Easy Canned Tuna Curry

There are some nights when you want dinner and you want it quick. This easy canned tuna curry can be made in just a few minutes. There’s very little prep work.  The toughest bit is opening a can. Just cut up a bit of onion, chop some garlic, grate some ginger, and open a can of tuna. Yes, canned tuna.

If you make extra rice in advance (as I usually do), you just have to heat that up and you have dinner. It’s curry in a hurry.

I adapted this recipe from Madhur Jaffrey’s Quick & Easy Indian Cooking. Her recipe made two or three servings, which I have reduced. She calls for fresh chopped cilantro (which I never have, so I used a bit of dried coriander, which is the same thing). If you do have the fresh version, use 1 to 1 1/2 tablespoons.

I have also simplified the preparation a bit.  Yes, it’s possible to want to speed up even a canned tuna curry recipe! I was in a rush! And I was hungry. Rather than slicing the onions into rounds, I chopped them.  I grated the ginger with my microplane zester, instead of slicing it into strips; I didn’t want to bite down on big hunks of ginger! Besides, this way is faster.

During the quarantine, if you don’t have fresh ginger, ground is fine.  No fresh jalapeño? Use canned chilis instead. Don’t have that either? Red pepper flakes work too.

 




More Quick Fish Recipes

 

pan-fried tilapia with lemon butter saucePan Fried Tilapia with Lemon Butter Sauce

Just a few ingredients and you’ve got a fancy-looking dinner.  Tilapia is mild, so it’s a good “starter” fish.  It’s mostly pantry ingredients (you just need to buy fish; Trader Joe’s usually has it frozen).

fish fillet with yogurt sauceIndian Fish Fillet in Yogurt Sauce

A few minutes prep and twenty minutes of baking. The sauce tastes rich and creamy, but it’s made with yogurt so no guilt. There’s a bit of heat, but it’s subtle, not overpowering.

 

tuna cannellini bean saladTuna Cannellini Bean Salad Recipe for One

Got beans? Mix them with some tuna, serve with bread or fruit and you have a meal. You don’t even have to actually cook anything.  All pantry staples, other than the scallion. If you don’t have one, use onion.

 




Bacon Spinach Tomato Aioli Sandwich Recipe

Mmmm bacon….We’re obsessed with it.  We have bacon appetizers, bacon cocktails, and even bacon ice cream.  And now, meet the bacon spinach tomato aioli sandwich, a slightly different twist on the tried-and-true BLT.

I made this with Trader Joe’s uncured bacon (which is delicious; get the bacon ends if you can and save some money).   I tend to use spinach far more than lettuce, because it’s more versatile. You can cook with it, as well as use it in salads.  So, I reached for that rather than lettuce.

Then, I added some mini bell peppers. The sweetness and crunch of the peppers makes a nice foil for the salty bacon.

Finally, I decided to ditch the standard mayo in favor of aioli (which is mayo with garlic, some lemon juice, olive oil, and a bit of cayenne pepper).

If you are ambitious, and want to make your own aioli from scratch you can do that.  It’s delicious, and freshly made mayonnaise is far tastier than the stuff in the jar.

On the other hand, it doesn’t keep nearly as well, and making (and eating) a whole batch is a bit much for one person. Of course, you can always use the leftover aioli for french fries (like they do in Belgium) or as a dip for crudités.

I like to take the jarred mayonnaise and then add fresh ingredients to brighten the flavor so it tastes a bit more like homemade. That way, there’s no leftovers to worry about.




Substitutions and Variations for Bacon Spinach Tomato Aioli Sandwich

  • Add more heat with sriracha instead of just cayenne
  • Chop some basil or cilantro and incorporate it into the aioli sauce
  • Make it a bit lighter by using half mayo and half Greek yogurt
  • Prepare the aioli in advance so the flavors have more time to blend

 

Thick Cut Bacon

Make your sandwich even better with thick-cut bacon. Choose either natural (humanely raised with no antibiotics, and a vegetarian diet), or heritage.  Heritage pork is more flavorful and less fatty than standard pork.  You can even choose your farm (and check exactly what goes into your bacon).

