Healthy Ramen with the Food Bank NWLA

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Easy Healthier Ramen Noodle

Ingredients

2 packets of instant ramen noodles (discard seasoning portion OR use ½ of packet)
1½ tsp soy sauce, reduced sodium
3 cups of your favorite vegetables (fresh or frozen) you can also use a frozen Asian blend
 *hot chili oil- to taste ** or sriracha

Instructions

Make ramen noodles according to package. (you can use 4cups of low sodium broth instead of packet OR ½ of packet and recommend water on package)

Add vegetables (and cooked meat if desired)

Let boil per package time (usually 3-5 minutes)

Add low sodium soy sauce to taste

Add Siracha to taste

Note: you can use your favorite vegetables, meat and flavoring to make a variety of soups. The key is to use a low sodium broth, ½ the favoring packet or seasonings instead of packet

Healthier Chicken Ramen

Ingredients

4 cups chicken broth, low sodium

2 chicken breast fillets, boneless and skinless (approx. 5-6 oz. each)

 2 (3.5 oz.) packets of instant ramen noodles (discard seasoning portion) or thin spaghetti

1 cup sliced cabbage

1 cup shredded carrots

2 green onions, chopped

Instructions

 In a soup pot (or medium saucepan) add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add the chicken breasts and continue cooking until thoroughly cooked (about 8-10 min.). Remove chicken breasts from broth, let cool to touch, and shred with two forks. Return shredded chicken to broth.

Add ramen noodles to pot with broth and shredded chicken. Cook noodles according to time indicated on package (approx. 3-5 min.) Add additional chicken broth or water as necessary. Add salt/pepper to taste.

Remove soup from heat. Add cabbage and carrots. Serve immediately. Garnish chopped green onions.

Note: Use any vegetables, sauces or meat you prefer. Make it your own, but healthier.

How to Make Vegetable Broth from Kitchen Scraps

Ingredients

1 carrot, roughly chopped

1 ribs of celery, roughly chopped

1/2 onion, roughly chopped

4 cups of vegetable scraps

3 cloves of garlic, peeled

one-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and sliced

2 bay leaves

a few sprigs of thyme or rosemary

a handful of parsley or cilantro

salt to taste

12–14 cups of clean water (I use about 3 and 1/2 quarts)

Instructions

Place everything in a large stock pot. Add water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer (covered) for 1 hour.

Turn off heat. Using tongs or slotted spoon, remove solids. And strain through a mesh sieve or small holed colander

Store in airtight jar for up to a week. Or freeze in small portions for use later.

What I use in my vegetable broth:

Any veggies that may have gotten a bit sad and wilted in the fridge

Carrot peels and small ends

Sweet potato peels and small ends

Celery ends and leaves

Onion and shallot skins

Green onion or leek ends

Mushroom stems

Small amounts of broccoli stem or kale stems

Slightly wilted greens from fridge

Any other fun vegetable scrapes I may have. 

The possibilities are endless.  And your broth will taste different every time depending on what you put in it.  I like to mix it up and add some extras for flavor and to boost nutrients. The recipe below is just a place to start.  Feel free to experiment.

Things I add for flavor and nutritional value:

Fresh herbs (parsley, thyme, rosemary, cilantro)- loaded with vitamins and minerals

Garlic – anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial

Ginger -anti-inflammatory and immune boosting

Peppercorns

Bay leaf

Shiitake mushrooms – rich flavor, immune boosting, and loaded with vitamins and mineral

Turmeric powder – anti-inflammatory

            How to store vegetable broth:

Be sure to use clean, glass containers.

Vegetable broth is good for up to a week in the fridge.

Freeze in thick glass containers.  I like to store in smaller portions (about 2-3 cups) to use as needed. Be sure to leave room for expansion so as not to crack the glass.

Freeze in large silicone ice cube trays and store in large freezer bags.

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