Celebrate Chinese New Year with Stir-Fried Noodles and Easy Add-ins


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One of the fun things about celebrating holidays outside of your culture is getting to try different foods. But as most anyone with a child knows, it can be difficult to get them to try foods outside of their comfort zone.

To celebrate Chinese New Year, which is coming up Feb.8, why not try making a Chinese-inspired dish everyone in the family will like? This is a great strategy for any cuisine you might want to introduce a reluctant eater to. Make simple stir fried noodles using ingredients your kids already like.

Start with Food They Know

First, think about what sort of things they already like to eat and how you could incorporate those items in a meal that’s a little different. ingredients stir fried noodles

For example, the girl doesn’t really like rice, but she does like noodles, so I decided to make a noodle dish. That’s actually perfect for Chinese New Year, too, because long noodles are considered lucky as a symbol of long life.

She also like broccoli and carrots, and said she likes water chestnuts, so those became the vegetables in my noodle dish.

You can make this same recipe with any kinds of veggies your kids like, or even just plain for them and add vegetables to your portion.

Use Easy Add-Ins pagoda egg rolls in store

Instead of just making noodles, I wanted to make the meal a little more fun with some easy add-ins from the freezer section.

While I was at Walmart picking up the other supplies, I headed to the frozen snack section and picked up some Pagoda Mini Chicken Eggrolls and Pagoda Express Chicken Potstickers.

I liked that these are easy additions to a meal and feature all white-meat chicken with no MSG or artificial colors. And right now you can get an Ibotta offer for 50 cents off two Pagoda products, so it’s the perfect time to try them.

Easy Stir-Fried Noodles

Serves 4.

  • half a package of whole-wheat linguini
  • 1 Tbs vegetable oil
  • one head broccoli, cut into small pieces
  • one carrot, shredded
  • one can water chestnuts, drained.
  • 1 clove garlic, minced (add more to taste if you’re not cooking for kids)
  • about 1 inch of ginger, peeled and grated
  • 2 cups vegetable or chicken stock, divided
  • 2 Tbs low-sodium soy sauce, divided
  • 1 Tbs corn starch
  • 1 Tbs rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp lemon juice

Cook the noodles according to package directions. Meanwhile, cook the egg rolls and potstickers according to package directions.

Add oil to a large pan and heat on high. broccoli and carrot stir fry

Add broccoli and cook, stirring constantly, about a minute.

Add carrots and cook, stirring regularly, for 2-3 minutes, until the broccoli is nice and bright green. Add water chestnuts.

Add garlic and ginger and cook a couple more minutes. stir fried noodle recipe

Add pasta to the pan, along with 1 cup of stock and 1 Tbs soy. easy stir fry sauce

In a saucepan, combine 1 cup stock, 1 Tbs soy, the corn starch and the vinegar. Bring to a boil. Cook for a couple of minutes until thickened, stirring occasionally.

Add honey and lemon juice, stir and add to noodles. srit fry noodle bowl

Serve with egg rolls (the dipping sauce that comes with them is pretty great) and potstickers.

Everyone in the family liked this simple meal, and it gave us a chance to talk about some of the traditions surrounding Chinese New Year.

Chinese New Year Foods and Symbols potstickers and eggrolls

Add an orange or tangerines to the meal for extra luck (the word orange is similar to the word gold in Chinese, while tangerine and luck sound similar).

Long noodles are symbolic of long life, and the color red is seen everywhere in Chinese New Year celebrations because it is emblematic of celebration and good fortune. A red envelope with money or chocolate coins is a common gift presented to children during Chinese New Year, but make sure you use an even number — $8 is considered particularly lucky because the word eight sounds like the word for wealth.

It’s also traditional to clean the whole house, and particularly to sweep out the old year, on the day before Chinese New Year, so get the whole family involved in chores to celebrate a prosperous year of the monkey!

Does your family celebrate Chinese New Year or other holidays outside of your culture? I’d love to hear what you do, or what sorts of ethnic cuisines your kids really love.

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