How to Make Shoyu Ramen, the Easy Way or from Scratch

Updated: Sep. 03, 2023

It only takes an hour to make the quick version of our shoyu ramen recipe. But if you have the time, make all the components from scratch. It's well worth the effort.

Ramen was one of my first loves. As an older child tasked with cooking for two younger siblings, I often upgraded packaged ramen for quick and flavorful meals. Then, as an adult, I visited my first Japanese restaurant and discovered the joy of shoyu ramen. Flavored with rice wine, garlic, sesame oil and soy sauce, the dish was then topped with decadent pork belly.

As I traveled more and sought out ramen shops at every stop, I realized that it was time to learn how to make my own. Armed with a pasta roller, some local pork and a dozen eggs, I practiced until I learned how to make almost traditional versions of ramen broth, flavoring sauces and garnishes, with a few home-style modifications.

This guide to making shoyu ramen includes a basic recipe, plus my favorite iterations of from-scratch broth, pork belly, ramen eggs and more.

What Is Shoyu Ramen?

Shoyu ramen is generally made with a light, clear meat or seafood broth. This type of ramen originated in central Japan.

It’s traditional to top shoyu ramen with tender braised pork, scallion, soft eggs, bamboo shoots, seaweed and sometimes a piece of fish cake decorated with a pink swirl. Making a classic shoyu ramen typically takes at least two days, since several of the ingredients need to marinate overnight. However, it’s possible to use shortcuts and simpler methods to pull together your own version of shoyu ramen in under an hour.

In this guide, I’ll start with the easy version of shoyu ramen, but if you want to dive deeper, you’ll find recipes for deeply flavorful and fairly traditional ramen ingredients. Mix and match the more complex and simpler methods depending on how much time you have to customize your bowl.

How to Make Shoyu Ramen

This recipe makes four servings. If you choose to use from-scratch ingredients for every step, the recipes for shoyu tare, chicken stock, chashu pork, ramen eggs, marinated bamboo shoots and aromatic sesame oil are listed underneath the main recipe.


  • 2 quarts chicken broth, store-bought or homemade
  • 3/4 pound cooked meat, such as chashu pork, pulled pork or roasted chicken, chopped or thinly sliced
  • 2 soft-boiled eggs, peeled, or marinated ramen eggs
  • 2 scallions, sliced
  • 1 can bamboo shoots, rinsed, or marinated bamboo shoots
  • 4 teaspoons plain or flavored sesame oil
  • 1 cup shoyu tare (recipe below)
  • 4 portions fresh ramen noodles
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons black sesame seeds


Step 1: Heat your ingredients

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. (For ramen, unlike other kinds of noodles, you won’t add salt.)

In another pot, heat 6 cups chicken broth over medium heat. If you wish, put the additional 2 cups of broth in a separate pot and add your meat garnish. If you don’t feel like washing an extra dish, you could also add the meat to the main pot of broth.

If your soft-boiled eggs or marinated ramen eggs are cold, put them in a resealable plastic bag, squeeze out the air, and put the bag in a bowl of warm water.

Step 2: Gather your garnish

Because ramen noodles cook quickly, have everything else ready to go before you put them in the water. Slice your scallions cut them into rounds or on the bias. Lay out five slices of bamboo per serving. Get your sesame oil ready to portion.

Finally, cut your ramen eggs in half. If the yolks are runny, make sure that the halves are sitting upright so the yolk doesn’t run out.

Step 3: Prep your bowls

Once the water for your noodles comes to a boil, set out four soup bowls. Ladle 2-3 tablespoons of tare into the bottom of each one—you can always add more tare later, if desired. Add a teaspoon of plain or flavored sesame oil (see recipe below), if desired.

Step 4: Boil the noodles

Drop the noodles into the boiling water, stir so that the noodles don’t stick, and cook for 2 minutes.

Meanwhile, add 1-1/2 cups simmering broth to each of your bowls. When the noodles are done, lift them out of the pot with a strainer. Working quickly, divide them into the bowls of hot broth. If you’d like, once the noodles are in the bowls, use chopsticks or tongs to lift the noodles and fold them over neatly.

Step 5: Add your garnish and serve

Garnish each bowl with around 3 ounces of meat, half of an egg, 5 slices of bamboo shoot and a smattering of scallions. If you’d like, sprinkle on some sesame seeds. Other optional garnishes include nori, fish cake and chile flakes. Serve the ramen. You can put the extra tare and sesame oil on the table in case anybody wants to add more.

How to Make Shoyu Ramen Components

Easy Shoyu Tare


  • Dashi packets
  • 1-1/2 cups Japanese soy sauce


Prepare 1-1/2 cups dashi based on the package instructions. When done, add 1-1/2 cups soy sauce. Refrigerate until you’re ready to make your ramen.

Simple Chicken Stock

This easy chicken stock—made with the bones from a roasted chicken, or from fresh chicken wings—makes an excellent base for shoyu ramen. The ingredients below yield 3 quarts. If you don’t want to make stock from scratch, use your favorite store-bought chicken broth or stock, instead. I prefer Imagine Organic or using Better Than Bouillon chicken base.


  • The bones from one roasted chicken, plus any remaining skin or bits of meat, or 2 pounds fresh chicken wings


In a large pot, cover the chicken bones with water by at least 4 inches. If using wings, make sure you’re starting with at least two gallons of water in the pot.

Bring to a boil and simmer, uncovered, for at least 6 hours. You’ll want the liquid to be reduced to around 3 quarts.

