Chilli Garlic Noodles (Chili Garlic Noodles) are quick, easy and seriously tasty! In less than 10 mins you can have a delicious slurp worthy bowl of noodles ready to dive into. These garlic chilli oil noodles get dinner done any night or every night of the week!!
Of the many things to love about this recipe, the following highlights are the summary of the points I think you will love the most:
- Everyday ingredients: everything that you need to make the recipe can be sort from the local supermarket.
- Fast cook time: the start to finish of this recipe will take 10 to 15 mins. Some nights I cook it in 8 mins, with only 2 mins of prep time. You will go from 'hangry - starving' to noodle fed yum in no time!
- Versatile: this is a recipe that you can add protein and veggies to if you wish.
- Side dish or main: serve the noodles on their own in bowls with chopsticks. Or serve them on the side with a protein like salmon, shrimp, tofu or cooked beef or pork.
The photo below is to show you exactly what you need to make the recipe. For exact measurements and step by step instructions, scroll to the printable recipe card below.
As you can see the recipe calls for:
- Noodles: I am using dried egg noodles. You can do the same or use your favourite brand. Follow the instructions on the packet and cook the noodles accordingly. Most brands and noodle types will have different instructions. Some require boiling on the stove and some only require boiling water poured over the top of them.
- Olive oil: this forms the basis for the sauce and is what we use to cook the garlic.
- Dark Soy Sauce: we use this ingredient for flavour and to get a bit of colour into the noodles. It is different to regular soy sauce. It will be in the same section at the shops however, and will be labelled 'dark soy sauce'.
- Chilli Flakes: these have a tendency to burn if they are overcooked. This is why we add them once the garlic is cooked, to the noodle water and dark soy as we make the sauce.
- Green onions: these are optional however, they add a pop of colour, a little crunch and are a nice way to garnish the dish. Thinly chopped and stirred to mix them through the noodles.
- Salt and pepper: just a little of each is used to season the dish.
- Reserved Noodle Water: when draining the noodles, hang onto 1 cup of the starchy water. It helps to bind the sauce and noodles together.
Top Tip: you might find it easier to use a heatproof jug to collect the noodle water just before draining the water, depending on how heavy the sauce pan or bowl is that you used to cook the noodles.
Here are the step by step instructions to make the recipe. We start by frying the sliced garlic in the oil at a medium to high heat.
- Add oil and garlic to pan, cook for 3 to 4 mins (Photo 1)
- Reserve 1 cup of water from noodles and add to garlic oil (Photo 2)
- Add dark soy sauce and chilli flakes (Photo 3)
- Stir to combine (Photo 4)
How to Make Chilli Garlic Noodles
Start by adding the oil to a large fry pan. Then add the sliced garlic and ensure the heat is medium to high. Stirring occassionally, cook until the garlic slices begin to sizzle and brown.
Try and use this time to also cook the noodles. To do this, simply follow the instructions on the packet. We then reserve 1 cup of the starchy noodle water for the sauce. You can use a jug to collect this just prior to draining or put the jug under the colander and collect as such.
Once you have collected the noodle water, add it to the cooked garlic. Then add the dark soy sauce and chilli flakes.
Stir these ingredients together to make the noodle sauce.
- Add cooked noodles to the sauce and stir to combine (Photo 5)
The next step is as per the photo above. You add the cooked noodles to the garlic chilli sauce and toss the noodles into the sauce.
It will take a couple of minutes to coat the noodles and you will notice them turn a slick brown colour as the sauce merges with the noodles. Keep tossing till the sauce is consistently mixed throuh with the noodles.
As you can see from the photo above, a few sliced green onions sprinkled then tossed through the noodles add pops of colour!
I find that the garlic tends to flick out to the outsides of the pan when cooking, so make sure when you are portioning that the garlic gets spread across the bowls.
There is plenty of garlic in this recipe and that is so that there is enough to go around between the 4 recommended servings.
You can stretch the dish to 6 if you want to serve the noodles as a side.
Portion the noodles into bowls and provide chop sticks for serving.
If you want to, you can provide some sriracha sauce or chilli oil that the eaters can drip over their steaming bowls of noodles!
If you want to provide an appetizer try my Air Fryer Frozen Spring Rolls, they cook quickly and be served with store bought sweet chilli sauce.
Substitutions and Variations
Regular readers know I like to give a few options in my recipes so that you have some choices and can mend things to your preferences. Try the following add ins or outs and let me know what you think in the comments below the recipe card!
- Use peanut oil as an alternative to the olive oil.
- Switch in gluten free noodles if that is your preference.
- Sprinkle toasted sesame seeds over the dish as a serving suggestion.
- Garnish with some pickled ginger for a pop of an alternate flavour.
- Add some cooked beef, pork or prawns to the recipe.
- Add in some cooked tofu, shrimp or seafood.
- Stir fry and add your favourite vegetables, like mushrooms, buk choy, capsicum, carrots and cabbage.
- Serve with parmesan cheese (some love this and some think cheese should be reserved for pasta, I will let you make the executive descision on that one).