More Sandwich Recipes

vegetarian eggplant sandwichVegetarian Eggplant Sandwich for One Person

Israeli salad, plus eggplant, and hummus and you have a delicious easy meal.

 

three cheese grilled cheese sandwichThree Cheese Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Why settle for only one kind of cheese when you can have three?  Ooey, gooey melty and delicious. Just the comfort food you need right now.

 

chicken caprese salad panini

Chicken Caprese Salad Panini Sandwich

Crispy, golden brown, and delicious! Transform a caprese side salad into a complete meal with chicken and sandwich fixings.

 

strawberry balsamic grilled cheeseStrawberry Balsamic Grilled Cheese Sandwich

You probably didn’t expect strawberries and balsamic vinegar in a sandwich, did you?  The tangy vinegar complements the sweet strawberries and enhances their flavor too.  And, of course, cheese nearly always makes everything better.




Greek Fish with Lemon and Tomatoes

I seem to be making a virtual trip around the Mediterranean. This week, instead of Israel, we’ve “landed” in Greece. This recipe for Greek fish with lemon and tomatoes is adapted from a recipe in The New York Times.

The Times recipe is good, but a bit too fiddly and time consuming. It also requires a whole fish. That’s generally too much food for one person.  And, it has to be cleaned, then stuffed, and finally baked. Probably delicious, but too much trouble.  So, I decided to make it easier and faster and used fish fillets instead.

Plus, the original recipe requires that you cook the tomatoes. I love fresh tomatoes, and tomato sauces, but don’t like the taste of freshly-cooked tomatoes. So, I simplified everything and added the tomatoes just at the end.

In my version, you make the marinade, leave out the tomatoes, and let it sit for a bit so the flavors combine. Then season the fish fillet, pour the marinade over it, and cook it. Add the tomatoes at the end, and serve. Also, I didn’t make it in the oven (too hot!). I grilled the fish in a pan instead.

 




 

Greek Fish with Lemon and Tomatoes Substitutions and Variations

  • Follow this suggestion from the comments of the original recipe: fry the fish for a minute or two with olive oil.  Then add the marinade, a splash or two of white wine, and simmer (covered) for 5-10 minutes.
  • If you don’t mind cooked tomatoes, add them to the marinade at the beginning.
  • Try cod instead of tilapia.  Or, use a small whole trout.
  • If you want more lemon flavor, slice some lemon and squeeze it over the fish.
  • Add some olives or capers to the marinade.
  • Add 1/4 C sliced zucchini to the pan when you start cooking the fish.

More Quick Fish Recipes

pan-fried tilapia with lemon butter saucePan Fried Tilapia with Lemon Butter Sauce

A quick dinner, enlivened with a touch of mustard for bite, and rosemary for herby flavor, with a squeeze of lemon juice. Even simpler and easier than the Greek fish on this post.

salmon greek yogurt dill sauceSalmon with Greek Yogurt Dill Sauce

Thick, creamy yogurt plus fresh dill, and refreshing cucumber mixed into a sauce that gets better the longer it sits.  Serve the sauce over simply cooked salmon.

 

fish fillet with yogurt sauceIndian Fish Fillet in Yogurt Sauce

Flaky, moist fish with a hint of heat from garam masala, cumin, and ginger. It’s subtle, not overpowering.  Ready in about 20 minutes.

 

fish in peppery tomato sauceSephardic Fish in Peppery Tomato Sauce

A bit spicier than the other recipes on this page, but still not super-hot.  It’s flavored with garlic, coriander, and briny capers, bathed in a peppery tomato sauce.

 




Spaghetti with Spinach and Lemon Cream Sauce

This recipe for spaghetti with spinach and lemon cream sauce was a bit of an accident. I innocently ordered a bunch of spinach (along with other groceries) from Fresh Direct.  I expected, well a standard bunch of spinach. What I got was a “spinach tree.” It’s enormous. It’s so large I had to prop it up against a bottle of seltzer and a plant to take a photo of it.

spinachSo, if anyone from Google noticed a spike in searches for  ‘spinach recipes’ over the last few days, it was me.

