Udon Soup

Learn how to make Udon Soup (うどん)! Easy to make this popular simple Japanese noodle soup with few ingredients. Slippery al dente udon noodles with a satisfying chewy bite in a comforting, light, and well-balanced savory broth.

udon recipe

What is Udon?

Udon (Japanese: うどん) is a type of wheat flour noodles. It’s usually white, thick, chewy, slippery, with a mild flavor.

Udon noodles is one of the most popular noodles in Japanese cuisine! And there are many ways to prepare and serve this delicious comfort food.

山元麺蔵 Yamamoto Menzo in Kyoto
Cold Handmade Udon with Chicken Tempura @ Kyoto Japan


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Udon Types

There are a variety of udon noodles that come in different thickness, shapes, and texture.

Udon noodles are mostly thick, but there are also thinner varieties. The texture can be firm or soft. And the shape can be flat and wide or square-shaped.

One of the most popular and well-loved udon noodles is Sanuki Udon (Japanese: 讃岐うどん). They’re thick, square-shaped with flat edges, and have a chewy elastic texture.

Manufacturers sell udon noodles in different forms and packaging. Such as fresh udon, dried udon, frozen udon, fully cooked udon, instant udon, and cup udon noodles. It’s important to note that different types need different cooking times.

*Note: For this udon soup recipe, make sure you’re using frozen udon noodles. You’ll find them in the supermarket’s freezer section.

frozen udon noodles

How to Serve Udon

You can serve udon noodles cold or warm, in soup or broth, with sauce and toppings, with dipping sauce, or stir-fried.

Udon can be eaten any time of the day including breakfast or brunch. You can serve udon as a side dish or main dish in a meal.

udon noodles

Soba vs Udon vs Ramen

Ramen, Soba, and Udon are three of the most popular noodle types in Japanese cuisine.

Ramen (Japanese: ラーメン, 拉麺): Ramen is mostly made with wheat. They vary in thickness, but ramen is usually thinner than udon. Ramen’s color can range from white to yellow. The texture is al dente and chew to the bite.

Soba (Japanese: そば, 蕎麦): Soba is made mostly with buckwheat, hence the nutty flavors. The color is usually a distinctive brownish-gray. Soba is thin, softer, less elastic texture than ramen and udon.

Udon (Japanese: うどん): Udon is made with wheat. It’s white, with mild flavors. Depending on the variety, it’s usually thick, chewy, firm or soft, flat or square-shaped.

Step-by-Step Guide: Udon Soup


How to Make Udon Soup

Ease Level – Super Easy: You can make authentic Japanese udon soup with basic cooking skills, kitchen tools, and Japanese pantry ingredients.

Cooking Time: You can easily make this comforting udon soup in just 15 minutes!

Flavors: This udon soup recipe yields a light, well-balanced, fresh, savory, dashi shrimp broth.

Texture: When cooked properly, the thick udon noodles are chewy, al dente, and slippery. Depending on the type of udon noodles you use, they can be firm or soft.

Tools for Udon Recipe

You only need basic cooking tools to make this udon noodle soup. If you like, you can use an Instant Pot instead of a regular pot on the stove. 

Noodle Strainer

For cooking any type of noodles, we love to use a Stainless Steel Mesh Noodle Strainer.

This strainer helps control the cooking time and easily strain the noodles. It’s a very convenient kitchen tool!

With this strainer, you can easily avoid overcooking the noodles. Also, you can shake out the excess liquid and prevent the water from diluting your broth’s flavors.

Prepare Udon Recipe Ingredients

udon soup ingredients

Soy Sauce

Kikkoman Organic Soy Sauce is an excellent choice for this udon recipe. This soy sauce may taste stronger than your usual soy sauce. Please remember to adjust it to your taste.

*Important Note: Different brands or bottles of soy sauce (same brand) can vary in their sodium levels, tartness, aroma, texture, and taste. As always, make sure to taste & adjust the amount accordingly.


For reference, we used 16/20 headless tiger prawns.

headless tiger prawns

Simply peel and devein the shrimp.

*Pro Tip: Don’t throw away the shrimp shells! We’ll add them to the dashi to give the broth a little extra flavor boost.

peel devein shrimp

Green Onion

Finely slice the green onions. We’ll use them to garnish the udon soup.

