Loaded Vegetable Chow Mein


I have days where I intensely miss California. Usually it means I’m missing my family, but the other times I crave the food. What I wouldn’t give for an In N Out burger or a 007 sushi roll from Miyako! I really miss authentic fish tacos and spicy Asian food. But necessity is the mother of invention, so I have come up with a few recipes that taste enough like my favorite restaurants back home that I can quiet my palate a bit longer. Whenever I crave going to my favorite Chinese take-out restaurant, I make this loaded vegetable chow mein. It’s surprisingly easy to make and fairly healthy. Sometimes I use it as a side dish but it is hearty enough to be a great vegetarian dinner option.

Start with a deep wok and some sesame oil. Pour in about 1 tablespoon.

Throw in a medium-sized onion that is cut into slivers. Cook these for about 3-4 minutes or until softened.

Now add some broccoli. Trim the heads down into bite-sized pieces. I usually add about 1 1/2 cups, or whatever a medium sized broccoli head yields. Stir regularly and cook for another 3-4 minutes.

Add a cup of shredded carrots. Save yourself a lot of prep time and just buy the bag that is already shredded for you. Mix it again and cook a minute or two.

Dice 3 green onions.

loaded vegetable chow mein

Put in 2 of the green onions and save the rest to top the dish at the end. Stir and cook another minute. You may need to drizzle in another tablespoon of sesame oil if you notice your vegetables charring.

Now for another difficult step…just kidding…open up a bag of pre-shredded cole slaw. You can also chop up a head of napa cabbage if your grocery store doesn’t have the pre-made bags.

Pour in 1/2 to 3/4 cup of lower sodium soy sauce. Mix it up as you watch the cabbage wilt, probably a minute or two.

Now add a tablespoon of Hoisin sauce. This can be found in the international section of the market or online.

loaded vegetable chow mein

It is very salty so start with 1 tablespoon and taste as you mix. If you want more of a punch, add some more.

loaded vegetable chow mein

These stirfry noodles are my best friend. I can rip open the bag and add as much as I want. If your market doesn’t have this brand, you can use rice noodles or udon noodles as well. The only issue is that you may have to cook the noodles to package instructions ahead of time.

Here’s where it gets spicy! Sriracha sauce is absolutely necessary in this dish! Even if you are not a spice fan, just add a dabble for flavor. Me? I pour that stuff on! You’ll find it right next to the stirfry noodles and Hoisin sauce. But for the kids, I add a tablespoon and then add more to my personal plate after I serve them.

When it is all served up, I top the dish with a few more green onions. I guarantee you will love this! If you have a holiday gathering, church function, or office party coming up, consider taking this. You will save a lot of time and really spice up the snack table.

I still get cravings for my hometown chow mein noodles but these suffice until I can make a trip home to SoCal. Most of the time I serve the chow mein as a hearty vegetarian main course, but it’s a great accompaniment to my 5 Ingredient Crockpot Orange Chicken or Ginger Chicken Stir-fry with Asparagus. I pack my recipe full of veggies and spice it up or down depending on whom I’m serving. It also makes for great leftovers! For more easy dinner ideas visit my Recipe Index or follow me on Pinterest! Happy cooking y’all!

Chow Mein

Heidi Davison
This 20 minute chow mein recipe is packed full of veggies yet doesn't sacrifice flavor.
4.75 from 4 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Entree
Cuisine Asian
Servings 6 -8


  • 1 medium onion cut in slivers
  • 1 head of broccoli cut in small pieces
  • 3 diced green onions divided
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 1 10 oz package shredded cabbage/cole slaw
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil divided
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup lower sodium soy sauce
  • 8 oz stir fry noodles
  • 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sriracha


  • Heat 1 tablespoon sesame oil over medium heat.
  • Add onion and broccoli. Cook 3-4 minutes.
  • Add carrots and green onions. Cook 3-4 minutes.
  • Add more sesame oil if needed/desired.
  • Add cabbage and soy sauce. Cook until cabbage wilts, about 1-2 minutes.
  • Add hoisin sauce and mix. Taste as you go.
  • Add stir fry noodles and cook 2-3 minutes.
  • Add sriracha. Cook 1-2 more minutes.
  • Mix well and serve.
  • Top with more green onions.


Related in Category

30 Minute Meals, Vegetarian


Side Dishes, Vegetarian


  • George Moy says:

    I was hoping that you might have a recipe for using chow mien noodles in making any sandwich (yep, even hamburgers)pop with the crunch of chow mien noodles and not only in a dish but sandwich based salad filling like chicken,tuna salad sandwich,so your recipe isn’t bad either but I like food that is ready to go too

  • This recipe was quick easy and delicious! Will definitely be cooking this again!

  • 5 stars
    Made this last night and loved it — like Jenka above, I added some extra veggies (doubled the broccoli and carrots, onion, mushrooms, cabbage, and edamame) and also added chicken. The flavors were spot on and it made a ton of food so we had plenty left overs for lunches for the next two days. It will definitely be one of our go to weekday meals for lunch leftovers.

    I used thin udon noodles and cooked them while the chicken was cooking so all in all it took me about 30-40 minutes from start to finish. My husband had three servings so it is stuff yourself good!

    • 3 servings definitely means it’s a keeper! I’m so glad you found another recipe to enjoy that the whole family loves. I also love that you added chicken and made the dish last for several meals. Thanks for sharing!

  • 5 stars
    This is very easy and the flavors are spot on! My fancy health food store didn’t have shredded carrots so I subbed celery for the carrots, and I also added cooked chicken. Next time I will also add snap peas and double the amount of all the veggies. One piece of advice is that if you can’t find the stirfry noodles, make sure you cook your rice noodles before starting. I didn’t and the mixture had to sit there and get brown while the noodles cooked. Still tasted delish!

    • Jenka, I love the substitutions and additions you made. This recipe can handle all sorts of different combinations and I’ve never found a bad one! And you’re right, rice noodles must be cooked ahead of time. Sometimes I boil a pot of water, submerge the rice noodles, and turn the heat off. They should be ready in ten minutes or less. Drain them and then throw them in the chow mein. Thanks for sharing!

  • Rhonda Versteegh says:

    5 stars
    Another delicious dish! Thanks Heidi!

  • Dawn Norris says:

    4 stars
    I want to thank you these are great recipes easy and quick to make and the expense is almost nil i have 99% of them on hand. Thanks.

    • Thank you, Dawn. What a kind thing to say. I hope you enjoy.

  • heidishomecooking@gmail.com says:

    I love this recipe. It was so delicious and I was able to share it with friends!

    • I tried this tonight and was delicious!

      • That is so good to hear! I’m glad you liked it. Hopefully you have a new go-to meal!

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