Beef Yakisoba (Beef Yaki Soba) is a Japanese dish consisting of stir fried noodles, vegetables and sauce. Quick and easy to prepare with a fast cook at high heat this recipe is perfect any night of the week!
You will love, love this recipe for the following reasons and many more:
- Japanese cooking at home: from the comfort of your kitchen you can whip up Japanese dinners that don't cost as much as eating at fancy restaurants!
- Japanese street food: yakisoba is a hugely popular dish that is often sold by market vendors at shrines and temples.
- Quick and easy: once everything is prepped and ready, you pretty much throw it in the pan and cook. Using a high heat makes the dish cook quickly in around 15 minutes!
- Packed with vegetables: I am using 4 different types of vegetables in this recipe. Loaded and versatile, check my subsitutions and variations for other veggies to try.
- Easily adaptable: some nights you might want beef, some pork, chicken or shrimp. Changing the dish is a simple as changing the protein.
- One pan: Other than cooking the noodles according to their packet instructions, this dish is all cooked in the one pan. Meaning less clean up and more time to relax!
Top Tip 1: Prep all of the ingredients on Sunday, pop them in the fridge and then come home from work on Monday knowing that dinner is almost ready!!
The photo below is to show you exactly what you need to cook the recipe. For exact measurements and detailed instructions, scroll to the recipe card below.
As you can see, the recipe calls for:
- Beef: I am using beef steak which I sliced into strips. I prefer this cut of meat for a stir fry as it is so thin and cooks very quickly. You can also use ground beef (beef mince) if you wish or any other thinly sliced beef.
- Noodles: Despite the name yakisoba, this recipe uses wheat based noodles not egg noodles. I am using Instant (ramen) noodles. You can do the same or use your favourite wheat based noodle, thick or thin.
- Cabbage: green cabbage which is shredded very finely as it cooks quickly is a great ingredient for this recipe as is one of the 4 veggies we use in the dish.
- Green onions: we predominately use the white onion part of this. This is because it has the same cook time as the other vegetables. You can use the green tubular bits for garnish, chopped up if you wish.
- Carrots: I peel and thinly slice mine. You can do the same or leave them unpeeled and cut into round slices.
- Onions: these are optional as we are also using green onions in the recipe. However, I like using them to bulk the recipe up with loads of veggies, it is somewhat traditional to see them in the recipe and they give great texture to the dish.
- Pickled ginger: benji shoga is the traditional garnish which is shredded picked ginger. If you can't find it, you can use gari, which is pickled sushi ginger (shown in the photos throughout the post). The main difference between the 2 is in their texture, one is shredded and the other sliced. They are also pickled with different vinegars, benji shoga uses plum vinegar and gari uses sweet vinegar.
- Sriracha sauce: optional ingredient to use when serving to add a little heat to the dish.
Beef Yaki Soba Sauce
- Soy sauce: this is the regular most common type of soy sauce available at the shops. You can use a salt reduced version if you wish.
- Oyster sauce: this is thick and salty! It is a great way to thicken the sauce as well being readily available and budget friendly.
- Worcestershire sauce (Worcester sauce): this is unique to yakisoba and how to get the umami flavour into the dish (savoriness).
- Ketchup: also known as tomato sauce. Is added for sweetness and flavour.
- Brown sugar: just a little bit which balances the high saltiness from the noodles and soy/oyster sauce.
Top Tip 2: Regarding the Worcestershire sauce, you will find it with other sauces at the shops, not in the Asian foods section (it originated in the UK).
Here are the step by step instructions to make the recipe. We start by making the sauce. I use a glass jug and mini whisk.
- Gather the sauce ingredients (Photo 1)
- Whisk the sauce together (Photo 2)
- Add oil and beef steak strips to pan (Photo 3)
- Stir fry the vegetables (Photo 4)
How to Make Beef Yakisoba
Start by making the sauce. This is as simple as whisking the 5 ingredients together, then setting it aside.
Next heat the peanut oil in a large pan and add the beef. Using high heat, cook the beef until browned, then remove it from the pan.
Add the cabbage, carrots, onions and green onions, cook for 2 to 3 mins. They will have a wet sweaty look when done.
- Add cooked noodles to stir fried vegetables (Photo 5)
- Add cooked beef back to pan (Photo 6)
- Pour sauce over the top (Photo 7)
- Stir till heated through (Photo 8)
Once you have cooked the vegetables and the noodles according to the packet instructions, drain them and add them to the pan.
Pour the sauce over the veggies, noodles and beef then stir to combine. It will only take a couple of minutes before everything is heated through and you are ready to serve.
You can serve from the pan on the table, or portion into bowls, garnish and provide chopsticks for eating!
As you can see from the photo above, I garnish my yakisoba with some picked ginger. Traditionally in Japan, it is common to see shredded (not sliced) ginger being served with the dish but if you can't find that or would have to make a special trip, use the same, same, slightly different sushi style ginger.
The ginger also adds a few pops of colour which is both pretty and gets your tastebuds watering at the same time!
If you want to, you can also use bonito flakes as a garnish and or chopped green onions.
Have a little fun with it, get your chopsticks out and enjoy cooking take out style food at home without waiting for it to be delivered!
I recommend serving the dish in bowls with chopsticks and small bowls on the table with optional garnishes.
This way the eaters can choose what they want to pop on top of their noodles.
Some people like ginger, some don't or won't so give people the choice.
If you want to serve an appetiser try my Air Fryer Frozen Spring Rolls!
Substitutions and Variations
As with all of my recipes, I like to give you a few options so that you can switch things up if you have different tastes or want to make it regularly and include some variety:
- Switch up the vegetables and try using buy choy, wombok, mushrooms, beansprouts and or capsicum (bell pepper).
