50+ Ramen Toppings to Transform Your Homemade Instant Noodles

Nov 10, 2023

Homemade noodles, including ramen and instant noodles, are a global phenomenon and the perfect quick meal. While they can be satisfying on their own, the true magic of these noodles lies in their versatility.

But have you ever wondered how to make instant noodles better? With the right noodles and ramen toppings, what begins as a simple cup of noodles can be transformed into your perfect meal.

We've tried a lot of noodle toppings in our lives and decided to put together a list of over 50 of our all-time favourites. These are proven to add extra flavour, texture and colour to your next bowl of homemade noodles or your favourite instant noodle brand.

Add as many or as few as you like - we're confident there's something for every palate. So enjoy our selection of proteins, vegetables, condiments, crunchy extras, and more.

→ Shop now: Our handpicked range of noodle and ramen toppings

Protein Ramen Toppings

We think of proteins as an essential component of any hearty bowl of homemade noodles. They add a satisfying richness that can form the most memorable part of your meal.

#1 Chashu pork

Chashu pork is a staple topping in many ramen restaurants and is a favourite of many ramen enthusiasts including ourselves. We find that chashu pork, especially when slowly cooked, can melt in your mouth due to its tender texture and succulent taste.

Chashu pork

#2 Ground meat

Whether it's pork, beef, or chicken, ground meat is a quick and easy protein to sprinkle on top, adding substance and flavour to your noodles. Why not try to add a bit of a kick by cooking with some garlic and onions?

Minced meat

#3 Sliced beef

Thinly sliced beef can be cooked directly in the hot broth, offering a hearty chew and a rich taste that complements any noodle bowl. Adding sliced beef always reminds us of the classic Taiwanese beef noodle soup.

Sliced beef

#4 Shredded chicken

A leaner option, shredded chicken, ideally without the skin, absorbs the ramen flavours. It also provides a satisfying, protein-packed bite.

Shredded chicken

#5 Seafood

If you are a seafood lover, then rejoice as toppings such as shrimp, squid, cuttlefish and crab sticks can enhance your noodles adding a taste of the sea. We love using seafood in many of our favourite instant ramen recipes.

Prawn topping for ramen

#6 Fish balls

Common in Asian cuisines, fish balls are a fun and flavourful addition that soaks up the broth, providing a savoury, chewy bite. We recommend trying out various brands and flavours of fish balls to find your favourite.

Fish balls in ramen

#7 Fish Cakes (Narutomaki)

A visually appealing steamed fish cake with a distinctive swirl pattern. Offers a mild, sweet flavour and chewy texture, adding both taste and visual appeal to any ramen bowl.

Narutomaki Fish Cakes

#8 Frankfurters

Sliced frankfurters are a fantastic way to introduce a smoky, meaty element to your ramen. They cook quickly and add their savoury juices to the broth, adding depth to every spoonful. The frankfurters' firm texture and rich taste provide a satisfying contrast to the noodles. This makes them a hearty and indulgent topping for any ramen bowl.

Frankfurters For Ramen

#9 Fried tofu pouches (Inari)

These sweet and savoury pockets of tofu add a delightful texture to your meal. They are also a great source of protein especially for vegans and vegetarians.

Inari fried tofu topping

#10 Soft-boiled, marinated ramen eggs (Ajitsuke Tamago)

Ajitsuke Tamago is the crown jewel of all ramen toppings. When cooked properly, it has a soft-boiled yolk with a custard-like texture that complements the marinade. We find this strikes a nice decent balance between savoury, salty and sweet to unlock umami flavours.

Marinated ramen eggs

#11 Poached eggs

If you are short on time and feel like a tasty egg topping you can add a poached egg. As the noodles simmer, break an egg into the noodles and poach it in the steaming broth. We find that its silky yolk and delicate white enrich the broth and overall noodle dish.

Poached egg in ramen

Asian Vegetables Ramen Toppings

Vegetables don't just add a splash of colour but also a wealth of nutrients and textures. We find that they help to transform your ramen into a more wholesome meal with multiple layers of flavour.

#12 Spinach

This leafy green adds a green colour and a tender texture. We recommend blanching spinach as that preserves its nutrients and bright colour. This makes it an attractive and healthy addition to your ramen bowl.

Spinach for ramen

#13 Pak Choi

For a satisfying crunch and a solid dose of Asian vegetables, pak choi is a must. It brings a subtle sweetness when sautéed which is just enough to maintain its crispness. We recommend using one or two heads of pak choi maximum, otherwise you run the risk of making the noodles too bland.

Pak Choi vegetables for ramen

#14 Cabbage

Cabbage, especially in shredded form, adds a crisp texture and can soak up flavours. We find it a refreshing topping that adds volume without overpowering other ingredients.