I adapted this recipe from the Smitten Kitchen. She used basil (or arugula), and while I have basil growing in my window, I don’t have arugula.

Besides, there’s that enormous bunch of spinach to use up!

So, I combined the two.  A bit of basil, and a handful of spinach, some diluted Greek yogurt instead of the heavy cream (didn’t have the cream and couldn’t leave to get some), and dinner is served!




Substitutions and Variations for Spaghetti with Spinach and Lemon Cream Sauce

  • If you don’t have heavy cream, melt 1/3 C unsalted butter and add 3/4 C whole milk. This makes about a cup.
  • Use plain Greek yogurt and thin it out with a little milk. If you do this, add a little hot water to the mixture first, before putting it in the pasta. This will prevent it from curdling.
  • Use frozen peas instead of spinach (add to the pasta while it’s cooking and save yourself an extra pot to clean; put the peas in for about 3 minutes).
  • Add some leftover cooked chicken for more protein.


Smitten Kitchen Cookbook

I love the Smitten Kitchen blog (as does a friend who is a professional chef). Deb’s recipes are consistently good. And, her original kitchen was nearly as small as mine. Which just proves you don’t need a lot of space, drawerfuls of gadgets, or an enormous pantry to create delicious food.

Everything is made from real ingredients, and ingredients that are easy to find. I know it really bugs me when some recipe calls for a teaspoon of some exotic ingredient I’ll never use again! One thing about this book is that the format spreads the recipes over more than one page, so it can be a bit hard to follow.


Spaghetti Spoon

It’s a small thing, but this spoon makes it much easier to toss your spaghetti and coat it with the sauce. It’s also a lot easier to get it out of the pot and into a bowl for serving. And because it’s OXO, it’s comfortable to hold too.

Microplane Zester

This is one of my favorite tools. It’s just the thing for zesting lemons (and getting only the zest without the bitter pith). Hard cheese can be tough to grate with a box grater, but this produces perfect little curls that practically melt into your pasta. It’s also ideal for grating nutmeg, ginger, or even garlic. Since it’s long and thin, you can just perch it right on top of the bowl while you grate. Note that it’s sharp, so be careful!

More Spinach Recipes for One Person

strawberry spinach salad balsamic dressing feta cheeseStrawberry Spinach Salad with Balsamic Dressing and Feta Cheese

Crisp, crunchy, sweet, and salty, this salad is a festival of flavor, color, and texture. Just the thing when it’s hot and actual “cooking” is a big nope.

spinach and feta cheese omeletteSpinach and Feta Cheese Omelette

Spanaokopita (spinach and feta pie) flavors without a lot of fussing with phyllo dough. And it comes together quickly.

 

sauteed garlic parmesan spinachSauteed Garlic Parmesan Spinach

An easy side dish with mellowed garlic,  sharp parmesan, and earthy spinach. Takes only a few minutes to make too.

 

spinach lamb meatballsSpinach Lamb Meatballs

Get your veggies and your main dish at the same time. The tangy red wine vinegar complements the robust flavor of the lamb beautifully.

 




Asian Chicken Salad with Cabbage

As colorful as it is tasty, this Asian chicken salad with cabbage proved to be an inspired invention. I was sick and didn’t feel like cooking much, plus I could hardly taste anything.

The crispy, vibrant salad even helped improve my appetite. It looked pretty (with the cabbage, peppers, and carrots), and I could taste it! It was also a good way to keep using up the giant cabbage I got from FreshDirect.

Asian chicken salad with cabbage is pretty easy to make, and you can make the dressing in advance if you like.

Before I got sick I had defrosted a chicken thigh that I had to use up, so I just seasoned that with ginger, garlic, a bit of soy sauce, and some sriracha. Then all I had to do was pop it in the oven for an hour.  Easy! The recipe would also work just fine with leftover rotisserie chicken, or even some leftover Chinese pork.

If you don’t want meat, you could add cold noodles, ramen noodles, slivered almonds, or extra veggies.