Strain the stock, let cool to room temperature, and place in the fridge until you’re ready to make your ramen.

Chashu Pork

Chashu PorkSuzanne Podhaizer for Taste of Home

Makes around 1 pound finished pork, depending on the fattiness of the piece you start with.

This simple recipe for pork belly makes for an incredible tasting ramen garnish. The delicious braising liquid can be added to the soup or saved for another dish.

Don’t have time to braise a belly or can’t find one? You can top your ramen with leftover roasted chicken or rotisserie chicken, pulled pork or roasted pork.


  • 1-1/2 pounds pork belly, with no skin
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup Japanese soy sauce
  • 1 cup sake
  • 1/2 cup mirin
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 6 scallions, sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 1 shallot, halved
  • 3-in. piece ginger, sliced


Step 1: Sear

Preheat the oven to 275°F.

Pat the pork dry and place it—fat-side down—in a heavy, oven-safe pan with high sides, such as a braiser or Dutch oven. Place over low heat and cook until some of the fat has rendered, around 5-7 minutes.

Increase the heat to medium-high, and sear the pork until it’s golden brown.

Meanwhile, combine all sauce ingredients in a bowl including the scallion, garlic, shallot and ginger.

Step 2: Make the sauce

When the pork is seared, flip it so that the fat side is up, turn off the burner, and add the liquid ingredients and aromatics. Cover the pan with a lid or with foil, and place it in the oven.

Step 3: Check the oven temperature

After an hour, check on the pork. If you can hear the liquid simmering when you open the oven, turn the heat down to 250°.

Even though the meat is probably not ready yet, pull back the foil, and stick a fork in the pork. If the fork pierces with meat with very little resistance, and it’s easy to twist, the pork is done. If not, put back the foil and return to the oven. After another 30 minutes, check the pork again. If it still isn’t done, check on it every 15 minutes until it is.

Step 4: Rest

After the pork is tender, it should be cooled and placed in the fridge—in its sauce—overnight. I like to transfer the meat and the liquid to another heat-safe container to cool because it speeds up the process.

Remove the pork from the fridge an hour or so before you plan to make your ramen, and reheat slices in broth before serving.

Ramen Eggs

Ramen Eggs in a bagSuzanne Podhaizer for Taste of Home

Ramen eggs, or ajitsuke tamago, are delicious in or out of a bowl of soup. This recipe makes more than you need for four servings of shoyu ramen, so try the extras on salads or as a snack.


  • 6 boiled eggs, peeled
  • 1/2 cup Japanese soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup mirin
  • 1/2 cup sake
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar


Combine the soy, mirin, sake, sugar and vinegar in a bowl, and stir until the sugar dissolves. Add 1 cup of marinade to your bag of eggs, seal the bag, and place the bag in a bowl in case of leakage. Retain the additional marinade for marinated bamboo shoots.

Refrigerate the eggs for at least 4 hours, or preferably, overnight.

Marinated Bamboo Shoots

Marinated BambooSuzanne Podhaizer for Taste of Home

Traditionally, the bamboo condiment called menma is made with dried, lacto-fermented bamboo shoots, but those can be hard to find. Instead, this recipe calls for canned bamboo shoots.

If you don’t wish to marinate bamboo shoots, a drained, rinsed can of bamboo shoots makes a fine ramen garnish.


  • 2/3 cup marinade reserved from making ramen eggs
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon bonito flakes
  • 2 dried shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 can bamboo shoots, drained and rinsed


Step 1: Make marinade

In a small pot, mix the marinade reserve from the ramen eggs with 1 cup water. Bring to a simmer. Once the pot simmers, add the bonito flakes and mushrooms. Simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let steep for an additional 30 minutes.

Step 2: Strain

When the marinade is done, strain out the bonito flakes and mushroom. You can reserve the mushrooms to use as a ramen garnish as well, if desired.

Step 3: Finish the bamboo

Rinse the pot, and pour in the strained marinade. Add the rinsed bamboo shoots and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 15 minutes, remove from heat, and let cool. Put in a Mason jar or airtight container and place in the fridge. Let marinate at least 4 hours, but preferably overnight.

Aromatic Sesame Oil

Sesame Oil cooking with other spices and vegetablesSuzanne Podhaizer for Taste of Home

Adding a few aromatic ingredients to sesame oil makes a fragrant and delicious garnish.


  • 1/2 cup toasted sesame oil
  • 1 large clove garlic, minced
  • 1 scallion, sliced into rounds
  • 1-in. piece of ginger, sliced


In a small pot, warm the sesame oil to just under a simmer, and add the garlic, scallion and ginger. Turn off the heat, but leave the pot on the warm burner. Let the ingredients steep until the oil has cooled to room temperature.

When cool, store the oil and aromatics in a small container until you’re ready to make your ramen.

Tips for Making Shoyu Ramen

  • Use a Japanese soy sauce, preferably one that’s dark. Chinese soy sauce is slightly viscous and a bit sweet. It’s delicious, but not what you’re looking for in this particular recipe.
  • If you don’t have time to make all of your ramen ingredients from scratch, but want to make some of them, consider starting with the ramen eggs and marinated bamboo shoots. Both are fairly quick to make, but really dress up the bowl.
  • Have time to hang out while things are in the oven? Consider making your own broth and braised pork belly. These two “set it and forget it” ingredients will make for an incredible ramen.
  • Cooking for someone who can’t eat gluten? Tamari is an excellent substitute for soy sauce because it doesn’t contain roasted wheat.