Instant Pot Lo mein ! easy, quick and delicous chinese lo mein. This instant pot lo mein recipe is ready in 15 minutes and made with vegetables and shrimp. I have also included recipe for instant pot chicken lo mein and instant pot beef lo mein.
This lo mein is one of my favourite chinese dish. It always end up in my plate when we eat out at chinese restaurant or order takeaway. The texture, the taste of the noodles tossed in soy sauce and simplicity of the dish are few of the things i love about lo mein.
This is the best instant pot lo mein recipe and you will love how easy it is to put together. Let me show you how.
What is Lo mein
Lo mein is a chinese dish that is made with egg noodles, soy sauce, sesame oil, sometimes vegetables and meat like chicken, shrimp or beef and some other ingredients. The egg noodles used for lo mein are wheat flour noodles with eggs added. The noodles are sometimes also called lo mein noodles.
Lo mein means stir fry noodles (noodles is tossed in sauce and vegetables). Sesame oil and soy sauce makes the base for stir frying the vegetables and noodles and are important ingredients that gives lo mein it's distinctive taste and colour.
Why i love instant pot lo mein
Lo mein made in the instant pot is not only quick and easy, It is :
- Dump and go - No need to watch over the pot like with stovetop method. Just dump everything in the instant pot and when cooked, serve and eat.
- One pot - Everything comes together in a pot and no need to drain water from the noodles.
- Easier than lo mein made in wok and less utensils needed to cook lo mein in the instant pot.
- Homemade so one can control the salt and oil and make it healthier than restaurant quality.
- Quicker than takeout - It takes just 15 minutes and will be ready before any takeout can be delivered.
Lo mein vs chow mein
Lo mein and chow mein are sometimes used interchangeably and although they are made with same type of noodles, the difference is the methods used in cooking these stir fry noodles.
While Lo mein are boiled soft, chow mein are fried to be crispy so chinese lo mein is soft and chow mein is crispy.
Lo mein noodles and chow mein noodles can be flat or round. They are both easy to cook, delicious and flavourful.
What noodles are used in lo mein ?
Egg noodles are used in lo mein and chow mein. Egg noodles is wheat flour noodles with eggs added. They are also called lo mein noodles. The noodles are thin and the packet usually recommend to cook for 5 - 6 minutes.
For this recipe, i used medium egg noodles which are not as thin as the fine egg noodles. In the absence of egg noodles, you can use Hakka noodles or pasta such as linguine, spaghetti, fettucine. All these mentioned pasta are long and thin.
Instant noodles won't work for this recipe as cooking time is not the same for instant noodles and low mein noodles. If you want to use instant noodles, adjust cooking time.
LO MEIN VARIATION
Instant Pot Vegetable Lo mein
For vegetable lo mein, follow this recipe and exclude the shrimp in the ingredient list. As this is one pot recipe and the vegetables are added and cooked with the noodles, the vegetables won't be crunchy! If you prefer the vegetables to be crunchy, don't add it with the noodles but rather microwave the vegetables for 1 - 2 minutes then add it to the lo mein after it's cooked then stir together. You can use vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, peas, bell peppers and your favourite vegetables.
Instant Pot Chicken Lo mein
Add chicken to make this a classic chinese takeout dish. Instant pot chicken lo mein is a good way to use up left over chicken. Substitute chicken for the shrimp in this recipe however if using uncooked chicken, use the instant pot saute button to cook the chicken first.
Instant Pot Beef Lo mein
To make beef lo mein, substitute beef for shrimp in this recipe however brown the beef by using the saute button of the instant pot before pressure cooking with the noodles.
Ingredients for Lo mein
The ingredients you'll need for this lo mein recipe include:
Egg noodles - Also called lo mein or chow mein noodles. You can also use Hakka noodles, linguine, spaghetti and fettucine.
Sesame oil - Gives lo mein distinctive taste.
Soy sauce - Dark soy sauce or mixture of dark soy sauce and light soy sauce.
Cayenne or black pepper for heat
Vegetables - Carrots, broccoli, peas, or your favourite vegetables. If pressure cooking vegetables with noodles it's best to go for vegetables like carrots, collard greens that take longer to cook.
Meat - shrimp, beef or chicken
How to cook Lo mein
Cooking lo mein in the pressure pot is very easy and quick.
1) First get all the ingredients and measure them ready.
2) In a bowl add the soy sauce, sesame oil, brown sugar, cayenne pepper /black pepper and stir.
3) Add noodles in the inner pot of the instant pot then pour the soy sauce mixture over the noodles. Make sure the noodles are soaked in the sauce or else some parts might come out uncooked.
4) Pour the onion, garlic, ginger and finally top with shrimp and vegetables. (For crispy vegetables, don't add vegetables at this stage).
5) Cover the instant pot with it's lid and set to manual pressure cook 5 minutes. After this time do a quick release.
6) When instant pot is depressurised, open the pot then stir the content.
Serve and enjoy lo mein.
Tips on cooking instant pot lo mein
- Do a quick release and not a natural pressure release to avoid the noodles getting too soft.
- Take out the inner pot from instant pot immediately after depressuring the instant pot.
- You can explore with combination of vegetables and meat.
How to store leftover lo mein
Lo mein is best eaten fresh however you can store left over lo mein in the fridge for up to 3 days. Put in airtight container and label.
Other easy Instant pot recipes you'll love
Check out these pasta recipes on the blog
Instant Pot Lo mein
- Instant Pot
- 250 g (0.5lb) Egg noodles
- ¼ cup Soy sauce
- 2 tablespoon Sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon Black pepper
- 1 tablespoon Brown Sugar
- 1 Onion chopped
- 1 thumbsize Ginger minced
- 2 cloves Garlic minced
- 200g Vegetables carrot, peas, or vegetables of choice
- 300g Shrimp or chicken or beef
- 1.5 Cup Water
- First get all the ingredients and measure them ready.
- In a bowl add the soy sauce, sesame oil, brown sugar, water, cayenne pepper and stir.
- Add noodles in the inner pot of the instant pot then pour the soy sauce mixture over the noodles. Make sure the noodles are soaked in the sauce or else some parts might come out uncooked.
- Pour the onion, garlic, ginger and finally top with shrimp and vegetables. (For crispy vegetables, don't add vegetables at this stage).
- Cover the instant pot with it's lid and set to manual pressure cook 5 minutes. After this time do a quick release.
- When instant pot is depressurised, open the pot then stir the content together.
- Cover the pot and leave for 2 minutes.
- Serve and enjoy.
Want more?Check out these delicious rice recipes.
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