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Delicious Vegan Zaru Soba!
Growing up in a part Japanese household, I ate a lot of zaru soba and I’m bringing you a this Vegan Zaru Soba recipe that is also gluten-free! Zaru soba is a classic Japanese dish of cold buckwheat noodles and you enjoy it by dipping it into a sauce. It’s refreshing, light and very simple but surprisingly not vegan or gluten free friendly.
See, buckwheat alone (despite the name containing the word wheat) is actually gluten-free but most buckwheat noodles have added wheat flour as well. The sauce, called mentsuyu (, which is a light soy based sauce, also contains gluten and bonito or fish stock (this is very commonly used in Japanese cooking to add umami and depth to dishes). The good news is I’ve not only veganized the recipe, but have found a way to make it 100% gluten free as well. I couldn’t be more excited to share this recipe with you, and although it’s a simple recipe, it’s near and dear to my heart.
This Vegan Zaru Soba is made with 100% buckwheat noodles, gluten-free sauce ingredients and a vegan fish sauce replacement that nails the flavour on the head.
- The recipe is vegan, gluten free and oil free. It is best enjoyed on the spot, but can be batch prepared for parties or meals for a family!
- Making Vegan Zaru Soba takes only about 15 minutes to make in total, making it a wonderful go-to meal for hangry moments or quick lunches.
- Buckwheat → is a surprising source of protein, but also fiber and vitamins like thiamin and folate. As I mentioned earlier, it is 100% gluten free as an ingredient, despite what you may think! It has a delicious toasty flavour to it, and I absolutely love it.
secrets to success
To ensure your recipe is 100% gluten free, make sure you look for a 100% buckwheat noodle. I used this brand and it’s absolutely delicious! Using an alternative noodle is possible but I wouldn’t recommend it if you want the authentic experience and texture. You can usually find a 100% buckwheat noodle at a Japanese grocery store if there’s one near you, but if not, I’ve linked a brand you can find on Amazon!
If you’d like to opt to leave out the vegan fish sauce, you absolutely can! I’ve included notes in the recipe if you decide to make your own umami stock using dried kombu, soaked and simmered with a small amount of water.
if you like this recipe, try…
- Gluten Free Shoyu Ramen
- Miso Mushroom Ramen
- Sautéed Lotus Root
- Japanese Sweet Red Bean Soup with Mochi
If you try this recipe out, tag me on Instagram @veggiekins so I can see your delicious re-creations and for a chance to be featured! As always, I love when you share your reviews in the comments below, and if you make any fun substitutions, let me know how it worked out below too!
This post may contain affiliate links.
Vegan Zaru Soba ざるそば (gluten free, refined sugar free)
- dry ingredients
- 8 oz 100% buckwheat noodles or as much as you'd like to serve (I also like this brand)
- sauce mentsuyu
- 1/4 cup gluten free soy sauce
- 1/4 cup mirin I like this brand
- 1/2 tbsp granulated sugar of choice you can use coconut sugar
- 1-2 tsp vegan fish sauce I used this brand of vegan fish sauce, but any will do. To make your own, soak a 1 inch x 1 inch piece of dried kombu overnight in 1/4 cup water and then boil it with the soaking water for a few minutes
- garnish optional
- scallions thinly sliced
- black and white sesame seeds
- thinly sliced nori
- shichimi japanese 7 spice seasoning
- Prepare sauce by mixing all ingredients together until smooth. Bring to a quick boil, then refrigerate, or add ice to chill. When ready to enjoy, add iced water to sauce to achieve your desired level of flavour/saltiness if needed.
- Boil noodles according to package, strain and rinse with cool water once cooked. Separate into little noodle nests to avoid clumping. You may also place on top of ice to keep cold.
- Add your desired garnish and toppings and enjoy!
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.