Best Noodles for Ramen: Top Picks and Must-Try Varieties

Noodles are a staple ingredient in many cuisines, and when it comes to ramen, choosing the right noodle can elevate your dish from ordinary to extraordinary. Ramen is a popular Japanese dish known for its flavorful broth and distinctive noodles, which play a crucial role in bringing everything together. To make the ultimate bowl of ramen, you need the best noodles that complement your choice of broth and toppings.

There’s an array of noodles available, but not all are ideal for ramen. Authentic ramen noodles have a distinct texture, slight chewiness, and the ability to absorb flavors. To achieve that perfect balance, it’s essential to look at factors such as the type of flour used, shape, thickness, and cooking method.

When selecting the best noodles for ramen, consider the type of broth you’ll be using and the desired texture. This is important because noodles can make or break the combination, so it’s essential to have noodles with the right thickness, elasticity, and chewiness to match your broth. For example, thinner noodles work best with lighter broths, while thicker noodles can hold up to richer and heavier broths.

There are many options available when it comes to finding the perfect ramen noodles for your next meal. To help you navigate the myriad of choices, we’ve spent hours researching and taste testing an assortment of noodles, focusing on factors such as texture, flavor, and ability to complement different broths. Our quest has led us to a selection of noodles that will elevate your ramen game and make each bowl a culinary delight.

Best Noodles for Ramen

Below, you’ll find our carefully curated list of the best noodles for ramen. Elevate your homemade ramen experience with these top-quality selections.

Nongshim Gourmet Spicy Shin Instant Ramen

Nongshim Gourmet Spicy Shin Instant Ramen

This ramen is perfect for those who crave a spicy, flavorful noodle dish that’s ready to enjoy in minutes!


  • Classic, customizable ramen with a rich, savory broth
  • Additional toppings like shiitake mushrooms, carrots, and scallions for texture
  • Convenient and deeply satisfying on-the-go meal


  • Spicier than average instant noodles (may not suit all taste buds)
  • Some may find the noodles too springy
  • Potential cravings for even more toppings

If you’re seeking a ramen dish that packs an unforgettable punch, the Nongshim Gourmet Spicy Shin Instant Ramen is a superb option. With a warm, savory, and rich spice throughout the broth, every bite is satisfying and comforting. The noodle consistency is springy and holds up well during the entire meal. This ramen is easily customizable by adding ingredients of your choice or enjoying it as is for a quick and easy meal.

The toppings included in this ramen, such as shiitake mushroom slices, carrots, and scallions, provide a pleasant texture as you eat. The shiitake mushrooms, in particular, have a nice meat-like texture, making this dish even more enjoyable for vegetarians or those wanting to consume less meat. Simply put, the flavors and textures work well together to provide a satisfying and easily-prepared meal.

However, be warned that this ramen is spicier than your average instant noodles, which might not be suitable for every palate. Having the ability to adjust the spice level to your liking is essential for those with lower tolerance levels. Additionally, some may find the noodle elasticity too springy for their taste, or may desire more toppings to create a fuller dish.

In conclusion, the Nongshim Gourmet Spicy Shin Instant Ramen offers a unique, flavorful, and easy-to-make meal option. If you’re a fan of customizable ramen and can handle a bit of heat, this should undoubtedly be your go-to choice for satisfying your taste buds and hunger for a delicious, quick meal.

Samyang Buldak Chicken Stir Fried Ramen Variety Pack

Samyang Buldak Ramen

This pack of Samyang Buldak Ramen will surely spice up your taste buds with its variety and authenticity.


  • Intense spiciness with a variety of flavors
  • Authentic Korean taste
  • Quick and convenient preparation


  • Might not be suitable for those who cannot handle spicy foods
  • Some reports of moldy rice cakes
  • May require additional toppings for a fuller meal

If you’re seeking a way to spice up your ramen game, the Samyang Buldak Chicken Stir Fried Ramen Variety Pack is an excellent choice. Each pack offers a different flavor, with options such as cream carbonara, kimchi, habanero, cheese, and stew. The intense heat and flavor balance will undoubtedly excite your taste buds and keep you coming back for more.

Aside from the spiciness, the authentic Korean taste sets this ramen brand apart. Samyang takes pride in using high-quality ingredients to ensure the best taste and quality. The perfectly textured noodles combined with the rich and flavorful soup base create a delightful and satisfying meal that captures the essence of Korean cuisine.

Preparing these noodles is both convenient and quick. In just a few minutes, you’ll have a delicious and satisfying bowl of spicy ramen by simply boiling the noodles, mixing in the included soup base, and garnishing with your favorite toppings. You can easily customize your ramen by adding vegetables, eggs, or extra protein to enhance the flavor and texture, allowing for a personalized dining experience.

