Cantonese soy sauce chow mein

Cantonese soy sauce chow mein has to be one of my favorite 20 minutes meals. This is the version of chow mein I grew up eating at home and at Cantonese restaurants. It's drier compared to the more popularized, saucy American version (that is usually closer to lo mein than chow mein).

This Cantonese soy sauce chow mein is made with simple ingredients like aromatic scallions and onions, crunchy bean sprouts, and stir-fried thin egg noodles that soak up the wonderfully savory sauce.

I share my best tips on making these noodles below!

Best noodles to use for Cantonese soy sauce chow mein

It doesn't have to be this specific brand, but fresh, thin chow mein will work best for Cantonese soy sauce chow mein. I usually find these in the refrigerated section of my local Asian grocery store.

If you can't find fresh, thin chow mein, you can substitute with dried thin chow mein. However, I find that these noodles tend to be a bit thicker, so it won't be exactly the same. Prepare the noodles according to the package directions (or cook until al dente), and rinse in cold water afterwards to maintain its bouncy texture.

How to prepare noodles for Cantonese soy sauce chow mein

Preparing the thin egg noodles is very simple (and quick)!

Just submerge the noodles in boiling water, and let them blanch for about 30 seconds. I like to use my kettle to prepare the boiling water as it's much faster than boiling the noodles in a pot.

Then immediately drain and rinse in cold water to prevent it from overcooking and to preserve its bouncy texture.

Let the noodles drain well while you prepare the other ingredients.

You may also like these other stir fry noodle recipes:

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Cantonese Soy Sauce Chow Mein

A classic Cantonese-style noodle, this dry soy sauce chow mein is simple to make, but incredibly satisfying with the crunchy bean sprouts, caramelized aromatics, and fresh scallions.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Asian, Chinese
Servings 2


  • 7 oz fresh thin chow mein (½ package)
  • 2 oz bean sprouts
  • 4 stalks scallions cut into 3 inch batons, white and greens separated
  • ¼ of an onion thinly sliced
  • 1 medium shallot thinly sliced (optional)
  • Neutral oil for cooking



Prepare the ingredients

  • Soak fresh or steamed chow mein noodles in boiling water for 20-30 seconds. If using dried chow mein noodles, cook according to the package directions. Rinse in cold water to stop cooking and maintain a bouncy texture. Drain well.
    7 oz fresh thin chow mein
  • Chop the scallions into 3 inch pieces. Slice those pieces lengthwise. Keep the white and green parts of the scallions separate. Thinly slice the onion and shallot, if using.
    4 stalks scallions, ¼ of an onion, 1 medium shallot
  • In a bowl, mix together all the sauce ingredients.
    1.5 tablespoon light soy sauce, 1 teaspoon dark soy sauce, 1 tablespoon oyster sauce, 1 teaspoon sugar, ⅛ teaspoon chicken bouillon powder, 1/16 teaspoon white pepper, ½ teaspoon sesame oil, 2 tablespoon water

Make the chow mein

  • Heat up a pan to medium high heat and add 1 tablespoon of neutral oil. Add scallion (white parts only), onions, and shallots. Sauté until lightly caramelized. Push to one side of the pan.
    Neutral oil for cooking
  • Add another tablespoon of neutral oil to the pan, then the drained noodles. Stir fry for about 1-2 minutes or until dry, then add the sauce to the perimeter of the pan. Mix well and stir fry for another 1-2 min. If you want crispier, drier noodles, you can stir fry for a bit longer here.
  • Add the bean sprouts and scallion (green parts). Stir fry until the bean sprouts have lightly softened but still maintain their crunch.
    2 oz bean sprouts
  • Taste and adjust any seasoning. For a darker color, add a little more dark soy sauce; if you want it saltier, add a bit more light soy sauce. This is best enjoyed immediately!
Keyword cantonese chow mein, soy sauce chow mein
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