You guys…I didn’t know how much I needed noodle bowls in my life until I started skiing at a mountain with a noodle bowl bar. You get to choose the broth: chicken, beef or miso. And the meat: chicken, beef brisket or pork belly. And the noodles: ramen, udon or soba.
The first time I ordered one it was late in the day and they only had Udon noodles left. And basically now I’m hooked on them. They are so chewy and light and velvety. The perfect mix in a bite of meat and broth and crunchy veggies.
When we’re skiing, I dream about the tender meat, and salty broth, and spicy bits of jalapeno and sriracha sauce and those luxurious noodles. And afterwards, this food makes you feel SO good. Super nourished and comforted and charged with good things so you can ski for hours.
I usually have to fend off all of my kids from grabbing all the noodles, so I decided to try to make noodle bowls at home.
What I did not realize was how easy it could be in a crock pot. Or what an awesome family meal this is, since picky eaters usually love the noodles and the egg (why does the egg just make this dish?) and can be coaxed into some grated carrots. It actually would make great party food too – lay out all the toppings and let friends build them selves a customized bowl to their liking.
All you have to do is cook the chicken and broth with some aromatics and mushrooms for a few hours, and then add the noodles five minutes before you want to serve it.
Then you layout all the toppings…
And then you start to assemble…
Oh man. They are just so good. And I know that you could look around for complex broth recipes and boil pork knuckles with cinnamon and star anise like real pho broth. But the thing is I’m probably never going to make those because I don’t have time.
This broth takes 10 minutes has a complex flavor from the garlic and ginger and onions, as well as the soy sauce and rice wine vinegar.
You could obviously swap beef broth and some cuts like flank steak or brisket to this recipe, and you could also use Ramen or Soba noodles instead. And if you’re looking for any of these ingredients, an Asian section at most grocery stores should have the Udon and Ramen noodles, and I also found some Miso Broth that I can’t wait to try too.
I hope you try these soon, because they are life changing. I don’t say that lightly but THEY’RE THAT GOOD.
Slow Cooker Noodle Bowl (I doubled this to feed 8 and have some leftovers):
1 diced onion
6 garlic cloves, minced (may only want to do 8 when you double it)
1 T. fresh ginger, minced
4 cups chicken broth (1 32 oz. boxes)
1 lb. chicken breasts
8 oz. sliced shitake mushrooms
¼ soy sauce (more to taste for serving)
¼ rice wine vinegar
½ t. pepper
1 package Udon or Ramen noodles
Hard-boiled egg, cut in half lengthwise
Add onions, ginger, garlic, chicken breasts, chicken broth, mushrooms, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, and pepper to crock pot. Cover and cook on low for 3 hours.
When finished, remove chicken breasts and let rest, and add noodles to crock pot. Let cook for 5 minutes while you prep toppings. Slice chicken breasts then add back into crockpot, stirring to be sure noodles are broken up.
To serve, ladle broth, noodle, chicken and mushrooms into bowl. Add fresh vegetables and herbs, two halves of the hard-boiled egg, and Sriracha and jalapeños for heat.