An easy vegetable lo mein recipe that is better than takeout? Yes. This combination of the long, steaming noodles, the tender, yet crunchy vegetables and the salty, slightly sweet and spicy sauce is the ultimate comfort food.
I used to order Chinese takeout often with the understanding that it was going to be a heavy, greasy, salty and indulgent meal that left me feeling heavy and bloated.
On a trip to China, I discovered lo mein the way it was meant to be eaten. I watched in fascination as food truck chefs stretched the dough between both hands, folded and stretched the noodles again until long, perfectly formed noodles were made.
The long noodles were then stir-fried with fresh vegetables and tossed with a rich, flavorful sauce that wasn’t greasy or heavy.
This easy vegetable lo mein is so versatile. Use whatever vegetables you have on hand. Toss in some chicken or seafood. Spice it up with some chiles or hot sauce.
SHORTCUTS FOR MAKING EASY VEGETABLE LO MEIN
Use bottled, minced garlic. 1 to 1½ teaspoons equals one clove of garlic.
Try the prepared ginger that can be found in squeeze tubes located with the fresh herbs in your grocery store. This product is a game-changer and nothing is better than the taste of fresh ginger.
Grab some prepackaged, bagged vegetables such as broccoli slaw mix, coleslaw mix, matchstick carrots.
Grab a rotisserie chicken from your grocer. Or use the leftover proteins from last night’s dinner. Shrimp, chicken, pork or beef are all delicious additions. Simply chop or shred your meat, add to the noodles, and toss together until warmed through.
SUBSTITUTIONS FOR EASY VEGETABLE LO MEIN
Use Tamari sauce as a gluten-free substitute for soy sauce.
Bragg’s Amino Acid is a healthy substitute for the soy sauce as well.
Light or dark brown sugar can be used. You can also omit the sugar altogether for a very savory sauce.
Use white wine or even broth in place of the Mirin.
Hot sauce or Sriracha can replace the Thai Sweet Chili sauce for heat. You may want to increase the brown sugar by a teaspoon to keep that sweet taste.
Ramen noodles or spaghetti can be used instead of the lo mein noodles.
Add additional crunch by tossing in some chopped peanuts.
Lo Mein means ‘stirred noodles’ in Cantonese. The long, uncut noodles symbolize a long and prosperous life.
The Chinese have been eating Lo Mein for over 2000 years. It is still a popular street food in China today. These folks know a good thing when they taste it.
This easy recipe can be made using a skillet or a wok. By using vegetables and ingredients that you have on hand, including leftover meats, it is easily customized to your family’s tastes. The best part is that your dinner can be made in less than 30 minutes.
Grab your chopsticks and dig into this steaming bowl of comfort.