May 25, 2021

Chilled Soba Noodle Salad with Crispy Shiitake Mushrooms

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Buckwheat soba noodles are tossed in a tahini and miso sauce with just a bit of spice from Sriracha, with wild arugula topped with crispy shiitakes, thinly sliced cucumber and green onions.
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This dish makes for a wonderful lunch or dinner. It’s easy to prepare, vegetarian, vegan and naturally gluten free (as long as you use tamari rather than soy sauce). This recipe is not a traditional preparation of Japanese soba noodles but it makes for a great healthy-ish meal.

Chilled Soba Noodle Salad


What are soba noodles? 

Soba are a type of Japanese buckwheat noodles, served chilled or hot in broth or salads. In addition, they have a nutty flavor and a tender texture. The process to make them is notoriously complex though the dried version can be widely found in stores. Since they are made only from buckwheat and water they are naturally gluten free. Some versions of soba noodles are made with a portion of whole wheat flour to help with binding so be sure to always check the label if allergies are an issue. When soba is served chilled as it is in this recipe, adding it to a bowl of ice water quickly stops the cooking process so the noodles don’t overcook. 

Chilled Soba Noodle Salad with Crispy Shiitake Mushrooms

How do I make crispy shiitakes? 

Thinly sliced shiitake mushrooms are simply tossed in vegetable oil, seasoned with salt and pepper, and slowly cooked in the oven at a low temperature for about 25 to 30 minutes total. Cooking them slowly also keeps them from burning as they crisp. When they are ready they should be like vegetarian bacon crumbles (which is how they are used atop By Chloe’s vegan mac and cheese). While it seems like a large quantity of mushrooms to start with – mushrooms are similar to spinach, you start with a ton and end up with a little.

umami salad dressing

What’s in the dressing? 

Though this dressing tastes complex with a creamy, nutty texture and salty, umami flavor, it is made with simple ingredients. Tahini paste, made from sesame seeds, is combined with miso paste, rice vinegar, a bit of soy sauce or tamari and Sriracha for a kick. This dressing goes on anything from noodles (try it over ramen too) to a simple kale salad or over roasted salmon. 

Chilled Soba Noodle Salad with Crispy Shiitake Mushrooms


  1. Make the dressing. Make the dressing by whisking the ingredients together in a small bowl. Set aside until ready to use. 
  2. Cook the noodles. Cook the soba noodles, then drain and add to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process. 
  3. Roast mushrooms. Toss the sliced shiitake mushrooms in oil and arrange on a sheet pan. Roast until crispy and set aside. 
  4. Toss noodles. Drain the noodles and then toss with the dressing. 
  5. Assemble and serve. Divide the arugula among serving bowls and top with the soba noodles. Top with the cucumber, crispy shiitake mushrooms, green onions and sesame seeds. Serve immediately. 
Chilled Soba Noodle Salad recipe

Tips for the recipe 

  • Double the Sriracha in the recipe if you like a bit more kick.
  • Substitute chopped kale, baby spinach or another green of choice. 
  • Add grilled salmon or chicken if you wish to add protein to the dish. 
  • If the noodles are made ahead of time and sit, the sauce will coagulate. Toss with a bit of water to loosen the sauce.

Chilled Soba Noodle Salad with Crispy Shiitake Mushrooms

chilled buckwheat soba noodles with crispy shiitake mushrooms, slices of cucumber and green onions in a stone bowl on white wood
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Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Serves 4


For the tahini dressing:

  • ¼ cup tahini paste
  • 2 tablespoons white miso
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce or tamari
  • 2 teaspoons sriracha

For assembly:

  • 6 ounces dried buckwheat soba noodles
  • 10 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and thinly sliced
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • Kosher salt, as needed
  • Freshly ground black pepper, as needed
  • 2 cups packed wild arugula (optional)
  • ½ cup thinly sliced English hothouse cucumber
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • ½ teaspoon toasted white sesame seeds


For the tahini dressing:

  • Add tahini, miso, rice vinegar, soy sauce, Sriracha and ¼ cup water to a small mixing bowl, whisking to combine until smooth. Set aside until ready to use.

For assembly:

  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the soba noodles and cook, until tender, about 3 to 4 minutes. Drain the noodles and add to a large bowl of ice water.
  • Heat oven to 325ºF (170ºC). Toss the mushrooms with the vegetable oil and spread out on a baking sheet in an even single layer. Season with salt and pepper. Bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Flip the mushrooms and cook until crispy, about an additional 10 minutes.
  • Once the noodles are chilled, drain the water and toss with the dressing.
  • Divide the arugula among serving bowls (optional) and top with the soba noodles. Top with the cucumber, crispy shiitake mushrooms, green onions and sesame seeds. Serve immediately.




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Recipe Rating

  1. 5 stars
    This was just marvelous and so attractive on the plate. I love easy to assemble meals like this when I don’t really feel like cooking but don’t want to spring for take out. This one is a keeper.

    • That makes me so happy!! I absolutely agree – I love meals like that too! Thank you for sharing Catherine, glad you enjoyed!