Cabbage for noodles

#15 Enoki mushrooms

These delicate mushrooms provide a unique texture and an earthy flavour. They're great for adding a gourmet touch to a humble bowl of Asian instant noodles or ramen.

Shiitake mushrooms

#16 Shiitake mushrooms

Known for their meaty texture and rich, umami flavour, shiitake mushrooms can turn a simple ramen into more of a luxury treat.

Shiitake mushrooms

#17 Julienned carrots

The bright colour and sweet, crunchy bite of carrots offer a contrast to the soft noodles, making them a visually appealing and tasty topping. For best results, use julienne to cut your carrots.

Julienned carrots

#18 Diced tomatoes

Adding a hint of acidity and freshness, tomatoes are great for cutting through the richness of the broth, balancing out the flavours.

Diced tomatoes

#19 Fresh scallions

A sprinkle of finely chopped scallions adds a slightly spicy and peppery freshness as well as a punch of colour to your ramen. The result is both aesthetically pleasing and flavour-enhancing. If time allows, try cooking the scallions until they are slightly charred.

Fresh scallions

#20 Minced raw garlic

For those who like it hot, a little minced garlic goes a long way in providing a pungent kick that will wake up your taste buds.

Minced raw garlic

#21 Leeks

Leeks are a milder, sweeter alternative to scallions. Their soft texture complements the noodles well.


#22 Coriander

The bright, citrusy notes of coriander breathe freshness into the dish and combine well with spicy or savoury broths.

Coriander topping

#23 Thai basil leaves

These aromatic herbs add a liquorice-like flavour, which can be a game-changer for those looking to add a healthy, unique twist to their ramen.

Thai basil leaves

#24 Sweetcorn

The natural sweetness of corn kernels bursts in your mouth. This provides a lovely contrast to the savoury broth which pairs wonderfully with the savoury broth. The result enhances the overall flavour profile.


#25 Peas

Fresh or frozen peas add a delightful pop of sweetness and texture to your ramen. Their vibrant green colour livens up the dish, while their tender yet slightly crisp bite complements the soft noodles. Peas are not only a visually appealing addition but also bring a subtle earthiness, balancing the rich flavours of the broth.

Peas For Ramen

Asian Condiments and Sauces

Condiments and sauces are the secret weapons in your ramen arsenal. They offer endless opportunities to customise your bowl with complex, bold, or delicate flavours.

#26 Roasted sesame oil

A drizzle of this deeply flavoured oil adds a nutty aroma and enriches the overall taste profile of the ramen.

Roasted sesame oil

#27 Chilli oil

For those who desire extra spice or heat, like ourselves, chilli oil can deliver an intensity that warms the soul. Be careful not to add too much if you still want to taste the broth. If you are a chilli lover then you may also be interested in discovering the various types of spicy instant noodles out there.

Chilli oil

#28 Black garlic oil

Black garlic oil, a luxurious Japanese topping, is made by gently scorching garlic in oil. This introduces a sweet, caramelised flavour with an umami depth that's hard to resist.

Black garlic oil

#29 Miso paste

Introducing a savoury, salty element, miso paste can transform your broth into something truly special. We love the umami taste and the thick texture it brings. Miso paste is one of our favourite Japanese ingredients.

Miso paste

#30 Hoisin sauce

Offering a sweet and tangy taste, hoisin sauce is a great addition for those who enjoy a hint of sweetness with a complex mix of spices in their ramen. This sauce can add depth and a dark, rich colour to the broth, complementing meaty toppings particularly well.

Hoisin sauce

#31 Sriracha sauce

For a tangy kick, this Thai hot sauce balances heat with a touch of sweetness, making it a popular choice for spicing up ramen. Explore the range of Sriracha sauce variants for varying levels of heat and flavour.

Sriracha sauce

#32 Soy sauce

Soy sauce is the quintessential Asian condiment. With its salty, umami-rich flavour, soy sauce serves as the backbone of many broths and makes the perfect seasoning for noodles. We find that just a splash can deepen the taste of your ramen, bringing a warm, earthy complexity to the dish.

Soy sauce

#33 Yuzu Kosho

A zesty Japanese condiment combining yuzu citrus peel, chilli peppers, and salt. Adds a refreshing, tangy, and slightly spicy kick, ideal for enhancing chicken or seafood instant noodles and ramen.

Yuzu Kosho

#34 White pepper

Unlike its black counterpart, white pepper offers a sharper heat and a less intrusive presence, perfect for a subtle spice profile. If not available then black pepper in moderation can still taste great.

White pepper

#35 Togarashi (Japanese seven spice)

Togarashi is a well-known Japanese spice blend. It usually includes chilli pepper, orange peel, and nori among others. It adds a complex heat and even a hint of citrus to the ramen.

