Gourmet and premium instant ramen brands
Since they are already an essential part of the Japanese meal, different types of Japanese instant noodles were developed since it first came out. Now, there is an instant noodle that will match your every craving.
Ichiran instant ramen
Ichiran is a chain of restaurants specializing on tonkotsu ramen. After perfecting the recipe, they packaged it as premium instant ramen so more people can experience and taste their specialty. A pack of Ichiran instant ramen contains a standard deep-fried block of noodles, a soup seasoning packet, a packet of special oil, and a package of red chili powder. The packaging also provided cooking instructions on how to achieve the preferred firmness of noodles. When cooked, you will have a savory soup with a tinge of sweetness.
Sapporo instant ramen
Sapporo Ichiban instant ramen is not your typical ramen that is made of wheat starch and other seasonings. It, actually, contains other ingredients that made it chewier such as potato starch and guar gum. The soup also boasts of a deeper flavor with a hint of onions and white pepper.
Nakiryu instant ramen
Nakiryu is another ramen restaurant in Tokyo and the second one to receive a Michelin Star. It became famous for its Dan Dan Noodles which they also made available as instant ramen. Together with the dried noodle block are three packets containing sesame sauce, chili oil, and toppings. When cooked, the noodles remain firm and springy, and the soup is creamy, with a hint of sesame and rich, meaty flavor.
Tsuta instant ramen
Tsuta is another Michelin-starred ramen restaurant and the first one to receive such an accolade. They made their award-winning ramen more available and accessible by creating an instant version of such. Now, people do not have to line up to taste the premium instant ramen from Tsuta. They only need to go to their favorite convenience store to grab ahold of the instant ramen in a cup and taste the light, clear noodle soup brimming with the ‘umami' flavor.
Ippudo instant ramen
Ippudo is another popular ramen chain in Japan who produced an instant version of their special ramen dish. Packed inside a box are the noodle block and packets of sauces, soup base, and condiments. When cooked, the soup base is richly flavored and tastes like it had been boiled for hours.
Maruchan has an extensive range of delicious instant ramen flavors which will definitely appeal to those who are craving something beyond the ordinary. Some of the flavors include Lime Chili Shrimp, Picante Chicken and Beef, Sriracha Chicken, and Chicken Tortilla, among others.
Myojo chukazanmai instant ramen
Another favorite instant ramen brand from Japan, the Myojo Chukazanmai has a range of premium instant ramen flavors which are, undeniably, Asian. Inside each pack are two flavorings packet, a liquid seasoning packet, and the block of dried noodles. As compared to other instant ramen brands, this one takes slightly longer time to cook and the extra minute made the difference in terms of taste.
Premium instant noodles
There are different instant ramen types, and the difference lies in the base flavor of the soup. There are, traditionally, four primary types of ramen but there are additional ones which are equally tasty and flavorful, just like the others.
A rich, creamy, whitish soup made from boiling ground up pork bones for 12-15 hours until all the collagen from the bones has dissolved and is flavored with either salt or soy sauce. Tonkotsu ramen is considered as the holy grail of noodle broths because of its incredible, full-bodied aroma and flavor.
The most traditional and the oldest way of adding flavor to a ramen soup, a shio ramen is salt-based soup broth that is lightly-colored and clear. It is derived from the Chinese tradition of using sea-salt for their soup. Shio means ‘salt’ so it is understandable that this ramen type is a bit saltier compared to the others.
Using miso paste, this ramen soup type is opaque and has a savory, fuller, and complex taste. This type of ramen started only in the 1960’s and is considered to be the most recent one. The flavor originated from the northern part of Hokkaido, where the cold weather is a perfect combination to a bold, hearty bowl of soup.
Shoyu ramen, on the other hand, uses Japanese soy sauce, instead of salt, to give flavor to the soup. It is the next oldest ramen type, second only to Shio ramen. The soup is usually clear but is dark-colored and tastes sweeter than Shio. The ramen is made more flavorful by topping it with either meat or fish.
Curry powder or paste is used to give flavor to this type of ramen. A Japanese curry paste is stirred directly on to the broth before the noodles were added to the mix. The result is full-bodied ramen with a hint of spice.
