Creamy Tahini Noodles
Jun 23, 2020, Updated Jan 29, 2024
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Vegan creamy tahini noodles are a luscious and satisfying dish, where the rich, nutty flavor of tahini blends seamlessly with the delicate texture of noodles to create a creamy, indulgent experience. This plant-based delight is elevated with the addition of garlic, lemon, and a variety of optional fresh vegetables, making it a versatile and nourishing meal for any occasion.
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Creamy Sesame Tahini Noodles
One pot creamy vegan tahini noodles epitomize convenience and flavor, melding the nutty, rich taste of tahini with the effortless ease of a single-pot meal. This dish comes together quickly, making it a perfect weeknight staple for those seeking a satisfying, plant-based option without the hassle of extensive cleanup. The creamy sauce, made from a blend of tahini, garlic, and lemon, coats the noodles evenly, ensuring each strand is bursting with savory goodness. Topped with a variety of vegetables and optional garnishes like toasted sesame seeds or fresh herbs, this dish is a versatile canvas that caters to a wide range of taste preferences and dietary needs.
Tahini is a spread that is from toasted hulled sesame seeds – it does not contain any peanuts, but has a toasted peanut like flavor and is a great peanut butter substitute!
Tahini is popular in the Middle East, Caucuses (we had the best tahini I’ve ever had in Yerevan Armenia), and Mediterranean countries – but it is popular everywhere and easy to find at most grocery stores.
How to Make Vegan Tahini Noodles
Firsty assemble the following ingredients:
- Grapeseed, peanut, or canola oil (1 tbsp) – Grapeseed oil provides a light, neutral base for sautéing, allowing the natural flavors of the other ingredients to shine through.
- Onion (1) – Onion adds a foundational savory depth and slight sweetness that enhances the overall flavor profile of the dish.
- Shallot (1) – Shallot contributes a delicate, mild flavor that bridges the gap between garlic’s pungency and onion’s sweetness, adding complexity to the sauce.
- Bell pepper (1) – Bell pepper introduces a crisp, sweet element that contrasts nicely with the creamy sauce, adding both color and a fresh, vegetal flavor.
- Zucchini (1) – Zucchini brings a mild, earthy flavor and a tender texture, absorbing the sauce well and adding nutritional value.
- Shiitake mushrooms (12 oz) – Shiitake mushrooms offer a rich, umami depth and meaty texture, enhancing the dish’s savory notes.
- Precooked stir fry noodles (7 oz) – Stir fry noodles provide a chewy, satisfying base, their substantial texture ideally suited to holding the creamy tahini sauce.
- Mirin or rice wine (2 tbsp) – Mirin adds a subtle sweetness and a hint of acidity, helping to balance the savory and nutty flavors of the sauce.
- Soy sauce (2 tbsp) – Soy sauce infuses the dish with umami and a salty depth, grounding the sauce with its robust flavor.
- Tahini (2 tbsp) – Tahini is the star ingredient, lending a creamy consistency and a nutty, slightly bitter taste that serves as the backbone of the sauce.
- Chili paste (1-2 tsp) – Chili paste injects a vibrant heat and complexity, offering an adjustable spice level to suit individual tastes.
- Sesame seeds and green onions – these optional garnished add a bite and bit of freshness.
Use this Method:
Heat oil in wok. In a large, heavy skillet, heat oil on medium high.
Cook Veggies. Add onion and shallot, tossing to prevent burning. After 2 minutes on high, onion and shallot should be lightly browned. Add peppers, zucchini, mushrooms, stir on high heat and lightly brown.
Add noodles. Add noodles to pan, toss. Add sauce and stir. Stir in tahini and mix well. Sprinkle green onions and sesame seeds over noodles, plate immediately.
Tips and Tricks for Perfect Creamy Noodles
Achieve the Right Consistency: Start with a base amount of tahini and gradually add water or vegetable broth to reach your desired sauce consistency. It should be smooth and creamy, but not too thick.
Balance the Flavors: Tahini can be quite rich, so balance it with acidity from lemon juice or a dash of vinegar. A hint of sweetness, such as maple syrup or agave, can also complement the tahini’s nuttiness.
Use Quality Tahini: The flavor of your noodles heavily depends on the tahini used. Opt for a well-stirred, smooth, and runny tahini that’s not too bitter.
Incorporate Fresh Garlic: Freshly minced or grated garlic will give the sauce a more vibrant flavor compared to garlic powder.
Add Nutritional Yeast: For a cheesy, umami flavor without dairy, consider stirring in some nutritional yeast into your tahini sauce.
Cook Noodles Al Dente: Slightly undercook your noodles as they will continue to soften when mixed with the hot sauce, ensuring they don’t become too mushy.
Reserve Pasta Water: Before draining, save some pasta water to thin out the sauce if needed. The starchy water helps the sauce cling to the noodles better.
Incorporate Veggies: Add steamed or sautéed vegetables like broccoli, spinach, or bell peppers for added nutrition and texture.
Experiment with Proteins: For a protein boost, add chickpeas, tofu, or edamame to your noodles.
Garnish for Extra Flavor: Top your dish with toasted sesame seeds, chopped green onions, or fresh herbs like cilantro or parsley for a burst of flavor and color.
