Spicy Udon Noodle Soup with Chicken & Mushrooms
Tender chicken pieces, gorgeous Asian mushrooms, slippery udon noodles, a spicy and savory broth with a peppery kick, juicy wontons, and crisp spring onion come together to make this warming and delicious Spicy Udon Noodle Soup with Chicken & Mushrooms! It’s easy to make, loaded with umami, and guaranteed to warm you up on a chilly or rainy day!
Friends, this Spicy Udon Noodle Soup with Chicken & Mushrooms is LEGIT delicious. It’s got all sorts of magical elements that when simmered and put together, make for a tasty, comforting, and satisfying meal. 💛
- Tender on the inside and crisp on the outside marinated and seared chicken pieces.
- A gorgeous assortment of Asian mushrooms.
- A wonderfully savory, spicy, and umami loaded broth with a peppery kick.
- Slippery and chewy thick udon noodles.
- Baby bok choy to add some greenery, and fresh crisp spring onion to sprinkle on top of your delicious bowl of udon soup noodles…
- …AND juicy pork and shrimp WONTONS?!
You know this is a winner meal when wontons are involved and that you can’t go wrong! 😉
It’s great if you’re fighting off a cold or just need to warm up your insides on a cold or rainy day. Best of all, it’s very simple and straightforward to make thanks to using store-bought broth to start with and just jazzing it up a little with a few fresh aromatics, sauces and seasonings. No need for hours of simmering to give you the BEST flavors. 🙌
Why This Recipe Works
- Easy and fairly quick to make. You can have it on the table in about 45 minutes (inclusive of prep time) on any given weeknight.
- Flexible. Use any type of Asian mushrooms, or in a pinch, brown button, cremini, or champignon mushrooms would taste fantastic too!
- Winter warmer. It’s guaranteed to warm up your bones on a chilly day, and is super comforting, filling, and satisfying.
- Noodles and WONTONS!! I think you’ll enjoy a bowl of this spicy udon noodle soup even more if you crown it with some delicious and juicy wontons!
- Chicken: I used boneless and skinless chicken thighs and marinated the pieces with low sodium light soy sauce, fish sauce, corn starch (to help give the chicken a crispy crust when seared), white pepper, and sesame oil. I like using thighs over breasts because they don’t dry out as much.
- Garlic, Ginger and Chilies: We’ll need to smash garlic, ginger, and fresh chilies in a mortar and pestle for our fragrant aromatics paste. I’ve used fresh Thai Bird’s Eye chilies and fiery hot Prik Kee Nu green chilies to really spice up the broth. Feel free to use any other type of small hot chilies you can get in your area. Also, adjust the quantity to taste based on your heat level preference.
- Asian Red Shallots: Substitute with 1/3 of a thinly sliced medium red onion or use 2-3 French eschalots if unavailable.
- Assorted Asian Mushrooms: I used an assortment of fresh shitake, shimeji/enoki, and Taiwanese Hsui Tseng mushrooms. But you’re welcome to use any type of Asian mushrooms you love, either one type or a combination of several varieties. You can also use a combination of dried mushrooms and fresh mushrooms. Rejuvenate the dried mushrooms by soaking in a bowl of hot water first before slicing the cap.
- Canola Oil: Or any other neutral flavored cooking oil.
- Star Anise: These star shaped pods are a Chinese spice that have a sweet peppery flavor with a licorice aroma. We’ll need whole pods for this soup, which we will fish out at the end after letting them infuse the broth with their beautiful anise flavor.
- Dried Shrimp: To add some background salty and savory umami notes. They’ll become tender enough to eat once simmered. While you can leave them out, you’ll notice the difference if you do. Find them in dried seafood shops in the wet market if you’re based in Asia, or in packages at Asian supermarkets or online.
- Pork Bone Broth: Or use chicken broth. If using low sodium chicken broth, you may need to add more salt to taste.
- Seasoning Spices: We’ll be using both ground white and black pepper to enrich the broth with wonderful peppery notes, ground cinnamon for some warming tones, and a pinch of kosher salt.
- Seasoning Sauces: Low sodium light soy sauce and fish sauce for savory umami notes, and Shao Xing rice wine for a fragrant floral aroma. Look for Shao Xing rice wine in an Asian supermarket, or substitute with dry sherry in a pinch.
