19 Asian meals on your plate in 15 minutes
Quick and fast meals in under 15 minutes!
Are you sick of take-out food but still craving the taste of home-cooked meals? Don’t sweat it! Here are 19 easy 15 minute Asian meals that are so worth making from scratch that would leave you wondering why you did take out in the first place.
1. Crunchy Asian salad
Craving for something tangy, light and healthy? Why not try this Thai and Vietnamese inspired salad? It is definitely one of the 15 minute Asian meals that you can prepare if you have pre-cooked chicken sitting around and reasonably good knife chopping skills.
This entire dish provides protein, crunch, citrusy freshness and takes less than 10 minutes to throw together! You can also make this ahead of time as it can keep in the fridge for 3 days provided you keep the dressing separate. In fact, you can even make a vegan version and switch out the chicken with tofu!
2. Mapo tofu
Like many soy foods, tofu originated in China during the Chinese Han dynasty some 2000 years ago. Despite its similarities, this Japanese version of this famous Sichuan spicy dish is made with readily available ingredients and it is a lot less oily.
It might look simple but in actual fact, it really packs a punch when it comes to flavour. A dish so simple that it can be thrown together with minimal prep, it is the best accompaniment with a bowl of steaming white rice. This dish is one of the simpler 15 minute Asian meals to make and showcases the versatility of the humble tofu. We also love that you can always adjust the level of spiciness according to your liking. Just add some mincemeat for extra flavour and throw in some vegetables and you’ll have a complete meal!
3. Packet ramen/instant noodle makeover
Who doesn't like instant noodles? This is why we added this amped up version to our the list of 15 minute Asian meals to make. Still, truth be told, a simple packet of ramen will only be a simple packet of ramen unless you add in extra goodies. To take your standard instant noodle to the next level you can try topping it with stir-fried vegetables and meat in a glossy sauce!
You can pretty much use whatever vegetables on hand. You can even add leftover meat from last night's dinner! The sky is the limit really, so use your imagination. Any meat will definitely add another dimension to your tasty noodles, not to mention it is really quick to prepare! Just remember to slice everything up thinly so that they can cook fast and don't forget to put them in the order of cooking times. This means stir-frying any raw meat first, followed by veggies so that everything finishes cooking at the same time.
4. Basic fried rice
Fried rice is the classic Chinese comfort food that originated in the city of Yangzhou in eastern Jiangsu province. Even though it is commonly made with barbecued pork, shrimp, rice, eggs and spring onions, there are actually no hard rules when it comes to what you want in your fried rice. You only need to remember to use day old rice because using freshly cooked rice will result in a soggy dish.
Making fried rice is a great way to use up leftovers. It is also hearty enough to become a stand-alone dish on its own, especially when meat and vegetables are added in. Besides, who doesn’t love fried rice!
5. Beef and broccoli stir-fry
Another favourite among the 15 minute Asian meals, is this quick and delicious, beef and broccoli stir-fry. Forget ordering take-out and just make this yourself and you will see how quick it is to get this onto the table (not forgetting how fast it would finish too!). Make it and be sure to douse your steaming rice with its delicious sauce!
6. Tangy chicken vegetable lettuce wraps
If you’re on a low carb diet then this is a great option for you. It is so quick to put together that you can pretty much start prepping veggies and toppings while you cook the chicken. This dish is not only healthy yet delicious but it can also be a feast for the eyes if you throw on a confetti of red and yellow peppers on the top. A great tip to make it better is to cut the chicken smaller to reduce the cooking time. You can also give this dish a hint of freshness with a spritz of lime or even some chillis for some hit. Either way, it will surely be a hit especially with the combination of tangy, spicy chicken together with the crunch from the lettuce. Who says all healthy food has to be bland and boring?
7. Pork stir fry with beans
This stir-fry dish is a staple in most Asian homes because they are so quick and easy to prepare. However, you can always give it an extra twist and make it tastier! Try adding some chilli sauce to give it a bit of heat and that slight Szechuan kick. Think bold and intense flavours that will surely make your mouth water. With only a few everyday ingredients that can be readily bought from the store, why not try to make this.
8. Build your own stir-fry noodles
Love noodles but think its a hassle to prepare them yourself at home? Think again, because if your pantry is well stocked with the basic staple sauces, this is actually really easy to put together. Definitely one of the 15 minute Asian meals with carbs, protein and vegetables all in one bowl, it a full meal on its own. No doubt you will spend most of your time getting everything assembled and chopped. But once that part is done, each ingredient goes in quickly together with your sauce of choice and is stir fried on high heat. It is really that quick!