The dressing is straight from a recipe I found online in The New York Times recipe section.  I don’t like a lot of dressing, so this made about 4 servings of dressing for me. Your mileage may vary.





I had a big bag of mini mixed bell peppers, so I used those (they also helped make the food look more appealing) and a seedless cucumber, so that’s what I used.

You could use regular bell peppers, add snow peas, mushrooms, or regular cucumbers too.  Food should be flexible, and unless it’s baking, you should adjust recipes to fit what you have or what you prefer to eat.

Ingredients and Tools for This Recipe

black and decker mini chopper

Black & Decker Food Chopper

I use this all the time. It’s so much easier than dragging out a big food processor. And, with space at a premium, it’s a lot easier to store it too. Use it for the dressing, to chop garlic or onions, cut up potatoes, and make pesto without making a big mess.


Huy Fong, Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce, 17 Ounce Bottle

This stuff has become so popular it’s almost a cliché, but it’s also versatile enough to use in eggs, salads, meatballs, or on chicken. Just a little bit adds a big punch of flavor, without being too spicy or too sweet.

 

More Asian Recipes with Chicken or Cabbage

chinese chicken noodle cabbage soupChinese Chicken Noodle Cabbage Soup for One Person

Fragrant with garlic, spicy chili, mellowed cabbage, and a touch of sweetness from honey, this Chinese chicken noodle cabbage soup tastes great and clears stuffy heads too.

 

bibimbap rice bowl

Bibimbap Rice Bowl with Meat and Vegetables

Both a feast for the eyes and the taste buds, this dish is enriched with a spicy, garlicky sauce, sweet carrots, and lots of vibrant veggies.

 

honey sticky garlic chickenHoney Sticky Garlic Chicken

Pantry-friendly and hunger-friendly too. This is ready quickly and uses ingredients you already have around. But, it tastes like it came from a restaurant.

 

sichuan chinese chicken and eggplant with garlic sauceSichuan Chinese Chicken and Eggplant with Garlic Sauce

Speaking of takeout, this is a takeout standard that you can easily make at home.  It’s spicy, tender, and absolutely delicious. No need to get takeout.

 




Penne with Feta Cheese Sun-dried Tomatoes and Olives

This penne with feta cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, and olives recipe is fairly hands-off, simple, and delicious. And, of course, it’s just one serving!

It also allowed me to make some progress using the enormous jar of sun-dried tomatoes that’s been in the back of my fridge forever! Add some pasta, a bit of feta cheese, olives, and a few leaves of fresh basil, and you get a tasty lunch with only a few minutes of real work. (I have a basil plant growing in my window, so that basil was really fresh).

The feta was leftover from making a feta and spinach omelette, so it also helps toward my goal of not wasting anything. I just hate having a couple of tablespoons of sauce, or a few random bits of fruit or vegetables turning into a science experiment.

Now, on to more tasty mental pictures.

Since the tomatoes are dried, you’ll have to start by heating them and softening them up a bit.  You can do this overnight (if you’re organized), or just start them a few minutes before you start boiling the water for the pasta.

Once the tomatoes are soaked and the pasta is cooked, the rest of the recipe takes only a few minutes to prepare.  Just cook the garlic, toss the remaining ingredients in the saucepan you used to cook the penne and heat them up with the pasta.

Since the entire meal only uses one pot, it’s also easy to clean up afterwards. I don’t have a dishwasher, so easy cleanup is good!




 

Substitutions and Variations for Penne with Feta Cheese, Sun-Dried Tomatoes, and Olives

  • add a handful of fresh spinach (maybe half a cup of torn leaves) at the end, after you drain the pasta; cooking it just a minute or two until it wilts
  • put in some leftover cooked chicken, this makes it more substantial and suitable for dinner
  • add some cooked mushrooms (if you have dried mushrooms, throw them in the hot water when you’re rehydrating the sun-dried tomatoes)

Ingredients and Tools for This Recipe

Roland Sun-Dried Tomatoes

The nice thing about sun-dried tomatoes is that they do last a long time (if you happen to have bought a giant jar because the price was great).  In addition to pasta, you can toss them on pizza, mix them in with eggs, add them to pesto, or put them in meatloaf.

