Sesame Noodles with Seasonal Vegetables

This lightened up noodle dish is perfect for spring! It’s also a good source of carbohydrates to fuel your running, and a departure from heavy pasta dishes that are common high-carbohydrate pre-race meals. This dish is endlessly versatile too – you can use rice noodles, egg noodles, or even spaghetti, and vary the vegetable with what you like, and what is in season (it is delicious with asparagus!).

For pre-race meals, it’s generally a good idea to stick to familiar foods that you know you digest well, so consider making this beforehand and trying it out if you plan to eat it before race day.

You can make this recipe ahead of time, and serve it hot or cold. It is delicious on its own, or served with fish, sliced chicken breast strips, or teriyaki tofu strips.



  • 2 tbsp. toasted sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup tamari soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 2½ tbsp. brown sugar
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. chili oil* (if you don’t have chili oil, use 2 tsp. sesame oil and add hot sauce or red pepper flakes to your desired degree of spiciness)
  • 1½ tbsp. minced ginger
  • 2 tbsp. minced garlic

Noodles & Vegetables

  • 2 lbs. asparagus (trimmed and thinly sliced to 1-inch pieces on a diagonal) or about 3-4 cups of another seasonal vegetable
  • 1 7-oz package (about 200 g) egg noodles (Chinese or other);
    you can also use rice noodles or whole-wheat spaghetti
  • 10 green onions, thinly sliced
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 tbsp. sesame seeds (toasted in pan or already toasted)


  1. Combine the marinade ingredients together and mix well.
  2. For seasonal vegetables, cook (lightly steam or grill, depending on vegetable).For asparagus: place in a large pot and fill with water to barely cover the asparagus. Bring to a boil, then turn down heat and simmer asparagus until it is bright green (just a few minutes after the water has boiled). Scoop the asparagus out, rinse it under cold water (important), and set on a towel to dry. You can cook noodles in the pot and water used to cook the asparagus – just add about 2 cups of water to the pot, bring to a boil).
  3. Cook noodles according to package directions.  Stir occasionally so they do not stick together. Boil until tender but not overly soft, tasting them as they cook (it should take only a few minutes for egg or rice noodles). Pour the noodles into a colander and immediately rinse under cold water (important). Shake off the excess water.
  4. Toss the noodles thoroughly with all the marinade, green onions, cilantro, sesame seeds, and vegetables. Serve immediately at room temperature, or refrigerate and heat slightly before serving.

Yield: Makes about SIX 1.5 cup Servings.

Nutrition Per Serving

  • 255 calories
  • 9 g protein
  • 23 g carbohydrate
  • 10 g fat (1.5 g sat fat)
  • 25 mg cholesterol
  • 5 g fiber
  • 825 mg sodium
  • 475 mg potassium
  • 100 mg calcium
  • 60 mg magnesium

This recipe is from  Visit the site for more healthy recipes and sports nutrition articles.

Sheila Kealey is a health promotion consultant, writer, and athlete passionate about encouraging lifestyle habits that promote good health.  She has a Masters’ degree in Public Health and has collaborated on many research articles related to diet and health. Sheila cross country ski races with XC Ottawa, and also competes in triathlons and running races (5k’s are her favourite, but she has gone the distance once, running a 2:57 marathon).  Sheila loves developing healthy recipes, and coauthored the cookbook and nutrition guide Food For Thought: Healing Foods to Savor.  Sheila shares advice on nutrition, physical activity, sports science, and tasty nourishing foods on twitter and her website.