Sweet & Spicy Hot Chili Chicken Noodles

This dish was inspired by a noodle recipe I saw on Bon Appetit and I just HAD to try it out, except you know, with my own few twists here and there. It reminds me of traditional drunken noodles with a rich meaty sauce. The noodles simply drip and bathe in a fabulous sweet and spicy tomato chili sauce that’s incredibly easy to make and addicting. Perfect date night in meal that seems a little fancy, but truthfully takes no time at all to whip up.

Tony and I slurped these noodles up and couldn’t get enough. Top them with roasted cashews or peanuts and plenty of fresh basil to bring it all together.

hot chili chicken noodles in bowls with chopsticks

What you’ll need to make hot chili chicken noodles

Okay, the flavors in these spicy chicken ramen noodles are out of this world! I lightened this dish up a bit by using less oil and sugar, but the result is equally as savory and delicious. Here’s everything you’ll need to make it:

  • Chicken: you’ll need some ground chicken or turkey to cook and add flavor into the sauce.
  • Herbs & spices: we’re also using freshly grated ginger, garlic and fresh basil for the perfect flavor boosts.
  • For the sauce: the rest of the sauce is made with a bit of coconut sugar, tomato paste, hot chili paste, soy sauce, rice vinegar and water.
  • Noodles: I love using ramen or rice noodles in this recipe! See below for more swaps and ways to make this dish gluten free.
  • To serve: top your bowls with more fresh basil, chopped roasted cashews or honey roasted peanuts and some extra red pepper flakes if you like more heat. Feel free to omit the nuts to keep this dish nut-free.

cooking chicken for spicy chicken ramen noodles in a pan

Can I make this vegetarian?

Yes! Feel free to use crumbled tofu in place of the ground chicken in this recipe. SO GOOD!

Customize these healthy chili chicken noodles

These spicy chicken noodles are super easy to customize with ingredients you have on-hand. Here’s what I can suggest:

  • Optional noodle swaps: out of ramen or rice noodles? Feel free to use spaghetti or fettuccine noodles. Using rice noodles will keep this recipe gluten free, or simply choose a gluten free pasta!
  • Add a boost of veggies: feel free to add already cooked broccoli, green beans, snow peas, bell pepper, mushrooms or matchstick carrots to the dish when you stir in the noodles. YUM.
  • Swap your spice. If you don’t have any hot chili paste you can use a hot sauce like sriracha instead, but I do recommend hot chili paste for best flavor.

cooking hot chicken and ramen noodles in a pan

Can I make these noodles less spicy?

While these noodles are meant to be a delicious blend of sweet and spicy, feel free to reduce the hot chili paste and replace it with more tomato paste instead if you’re sensitive to spice. Add some red pepper flakes to taste at the end if you end up wanting more of a kick!

hot chicken chili noodles in a bowl with chopsticks

How to make sweet & spicy chicken noodles

While these chili chicken noodles look nice and fancy, they’re incredibly easy and quick to make right at home.

  1. Brown the chicken. You’ll start by breaking up your ground chicken in a pot with sesame oil until it’s nice and golden.
  2. Season the chicken. Add your ginger, garlic and coconut sugar to the chicken and break it up and cook it until it’s fully cooked.
  3. Make the sauce. In the same pot you’ll stir in the rest of the ingredients (besides the noodles), bring everything to a simmer and then reduce the heat and cook it uncovered so that the sauce thickens.
  4. Cook the noodles. In a separate pot cook your noodles until they’re al dente according to the directions on the package. Be sure not to overcook! Drain them and add them to the pot with your meat sauce and stir everything well.
  5. Garnish & serve. Divide the chili chicken noodles into bowls, garnish with your fav toppings and serve!

sweet and spicy chicken noodles in a bowl topped with peanuts and basil

Storing & reheating tips

Store any leftover spicy chicken noodles in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 3-5 days. To reheat simply do so in a microwave safe dish.

pulling spicy chicken ramen noodles up out of a bowl with chopsticks

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I hope you love these sweet & spicy hot chili chicken noodles! If you make them be sure to leave a comment & a rating so I know how you liked them. Enjoy, xo!

Sweet & Spicy Hot Chili Chicken Noodles with Basil

Delicious hot chili chicken noodles tossed in an easy, flavorful meat sauce. These sweet & spicy chicken noodles are packed with protein and seriously better than takeout! Top your bowl with fresh basil, roasted nuts and red pepper flakes for an extra kick of heat.

  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil (or avocado oil)
  • 1 pound ground chicken
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
  • 6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar
  • 2 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped basil
  • 3 tablespoons hot chili paste (such as sambal oelek)
  • 3 tablespoons reduced sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 cup water
  • 10 ounces ramen noodles (spaghetti, fettuccine or rice noodles will also work)
  • For serving:
  • Fresh chopped basil (I recommend basil ribbons on top!)
  • Chopped roasted cashews or peanuts (honey roasted is delicious!)*
  • Extra red pepper flakes
  1. Add sesame oil to a large pot and place over medium-high heat. Add ground chicken to the pot and season generously with salt and pepper. Brown the meat and break up into medium-sized chunks; cooking for about 5 minutes or until nice and golden underneath. Next, add in ginger, garlic, coconut sugar to the chicken and continue to cook about 4-5 minutes longer or until meat is almost all the way cooked, breaking up into smaller chunks as you cook it.

  2. Once meat is cooked, stir in tomato paste, fresh chopped basil and hot chili paste for 30 seconds to 1 minute, then add in the soy sauce, rice vinegar and water. Bring to a simmer, then reduce heat to low and cook uncovered, stirring every so often until sauce begins to thicken. This should take about 30 minutes.

  3. While the sauce cooks, you can make your pasta: cook pasta until al dente according to directions on the package. Once pasta is done, drain, then add back to the pot with the meat sauce (once it is done cooking!) and stir well to allow the meat to coat the noodles. Divide noodles into bowls and garnish with LOTS of basil ribbons, chopped cashews/peanuts extra red pepper flakes, if desired. Serves 4.

*Feel free to omit the nuts to keep the dish nut free.

To make vegetarian/vegan: feel free to use crumbled tofu in place of the ground chicken in this recipe.

To make gluten free: use your favorite gluten free noodles or gluten free stir fry rice noodles.

How to store: store any leftover spicy chicken noodles in airtight containers in the refrigerator for up to 3-5 days. To reheat simply do so in a microwave safe dish.


Servings: 4 servings

Serving size: 1 serving (based on 4)

Calories: 473kcal

Fat: 12.1g

Saturated fat: 3g

Carbohydrates: 63.4g

Fiber: 0.5g

Sugar: 4.1g

Protein: 28.5g

Recipe by: Monique Volz // Ambitious Kitchen | Photography by: Eat Love Eat

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