However, those who are not into spicy foods might find the Samyang Buldak Ramen too hot to handle. Furthermore, there have been a few reports of moldy rice cakes, which could adversely impact your overall experience. To enjoy a more balanced meal, you may also need to add extra toppings, as the noodles and soup base alone might not be enough.

In conclusion, the Samyang Buldak Chicken Stir Fried Ramen Variety Pack offers a diverse range of spicy flavors, which are perfect for anyone who enjoys a good kick in their meals. Prepare to test your taste buds and indulge in the authentic Korean taste of these unique noodles.

Public Goods Ramen Noodles

Public Goods Ramen Noodles

Indulge in the delicious flavors and high-quality noodles of Public Goods Ramen Noodles, perfect for vegan and health-conscious food enthusiasts.


  • Healthier alternative to traditional ramen
  • Made from all-natural, simple ingredients
  • Two flavors in one pack – original and spicy sesame oil


  • Not suitable for those with gluten allergies
  • Cannot purchase flavors individually
  • Pricier than standard ramen packets

Public Goods Ramen Noodles stand out for their unique approach to the classic ramen dish, offering a vegan and preservative-free alternative that doesn’t compromise on taste. With an original and spicy sesame oil flavor, these noodles cater to different taste preferences while maintaining a focus on simple, all-natural ingredients. The noodles are also lower in fat compared to traditional ramen noodles, thanks to a special technique that eliminates the need for deep frying.

However, there are some details customers need to take into account. Firstly, these noodles are not suitable for those with gluten allergies. Secondly, the inability to purchase individual flavors may be a drawback for some. Lastly, the higher price compared to typical ramen packets may discourage those on a budget.

Despite these minor drawbacks, Public Goods Ramen Noodles provide a fantastic option for those seeking a healthier and eco-friendly ramen experience. The combination of delicious flavors and high-quality noodles is sure to impress even the most discerning of eaters. Give it a try – you won’t be disappointed.

Momofuku Ramen Noodles Variety Pack by David Chang

Momofuku Ramen Noodles

Upgrade your ramen game with these delicious, nutritious, and vegan-friendly noodles from David Chang’s Momofuku.


  • Wholesome ingredients and chef-approved flavors
  • Air-dried, not fried, for lower calorie count
  • Versatile variety pack with 3 different flavors


  • Flavor packs and add-ins may be a bit skimpy
  • Might be considered pricey for some
  • Two of the flavors may be too spicy for those with low heat tolerance

Momofuku Ramen Noodles are a fantastic upgrade from your standard instant noodles. With a focus on wholesome ingredients and delicious flavors, these noodles have a satisfying taste and texture that make them perfect for a quick and tasty meal. The variety pack features three flavors: Soy & Scallion, Spicy Soy, and Tingly Chili Wavy, giving you plenty of options to match your preferences.

The noodles are air-dried, rather than fried, which translates to 25% fewer calories than leading brands and double the protein. Plus, they contain zero grams of cholesterol. This makes them a healthier choice for your ramen cravings. The flavors are developed by David Chang and rely on simple, tasty ingredients like soy sauce, chili paste, and sesame oil, resulting in a balanced and satisfying experience.

However, some users have noted that the flavor packs and add-ins could be more generous. Additionally, the price might be considered high for some customers, especially compared to standard instant noodles. Finally, the two spicy flavors may be too hot for those who can’t handle heat, although it might not be an issue for spice lovers.

Overall, if you’re looking for a healthier and tastier alternative to regular instant ramen, Momofuku Ramen Noodles are worth a try. They provide a chef-approved and nutritious option that’ll elevate your at-home ramen experience.

Pure Traditions Keto Noodles

Pure Traditions Keto Noodles

A perfect noodle alternative for low-carb and keto enthusiasts without compromising taste and texture.


  • Only 1g carbs and 10g protein per serving
  • Amazing taste and texture, similar to rice or wheat-based noodles
  • Simple, clean ingredients; keto and paleo-certified


  • May be slightly pricey for everyday consumption
  • Relies on a good sauce for full flavor
  • Limited availability, restock waiting periods

These Pure Traditions Keto Noodles are a game-changer for anyone following a low-carb or keto diet. With only 1g of carbs and 10g of protein per serving, they allow you to enjoy your favorite noodle dishes without feeling guilty. Made from egg whites, they offer the taste and texture you crave in traditional noodles but without the usual allergens, carbs, or wheat-based ingredients.

The variety pack includes both Ramen and Vermicelli noodles, ensuring you have options for a range of dishes. Whether you want to add them to your favorite soup, sauce or create a stir fry, these noodles provide a satisfying and delicious alternative to regular pasta. Simply drain the noodles and toss them in with your preferred ingredients. The possibilities are endless!