Togarashi (Japanese seven spice)

#36 Curry powder

A pinch of curry powder or even a curry cube can infuse your noodles with warm, aromatic spices, giving them an inspired transformation.

Curry powder

#37 Kewpie mayonnaise

This Japanese mayo is richer and creamier than its Western counterpart using only egg yolks. This adds a unique, umami-packed creaminess to your dish.

Kewpie Mayonnaise

Pickled and Fermented Extras

Pickled and fermented items introduce an element of zesty brightness or savoury depth to ramen. This creates a harmonious balance with the broth's richness.

#38 Kimchi

This staple Korean side dish of fermented cabbage brings a punch of sourness and spice, offering a tangy contrast to the rich broth. Use in moderation as it can be overpowering.


#39 Pickled ginger (Beni shoga or Gari)

Offering a sharp, sweet heat, pickled ginger cleanses the palate. It can either be added to the noodles as a topping or eaten to cleanse your palette in between slurps of noodles. We prefer the slightly pinker gari but you can't go wrong either way.

Pickled ginger gari

#40 Pickled radish

Its crunch and zesty flavour profile provides a refreshing bite that complements the chewy texture of noodles. If available try adding it to some honey or rice vinegar.

Pickled ginger gari

#41 Bamboo shoots (Menma)

These fermented shoots have a pleasingly earthy taste and a crisp texture that's unique among ramen toppings. We always include in ramen when available.

Bamboo shoots for ramen

#42 Pickled mustard greens

These bring a bitter, tangy, and sometimes spicy taste to your bowl, complementing the richness of traditional ramen broth.

Pickled mustard greens

Crunchy Ramen Toppings

Crunchy toppings for ramen and instant noodles can add a pleasing textural contrast as well as bursts of flavour. We find this makes each bite uniquely satisfying.

#43 Tempura bits (Tenkasu)

These crunchy bits of deep-fried tempura batter offer an irresistible crunch and an added dimension to the soup's texture. Not the healthiest but definitely among the tastiest.

Tempura bits Tenkasu

#44 Nori (dried seaweed sheets)

Nori introduces an umami taste with a sea-like flavour, enhancing the broth's complexity. When cut into strips, it also adds a pleasing visual touch to your bowl. Eat it how you like, however we recommend trying it once it's soaked up some of the broth.

Nori seaweed

#45 Wakame seaweed

Slightly sweet and succulent, wakame expands in the broth, adding not just flavour but also a fun, slippery texture. Not everyone's cup of tea, but worth a try.

Wakame Sushi

#46 Crispy fried onions or shallots

Adding a burst of savoury crunch, these are ideal for a final garnish that offers both taste and texture contrast.

Crispy fried onions

#47 Sesame seeds

Toasted sesame seeds sprinkled over the top add a subtle crunch and an aromatic nuttiness to each bite. Feel free to try white or black variants.

Sesame seeds

#48 Furikake

This Japanese seasoning often contains mixed sesame seeds, chopped seaweed, sugar, and salt. It gives a final touch of umami and texture.


International twists as Ramen Toppings

These toppings not only add a burst of flavour but also turn your ramen or instant noodles into a global dish. These international toppings showcase how global flavours can beautifully integrate with traditional ramen.

#49 Truffle oil

A few drops of truffle oil can elevate your ramen with a luxurious aroma and earthy flavour that's usually associated with gourmet dining.

Truffle oil

#50 Sundried tomatoes

Adding a Mediterranean twist, sundried tomatoes offer a chewy texture and a burst of tangy sweetness.

Sundried tomatoes

#51 Jalapeños

For a spicy kick, sliced jalapeños bring a fresh, zesty heat to the dish, infusing it with Mexican flair.

Jalapenos for ramen

#52 Harissa paste

This North African condiment is made from chilli peppers, spices, and herbs. It introduces a smoky heat and can be stirred into the broth for a vibrant taste sensation.

Harrisa Paste

#53 Cheese

Adding sliced or cream cheese to ramen might sound unconventional, but it gives a creamy, tangy depth. This goes surprisingly well with the broth.

Sliced cheese or cream cheese

#54 Artichoke hearts

Marinated artichoke hearts bring a tender texture and a slightly tangy flavour. We find it pairs particularly well with creamy or chicken-based ramen broths.

Artichoke hearts

Final Word

Every bowl of ramen and instant noodles is a unique story of textures, tastes, and colours. We hope this list of toppings inspires you to get creative with your next bowl of instant noodles.

So, dive in, get tasting and experiment to find some combinations of instant noodle and ramen toppings that suit you.

→ Shop now: Our handpicked range of noodle and ramen toppings

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