- White Sugar: To round out and balance the spicy and peppery flavors.
- Udon noodles: I used the vacuum sealed packages of udon noodles, which are readily available in Asian supermarkets and some large supermarkets. But you can use dried or frozen udon noodles too.
- Asian Greens: Some blanched bok choy and spring onion for garnish. You can use other Asian greens like choy sum, Chinese broccoli (‘gai lan’), etc.
- Wontons (not pictured): Wontons in noodle soups always taste AMAZING! I used some store-bought pork and shrimp wontons. You’re welcome to use any type of homemade or store-bought wontons you like.
Full ingredient list and amounts are in the recipe card below.
How to Make Spicy Udon Noodle Soup
Make the Spicy Chicken & Mushroom Soup
1. Cook the chicken. In a bit of oil in a medium-sized skillet. Sear the marinated chicken pieces until they’re nicely browned and cooked through. Transfer to a clean bowl and set aside while you make the broth.
2. Sauté aromatics. In a large Dutch oven, heat oil and sauté the shallots for a minute. Then add the smashed garlic, ginger and chilies paste, star anise, and dried shrimp. Sauté for a few seconds until fragrant.
3. Add the mushrooms. Stir to combine until slightly tender.
4. Build the broth. Stir in the pork bone broth and water and add all of the sauces and seasonings. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for a few minutes.
You can add the cooked chicken to the soup during the last few minutes of simmering until it’s heated through. Or wait until you assemble the noodle bowls and top them with the cooked chicken. Either way works as the broth will be hot enough to heat the chicken through in the bowls. However, the latter method will help to preserve the crispy texture of the chicken.
Give the broth a taste and adjust seasonings if needed, then switch off the heat. Fish out and discard the star anise.
Assemble the Noodle Soup Bowls
- Cook noodles, Asian greens, and wontons. Cook the udon noodles according to package instructions in a separate pot of boiling water. During the last 30 seconds, blanch the Asian greens in the same pot. Drain and divide the noodles and greens evenly into bowls. Add water to pot again and bring to a boil. Add the wontons and cook according to package instructions. Transfer the wontons using a slotted spoon to the noodle bowls.
- Serve! Ladle the spicy chicken and mushroom soup evenly over the noodle bowls and garnish with chopped spring onion. Serve immediately, with some Chinese chili oil for drizzling if desired. Enjoy!
Full detailed instructions are in the recipe card below.
- Use half the amount if using dried udon noodles. They’ll be approximately double in weight once cooked.
- Strain the broth. I don’t mind have bits of fresh aromatics and the chewy dried shrimp in my spicy udon noodle soup bowl. But if you prefer a cleaner broth, sauté the aromatics and dried shrimp, then add the broth, sauces, and seasonings and simmer for 10 minutes. Strain and discard the solids, then add the mushrooms and simmer for 5 more minutes or until tender.
You can find dried, frozen, vacuum sealed shelf-stable packs and fresh udon noodles in Asian supermarkets. You might also be able to find them in the noodles or Asian ingredients aisle in supermarkets that are well-stocked with international ingredients. Alternatively, purchase from any of the many online stores that sell them such as Amazon.
Udon noodles are made with wheat as one of the primary ingredients, so they are not gluten free. However, you can find gluten-free udon noodles online, which are made with Japanese rice flour instead of wheat.
- Switch up the protein. Use marinated and seared sliced pork fillet or beef flank steak, or shrimp or assorted seafood to make this a spicy seafood udon noodle soup. If using shrimp or assorted seafood, add it directly to the broth during the last 2-3 minutes of simmering the broth and until cooked through. Some great seafood choices would be scallops, calamari, and even shellfish like clams.
- Use different noodles. Shirataki – a gluten-free and vegan noodle, ramen, soba, or other wheat noodles, etc.
- Make it vegetarian/vegan. Omit the chicken and marinade ingredients. Top with salt and pepper seasoned crispy pan-fried tofu cubes. Use veggie broth instead of pork bone broth, red miso paste in place of the dried shrimp, and more soy sauce to season the broth instead of fish sauce. You can use store-bought or homemade vegetarian wontons or dumplings, or leave them out if you wish.
