Buldak in Korean translates to fiery chicken, so the name itself tells you what you can expect from this ramen flavor. Originating in South Korea, buldak ramen has become a popular snack or meal worldwide because it is delicious, and ramen is probably one of the most accessible and most convenient meals to make. But, it can be too spicy even for those who relish the hottest foods.
If you like this snack but find it too spicy for your palate, try these tips below to make buldak ramen less spicy:
- Don’t use the whole sauce or spice packet.
- Add dairy like milk, butter, yogurt, or cheese.
- Add some eggs.
- Add a sweetener.
- Add vegetables or meat.
- Don’t drain all the water.
- Add peanut butter or any nut butter.
- Add more ramen.
Let’s look at how you can make your Buldak ramen less spicy in more detail.
1. Don’t Use the Whole Sauce or Spice Packet
All the delicious flavor in your buldak ramen comes from the little sauce or spice pack. This seasoning is so spicy because it contains pepper extract and not whole peppers. The extract is, of course, much spicier.
When you open the little sauce packet, you are immediately hit with the spicy smell, so don’t pour the entire content of the packet into your noodles. Instead, start with maybe one-quarter of the packet and mix. If you need more flavor and heat, gradually add a little more until you are satisfied.
Using less of the sauce packet means less flavor is added to your ramen. However, it will also significantly reduce the heat and spiciness, making the snack tolerable to people with lower spice tolerance.
2. Add Dairy Like Milk, Butter, Yogurt, or Cheese
Dairy is a fantastic addition to buldak ramen if you’re looking to make it less spicy. If your noodles are in a cup, you can move and cook them in a pan with boiling water before adding the sauce from the packet. You may then add in your choice of dairy product, such as cheese or milk.
Milk or Cream
If you like a creamy taste, add milk or cream. Start with a little and gradually add as much as you need. Leave it to simmer on the stove for a few minutes until it’s well mixed into the sauce. You can try adding either yogurt or sour cream for a creamy and tangy taste. This will cut the spiciness and add another kind of flavor.
Butter is another great option that adds extra flavor. Either salted or unsalted butter goes well with buldak ramen. You can add about a teaspoon of your choice of butter into the boiling mixture, stir, and taste until you get the flavor you like.
Although most dairy products go well with buldak, the most popular one is cheese as everything seems better with cheese! Adding cheese to your ramen will make it less spicy. There is no measure of how much cheese you need, so add as much as you like. The combination of spicy sauce and cheesy goodness is absolutely heavenly!
If you have lactose intolerance but like the creaminess of milk, you can swap cow’s milk or cream with coconut milk or coconut cream. You get the same creamy flavor without the dairy. Other milk substitutes like almond or soy milk don’t work as well, but it’s up to personal preference.
3. Add Some Eggs
Adding some eggs to your buldak ramen will reduce the spiciness and add protein, making the meal more balanced.
There are three ways to add eggs to your ramen.
- Fried scrambled eggs. The first method is to scramble the eggs and fry them in a separate frying pan. You can then put them on your ramen before serving.
- Boiled scrambled eggs. The other option, especially if you want to cut down on the number of pots you have to wash, is to add the raw eggs to your pot of ramen, stir them in, and let them cook together. The trick is to cook it quickly while continually stirring so that your eggs are light and fluffy and not lumpy.
- Eggs and milk. Another thing you can do to cut the spiciness and add protein is to crack your eggs into a cup and mix in a tablespoon of milk. You can then add this egg and milk mixture to your boiling pot of ramen noodles. The result will be light, fluffy, and milky egg noodles.
4. Add a Sweetener
If you enjoy a sweet and sour or sweet and spicy taste, adding a sweetener will cut the heat and add another layer of flavor. You can add sugar, brown rice syrup, honey, or maple syrup. When adding a sweetener, start with a small amount because if it is too sweet, it will be difficult to fix.
You can either add the sugar or honey or syrup straight to the ramen and mix it well or make a sweet sauce. To make a sauce, combine soy sauce with honey, maple syrup, or sugar, and then add it to your noodles.
Another option is to use teriyaki sauce or rice vinegar instead of soy sauce. Experiment with the different sauces and sweeteners to get the flavor you like.
5. Add Vegetables or Meat
Bulk up your meal and reduce the spiciness by adding vegetables or meat. Make sure your veggies or meat are not spiced. The last thing you want is other flavors and spices from the vegetables or meat clashing with spice in the buldak noodles.
Leftover chicken fillet works well. All you need to do is shred it and mix it into the noodles. Other great meat options include ground beef or leftover roast, which you can also shred.
Vegetables that work well are grated carrots, spinach, kale, bell peppers, sliced cucumber, peas, onions, cabbage, and scallions. Stay away from vegetables like butternut squash and pumpkin because they will become a soggy mess.
Raw veggies work well, but you can steam them before adding them to the ramen if you prefer them softer.
6. Don’t Drain All the Water
Don’t drain out all the water or add more than the suggested amount of water during the cooking process if you like a broth consistency. Leaving more water in your buldak ramen will dilute the sauce making it less spicy.
You can also add broth to the ramen if you have some to add more flavor or throw in some stock cubes to balance out the spiciness. This will add a bit of volume to ramen and make it less watery.
7. Add Peanut Butter or Any Nut Butter
Peanuts and cashew nuts are often found in Asian dishes and add a lovely flavor. If you’re a fan of these nutty flavors, add a bit of peanut butter or any nut butter to your boiling pot of buldak ramen. Various types of nut butter that work well are cashew nut butter and almond butter.
Before adding the nut butter to your ramen, make sure it’s melted so that it is easier to incorporate. Alternatively, you can make a sauce by mixing nut butter and soy sauce before adding the mixture to your ramen. It is simply delicious!
8. Add More Ramen
Many people may not have some or any of the ingredients mentioned above. In that case, you can try a different technique using what you have. Like most people who enjoy ramen, you probably have a stash of packets or cups in your pantry.
If you’ve accidentally poured the entire sauce packet into the noodles but prefer your noodles less spicy, just add another packet of noodles to reduce the heat.
You will end up with double the amount of ramen you wanted, but luckily ramen keeps quite well in the fridge for about a day or two. Empty half the ramen into an airtight container, seal it, and pop it into the fridge. When you want to eat it, empty it into a pot and heat it on the stove, or transfer it into a microwave-safe bowl and warm it up in the microwave.
Sometimes even spice lovers find buldak ramen way too spicy. You can do several things to cut the heat so that your ramen is more tolerable. Add less of the sauce packet or add dairy, vegetables, meat, eggs, nut butter, or eggs. You can also add more noodles and water. Experiment with a combination of these to get the taste you enjoy most.
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