How to Guide
How to Store
Store the noodles in an air tight container for 2 to 3 days. Reheat prior to consuming.
How to Freeze
Allow the dish to fully cool before freezing.
Freeze in portions placed into sealed glass or plastic containers or zip lock bags.
How to Reheat
Reheating cooked noodles can have mixed results.
For this reason, I recommend removing any frozen noodles from the freezer and placing in the fridge or on the bench to thaw.
Ensure that they are fully thawed prior to consumption.
Here are my top tips and tricks for getting the recipe right from the get go:
- Have everything prepped and ready to go.
- When cooking the noodles, use a fork or chopsticks to unfold them so they stretch out. Otherwise they will be in big clumps in the pan.
- Use high heat and keep things moving in the pan.
- When the garlic starts to sizzle and brown, reduce to a medium heat.
- Use chopsticks or kitchen tongs when tossing the noodles to allow all of the noodles to be covered by the sauce.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you eat garlic noodles?
Garlic noodles are best eaten hot with chopticks. Many garnishes are available such as toasted sesame seeds, chopped green onions, picked ginger, chilli oil and or cheese.
What tastes good with garlic noodles?
There is a wide variety of things to serve your noodles with! You can try an appetizer first such as dumplings or gyoza. Or you can add protein or vegetables to the recipe. For protein try beef, pork, chicken, tofu or shrimp. For vegetables try green onions, cabbage, carrots and or buk choy.
What is in chili garlic sauce?
Chili Garlic Sauce contains oil, garlic, chillies or chilli flakes, dark soy sauce, salt, pepper and reserved noodle water. This is the water that is used to cook the noodles it is starchy and helps bind the sauce to the noodles.
Is chili garlic sauce the same as Sriracha?
Sriracha is a thick hot chilli sauce used commonly as a condiment to add extra heat to a dish or in a sauce.
Chilli Garlic Sauce on the other hand is a combination of garlic, chilli and other ingredients to form a sauce for noodles or pasta.
Sriracha is very hot. A little of it goes a long way. Whereas chili garlic sauce has heat from the chilli flakes and flavour from the garlic but it does not contain the intense heat that sriracha is well known for.
What do you use chili garlic sauce for?
Chili Garlic Sauce has a wide variety of uses, is versatile and lends itself to mutliple serving manners. Try combining it with noodles, pasta, chicken, pork and rice or as a salad dressing.
If you love noodles or takeout style food and cooking these at home, here are some more recipes that you might enjoy:
- Beef Yaki Udon
- Shrimp Yakisoba
- Ginger Scallion Noodles
- Prawn Stir Fry Noodles
- Salmon Noodle Stir Fry
- Hungover Noodles
- Vegan Brown Rice Noodles
It is time to get your chopsticks ready my friends!
Chilli Garlic Noodles
- 1 Large fry pan
- 1 Wooden spoon
- 1 Kitchen Tongs
- 1 Chopsticks
- 1 Saucepan or Bowl to cook the noodles
- 1 Colander
- 1 Heatproof jug
- ½ cup olive oil Note 1
- 20 cloves garlic thinly sliced Note 2
- 500 grams egg noodles Note 3
- ½ teaspoon cracked black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon salt
Chilli Garlic Noodle Sauce
- 1 cup reserved noodle water Note 4
- 1 tablespoon chilli flakes
- 1 tbs dark soy sauce
- Cook garlic: add both the oil and sliced garlic to a pan, season with salt and pepper, then cook on medium to high heat for 3- 4 mins.
- Cook noodles: read and follow the cooking instructions on the packet of noodles and cook accordingly. Drain and reserve 1 cup of noodle water.
- Make sauce: add cup of reserved noodle water, chilli flakes and dark soy sauce to cooked garlic. Stir to combine.
- Add cooked noodles: add cooked noodles to the chilli garlic sauce and use kitchen tongs to toss the noodles, coating them in the sauce. Add finely chopped green onions and stir to combine (optional).
- To serve: portion and plate. Serve with chopsticks and enjoy!
- Note 1 - Oil: I am using olive oil. You can use the equivalent amount of peanut oil if you wish as an alternative.
- Note 2- Garlic: if you have a look at the ingredients photo, you will see how I have thinly sliced the garlic. This adds texture and taste to the dish. For this reason, I don't recommend you using minced garlic as it lacks the same texture which makes a highlight in the recipe. You want to be able to pick up those crispy little cooked bits of garlic with your chopsticks and you can't do that if you use minced garlic. Use garlic cloves and slice thinly like the photos in the post suggest (you will love it!).
- Note 3 - Noodles: I am using dried egg noodles. You can use these or your favourite type of noodle. For this recipe, I find a robust noodle works best than thinner ones (egg versus very thin wheat noodles).
- Note 4 - Reserved Noodle Water: this is 1 cup of the water that the noodles are cooked in. You can use a heatproof jug to scoop it out when the noodles are cooked, or place a jug under the colander and collect this as you drain the noodles. This is a key ingredient (essential) for the sauce as it helps bind the noodles to the sauce.