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Chinese Inspired Green Onion Spaghetti

It’s Chinese Green Onion Oil Noodles (Cong You Mian) but easier and western-grocery-store-friendly! You’ll only need some fresh green onions and the rest are pantry ingredients. And about 30 minutes. Click here to skip to the printable recipe.
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And if you want the OIL-FREE version, click here!

Video Tutorial for Green Onion Spaghetti

What are Green Onion Oil Noodles?

Also known as Scallion Oil Noodles, these noodles are flavoured with aromatic green onion infused oil, both regular and dark soy sauce, and topped with sweet crispy green onion threads. Super simple but so delicious!

This Chinese comfort food recipe is a well loved childhood favourite as it’s one of the more simple but delicious meals anyone can whip up with very few basic ingredients: noodles, green onions, oil, soy sauce and a little sugar. 

plate of green onion spaghetti noodles

But Green Onion Spaghetti?

This version is almost exactly like the original Green Onion Oil Noodles recipe but with two exceptions. Mainly because I had a craving but didn’t have exactly the right noodles or oil in my pantry.

chopsticks full of green onion spaghettiNoodles

Spaghetti is not as springy as Chinese noodles tend to be. But I really love the convenience. Especially when the ‘rona has me avoiding busier supermarkets, I can pick up regular pasta at any local grocery or convenience store.

cooked spaghetti noodles draining in sieveBut other lovely noodles you can use include the more traditional Chinese wheat noodles (fresh or dried), lo mein, or even instant noodles. Also, naturally gluten-free noodles like rice vermicelli or wide rice noodles taste great. Finally, my favourite at the moment: potato starch noodles! These springy translucent noodles are typically used for japchae and also go great in this dish.

Oil

The base of this dish is the infused oil. It’s typically a neutral flavoured oil like canola or vegetable, though peanut is another very common Chinese cooking oil that I like to use. But I’ve been going towards using extra virgin olive oil for my cooking. Plus, the fresh grassy aroma of EVOO is a nice compliment to the green onion flavour. Please feel free to use what you have!

How to Make Green Onion Spaghetti

You can make Green Onion Spaghetti easily in about 30 minutes. First, cook the spaghetti according to your package instructions. Meanwhile, you can prep the other ingredients.

Prep the Green Onions and other ingredients

Chinese chef knife cutting off roots from bunch of green onions

Clean and remove the root ends from one bunch of green onions (100g). Dry them with a clean kitchen towel. Then, cut the dark green parts away from the white parts. Slice them lengthwise. Then slice again down each middle to make long strips.

cutting white parts of green onions into threads

Repeat with the dark green parts. Afterwards, blot away any moisture with a clean lint-free kitchen towel or paper towel.

cutting dark green parts of green onions lengthwise

The rest of the ingredients just need to be measured out: 60ml extra virgin olive oil (¼ cup), 1 tablespoon soy sauce (regular or light), 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce, 2 teaspoons sugar or sweetener ( I like to use 1 1/2 teaspoons of Lakanto monkfruit and erythritol sweetener instead).

julienned green onions with oil and sweetener on table

If you are making a gluten-free batch, you can use gluten-free tamari to replace both the dark and regular/light soy sauce.

Make Green Onion Oil and Crispy Green Onions

white parts of green onions cooking in oil

Heat olive oil over low to medium low heat with the white parts of the green onion. After the oil warms up and the white parts will start shrinking at first, and after about 10 minutes, give up their moisture through sizzling and become lightly browned and crispy. But don’t let them get too dark as just-crisp green onions are sweet but burnt ones are bitter. Some pieces will get crispy earlier so remove them and rest them on a paper towel. And when all the remaining onions are brown and crispy, remove them as well.

chopsticks grabbing some crispy white green onions

If this is taking longer than 10 minutes, either be a little more patient OR turn the heat up slightly. Every stove temperature setting can have variation but we do want to keep the heat low so the oil gets all the flavours from the green onion without burning.

Then repeat the process with the dark green onion parts. This time, it will be harder to tell by colour and it may happen sooner. Look out for pieces that don’t have any sizzling happening on them. No bubbles means no more moisture, which means they will be crispy! Remove those pieces as soon as  you notice them.

piece of crispy green onion

Finally you’ll just have your aromatic green onion oil in the pan and crispy green onion pieces on the side. 

Finish the dish

Immediately, add the regular/light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, and sugar. Stir well, increase heat to medium and let it come to a simmer for one minute. Afterwards, add the spaghetti noodles to warm them; about 2 minutes.

pan full of green onion spaghetti

Finally, you can serve up the noodles on 4 plates and divide the crispy onions among them. These Green Onion Spaghetti Noodles are fantastic just as they are, but I also love to add a little pinch of red chilli flakes and a sprinkle of white pepper.

plate of green onion spaghetti with crispy onions on top

Printable recipe for Green Onion Spaghetti

Yield: 2 large servings

Chinese Inspired Green Onion Spaghetti

plate of green onion spaghetti noodles

Inspired by Chinese Green Onion Oil Noodles (Cong You Mian or Chong Yao Mien in Cantonese), this is my easier, western grocery store-friendly version. All but two of the ingredients are the same as the original dish. 

This recipe can be made gluten-free by using gluten-free tamari in place of regular and dark soy sauce, and using gluten-free noodles (such as rice vermicelli noodles).

Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes

Ingredients

For sauce:

  • 60ml extra virgin olive oil (¼ cup)
  • 100g green onions (about 1 bunch)
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce (regular or light)
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sugar (or 1 ½ teaspoons monkfruit/erythritol sweetener)

Pasta:

  • 170g dried spaghetti noodles

Instructions

  1. Cook the spaghetti according to package instructions to your preferred doneness. Drain the noodles well and set aside.
  2. While spaghetti is cooking, clean and remove the root ends from the green onions. Dry them, then cut the dark green parts away from the white parts. Slice them lengthwise. Then slice again down each middle to make long strips. Repeat with the dark green parts. Blot away any moisture with a clean lint-free kitchen towel or paper towel.
  3. Heat olive oil over low (or medium-low depending on your stove) heat with the white parts of the green onion. 
  4. Within 10 minutes, the white green onion threads will shrink, sizzling off their moisture, and become crispy. When they've changed colour and are lightly browning, it will be time to remove them. Don’t let them get too dark as just-crisp green onions are sweet but burnt ones are bitter. Repeat with the dark green onion threads; remove them as you notice they are not bubbling/sizzling anymore as the colour change is not as pronounced.
  5. With all the onions crispy and out of the oil, immediately add soy sauce, dark soy sauce, and sugar. Stir well, increase heat to medium and let it come to a simmer for one minute.
  6. Quickly add the spaghetti noodles to warm them; about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and serve right away with some crispy onions on top! Optionally add some chili oil or flakes and white pepper to finish.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

2

Serving Size:

half of recipe

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 410Total Fat: 28gSaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 23gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 889mgCarbohydrates: 34gFiber: 3gSugar: 6gProtein: 7g

Nutritional Information automatically calculated by a plugin and may not be correct.

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  • […] by popular request: Oil Free Green Onion Noodles! Inspired by Green Onion Oil Noodles (Cong You Mian AKA Scallion Oil Noodles), this recipe keeps the sweet crispy green onion threads […]

  • […] since started a restaurant devoted to green onion cakes. But there is also this Chinese inspired green onion spaghetti recipe from the always wonderful Mary’s Test Kitchen that calls to me. Part of me wants to […]

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