Vegan instant ramen
A Japanese stir-fry noodle dish, yakisoba is actually made from wheat flour. They are usually flavored with oyster sauce and similar condiments and topped with pork, chicken, or beef slices and vegetables.
Wonder what other ingredients can make your steaming, hot bowl of instant noodles more flavorful and more delicious? We listed down some popular ones that you can add to your next instant noodle meal.
Crack an egg and drop it into a bowl of instant hot ramen or merely add a hard-boiled egg into a bowl and you have a protein-rich meal. Filling and nutritious, having instant ramen with an egg is perfect for those who need a quick meal that will give a kick of energy and keep them full for some time.
There is shrimp-flavored instant ramen available, but this does not stop you into popping some more shrimp into your instant ramen. Another good protein source, shrimp adds an extra flavor to your seafood instant ramen or sriracha-flavored one.
Kick up your instant ramen into several notches high by adding bacon strips into your bowl. The crunchy bacon will make the soup meatier and tastier, plus, the additional texture will add contrast to the usual soft noodles and soup making you instant ramen bowl more exciting and enjoyable.
Instant ramen cookers
Though instant ramen is called such because of their short and easy preparation, some people still find it tedious to boil water for some minutes and spend some more minutes into ‘actually' cooking the noodles. Well, those who are always in a hurry will find relief in knowing that there are instant ramen cookers in the market which can cut preparation time in half and allow them to spend more time in more important things, such as enjoying their bowl of instant noodles. These instant ramen cookers are containers designed to be used in a microwave and are dishwasher-safe, again, for faster clean up. They can cook instant ramen in just about 3-4 minutes. What's even better is that the containers only require half the usual amount of water, so there is no need to use the entire packet of seasonings. Less preparation time and less sodium—what more can you as for?
Calories in instant ramen?
Ramen noodles in itself only have 190 calories. But with the addition of seasonings and toppings, a packet of instant ramen could pack up 390 calories. However, there are low-calorie options which are low in fat and has less sodium but still packs a lot of flavors. These noodles are not fried and contain more protein and fiber.
What things to add to instant ramen to make it taste better?
Aside from the previously mentioned ingredients, there are other ingredients which can be added to the instant ramen to enhance its flavor and make it different from the usual. To name a few, some people would add sautéed mushrooms, a hint of lime juice, or coconut milk to their instant ramen. Simple condiments also make a lot of difference in terms of taste so you may try adding chili bean sauce, fish sauce, vinegar, and others. Others would go daring by adding peanut butter, hot sauce, or pickled ginger for a more exotic flavor. There are actually no hard and fast rules when it comes to making your instant ramen taste better. Your taste buds can be your guide, though. You can always go for what tastes good to you.
What is the hottest instant ramen?
Samyang is known for producing really hot, spicy instant noodles and their Nuclear Hot Chicken Ramen is considered by a lot of people to be the spiciest one you can lay your spoon on. It registered at 8,000 on the Scoville Scale, a measurement of spiciness or heat of certain peppers and other spicy food.
How to spice up instant ramen?
Not ready for the hottest instant ramen but would like to spice things up a bit? You can add a little spice to your instant ramen bowl by adding in white pepper, Sichuan pepper, or chili flakes. Cinnamon stick, star anise, or coriander seeds can also make your instant ramen more flavorful with a hint of spice.
Does instant ramen expire?
Instant ramen do have an expiration date, and when they do expire, they do not taste good anymore. When stored for a long time, dehydrated vegetables, meat, seasonings, and oil may go stale. Just like with any other food, it is always wise to check on the expiration date on the packaging before buying instant ramen.
Is instant ramen healthy?
We know that there is a healthier variety of our favorite comfort food, the instant ramen. There are air- or sun-dried noodles, and there are vegan varieties. There is also whole wheat instant ramen which is rich in fiber and has more nutrients.
Can I buy in bulk? Do you wholesale?
Because instant noodles are really popular, stores usually ran out of stock and may take some time to restock. Here at 99japan, we understand the heart of a instant-noodles-lover and your need to have it ready when cravings set in. We do sell in bulk and you just have to send us a message at email@example.com if you are interested.