While the taste and texture of these keto noodles are impressive, they do rely on a good sauce to reach their full flavor potential. Some may find the price a bit steep for regular use, but they are well worth it as a treat or more occasional meal. Additionally, be prepared for potential periods of unavailability as they tend to sell out quickly due to their popularity.

In summary, the Pure Traditions Keto Noodles offer a versatile, tasty, and low-carb solution for those who want to enjoy pasta dishes without compromising their keto or paleo diet. If you’re willing to invest a little extra for a delicious alternative, this product is definitely worth a try.

Buying Guide

When looking for the best noodles for your ramen, there are several factors to consider. In this buying guide, we will walk you through some key features to look for in a quality ramen noodle.

Type of Noodles: Ramen noodles come in various types such as wheat, egg, and rice noodles. Each type offers a distinct texture and flavor profile. Consider your personal preference and the type of broth you plan to use when selecting your noodles.

Thickness and Shape: Noodles vary in thickness, from thin and straight to thick and wavy. Thinner noodles tend to cook faster and absorb flavors more quickly, while thicker noodles have a chewier texture. Choose a shape and thickness that complement your ramen dish and suit your taste preferences.

Ingredients: Look for noodles made with high-quality ingredients, such as stone-ground wheat flour and natural mineral water. These ingredients can impact the texture and taste of your noodles. Avoid noodles containing artificial additives or preservatives.

Cooking Time: Ramen noodles typically have a short cooking time, ranging from 1 to 5 minutes. Choose noodles with a cooking time that works best for you, keeping in mind that some types may require additional preparation, such as soaking or pre-cooking.

Packaging: Opt for noodles packaged in airtight bags or containers to maintain freshness. Additionally, check for clear cooking instructions and, if possible, a recommended “best by” date.

To summarize, when choosing the best noodles for your ramen, consider factors such as type, thickness, ingredients, cooking time, and packaging. By paying attention to these features, you can ensure a delicious and satisfying ramen experience.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the top types of noodles to use in ramen?

There are several types of noodles that work well in ramen, but the top choices are:

  1. Wheat noodles: These are the most traditional choice, offering a nice chewy texture and a good balance with the broth.
  2. Egg noodles: They have a slightly firmer texture and a rich, eggy flavor, making them perfect for heartier ramen bowls.
  3. Thin noodles: These are ideal for lighter ramen dishes, as they absorb the broth well without becoming too heavy or overwhelming.

Which instant noodles brands are best for ramen?

Some of the best instant noodle brands for ramen include:

  1. Nissin: Creator of the original instant noodles and known for their delicious and authentic ramen varieties.
  2. Maruchan: Widely popular for their flavorful and affordable instant ramen options.
  3. Sapporo Ichiban: A well-loved Japanese brand offering tasty and traditional ramen flavors.

Can soba or rice noodles be used as a substitute in ramen?

While traditional ramen noodles are made from wheat, you can definitely experiment with soba or rice noodles as substitutes. Soba noodles, made from buckwheat flour, will give your ramen dish a unique and nutty flavor. Rice noodles, on the other hand, will provide a lighter and gluten-free alternative.

What’s the best homemade ramen noodles recipe?

A simple homemade ramen noodle recipe involves the following ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup water

Combine the flour and salt, then mix in the eggs and water. Knead the dough until smooth, then roll it out thinly and cut into your desired noodle shape. Cook in boiling water for 2-3 minutes or until al dente.

Are udon noodles a good choice for ramen?

Udon noodles, being thicker and chewier than typical ramen noodles, can be a great alternative for those who prefer a heartier texture in their noodle soups. However, keep in mind that udon noodles may not absorb the broth as much and may slightly alter the overall taste of your ramen dish.

What are some must-try instant ramen bowls?

Some must-try instant ramen bowls include:

  1. Nissin Raoh: A premium instant ramen brand with a rich and complex broth and high-quality noodles.
  2. Samyang Spicy Chicken Ramen: A Korean instant ramen known for its fiery heat and delicious flavor.
  3. Myojo Chukazanmai: A Japanese brand offering restaurant-quality ramen at home with various flavor options.
  4. Maruchan Creamy Chicken Flavor: A popular choice for a creamy and rich twist on the classic chicken ramen.
  5. Indomie Mi Goreng: A unique Indonesian-style fried noodle dish packed with bold flavors.
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Cassie brings decades of experience to the Kitchen Community. She is a noted chef and avid gardener. Her new book "Healthy Eating Through the Garden" will be released shortly. When not writing or speaking about food and gardens Cassie can be found puttering around farmer's markets and greenhouses looking for the next great idea.
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