 

Divina Castelvetrano Olives 10.2 oz jar
Divina Castelvetrano Olives 10.2 oz jar

My mom only eats black olives and my dad only likes green ones. I never really liked olives of any kind that much until I tried these. They were set out as a bar snack (of all things). They are bright green, mild, and don’t taste sour or briny like most olives do. They’re great with this pasta dish, and also marinated in olive oil with slivers of garlic and rosemary (which is how the bar served them). Delicious and great for a wine and cheese cocktail hour (either just for you or for company).

More Single Serving Feta Cheese Recipes

strawberry spinach salad balsamic dressing feta cheeseStrawberry Spinach Salad with Balsamic Dressing and Feta Cheese

Perfect for long, hot summer days, this recipe requires no actual cooking. Crisp, refreshing, salty, and sweet, all at once.

feta brined roast chickenFeta Brined Roast Chicken Recipe for One

Easy enough for a weekend, fancy enough for company. The feta brine helps keep the chicken moist and adds flavor too.

 

summer pasta olives and fetaSummer Pasta with Green Olives and Feta Cheese

Sweet, juicy tomatoes, plus salty olives and feta, equals an easy summer meal. The feta cheese and olives are slightly salty, while the tomatoes add sweetness. Works either hot as dinner, or cool as a pasta salad.

 

spinach and feta cheese omeletteSpinach and Feta Cheese Omelette

Spinach and feta pie flavors, with a lot less effort. Make this for breakfast, brunch, or lunch.

 

 

 




Spicy Sesame Noodles Recipe for One Person

I recently found myself craving spicy sesame noodles. Unfortunately, I had trouble finding a ready-made recipe that appealed to me. One recipe was too sweet, another was too bland.  Yet a third called for ingredients I didn’t have at hand, like tahini and sesame paste. While those would be good, I dislike buying an entire jar/package/bottle of something just for one recipe. It did give me the idea to include some ginger, which I liked. Besides, I wanted spicy sesame noodles right then and there, not several hours or days in the future!

So, I combined and improvised.  And, of course, cut down the recipes from eight or four people to just one serving.

I also didn’t have long  rice noodles, only linguine, so I used that.  If you use rice noodles, follow the directions on the package to cook them.  There are instructions in the recipe for both.  If you only have linguine (or even short pasta) use that and don’t worry about it.

So, instead of a ready-made recipe, I ended up with my own twist. But, I’m happy to say it turned out really well.

A bit of a warning about this recipe. As is, it’s really spicy, since that chili garlic sauce packs a punch, so if you prefer a milder version, leave it out.

It’s great for a hot summer day, as it requires only that you cook the noodles, and nothing else. Just chop, mix, arrange in a bowl, and eat.

 




Spicy Sesame Noodles Recipe for One Person Substitutions and Variations

  • if you don’t have rice vinegar, use white vinegar
  • top with diced fresh bell pepper
  • add lightly cooked snow peas or broccoli
  • if you want a heartier meal, add in some cooked chicken
  • add 1 tsp tahini  to the sauce
  • garnish with sliced cucumber
  • use the peanut butter and cucumber to make a peanut butter and cucumber sandwich — yes, really)

More Spicy Noodle Recipes

spicy beef noodle soupSpicy Beef Noodle Soup for One

Exactly one serving of hot, spicy soothing soup. And it only takes a few minutes to prepare too.  You don’t have to simmer it for hours.

 

szechuan chili noodlesSchezuan Chili Noodles

Think Dan Dan noodles, but faster and easier.  You only need a few ingredients, and you don’t have to order out either.

 

easy singapore noodles with chickenEasy Singapore Noodles with Chicken for One Person

Nobody knows how this got its name. It’s not really from Singapore. But, it is crunchy, slightly spicy, warm, and delicious. Also a good way to clean out the fridge.

 

 




Egg Chili Cheese Burrito Recipe

This egg chili cheese burrito recipe is adapted from a Southwestern cookbook I bought long ago. Their recipe called for refried beans, and while I had beans, they were dry beans and hadn’t been soaked or refried, and I didn’t want to bother.  I did have tortillas (the ones I use as sneaky crepes), plenty of eggs, chilis, scallions, and cheese.

