Want A Great Coconut Rice Noodle Bowl? We’ve Got A Creamy One!
When it comes to rice noodles, we are a fan. We’re also a big fan of coconut milk in recipes – well Lisa is, and then she turned Eric into a believer. To be honest, we kind of made this coconut rice noodle recipe on accident. We just liked eating rice noodles with tofu and a nice broth but the addition of coconut milk to make the broth more creamy was an instant hit.
This recipe uses curry powder – but not curry paste – so we hesitate to call it a coconut curry dish. It’s also not strictly Asian because we don’t use a number of traditional ingredients like fish sauce. You CAN add it – but we wanted to keep it simple!
The best part of this dish is that you can garnish your bowl how you like it. Eric likes sriracha while Lisa prefers chopped peanuts. Of course, you can also garnish it with coriander, basil or lime wedges. So, let’s talk more about this naturally vegan rice noodle dish that is full of protein, flavor, and a few veggies!
Coconut Rice Noodle Bowl Variations
Of course, this recipe can be modified for different tastes – but when it comes to changing it for dietary reasons, it’s already a solid rice noodle recipe that checks off a number of boxes!
- For a gluten-free coconut rice noodle bowl, you don’t change anything in the recipe because rice noodles are already gluten-free! Just make sure you use a gluten-free soy sauce!
- For a dairy-free/vegan recipe, you also literally do nothing because this recipe is already plant-based and dairy-free.
- There are a vast number of dry spice combinations/substitutions you can add to make the creamy sauce spicier, more curry-y, etc.
Coconut Rice Noodle Recipe Need-to-Knows
Before you re-create this coconut rice noodle recipe, there are a few things you should consider/know:
- This recipe is more of a noodle bowl compared to a stew or soup. Emphasis is on the noodle component. If you want more broth with your noodles, you can add in more vegetable broth before you add your noodles so that it doesn’t cook off and/or absorb into the noodles as much.
- Speaking of rice noodles – rice noodles can vary in thickness by a few millimeters so be sure to know what thickness you have AND read the back for their cook time. If you have thicker size noodles, they might have a higher cooking time and need more broth to soften up while cooking. If you have thinner ones, they cook up faster so keep an eye on them so they don’t get too mushy!
- This is both a need-to-know and a variation – we use smoked tofu because regular tofu can be a bit bland. However, if you just have plain tofu on hand, that’s completely fine too! Just be sure to compensate with spices/seasonings you like.
- We really like cooking this recipe in a cast iron pan. This is because ours has a deep capacity and also heats evenly ensuring the vegetables cook and become heated without burning. You can also reheat it easily in this pan if you want to do that later or the next day.
Coconut Rice Noodle Storing Tips
This recipe doesn’t make a ton of extra (depending on how many people are eating) so we don’t usualy have loads to store. That said, we sometimes just leave it in the pan and put it in the fridge. Then we just reheat the whole thing the next day!
If you want to save your cast iron (which is honestly a better idea), remove it from the pan while still warm so more of the creamy sauce comes with it. Place the noodles in a glass or plastic tupperware and it can chill in the fridge for up to 2 days. Any more and it starts to get overly soggy.
When we want to reheat the noodles, you can put them in a bowl to microwave or you can reheat them in a smaller pan on the stove on lower or medium heat. Don’t re-fry the noodles since they will be soft from sitting overnight already and you’ll lose the sauce if the heat is too high! You might have to add a splash of water to get some of the creaminess back since the noodles in the fridge will have absorbed some of the liquid.
- 1 medium-sized onion
- 2 carrots
- 7 oz (200 g) firm tofu - preferably smoked
- 2 tablespoons of coconut oil
- 2 teaspoons paprika powder
- 2 teaspoons curry powder
- 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
- 2 cups (around 470 ml) of vegetable broth
- 3/4 cup of coconut milk
- 7 oz (200 grams) rice noodles of medium thickness
- 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Optional: Chopped peanuts, green onion, or cilantro (for garnish)
- Cut the carrots, onion, and tofu into small cubes.
- Heat the coconut oil in a pan with high sides. Add the onions and saute the onions until translucent.
- Add paprika, curry powder, and chili powder to the onions and mix. Let it cook for one minute.
- Add tofu and carrots and stir until coated. Cook on low-medium heat with a lid for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add one cup of vegetable broth and the coconut milk, stir until mixed. Let it simmer on low-medium heat with the lid on for about 10 minutes.
- Add the rice noodles, 1 cup of vegetable broth, and soy sauce. Stir well, cover, and let simmer for however long your noodles need (check the package). It should be between 5-10 minutes. Depending on your noodles, you might have to add a little extra water.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Serve and optionally garnish with chopped cilantro, chopped green onion, chopped peanuts, or sriracha and enjoy!
Depending on what kind of rice noodles you have, you might have to modify the cooking time. If you have noodles that take very long (around 10 minutes or more), the carrots would get too soft if you use the cooking times mentioned in this recipe.
Alternatively, you could also cook your rice noodles seperately - according to package directions - and then add them later. In this case, you would use less vegetable broth (approx. 1 cup instead of 2).
And there you have it – our simple recipe for making creamy coconut rice noodle bowls! We love that it is so filling, packed with flavor and very easy to make – and the garnishes can really change the flavor for individual tastes! If you make these noodle bowls, let us know what you think!
As always, Keep It Simple,
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