- Make it gluten-free. Make sure the broth and fish sauce you’re using is GF certified, and use a gluten-free soy sauce (low sodium preferred or use less to taste if using regular soy sauce). Also, use gluten-free udon noodles. Leave out the wontons, or make some gluten-free wontons with homemade gluten-free wonton wrappers.
More Noodle Soups
- Thai Glass Noodle Soup (with Chicken & Prawn Meatballs)
- Spicy Korean Seafood Soup Noodles (Jjjamppong)
- Spicy Dan Dan Noodles with Wontons
- Khao Soi Gai (Northern Thai Coconut Curry Noodles Soup with Chicken)
- Spicy Curry Laksa
- Or browse the entire Soup Noodles and Noodles recipe collections.
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Spicy Udon Noodle Soup with Chicken & Mushrooms
Tender chicken pieces, gorgeous Asian mushrooms, slippery udon noodles, a spicy and savory broth, juicy wontons, and crisp spring onion come together to make this warming and delicious Spicy Udon Noodle Soup with Chicken & Mushrooms!
- Prep Time: 15
- Cook Time: 30
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: 3 1x
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Simmer
- Cuisine: Asian-inspired
For the Chicken:
- 13 ounces / 375 grams (2 large pieces) Chicken Thighs, boneless, skinless – cleaned and pat-dried, cut into bite-sized pieces
- ½ TBLS Low Sodium Light Soy Sauce
- 1 TSP Fish Sauce
- ½ TBLS Corn Starch
- ½ TSP ground White Pepper
- 1 TSP Sesame Oil
- 1 TBLS Canola Oil (or any other neutral flavored cooking oil), for cooking
For the Spicy Mushroom Broth:
- 6 Garlic cloves – peeled and roughly chopped
- 2-inch piece Ginger – peeled and roughly chopped
- 4–12 fresh Thai Red Chilies (Bird’s Eye or any other small hot red chilies), to taste – destemmed and roughly chopped
- 4–6 Thai Prik Kee Nu Green Chilies (optional), to taste – destemmed and halved
- 3–4 small Asian Red Shallots – peeled, halved, thinly sliced
- 7 ounces / 200 grams Assorted Asian Mushrooms (oyster, enoki/shimeji, shitake, Hsui Tseng, etc.) – cleaned and thinly sliced if needed
- 2 TBLS Canola Oil
- 2 whole Star Anise
- 1 TBLS Dried Shrimp
- 1 liter / 1000ml Pork Bone Broth (or Chicken Broth)
- 2 cups / 474ml Water
- ½ TSP ground Cinnamon (or 1 2-inch piece cassia cinnamon)
- ½ – ¾ TSP ground White Pepper, to taste
- ½ TSP Black Pepper Powder, to taste
- 2 TBLS Low Sodium Light Soy Sauce
- 1 TBLS Fish Sauce
- 2 TBLS Shao Xing Rice Wine
- ½ TSP Kosher Salt, to taste
- ¾ TSP White Sugar, to taste
- 14 ounces / 400 grams Udon Noodles (I used vacuum sealed packs)
- 6 pieces Asian Greens (bok choy, choy sum, or Chinese broccoli)
- 9 pieces frozen Wontons (I used store-bought shrimp and pork wontons)
- 2 Spring Onions / Scallions (Green Onion) – finely chopped
- Chinese Chili Oil (optional) – store-bought or homemade, with flakes and seeds such as Lao Gan Ma Spicy Chili Crisp Sauce
- Marinate the chicken: Clean and pat-dry the chicken thighs. Trim off excess fat if needed and cut into bite-sized pieces. Add to a medium bowl, followed by the low sodium light soy sauce, fish sauce, corn starch, ground white pepper, and sesame oil. Mix well to combine, then set aside.
- Prepare the fresh ingredients: Roughly chop the garlic, ginger, red chilies, and Prik Kee Nu (if using). Transfer to mortar and pestle and pound into a coarse paste, then. Slice the shallots and any of the mushrooms such as shitakes if needed. Set aside.
For the Spicy Chicken & Mushroom Soup:
- Cook the chicken: Heat 1 tablespoon of canola oil in a medium-sized skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the marinated chicken and immediately spread the pieces out in the pan. Cook for a minute, undisturbed, then flip the pieces over and cook for another minute. Once nicely browned and cooked through, transfer to a clean bowl using a slotted spoon and set aside.