I decided to improvise with what I had ready to eat, rather than waiting for the beans to soak.  I was hungry, and didn’t want to fuss.

If you want to make the refried beans, you can use canned beans. If you have dried beans, and you have more time than I did that day, use the quick soak method to speed up the process.

To refry beans, just heat some bacon drippings in a pan, add cooked (or canned) pinto beans, plus some of the soaking liquid, cook them on high heat, and mash them up.  Turn the heat to low once the beans get thick and simmer until they’re soft.




Egg Chili Cheese Burrito Variations and Substitutions

  • add refried beans (about 1/4 cup)
  • cut up a sausage, fry it, and add that to the burrito
  • swap the salsa for some spicy stovetop chili
  • vary the cheese; I used sharp cheddar, but Colby, Monterey Jack or Colby-Jack would work too

More Egg Recipes

eggs with spinach and chili pepperEggs with Spinach and Chili Peppers

An easy light meal, flavored with ginger, garlic, and chili peppers. First you cook the seasonings, then the eggs, all in the same skillet.

 

frittata recipe for one personFrittata Recipe for One Person

A flexible recipe that uses whatever veggies you have around (fresh or frozen). Keep it vegetarian, or add some ham.

 

egg and tomato gratinEgg and Tomato Gratin

Fast food that’s so much better than anything from a takeout place. This is fragrant with thyme, garlic, and, onions. The whole thing is then topped with Swiss cheese.

 

shakshouka for oneShakshouka for One

Poached eggs bathed in a spicy tomato sauce, enlivened with fresh spinach. A bit more effort, but definitely worth it!

 

 




Cranberry Chipotle Turkey Enchilada

Thanksgiving is great, but finding new and different ways to use up the leftovers can be a bit of a challenge. However, it’s also an opportunity to be creative. I had an idea for a turkey cranberry chipotle turkey enchilada and went looking for cranberry chipotle salsa or even some cranberry relish in the supermarket.  The store had both, but I eventually decided I didn’t want to buy a whole jar (and end up with more leftovers to use up).  So I created my own instead.

I took some of the leftover turkey, a few craisins (dried sweetened cranberries), and added chipotle salsa which I already had (and could use for other recipes like chili or meatloaf). I combined them together to make cranberry chipotle turkey enchiladas.

If you already have cranberry relish or cranberry salsa from your own dinner that would work beautifully too.

It’s pretty simple. Just warm up the turkey, heat the tortilla in some oil, add the rest of the ingredients, and roll it up into an enchilada.

A few weeks ago, those tortillas were “crepes“, but this time I decided to use them as intended on the package!




 

Tools and Ingredients for Turkey Cranberry Chipotle Enchiladas

 


OXO Good Grips Box Grater

Much as I love my zester/microplane, there are some jobs that require a different tool. A box grater can slice or shred food better than a zester can. Use this to shred or slice cheese, carrots, onions, and potatoes or to coarsely grate citrus peels (use the microplane for finer results).

This particular grater comes with its own marked storage container, so you can measure while you’re grating and just make exactly the amount you need.


SilverStone Ceramic 8-Inch Deep Skillet, Chili Red

I don’t like the old-style non-stick pans, but I confess I am enjoying using my ceramic pan. I can make eggs, enchiladas, frittatas, and many other things without worrying about it sticking and it cleans up easily. So far, the coating has held up beautifully. I don’t have this exact pan, but if I had seen the red I would have gotten that one in a New York minute. Do keep the heat a bit lower than you would with a stainless steel pan, and be careful if you have a glass top stove.

More Turkey Recipes

easy spicy turkey soupQuick and Easy Spicy Turkey Soup

Turkey soup with south of the US border flavor from lime, cumin, and cayenne, topped with cooling sour cream.  Zippy, and easy.

