12 September 2014

Maggie's Vegan Chicken and Noodles

Last Sunday I woke up really early (just before 6) and couldn't get back to sleep. After tossing and turning for a while, I decided to get up and be productive. For the record, productive on Sunday morning means reading the paper while sipping a single cup of French pressed coffee. After I finished the paper, it still wasn't late enough to wake up Shana, so I decided to do some work. For some low-level background noise, I turned on the TV. I'm not sure how much Sunday morning TV you watch, but there is not a lot on that interests me. I decided on the Food Network.

At this point, I'm not even sure what show I was watching, but I assure you that it was not a vegan-friendly cooking show. Somehow or another, I came away with two new recipes I wanted to veganize. When I mentioned the idea of a vegan "chicken" and noodles dinner to Shana, she seemed cautiously interested. We put it on the meal plan for this week. As the week progressed, Shana got more and more excited and kept saying that she wanted something like the "just boil water" pasta sides of her college days (read: weekend late nights).

Veganized chicken and noodles was on the menu for tonight. I'd come home late after an outing with some colleagues and hadn't had enough time to look up a variety of recipes to get some ideas, which is my general plan when I'm making something new. Instead, I came home, grabbed ingredients, and got to work. The resulting dish ended up being a delicious (and less chemically-laden) version of a comfort food. Shana was in heaven.

Maggie's Vegan Chicken and Noodles
1 small onion, finely diced
2 stalks celery, finely diced
2 small carrots, finely diced
6 c. Better Than Bouillon No Chicken Broth
8 oz. uncooked flat noodles
4 oz. Butler's Soy Curls
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp. dried parsley
dash or two of turmeric
2 T. flour

1. Saute onions and celery in a stock pot over medium heat until close to soft.
2. Add carrots, saute another 2 minutes.
3. Add all other ingredients except flour, keep at a low boil until pasta is soft and soy curls are reconstituted, stirring occasionally.
4. Mix the flour with a small amount of water in a jar with a tight-fitting lid. Shake well to get rid of lumps, then pour into pot and stir until mixture thickens slightly.

Helpful Hints
  • The broth I listed above is key in this recipe. It is a phenomenal substitute for chicken broth. Although you can use another broth, try to use one as close to "chicken" flavored as possible, since the broth carries most of the flavor in this dinner. 
  • The noodles we used tonight were Kroger brand "egg-free dumpling noodles." I thought they were the perfect choice for this, but you could use any other wide-ish and flat-ish noodle (even something like bow-tie pasta would work).
  • If you are worried about the soy curls in this recipe, you could substitute some chicken-style strips or plain wheat gluten strips. Don't use something with a heavy flavor, as it would overwhelm the other flavors. 
  • Although there are technically veggies in this dish, an additional veggie would round out a meal nicely. Peas are a traditional element of chicken and noodles for some people, so maybe those? 
The post "Maggie's Vegan Chicken and Noodles" first appeared on Maggie's LesVegan Kitchen.


  1. Hi! Do you think jackfruit would work in this recipe as a chicken substitute? If so, any suggestions for how to prepare/season the jackfruit? Thanks!

    1. Hi Kelsey! I'm sorry for not responding sooner!! Did you try jackfruit? If not, I think it could work. I haven't tried it, as it is really hard to get jackfruit where I live. Anyway, if I were to use it, I would cut down on the broth in the recipe, as part of it is to rehydrate the soy curls. As for seasoning, a powdered "chicken" style might work, something like VegeBase (http://www.voguecuisine.com/vegebase.php), maybe?