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How to Cook Rice Noodles

Here's How to Cook Rice Noodles in a Simple Hassle-free Way

Cooking rice noodles is an easy task, if you have the correct steps at your disposal. Read the Tastessence article to find 3 different ways to cook rice noodles properly.
Sheetal Mandora
Last Updated: Feb 19, 2018
Before we learn how rice noodles are cooked, let's answer an important question, 'What are rice noodles?' Simple, noodles made from rice or rice flour. Water and rice are the 2 main ingredients, besides cornstarch and tapioca, while preparing these noodles. What the latter ingredients do is make the noodles jellylike and chewy once cooked. Included in various Asian cuisines, they are commonly found in fresh, dry, and frozen forms. Rice noodles come in different shapes and sizes such as thick spaghetti style ,Thai flat rice sticks, laksa noodles (used in soups), rice vermicelli (used in spring rolls, stir-fries, soups), thin rice sticks (used in soups, cold salads, spring rolls), river rice noodles (used in stir-fries, soups, and served with seafood), and many more. While cooking these varieties, it's important that you know how long it takes to cook and what are the specific steps.
If you are new to Asian cuisine and have never experimented with rice noodles, the process can be frustrating because of lack of proper information. When you take a look at the rice noodles package your purchased from the store, they don't include any directions on the packages. Again, as I said, frustration. But we are here to give you simple solutions. So read the following article properly and get the answers you have been searching for.
Ways to Cook Rice Noodles
As we discussed earlier, there are different types of rice noodles, it may seem that you might have to use different directions to cook them. Well, not really. Even though the shapes and sizes may be different, in the end, they are still rice noodles. So the instructions don't necessarily have to change. The only alterations to cooking them would be after they are ready, would you like to add them in stir-fry or soup. So depending on your recipe, the uses of cooked rice noodles will change, but not the way the rice noodles are cooked in the first place.
For Stir-Fries
Unlike wheat noodles, rice noodles are delicate and can break if not cooked properly. While cooking the noodles, it's essential to know how long it should be soaked in water. Otherwise, you will be left with nothing just mushy noodles for your soups and stir-fires.
  • The best way to cook these rice noodles for stir-fries is to take a big bowl.
  • Add warm water in first and then add the noodles.
  • Let them soak for no longer than 30 minutes. It's essential that you don't let them soak for longer time.
  • The extra time these noodles stay submerged in the water, the more mushy they become.
  • If you want to know how to fry rice noodles, take the wok add these soaked noodles in a lot of oil so they can cook properly.
  • Make sure none of the other ingredients like vegetables, meat, or seafood is being cooked along with the noodles.
  • This way, you keep the noodles tender and not mushy to eat when added with the rest of the ingredients later on.
For Soups
With soups, again you need to remember that overcooking them can be disastrous. As it is when they are getting transferred into the soup, they will be in warm water again. So it's essential that you don't make any mistakes while cooking them. Also, don't make too much rice noodle soup as they are not ideal as leftovers.
  • To begin, you can add them in the end of your recipe.
  • Once all the ingredients of your soup are almost cooked, you can add the rice noodles then.
  • You want the noodles to be al dente and not completely cooked.
  • Till the time you serve and have the soup, the noodles will keep cooking and getting more and more soft.
For Salads
Finally, the cold salads. Now this calls for an entirely different instruction for cooking.
  • Don't soak them in warm water.
  • Take a pot of boiling water and add the rice noodles in.
  • Boil only for 3 minutes tops and remove them immediately.
  • If you keep the noodles in boiling water for long, you will be left with mush.
  • Rinse them under cold water and add to your salad in the end.
  • Toss properly and enjoy.
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