Japchae at Home

Photo of Asian dish Japchei

Homemade take-out!

I love Japchae. The clear yam noodles have such a satisfying texture and really soak up the seasonings nicely. I had only ever eaten japchae at Korean restaurants until a friend gifted me a pack of yam noodles and I needed to figure out how to make it at home. Voila!


1 package sweet potato noodles
2 handfuls baby spinach
1 package TJ’s sriracha tofu (or any seasoned tofu)
1 sweet onion, sliced
3 garlic cloves minced
1 carrot, peeled and cut into matchsticks
5 dried shitakes, rehydrated and sliced (can use fresh)
1 red bell pepper, sliced
1/4 a small purple cabbage, sliced
2 scallions, sliced into matchsticks

For the sauce:
5 T soy sauce or tamari

,2 T brown sugar, or coconut sugar

1 T toasted sesame oil (optional, but adds so much flavor – you can skip it and just toss in 1 T toasted sesame seeds. Or you can use just a few drops of the oil).


Boil noodles, rinse with cool water, drain and toss with a a few drops toasted sesame oil to prevent sticking (or use a little veggie broth for oil-free). Blanch and squeeze spinach. Heat a large wok or wide pan, sauté tofu until warm, remove and set aside. Sauté onions and garlic one minute. Add the rest of the raw veggies and cook a few more minutes. Add noodles, tofu, spinach and sauce, cook until heated through and sauce is absorbed. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds, and sliced scallions.

*How to blanch your spinach:

Boil a pot of ice water and prepare a bowl of ice water. When the water boils, add your spinach and use a utensil to submerge it in the water so it is completely covered. Then remove it with a slotted spoon or tongs and immediately put it in the ice water. Remove, place in a strainer and squeeze the water out with your hands.