Ramen UpgradeSo, it’s that time of year. And no, I’m not talking about the holidays. I’m talking about the time of year when evvvverrryone and their mother is sick. You know what I mean. The lines at the pharmacy are suddenly longer than the lines at FAO Schwartz. Friends are canceling plans with you because they are “sick.” Your head hurts so badly you want to cry. People in your office are following you around with a can of Lysol. You’re meeting with your boss and have such a violent coughing fit that your eyes tear up and she hands you a cough drop and begs you to asks you if you need to leave to get a drink. Your desperate late night texts turn from pathetic attempts at flirting into requests for someone to please please puhlease bring you NyQuil. I mean, this is what happens to everyone. Right?

Needless to say, I’ve been feeling under the weather this week. So I haven’t had much of an appetite. And there’s really only so much Lipton’s Soup Secrets (extra noodle) that one person can eat. Last night, I had a fleeting thought that I was feeling better and wanted to eat something solid. But right now my cupboard looks like I’m on a serious pantry diet. For those of you who don’t know, the pantry diet is when you are either so broke or so fat that you refuse to go grocery shopping and limit yourself to only eating what’s left in your pantry. I don’t think this really works if you are trying to lose weight because normally all I have in my pantry is carbs. Unless of course your pantry is empty and you eat nothing. Then I’m sure you’re guaranteed to drop a few pounds. All while saving a few pennies.

Annnyway, in my moment of hunger, I remembered a simple and delicious Ramen upgrade that a friend and I made when we were “rained in” during Hurricane Sandy. All it requires is soy sauce, Siracha (or something similar), peanut butter, and wait for it… Ramen noodles. Shocking ingredient, I know. Fortunately, I had all of those things in my pantry last night. Plus some frozen shrimp, celery, and carrots. When my friend and I made this, we included green onions and cilantro, and he added chicken to his. So clearly, you can experiment¬†with your add-ons as long as you have the 4 main ingredients mentioned above.


ramen upgrade 2


  • 1 package of Ramen noodles (I used shrimp flavor)
  • 1 tablespoon of soy sauce
  • 1.5-2 tablespoons of peanut butter (chunky or smooth)
  • 1 teaspoon of Siracha (or however much you want)
  • optional ingredients:
  • 1 small carrot, shaved thin
  • 1 celery stalk, cut in thin slices
  • dash of ginger and garlic
  • 5 frozen shrimp tails, cooked according to package directions


Cook Ramen according to package instructions. However, add the seasoning packet at the same time that you add the noodles (rather than waiting until after they are done boiling for 3 minutes).

At the last 30 seconds of cooking, add carrots and celery.

Once the noodles are done, drain most of the liquid. It’s better to leave a little more liquid than you think you will need. You can always dump a bit more out if it’s too watery.

Add peanut butter, Siracha, soy sauce, and ginger and garlic (if using) and mix well, until the peanut butter is completely melted and you have a nice creamy coating of sauce on your noodles.

Add the cooked shrimp tails and enjoy!