9. Beef soba noodles with green beans
How about this Japanese inspired dish with soba and green beans? Soba sauce can be bought easily from grocers carry imported goods. It only takes minutes to blanch the noodles, boil an egg and do a quick minced beef and beans stir fry to put on top! If you're feeling a little fancier, you can always switch the mincemeat with a juicy steak!
10. Corn soup with chicken
The corn soup with chicken is also commonly known as the egg drop soup to most people. An all-time favourite for most Asians, it is thick and creamy from the starch with a little sweetness from the corn. Just imagine having this on a cold rainy day. Even though it is commonly made with bits of shredded chicken, you can easily switch the meat out and make the soup vegetarian/vegan. Best part! Minimal chopping! Just shred the chicken by hand for the non-vegan version, or cut some tofu into small cubes if you're vegetarian. Then garnish your soup by snipping the spring onions with a pair of kitchen scissors. Less cleaning up is a plus every time.
11. Thai chilli basil chicken
While strong spicy dishes may not be everyone’s cup of tea, it is definitely ours. Especially when sweet and fragrant Thai basil is added to it! If you ever feel like a pick me up for the day. Or find that most of the 15 minute Asian meals listed here haven’t quite hit the spot, then try making this bold dish. We promise you won't be disappointed.
12. Pad see ew (Thai stir-fried noodle)
Now here's a dish to make if you are reminiscing about your last trip to Thailand. You can easily relive it by making this Pad See Ew or Thai stir-fried flat noodles. Made with easy to get ingredients and everyday sauces like oyster sauce, thick soy sauce, vinegar and fish sauce --- it is really simple to put together. Just add in some chilli flakes and a spritz of fresh lime and you would be tucking in with gusto.
13. Sweet and sour chicken
Another staple in most Asian homes is this delicious yet perfect combination of savoury and sweetness. You might just make it under 15 minutes if you have good chopping skills. But to make it better and tastier, we recommend you marinade the chicken for longer to allow the seasonings to penetrate into the chicken breast cutlets. Again to shorten cooking time, don’t make the chicken breast cutlets too big. Instead, try to cut them bite-sized and roughly the same so that they cook at the same time.
14. General Tso meatballs
Believe it or not, it takes less than 15 minutes to prepare these Asian twist on meatballs. The meatballs only require 3 minutes per side. Then all that's left is a short simmer in sticky salty hoisin-based sauce and turning them until they are coated and cooked through. You can bet these delicious morsels would be finger licking good.
15. Tofu and vegetable omelette
Loaded like a frittata, this carb free omelette is so much faster from stove to table. This is a quick and easy option for those of you are either doing Keto or a low carb diet. The list of ingredients of what you want to add to your omelette is endless and you can always switch up your protein and veggies choices. You can also keep it vegan by incorporating tofu even!
Remember that quick and easy doesn’t mean it would be plain and tasteless. With a little bit of imagination and some help from these 15 minute Asian meals, you’ll be cooking up a storm from home.
16. Stir fry prawns with asparagus
This stir-fry dish only takes 5 minutes MAX because prawns cook really fast. Most of the time is spent on preparation, especially if your prawns have not been deveined or shelled for you. Just heat up some oil and stir fry your aromatics until they are fragrant. Then throw in your prawns, asparagus and seasoning. Stir constantly until your prawn change colour and its done!
17. Simple quick meat skewers
Another quick cook dish is meat on a skewer. Most of the time is spent on leaving the meat to sit in the marinade. But since you are slicing the meat really thinly, it shouldn't take too long for the flavours to permeate. Just set it aside for about 10 minutes before putting them on skewers and cooking it. You can either grill them on the stove, air fry or broil them in the oven.
18. Quick tandoori chicken
Most people think that tandoori chicken would take a long time. But do bear in mind that yoghurt and lime are great tenderisers. You can also score the chicken thighs to allow the marinade to flavour the meat faster. All you need is yoghurt, paprika, ginger, garlic, salt, pepper and a spritz of lime. Then just grill the meat on a grill pan over the stove 3-4 minutes per side.
19. Thai sauce hot wings
Not really an Asian dish, but we can always give this an Asian twist. This dish is super quick to prepare if you have an airfryer at home. All you need to do is to season your wings and pop them into the airfryer for 15 minutes! Celery sticks are optional but you can prep them with some sour cream while you're waiting for the wings to cook. When the wings are done just toss them with your favourite Thai hot sauce!
Seeing how you can pretty much cook these 15 minute Asian meals in a jiffy, why not make it! Try any of these options above! We guarantee you won't be disappointed!