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This Easy Vegetable Lo Mein recipe is a delicious, one-pan meal that is done in 30 minutes or less. You'll get a plateful of veggies and chewy, silky noodles that are covered in a scrumptious umami-flavored stir-fry sauce! It hits the spot ALL the time!
You have probably ordered Lo Mein at least once in your lifetime. It’s one of the most popular Chinese take-out orders, after all! All those rich and intricate Asian flavors just make us come back for more! However, it's traditionally served using egg noodles, so buying them at your favorite Chinese take-out is a no-go when you are vegan.
But that should not stop you from making a veganized Vegetable Lo Mein at home. And don’t be intimidated by the thought of making this dish on your own. This recipe is as convenient and as easy as they come! It's perfect for a quick and easy weeknight dinner!
All you need is a pan or a wok, a few simple pantry ingredients, an assortment of vegetables, vegan noodles, and 20-30 minutes of your time. That’s it! And once you’ve created the fusion of flavors and textures at home, you will never go back to take-out, vegan, or not!
What is Lo Mein?
Lo Mein simply means “stirred noodles”. It is traditionally made with egg noodles, vegetables, and any type of meat. It is also referred to as dry noodle soup.
It is customarily served with the noodles, veggies, and other ingredients on a plate, while the soup is served in a bowl on the side. Here, you will see Lo Mein in Chinese takeout menus alongside Chow Mein, which translates as “fried noodles”.
Ingredients You'll Need and Possible Alternatives
- Dried Noodles - You can use any type of vegan noodles of your choice. Vegan lo mein noodles, rice, ramen, soba, or even some Italian spaghetti or linguine noodles!
- Vegetables - I used red bell peppers, carrots, bean sprouts, green onions, and garlic for this recipe. But the beauty of this dish is that it is highly customizable and flexible, so feel free to add your favorites. Just make sure the ratio of veggies stays somewhat close to the written recipe or you won't have enough sauce to coat everything well.
- Soy Sauce - this recipe calls for a combo of soy sauce or tamari and dark soy sauce. Dark soy sauce is a thicker, darker, and aged version of soy sauce that has a richer and full-bodied flavor but is less salty. If you don't have it, you can replace it with low-sodium soy sauce or tamari. Hoisin sauce is really nice too. It has a different flavor, but it's delicious! Here is more information on the Difference Between Light and Dark Sauce.
- Sesame Oil - I highly recommend using this oil as it provides a nutty and earthy flavor to the dish.
- Maple Syrup - you can use agave syrup, brown sugar, or coconut sugar as a substitute.
- Shaoxing Wine - if you do not have this on hand, you can also use mirin or rice vinegar.
This is a basic, yet delicious Vegetable Lo Mein, but feel free to add some more ingredients that you may like:
- For a meaty texture, add crispy tofu. Learn how to crisp up tofu from my basic Stir-Fry Recipe. Browned mushrooms add a nice chewy texture too. Stir-fry them first so they get nice and browned.
- To add some heat, you can add some Sriracha, red chili flakes, or cayenne powder to your sauce.
- Add vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, snow peas, or bok choy, to name some.
- More aromatics - thinly slice half of a small red onion and stir-fry briefly before you add the other veggies. A tablespoon of minced ginger is nice too. I usually add that with the garlic because it burns easily.
Tips and Tricks when making Vegetable Lo Mein
- Choose a high smoke-point oil to prevent burning. I like to use a neutral-flavored one like grapeseed, avocado, or sunflower for cooking at high temps.
- Have everything prepped and close to your cooking space before you begin. Once the pan is is hot, you need to keep all your attention on it or ingredients can overcook or burn.
- Slice your vegetables thinly and evenly to make sure they cook through at the same time. You want them to remain crisp to complement the chewiness of the noodles.
- Make sure the pan is fully heated before adding the oil. Test by placing a few droplets of water in the wok - it should sizzle and evaporate quickly. You're now ready to go!
- Keep things moving in the pan to avoid uneven cooking, burning, or soggy veggies.
Can I make it Gluten-free?
Yes, you can! Just make sure to use rice noodles and tamari sauce instead of soy sauce. Omit the Shaoxing wine unless you have a brand that clearly states that it is gluten-free.
Can I make this oil-free?
Affirmative! Just omit the sesame oil in the sauce and use water or vegetable broth to create water sauté.
More 30-Minute Meals to Enjoy
I Love To Hear From You
If you make this Veggie Lo Mein recipe, let me know what you think by ★ star rating it and leaving a comment below. It would really make my day. You can also follow me on Instagram and share your creation with me. Just tag me @veganhuggs and hashtag #veganhuggs so I don’t miss it.
Vegetable Lo Mein
- 8 ounces dried noodles of choice (vegan lo mein, rice noodles, ramen, soba)
- 1.5 tablespoons avocado oil or any neutral flavored high smoke point oil
- 1 medium red bell pepper , julienned
- 1 medium carrot , julienned
- 3 cloves garlic , minced
- 1 handful bean sprouts
- 1-2 stalks spring onion chopped (for garnish)
- Large Pan or Wok
- Add all the sauce ingredients to a medium bowl and whisk to combine well. Taste and adjust flavor if needed. Set aside.
- Cook the noodles according to the package direction. Drain and rinse with cold water. Set aside. I usually reduce the cook time by 1-2 minutes for firmer noodles. Rinse with cold water and drain well. Drizzle with oil to prevent sticking.
- Heat a large pan or wok over medium-high heat. Once fully heated, add oil and wait until it shimmers. Now add the peppers and carrots. Stir fry for about 4-6 minutes until the veggies are crisp-tender. Keep things moving in the pan to avoid overcooking.
- Add garlic and sauté until fragrant. About 30-60 seconds.
- Lower the heat to medium and toss in the noodles and bean sprouts. Now pour in the sauce and gently toss to combine well. Cook for 1-2 minutes and frequently toss to warm and coat noodles. Remove from heat and garnish with green onion. Serve and enjoy!