Instant ramen remains a staple dish of the struggling college student. Even in a world where clean and healthy eating is on the rise, with acai bowls and green drinks everywhere you turn, ramen still beckons, especially when your wallet is thin.
Of course, eating ramen daily gets boring quickly, and it can be downright depressing to constantly slurp the same noodles and “flavor packets” all the time. The good news, however, is that several ramen aficionados have come up with easy ways to upgrade the dish into something exciting and delicious.
Here are a few of the most popular ways to elevate your instant ramen and stay within a tight budget.
An egg-cellent addition
Far and away, the most common and beloved way to easily upgrade a cup or packet of ramen is to simply drop an egg or two into the pot when the noodles are finished cooking, then cover for a few minutes.
For a more ambitious version of the egg trick, try this method of turning your dish into something that mimics the flavor of pho, the popular Vietnamese street food.
Start with your ramen noodles and add the flavor packet like you normally would, then add Chinese five spice, sriracha, hoisin sauce and a raw egg or two. After cooking, top with sprouts, chopped scallions, jalapenos, basil and lime.
Peanut butter and beyond
For a unique spin on a ramen hack, start with a curry flavored ramen pack. Then add two tablespoons of peanut butter, corn, chili paste, cilantro and some lime juice.
Sour cream and salsa
For a simple upgrade that doesn’t require any additional prep, add some sour cream, salsa and hot sauce to your pot of noodles. You will be treated to all kinds of extra flavor without even having to break out the cutting board!
Spicy tuna noodles
For a blast of protein and flavor, try this interesting ramen hack. Cook your ramen normally, using half of the flavor pack if you want to cut out the high sodium content. Before serving, add a can of tuna fish, a teaspoon of chili garlic sauce, some prepared fish sauce, chopped peanuts and sriracha.