An easy, healthy, satisfying dinner idea: Soba Noodles, Chicken, and Vegetable Stir Fry in a Spicy Peanut Sauce. Or skip the spice - your choice. But either way - make this delicious stir fry with peanut sauce!
This recipe is one of our favorites because of all the flavors and textures. If you love stir fry dinners, try this easy chicken and vegetable stir fry for dinner.
If I was stranded on a really odd deserted island where all they had to eat was this Soba Noodle and Chicken Stir Fry, I would not be sad about it.
I love everything about this dish: the healthy chicken and vegetables, the soft and filling soba noodles, the crunchy crushed peanut topping, and most of all - the tasty and easy peanut sauce.
And I love that you have your protein, veggies, and noodles ready all in ONE RECIPE, so there is no need to make separate side dishes for dinner.We make this ALL THE TIME, so let me try to convince you to give it a try. 🙂
Related recipe: Air Fryer Paneer with Peanut Sauce
Soba noodles are Japanese noodles made with buckwheat and wheat. Buckwheat is actually a seed and not a grain, and it is not even related to wheat. Buckwheat is gluten-free, super healthy and nutritious, which makes soba noodles a healthier option than rice noodles or wheat noodles.
Buckwheat is what gives the soba noodles their brown color, but soba noodles don't taste or feel like whole wheat spaghetti - they are much more tender. You can read more about buckwheat in my buckwheat kasha recipe.
You can find soba noodles in the international or Asian aisle of most large grocery stores, or you can order them on Amazon here.
Soba noodles usually come in these neat little bundles that are just over 3 oz each. A typical serving of pasta is 2 oz, so 3 bundles of soba noodles are about ~9-10 oz, or 5 servings. Of course, you can use less noodles and more veggies and chicken if you want to keep things even healthier (more on that below!)
Are soba noodles gluten free?
Most varieties of soba noodles are made with wheat in addition to buckwheat, so they are not gluten-free. You have a few options if you can't have gluten but still want to cook soba:
- 100% buckwheat noodles - these are not certified gluten-free. They are not made with wheat, but if you have celiac's disease or a severe gluten allergy, I wouldn't trust this. If you're just trying to eat a little more whole foods and whole grains, then these are just fine. We use these usually. 🙂
- Rice noodles that are specifically labeled as gluten-free
Cook these noodles according to the package, then combine with the chicken, veggies, and peanut sauce.
How to cook soba noodles
I love cooking with soba noodles because they cook quickly compared to pasta. Soba noodles are typically done in 3-4 minutes, making them great for quick summer meals.
To cook soba noodles, just boil a large pot of salted water, add the soba noodles, stir, bring the water back up to a boil and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.
Since soba noodles cook fast, you want the water to be a little saltier than if you were cooking pasta (unless, of course, you're on a low sodium diet). This is because the soba noodles don't spend as much time in the salted cooking water as pasta, which would spend about 10 minutes in salted water.
Once the soba noodles are cooked, you can toss them with any sauce, protein, and veggies you like. You can serve soba noodles in a hot dish, or in a chilled soba noodle salad.
In fact, this chicken and veggie soba noodle stir fry can be served hot immediately after cooking or chilled the next day (*if* you have leftovers!).
Spicy peanut sauce
The tasty peanut sauce is my favorite part of this stir fry recipe. The sauce needs just a few really flavorful ingredients:
- Peanut butter
- Soy sauce
- Grated ginger
- Grated garlic
- Rice vinegar
- Lime juice
- Crushed dry Thai chilies (or crushed red pepper flakes)
To make the sauce, you just stir the sauce ingredients all together until everything is smooth. It will look extremely lumpy at first because the peanut butter is so much thicker than the rest of the ingredients, but keep stirring carefully and try not to splash - it will all work itself out!
There is no need to cook this sauce - you'll toss it in with the chicken, veggies, and soba noodles for a minute and then dinner is ready!
A few tips and tools to make this peanut sauce:
- Peanut butter - you can use any kind of peanut butter here: regular, natural, low-fat, or crunchy. It doesn't matter! I usually go for the regular one (yep, the JIF or the Skippy since I am adding sweetener to the sauce anyway)
- Soy sauce - I always always recommend using "less sodium" soy sauce - particularly the Kikkoman kind here. It still has plenty of sodium (we don't need any more!) and makes every sauce taste great. Other soy sauces have more of a bitter flavor and just don't work as well for me.
- Honey - any kind is great here. No need to go fancy, local, raw, organic or whatnot. You're using 1/4 cup which is a large amount, so no need to use fancy expensive honey on this sauce. This honey here works great and is very inexpensive. You can also use agave syrup if you want.