Adjust Heat: If you enjoy a bit of spice, a drizzle of chili oil or a sprinkle of red pepper flakes can add a warm heat that complements the creamy tahini.
Serve Immediately: Tahini noodles are best enjoyed fresh, as the sauce can thicken upon cooling. If needed, gently reheat and add a splash of water to restore creaminess.
Any type of noodle can be used for creamy tahini noodles, but long, thin varieties like spaghetti, fettuccine, or even Asian-style noodles like soba or udon are particularly good at holding the creamy sauce.
If the tahini sauce thickens too much, gradually add warm water or vegetable broth, stirring continuously until you reach a creamy, pourable consistency. The starchy pasta water is particularly effective for this.
Absolutely! For a more substantial meal, consider adding plant-based proteins like chickpeas, tofu, or tempeh. If you’re not strictly vegan, cooked chicken or shrimp also pairs well with the dish.
Enhance the flavor by incorporating minced garlic, a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, a dash of soy sauce or tamari, and spices like paprika or cumin. Fresh herbs, like cilantro or parsley, can also add a burst of flavor.
Versatile and adaptable, this dish pairs well with a variety of vegetables. Try sautéed bell peppers, steamed broccoli, spinach, kale, or roasted sweet potatoes for added color, texture, and nutrition.
Leftover creamy tahini noodles can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days. The sauce may thicken, so gently reheat and add a little water or vegetable broth to restore creaminess.
To make gluten-free creamy tahini noodles, simply use gluten-free noodles such as rice noodles, quinoa noodles, or gluten-free pasta varieties, and ensure that any added sauces like soy sauce are gluten-free as well.
While tahini is made from sesame seeds and is naturally nut-free, those with severe allergies should ensure there’s no cross-contamination in the tahini production process. For a nut-free dish, also ensure that no cross-contaminated ingredients are added.
Add heat to your tahini sauce with a dash of cayenne pepper, a sprinkle of red chili flakes, or a swirl of chili oil, adjusting the amount to suit your preferred spice level.
What to Serve with Tahini Noodles
Steamed Greens: Broccoli, spinach, or bok choy add color, nutrients, and a slight bitterness to balance the creaminess of the tahini sauce.
Grilled Vegetables: Zucchini, bell peppers, and eggplant, grilled to perfection, provide a smoky contrast to the smooth noodles. Try these easy grilled carrots.
Crispy Tofu: Cubes of tofu, pan-fried until golden, offer a crunchy, protein-packed topping that soaks up the tahini sauce beautifully.
Pickled Vegetables: Quick-pickled cucumbers or radishes introduce a tangy crunch that cuts through the richness of the dish.
Roasted Nuts: Toasted almonds, cashews, or pine nuts add a delightful crunch and nutty flavor that echoes the tahini in the sauce.
Fresh Herbs: A sprinkle of cilantro, parsley, or green onions can brighten the dish and add a fresh, aromatic finish.
Chili Oil or Flakes: For those who enjoy a bit of heat, a drizzle of chili oil or a sprinkle of chili flakes can spice up the creamy noodles.
Roasted Chickpeas: Oven-roasted until crispy, chickpeas provide a savory, crunchy element that pairs well with the creamy texture of the noodles.
Sliced Avocado: Creamy avocado slices add a buttery texture and a rich, subtle flavor that complements the tahini sauce.
Lemon Wedges: A squeeze of fresh lemon juice over the top of the dish can cut through the richness and add a zesty, refreshing note.
One Pot Creamy Vegan Tahini Noodles
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- 1 tbsp grapeseed, peanut, or canola oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 shallot, diced
- 1 bell pepper, diced
- 1 zucchini, diced
- 12 oz diced shiitake mushrooms
- 7 oz precooked stir fry noodles
- 2 tbsp mirin or rice wine
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tbsp tahini
- 1-2 tsp chili paste, fire oil, or other spicy oil/paste/herb
- sesame seeds and green onions, to garnish
- In a large, heavy skillet, heat oil on medium high.
- Add onion and shallot, tossing to prevent burning.
- After 2 minutes on high, onion and shallot should be lightly browned.
- Add peppers, zucchini, mushrooms, stir on high heat and lightly brown.
- Add noodles to pan, toss.
- Add sauce and stir.
- Stir in tahini and mix well.
- Sprinkle green onions and sesame seeds over noodles, plate immediately.
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Soom Foods Ground Sesame Tahini Paste 11oz (2 Pack) | Silky Smooth Texture in Hummus, Dips, Salad Dressings | Vegan, Nut-Free, Gluten-Free, Kosher, Keto, Paleo, Whole30
HexClad Hybrid Nonstick Wok, 12-Inch, Stay-Cool Handle, Dishwasher Safe, Induction Ready, Compatible with All Cooktops
TILUCK measuring cups and magnetic measuring spoons set, stainless steel measuring cups, 6 double-sided stainless steel measuring spoons & 1 leveler
Nutrition InformationYield 6 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 285Total Fat 16gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 13gCholesterol 0mgSodium 547mgCarbohydrates 24gFiber 4gSugar 8gProtein 6g
Nutrition is automatically calculated by Nutritionix - please verify all nutrition information independently and consult with a doctor or nutritionist for any and all medical and diet advice.