- Use thicker noodles, I am using thin ones, but you can use your favourite.
- Garnish with traditional Japanese toppings such as bonito flakes, picked ginger and or sesame seeds.
- Use white sugar or honey as a substitute for the brown sugar.
- This one is for the game and adventurous: serve the yakisoba in hot dog buns (yakisoba pan)!
How to Guide
How to Store
Portion the dish into air tight containers and keep in the fridge for 2 to 3 days.
How to Freeze
Allow the dish to fully cool, then portion into sealed containers and freeze for up to 3 months.
How to Reheat
Reheating dishes that contain noodles can have mixed results.
I find the best method to use is to ensure that the dish has fully thawed prior to reheating.
This way the noodles won't break apart as you stir to get them hot again.
You can heat in the microwave or on the stove in a pan with a little oil to ensure they don't stick!
Here are my top tips and tricks for when you make the recipe to ensure you get it right from the very 1st time:
- Have everything prepped and ready to go.
- Make the sauce as a a starting point, set aside so ready as needed.
- Use high heat, this ensures things cook quickly!
- Keep things moving in the pan, this ensures nothing sticks and epitomises the ideals of 'stir fry' cooking.
- Read the pack instructions for the noodles. Some will require boiling on the stove and some simply covered with boiling water to cook.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Yakisoba?
Yakisoba is a Japanese recipe with stir fried noodles, vegetables and sauce. Commonly sold across the country and popular as a street eats food, you can find it at markets near shrines and is available for takeaway. (They pop it in a plastic container with chopsticks).
What is yakisoba sauce made of?
Yakisoba sauce has 5 ingredients. Soy sauce, oyster sauce, Worcestershire sauce (Worcester Sauce), ketchup (tomato sauce) and sugar.
Is yakisoba a ramen?
Yakisoba is not a ramen, however, ramen noodles are commonly used in yakisoba. Ramen is a meal served in a bowl with broth with options such as pork and boiled egg.
Yakisoba has a sauce but there is not broth involved.
What's the difference between udon and yakisoba?
Udon are thick white noodles. Yakisoba refers to the name of the stir fried dish which contains vegetables, protein and sauce.
Udon noodles can be used in stir fry recipes such as Yaki Udon or in broth such as Udon Noodle Soup. Yaki Udon is stir fried udon noodles with vegetables, protein and a soy based sauce.
What kind of noodles are in yakisoba?
Yakisoba noodles are thin wheat based noodles, and often ramen or Instant noodles are used. Egg noodles and Udon Noodles are different types of noodles to the ones used in yakisoba.
Despite the name, soba noodles are not used in Yakisoba.
How do you make yakisoba steak?
To make yakisoba steak, whisk together the sauce ingredients, cook the steak, then the vegetables, cook the noodles according to the instructions on the packet, pour the sauce over the top and stir to combine.
Is beef yakisoba spicy?
Beef Yakisoba is not spicy or hot in the chilli type sense. It has a sauce with a depth of flavour making it incredibly tasty, however, it is a mild tasting dish. If you want to make it spicy, serve it with sriracha sauce.
Is yakisoba served hot or cold?
Yakisoba is served hot. Often garnished with shredded pickled ginger and eaten with chopsticks.
More Takeout Style Recipes
Stay home and enjoy the comfort of your kitchen, cooking and down time. These recipes will take the weekly edge off and have you raving about them all week:
- Shrimp Yakisoba
- Pork Mince Noodles
- Chilli Garlic Noodles
- Soy Sauce Noodles
- Chicken Noodle Stir Fry
- Chicken Mince Stir Fry
- Ginger Scallion Noodles
- Honey Soy Chicken Stir Fry
You can also find all of my noodle recipes in the one spot!
PIN and save the recipe for later!
- 1 Small jug
- 1 Mini whisk or fork
- 1 Wok or Large Fry Pan
- 1 Chopsticks
- 1 Wooden spoon
- 1 Tongs
- 2 tbs peanut oil
- 400 grams beef thinly sliced, Note 1
- 2 cups cabbage thinly shredded
- 1 cup carrots peeled and cut into thin strips
- ½ cup onion peeled, thinly sliced
- 4 green onions roots and tips trimmed, cut into 4 sections
- 4 packets Instant noodles Note 2
- pickled ginger optional, to garnish
Beef Yakisoba Sauce
- 2 tbs soy sauce
- 2 tablespoon oyster sauce
- 2 tbs worcestershire sauce
- 2 tablespoon ketchup (tomato sauce)
- 2 teaspoon brown sugar
- Make sauce: use a small jug to combine and whisk the sauce ingredients. Set aside.
- Cook beef: heat 2 tbs peanut oil in fry pan at high heat, add beef and cook till browned, then remove from pan.
- Cook vegetables: use the same pan to stir fry the vegetables for 2 to 3 mins.
- Cook noodles: according to the packet instructions, drain, then add to the cooked vegetables.
- Add beef: add cooked beef back to the pan, pour sauce over and stir fry till dish is heated through.
- Serve: portion into bowls, garnish with pickled ginger, bonito flakes, sesame seeds and or chopped green onions (optional), provide chopsticks for eating!
- Note 1 - Beef: I am using sizzle steak. It is a very thin cut and cooks quickly. This or stir fry beef strips work well. You can also use beef mince or ground beef.
- Note 2 - Noodles: I am using Instant noodles (ramen noodles). I buy a large packet that has no seasoning or dried vegetables. This way I am not discarding anything from the packet. They are budget friendly and are usually in the Asian foods section of the supermarket. You might know them as 2 minute noodles.
- Note 3 - Nutritional Information: is provided as a user friendly guide. Portion size and ingredients will impact kcal information.