- Grated ginger and grated garlic - I always grate mine fresh because I find that it really doesn't take that long. I use this microplane zester for grating both. But if you want to make your life easier, you can use this bottled squeeze ginger and this bottled minced garlic.
- Rice vinegar and lime juice - at least one of these is a MUST to add a little acidity and tang to this peanut sauce! I love rice vinegar because I find it milder and sweeter than other vinegars. I always use this one. And I use this citrus squeezer to get fresh lime juice, but the bottled stuff will work fine for this recipe too!
- Crushed dry Thai chilies (or crushed red pepper flakes) - use as much or as little as you like - to taste!
As you see in the picture above, this sauce is not as quick as spicy peanut sauce for dipping. This one is more suited as a stir fry sauce.
Chicken and vegetables
I use chicken breast and several different veggies in this recipe to add lots of protein and make it healthier.
The great thing about this stir fry (and all other stir fries) is that you can customize it to your dietary preferences: want to skip the soba noodles and add more veggies? Go for it! Want to add cooked tofu instead of chicken? Sure! Don't have snow peas? Use, sugar snap peas, other green beans or add an extra bell pepper!
YOU CAN'T GO WRONG HERE.
Making this stir fry:
To make this stir fry, I start by seasoning the chicken, cooking it in sesame oil (for more flavor!) and setting it aside.
Then I cook the veggies for a few minutes in the same skillet.
Then I add the peanut sauce and cooked soba noodles, give everything a quick stir, and DONE.
Garnish with crushed peanuts and fresh cilantro on the plate. Or don't whatever. It's still amazing.
The leftovers will keep in the fridge for a couple of days and reheat well. Or you can eat it as a cold soba noodle salad the next day - that's delicious too.
I really hope you get to try this delicious Soba, Chicken, and Veggies Stir Fry! I would love to hear what you think of the peanut sauce. If you make this dish, please take a picture and tag me on Instagram or Facebook. You can find me at @babaganoshblog on both. I love seeing your creations!
Looking for more easy dinner ideas?
- Cabbage and pork stir fry with homemade sweet and sour sauce
- Cabbage and kielbasa stir fry
- Sheet pan lemon-garlic shrimp and vegetables
- 20 minute shrimp and sausage skillet
- Veggie-loaded creamy chicken fajita pasta
If you enjoyed this recipe, let me know with a comment and a star rating below. And don't forget to share it on Facebook and save it on Pinterest for later!
Soba Noodles with Chicken and Vegetables in a Spicy Peanut Sauce
- 3 bundles uncooked soba noodles
- Salted water for cooking noodles
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 lb chicken breasts thinly sliced
- 2 bell peppers cleaned and thinly sliced (I used one red, one orange)
- 2 small carrots julienned
- 1 small red onion thinly sliced into half-moons
- 1/2 lb snow peas (about 2 cups, or substitute sugar snap peas)
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil divided (or use your favorite cooking oil)
- crushed peanuts and cilantro leaves for garnish
- 2/3 cup peanut butter (any kind)
- 1/2 cup lower sodium soy sauce (or regular soy sauce)
- 1/3 cup water
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar (apple cider vinegar or white wine vinegar can be substituted, or skip it)
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 1 inch piece of ginger minced
- Juice of 1/2 lime (about 1 tablespoon)
- 1-2 dried Thai chili peppers , crushed, or use 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (to taste)
- Work or large skillet with high sides
- Cook the soba noodles: Boil a large pot of water. When it comes to a boil, add the soba noodles and cook according to the directions on the package. (typically 3-6 minutes) Rinse the soba noodles in cold water and set aside.
- Season the sliced chicken with salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon of sesame oil in a large skillet and add the chicken. Allow to brown for 3-4 minutes, then stir fry until it is fully cooked (about 3-4 more minutes). Set cooked chicken aside.
- Prepare the peanut sauce: Combine all the ingredients in a medium bowl and stir until they are well combined. The sauce will look chunky at first until the peanut butter gets mixed with the rest of the liquid ingredients, but it will turn smooth if you keep stirring. Start with 1 Thai chili pepper (or 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes) and see how you like the spiciness. Add the second one if you want more heat.
- In a large wok or skillet with high sides, heat up the other tablespoon of sesame oil. Stir fry the sliced onion for 2-3 minutes, or until it starts to soften. Add all the vegetables - sliced peppers and snow peas - and stir fry for another 2-3 minutes to get them warmed up as well.
- Add the chicken, cooked soba noodles, and the sauce, and stir fry for 2-3 minutes until everything is coated in sauce and is heated through.
- Garnish with chopped peanuts and cilantro.