 

easy leftover turkey soupLeftover Turkey Soup Recipe

If you’d prefer something more classic, this soup is more traditional.  It’s flexible too. Use whatever fresh or frozen veggies you have (potatoes, broccoli, carrots, peas), toss it all together with some wine and broth and let it simmer.

 

sweet and sour jelly turkey meatballsSweet and Sour Turkey Meatballs with Jelly and Chili Sauce

Remember those childhood jelly meatballs? These have a bit more oomph. They’ve grown up, gotten a bit spicier, and less sweet.  You may lick the plate!

 

turkey pot pie for one personTurkey Pot Pie for One Person

Perfectly sized for one, without making more leftovers. You don’t even have to make turkey (get it cooked from the deli instead). The crust is rich, flaky, and all butter.

 




Spicy Beef Noodle Soup for One

It’s creeping crud season, and while I’m not quite sick, I’m definitely not feeling quite well either. I was browsing through Pinterest and spotted a spicy beef noodle soup recipe. I was about to save it when I realized I already had one! So I made that instead.

The beauty of this is that it’s really easy, and quick, as well as being spicy (good for fighting germs), hot (the steam is good for fighting congestion) and comforting on a cold day.  I sort of got this recipe from my online friend Terry. She had posted a “recipe” (no amounts or detailed directions, just the ingredients) for a spicy beef noodle soup that sounded awfully good.

She used red pepper which I didn’t have, as well as a specialty Korean chili sauce (which I also didn’t have). However, cooking is part following what someone else is done, part inspiration, and part improvisation, so I went with improvisation.

I did have cabbage, and I also had leftover steak, sriracha, and chili garlic sauce. I figured those would work just fine for my beef noodle soup.




If you don’t have turkey stock, you could use beef or even chicken if you prefer (see improvisation!). If you want to make your own turkey stock,  the recipe is here.

Either way, once you have the stock, the rest of the soup is really easy to make and only needs a few ingredients.

Start the noodles first, then while they’re cooking, heat the stock in a separate pot and add the other ingredients. Or, you could throw everything (except the steak!) in one pot. If you do, the noodles will absorb a lot of the liquid, so you’ll need more.

Since I had the leftover steak,  I didn’t even have to cook that. If you don’t, cook that while the noodles are cooking, and then add it to the soup at the last minute.

Another thing about this spicy beef noodle soup is that with all that garlicky, spicy goodness it will kill any germs that may be plaguing you!

Spicy Beef Noodle Soup Substitutions and Variations

  • Use roasted gochujang (which is what Terry used)
  • Swap the steak for cooked turkey (especially if you still have turkey to use up), add that at the end, just for a minute to heat up
  • Add sliced red peppers
  • Put in some mushrooms; crimini or other stronger flavored varieties would work best

Tools and Ingredients for Spicy Beef Garlic Soup

Chili Garlic Sauce

I love this stuff. It’s got a stronger kick, and less sugar, than the sriracha, plus the extra heat (and spiciness) from garlic.  It’s great in meatloaf, on eggs, in soup, or in a sauce. Think garlicky salsa.

 


Huy Fong Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce

If you prefer a hint of sweetness, you might like this instead of the chili garlic sauce (or use them both).  Squeeze it over eggs, into soup, on enchiladas, or burritos.  It’s also good for stir-fry. Think of it as ketchup with a kick.

More Small Batch Soup Recipes

curried chicken soupCurried Chicken Soup

A delicious, low-effort soup that cuts through congestion and fights germs. Cut up some vegetables, add the remaining ingredients, and simmer.

 

mushroom barley soupMushroom Barley Soup Small Batch for One Person

Comfort food like my grandma used to make.  Rich, hearty, and delicious. Cooked slowly to bring out the full flavor.

 

chinese chicken noodle cabbage soupChinese Chicken Noodle Cabbage Soup for One Person

This soup is fragrant with garlic, spicy chili, and a hint of sweetness from honey.  Nutritious too (lots of cabbage, noodles, and chicken).

 

ham and lentil soupEasy Ham and Lentil Soup for One Person

Unlike beans, lentils don’t have to be soaked.  Just pour in the ingredients, and let it cook. Nothing fancy, and it’s all done in one pot.