Making perfect Restaurant Style Hakka Noodles at home is easier than you think! It’s all about cooking the noodles right, veggies and a few simple sauces. Everything's probably in your pantry already!
Look, everyone has those days when you wanna eat simple but you’re sick of the same old roti, dal, subzi deal. Next time that happens, just tell your folks that you’re making Hakka noodles for dinner, and let me know their reaction in the comments below 😛 Denver LOVES street-style desi Chinese food and so do I. We’re always up for Indo-chinese and the list of recipes on this website says it all!
I’ve been trying to make restaurant quality Hakka Noodles for years. And only recently I’ve been able to get flavour right. So here’s my secret hakka noodles recipe that takes literally 20-25 minutes including the veggie prep. We’ve done a vegetarian version, but if you want to add protein I’ve included some tips on that below. The seasoning is the most important part and that’s what gives it that street style taste. Every bite reminds me of the noodles that my favourite desi-chinese stall guy makes!
What are hakka noodles?
In simple terms, it’s a Chinese dish that’s prepared with cooked noodles, veggies, and proteins. The sauce or seasoning is milder than, let's say, Schezwan noodles, for example. All the flavour comes from the veggies and noodles being tossed together in a really hot wok with just a few sauces.
Cook The Noodles Perfectly
We used store bought noodles for this chinese noodles recipe - I use a brand called Kim's but Ching's Secret which is a popular brand works just as well. They usually take 3-4 minutes to cook and that’s why you should keep an eye on them - no instagramming please! This is probably the most important step in this recipe. If you cook your noodles right so that they are al dente (they still have a bite to them), that's half the battle won! Because eating mushy noodles stuck to one another is no fun at all. So here are some tips to cook the noodles just right:
- I usually cook the noodles for a minute less than what’s given on the packet. In my experience, by the time you drain them etc they are cooked just right.
- Salt the water well. It should be almost as salty as seawater! I also like to add some oil to the pot to prevent the noodles from sticking together
- When you check on the noodles, they should be done al dente - they should have a bite and not be mushy. Mushy noodles = overcooked
- Once cooked, quickly drain the noodles and rinse them well with cold water. Washing the noodles with cold water stops them from cooking further. So don’t skip this step!
- Drain the noodles really well. And if possible, spread them out on a baking tray and let them air dry for an hour or two. This gets rid of excess moisture and gives you thin, separate strands when you stir fry
How To Chop The Veggies
I always say this: When you’re making Indo-chinese food, prepping veggies is the only real work. Because they are not parboiled or pre-cooked, they need to be sliced thin and long or julienned, so they can cook evenly.
- Thinly slice the onions
- Finely mince the ginger and garlic
- Roughly chop some celery and spring onions. Celery may seem like an oddball here but it makes Chinese food taste amazing!
- Julienned carrots and capsicum: long slices, and as thin as you can
- Diagonally slice the beans so you get nice long fingers - they’ll cook faster, plus they’ll look good
- Thinly shred some cabbage
The Hakka Noodle Sauce/ Seasoning
That street-style taste of hakka noodles comes from just a handful of ingredients which I’m pretty sure you have in your pantry! We’ve used soy sauce, vinegar, tomato ketchup, red chilli sauce, salt and pepper to flavour the noodles. That’s literally all it takes to pack in those addictive flavours that you’ll crave for! Some people also like to add MSG for extra flavour, but we are skipping it here.
Choose the right oil
Use a cooking oil with a high smoke point. Sunflower oil, rice bran oil or canola oil are all good options. We’ve also added some sesame oil along with cooking oil. Sesame oil adds another dimension of flavour to the dish.
Top Tips To Make The Best Hakka Noodles
Here are some tips to take you through the process for Hakka Noodles
- The noodles should be cooked just right - do a bite test with a single strand of noodles!
- Make sure the veggies are all cut in approximately the same size so that they cook evenly
- Make sure your wok is super hot. The mise en place should be ready so that as soon as your wok is hot, you can start cooking. These hakka noodles only take minutes to cook!
- Stir-fry the veggies on high heat. The aim is to lightly cook the veggies by stir-frying so that they remain crunchy. Soggy veggies are no fun!
- Carefully stir fry the noodles - overdoing this can make the noodles stick to each other and ruin the dish
Thinking of making a different version of this hakka noodles recipe? Here are some ideas:
- You can add any veggies you like to this dish - mushrooms, broccoli, red and yellow bell peppers
- If you’re planning on making a non-vegetarian version, here are some protein options -
- Scramble in some eggs at the end
- Add some diced chicken pieces and lightly fry them along with the veggies. Thinly sliced or inch long diced chicken cooks really fast if you add it along with the carrots
- You could also add some prawns along with the veggies - prawns cook very fast so keep an eye on them so that they don’t get overcooked.
More Indo-Chinese Recipes For You:
- Egg Fried Rice
- Chinese Chicken Salad
- Chinese Hot and Sour Soup
- Chinese Cashew Chicken Noodles
- One Pan Veg Noodle and Manchurian
Love Asian as much as we do? Check out our list of Asian Recipes for When You Crave Takeout
Watch How to make Hakka Noodles Recipe Video
Restaurant Style Vegetarian Hakka Noodles
- 250 Grams Noodles hakka, egg or lo mein noodles
- 2 Teaspoons Salt
- Water for boiling
- 2 Tablespoons Oil
- ½ Teaspoon toasted Sesame Oil
- 2-3 Green Chillies slit lengthwise
- 1 Tablespoon Garlic minced
- ½ Tablespoon Ginger minced
- 1 Tablespoon Celery finely chopped
- ½ Cup Onion thinly sliced
- ½ Cup Carrot julienned
- ½ Cup Beans sliced diagonally
- ½ Cup Capsicum thinly sliced
- 1 Cup Cabbage thinly shredded
- 2 Teaspoons Soy Sauce
- 1 Teaspoon Vinegar
- 1-2 Teaspoons Red Chilli Sauce
- ½ Teaspoon Tomato Ketchup
- 1 Teaspoon Salt adjust to taste
- 1 Teaspoon Pepper
- 1 Tablespoon Spring Onion chopped for garnish
- Heat water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Ensure that there is enough water to submerge the noodles. Once the water is boiling, add salt and half a teaspoon of oil give it a stir. Now add the noodles, break them up slightly if you need to and boil on medium heat for 1 minute less than the package instructions (approx 3 minutes). Remember noodles can overcook within seconds so pay close attention. Once cooked, strain the noodles and run them under cold water till the noodles come to room temperature. Drain well and keep aside. You can toss them in a little oil to keep them from sticking to each other.
- Heat cooking oil and sesame oil in a wok and add garlic and ginger once hot. Saute on high flame until fragrant. Add onion, celery and green chillies and saute till the onions are almost translucent. Next add the carrots and beans and saute for 1 minute. Add capsicum and saute for 1 minute. Now add the cabbage and saute for 2 minutes.
- Add soy sauce, vinegar, red chilli sauce and ketchup and mix well. Add the cooked noodles and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Garnish with spring onions and serve hot!
- The noodles should be cooked just al dente. Before draining them, check the noodles and they should still have a bite to them.
- Immediately rinse the noodles under running cold water. This will prevent the noodles from cooking further.
- You can personalise this recipe as per your taste. Add any vegetables or protein you like when stir frying, before adding the noodles. I love to add prawns and chicken making it a full meal.
- Serve as is or along with my Asian Veg Stir Fry recipe