If you love noodles, you’ll love this recipe.  Thick, chewy Udon Noodles, Shiitake Mushrooms, and baby Bok Choy soaking in a sweet & savory Stir Fry Sauce.  People may not get Shanghaied in Portland anymore, but you’ll be sure to sneak these Shanghai Noodles away because everyone’s going to want some!


The idea for this recipes comes from Portland’s not too distant, shady past and the fact that our famous tunnels are said to be haunted.  You see….  Portland was known as “The Shanghai Capital of the World”, and the tunnels that still exist underneath old town get bombarded every Halloween for tours.

If you aren’t familiar with shanghaiing, it refers to the capture and illegal sale of able-bodied men to sea captains in need of crewmen. Unscrupulous (to say the least) middlemen kidnapped men and sold them off to captains for as little as $50 a head. These poor men were then forced to work on ships bound for the Orient with no pay. According to legend as well as some historical data, men were shanghaied in Portland from roughly 1850 to 1941. Things were supposedly at their worst during Prohibition.  Link

Ahhh Portland….what a colorful city 🙂

So I was sitting here on Halloween, seeing ads for the haunted tunnel tours, and thinking about noodles…..Udon Noodles to be exact…. and so I googled Shanghai Noodles.  Imagine my surprise when I found out they were a real thing….and boy did they sound good!

The rest, as they say,  is history.

I hope you enjoy my version of Shanghai Noodles and if so – please leave a comment.  And if you’re ever walking around Old Town Portland…..well – let’s just say watch out for those hidden trap doors….. 😉


Shanghai Noodles



Shanghai Noodles | Brand New Vegan

You’ll need some Udon Noodles, Shiitake Mushrooms, Napa Cabbage, Baby Bok Choy, Garlic, Ginger, Green Onions, and a Carrot for this recipe.  For the sauce I mixed Soy Sauce, Hoisin Sauce, Mirin, a little Chili Garlic Paste, Brown Sugar, and a few drops of Sesame Oil.

A very simple Stir Fry…..  you got this!

The Udon Noodles I bought were precooked and compacted in a little 7oz package with a seasoning packet (throw that away).  I simple added 3 of those packages of noodles to some hot water and let them slowly unwind from each other.  Stir them around with a wooden spoon if it helps.  Then drain and set aside.

Make the sauce by whisking all the sauce ingredients over low heat, and when it starts to simmer, add a slurry of 1 Tbs cornstarch and 1 Tbs water. to thicken.  Remove from heat when thickened and set aside.

Stir Fry the ginger and garlic in a little water until softened, then add 1 shredded carrot, a small bundle of chopped Baby Bok Choy, an 8 oz package of Shiitake Mushrooms and about ¼ head of chopped Napa Cabbage.

When the veggies are nice and soft stir in the sauce and the noodles.  Mix well to combine and serve with chopped Green Onions for garnish.

As always – leave those comments!  I love getting your comments and I read each and every one!  Once again, thank all of you for supporting Brand New Vegan!!!



Shanghai Noodles
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
15 mins
Total Time
30 mins
Don't get shanghaiied in Portland without at least trying my Shanghai Noodles! Chewy Udon Noodles, Shiitakes, and baby Bok Choy in a sweet & savory sauce.
Course: Main
Cuisine: Asian
Servings: 4 servings
Author: Chuck Underwood
  • 3 pck Udon Noodles (7 3/4 oz each)
  • 1/2 head Napa Cabbage (chopped)
  • 1 small Baby Bok Choy (chopped)
  • 3 cloves Garlic (minced)
  • 1-2 tsp Ginger (minced)
  • 1 med Carrot (shredded)
  • 8 oz Shiitake Mushrooms
The Sauce
  • 1/2 cup Water
  • 1/4 cup Soy Sauce (low sodium)
  • 1/4 cup Hoisin Sauce
  • 2 Tbs Mirin (asian cooking wine)
  • 1 tsp Chili Garlic Sauce
  • 1/2 tsp Brown Sugar
  • 1 Tbs Cornstarch
  • 1 Tbs Water
  1. Add packages of noodles to hot water, stir until they loosen and unwind.

    We will NOT be using the flavoring packets - toss them.

  2. Drain noodles and set aside
The Sauce
  1. Whisk all ingredients (except cornstarch & water) together over low heat until simmering

  2. Make a slurry of the Cornstarch and 1 Tbs Water and stir it in to thicken
  3. Remove from heat
The Stir Fry
  1. Stir Fry the garlic and ginger in a little water until softened and fragrant
  2. Add carrot, bok choy, cabbage, and mushrooms.  Stir fry until veggies have softened.

  3. Keep adding water as necessary to keep everything from sticking.
  4. Stir in sauce and noodles and mix well
  5. Garnish with chopped Green Onions, Sesame Seeds, and Sriracha







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