Dashi Stock

Homemade Dashi: It’s very easy to make homemade dashi with this dashi recipe. It definitely tastes better than instant dashi!

homemade dashi

Substitute with Instant Dashi

If you don’t have time to make dashi from scratch, you can use instant dashi to make the dashi stock.

Mix 6g dashi powder (HonDashi) with 4 cups (1L) of water.

how to make dashi

Cook Shrimp in Dashi

Adding Shrimp Shells

1) If You’re Using Homemade Dashi: Add in the shrimp shells with the kombu.

make dashi with shrimp

2) If You’re Using Instant Dashi: Add in the shrimp shells with the shrimp.

First, bring the dashi stock to a bare simmer.

Then, cook the shrimp in dashi stock until they’re fully cooked.

cook shrimp in dashi

*Note: 16/20 extra jumbo shrimp take roughly 4 to 5 minutes to cook in the dashi.

Set aside the shrimp once they’re fully cooked.

Cook Soft Boiled Eggs

First, bring 7 cups (1750ml) of cold water to a full boil in a pot.

*Note: We’re using this pot of water to cook the eggs and frozen udon.

For Soft-Boiled Eggs: Boil eggs in the water for 5.5 to 6 minutes.

cook soft boiled eggs

Drain & place eggs in ice-cold water to stop the residual heat from further cooking them.

soft boiled eggs recipe

Season Dashi Broth

Add 2 to 2½ tbsp (30ml – 37.5ml) Japanese soy sauce to your dashi broth. Please don’t add them all at once!

*Instant Dashi Tip: If you’re using Instant dashi, you may need to add less soy sauce. Please taste and adjust accordingly.

*Pro Tip: Aim to have a slightly more salty dashi broth because the udon noodles will dilute the saltiness a bit.

soy sauce dashi

Now, mix and bring your soy sauce dashi broth to a full boil.

*Note: If you’re using the Instant Pot to make your dashi broth, use the “Saute” button.

make udon broth

Cook Frozen Udon

First, place the frozen udon noodles in your pot of boiling water.

cook frozen udon noodles

*Pro Tip: Frozen udon cooks extremely quickly. It’ll take roughly 40 seconds to 1 minute to cook.

*Pro Tip: It’s extra helpful to use a Stainless Steel Mesh Noodle Strainer to cook udon! With a noodle strainer, you can easily scoop up the frozen udon, then give it a few shakes. This helps prevent soggy noodles and lets you drain them well.

Once cooked, remove udon from the water immediately.

Then, drain well and place the udon in a serving bowl.

Serve Udon Soup

Now, place cooked shrimp and soft-boiled eggs on top of the udon noodles.

Then, garnish with finely sliced green onions.

Lastly, add 2 cups (500ml) of hot dashi udon broth to your udon noodles.

udon noodle soup

Serve hot udon noodles soup immediately!

udon noodle recipe

What to Serve with Udon

There are a variety of toppings, side dishes, main dishes you can add or serve with your udon soup.

Most Popular Udon Toppings

The most popular udon toppings or seasoning include tempura, mochi rice cakes, kakiage (tempura bits), abura-age (fried tofu), kamaboko (Japanese fish cake), egg, butter, mentaiko (fish roe), nori seaweed, or shichimi spice.

Enjoy your comforting Udon Soup!

udon soup recipe

Udon Soup

Easy to make this deliciously comforting Udon Soup! A popular simple Japanese noodle soup. Slippery al dente udon noodles with a satisfying chewy bite in light and well-balanced broth.

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Udon Types: There are a variety of udon noodles, for this recipe, make sure you’re using frozen udon noodles. You can find them in the supermarket’s freezer section.
Soy Sauce: Different brands or even different bottles of soy sauce (same brand) can vary in their sodium levels, tartness, aroma, texture, and taste. As always, make sure to taste & adjust the amount accordingly. We developed this recipe using Kikkoman Organic Soy Sauce. This soy sauce may taste stronger than your usual soy sauce. 
*Rate Recipe: If you’ve tried the recipe, don’t forget to Rate the Recipe in the Comments Section. Thank you!


Calories: 59kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 113mg | Sodium: 674mg | Potassium: 86mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 182IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 55mg | Iron: 1mg
udon soup | udon recipe | udon noodles | udon noodle soup

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