- Sauté aromatics: Heat 2 tablespoons of canola oil in a large Dutch oven or stockpot over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the shallots and sauté for a minute until slightly softened. Then add the garlic, ginger, and chilies paste, star anise, and dried shrimp. Sauté for 30 seconds until fragrant.
- Add the mushrooms: Add the mushrooms and stir to combine for a minute until slightly tender.
- Build the broth: Pour in the pork bone broth and water, stir to combine. Season with ground white pepper, black pepper powder, ground cinnamon, low sodium light soy sauce, fish sauce, Shao Xing rice wine, kosher salt, and white sugar. Stir to combine and bring to a boil over high heat. Then reduce the heat to low and simmer uncovered for 15 minutes. Add the cooked chicken back in during the last 2 minutes of simmering. (Or to preserve the texture of the cooked chicken, you can top off the noodle bowls with the chicken pieces when serving instead). Switch off the heat. Fish out and discard the star anise.
To Assemble Noodle Bowls:
- Assemble the noodle bowls: While the soup is simmering, cook the udon noodles according to package instructions in a separate pot of boiling water. During the last 30 seconds of cooking, add the Asian greens in the same pot and briefly blanch them. Drain and divide the noodles and Asian greens into three bowls. Add water to pot again and bring to a boil. Add the wontons and cook according to package instructions. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the wontons to noodle bowls.
- To Serve: Ladle the spicy chicken and mushroom soup evenly over the noodle bowls and garnish with chopped spring onion. Serve immediately with Chinese chili oil for drizzling if desired.
- Mortar and pestle: If you don’t own one, you bend the aromatics in a mini blender instead. Or smash with the flat side of your knife and then finely chop.
- Assorted Asian Mushrooms: I used an assortment of fresh shitake mushrooms, shimeji/enoki, and Taiwanese Hsui Tseng mushrooms. But use any type of Asian mushrooms you love, either one type or a combination of several varieties. You can also use a combination of dried mushrooms and fresh mushrooms. Rejuvenate the dried mushrooms by soaking in a bowl of hot water first before slicing. If you don’t have easy access to Asian mushrooms, use brown button, cremini, white champignon mushrooms, etc. instead.
- Asian ingredients: Dried shrimp, star anise, pork bone broth, and Shao Xing rice wine can be found in an Asian supermarket. If you can’t get a hold of Asian red shallots, substitute with 1/3 of a thinly sliced medium red onion or use 2-3 French eschalots.
- Udon noodles: Dried, frozen, vacuum sealed shelf-stable packs and fresh udon noodles can be found in Asian supermarkets. You might be able to find them in the noodles or Asian ingredients aisle in supermarkets that are well-stocked with international ingredients. They are also available on several online stores that you can order from such as Amazon.
- Strain the broth if desired. I don’t mind have bits of fresh aromatics and the chewy dried shrimp in my spicy udon noodle soup bowl. But if you prefer a cleaner broth, sauté the aromatics and dried shrimp, then add the broth, sauces, and seasonings and simmer for 10 minutes. Strain and discard the solids, then add the mushrooms and simmer for 5 more minutes or until tender.
- If using dried udon noodles. Use half the amount (7 ounces / 200 grams) and boil according to package instructions. The noodles will be approximately double in weight once cooked.
- Storing leftovers: Store the spicy chicken & mushroom soup in an airtight sealed container in the fridge for 3-4 days. Reheat the broth in a pot on the stovetop over medium-high heat until hot throughout. Only assemble the noodle bowls when ready to eat. If the noodles are combined with the soup in advance, they will absorb all the broth over time.
- See ‘Variations’ section above if you’d like to customize this noodle soup.
- Serving Size: 1 bowl
- Calories: 759
- Sugar: 17.2g
- Sodium: 3489.3mg
- Fat: 27.2g
- Saturated Fat: 4.5g
- Unsaturated Fat: 20.6
- Trans Fat: 0.1g
- Carbohydrates: 83.4g
- Fiber: 7.4g
- Protein: 44.4g
- Cholesterol: 134.5mg
Keywords: udon noodle soup, chicken udon noodle soup, spicy udon noodle soup
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