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Chilled soba noodles get lifted off a zaru with chopsticks for dipping into soba sauce.

Zaru Soba (Chilled Soba Noodles)

Chilled Soba Noodles, or Zaru Soba, is a classic summertime meal in Japan accompanied by a savory dipping sauce called tsuyu, and a plethora of condiments called yakumi.
Course Entree
Cuisine Japanese
Keyword noodles
Level Beginner
Main Ingredient Noodles
Diet Dairy-Free, Low-Fat, Pescatarian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Servings 2 servings
Calories 253 kcal


For dipping sauce

  • 1 cup dashi
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoons sake
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar

For serving

  • 2 servings soba noodles
  • 1 teaspoon wasabi
  • 1 scallion (finely chopped)
  • 50 grams daikon (grated and drained)
  • 1/2 sheet nori (cut into thin strips with scissors)


  1. To make the dipping sauce, add the dashi, soy sauce, sake and sugar to a saucepan, and bring the mixture to a boil. Continue boiling for 1 minute to vaporize the alcohol in the sake and soy sauce. Set this aside to cool.
    A boiling pot of soba tsuyu or dipping sauce.
  2. To boil the soba noodles, bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Add the soba noodles and stir for about a minute to ensure the noodles don't stick together. Continue boiling the noodles for the amount of time specified on the package.
    A pot of boiling water with soba noodles.
  3. Transfer the noodles to a strainer using chopsticks or tongs (leaving the boiling liquid in the pot).
    Transferring the cooked soba from the pot to a strainer.
  4. Wash the soba under cold running water to cool it to room temperature while removing any excess starch on the noodles' surface.
    Rinsing boiled soba noodles under running water to remove excess starch from the surface of the noodles.
  5. Transfer the soba to a bowl of ice water and let the noodles chill for a moment.
    Chilling soba noodles in a bowl of ice water.
  6. Serve the noodles by scooping small amounts of soba out of the ice water and bundling them up into small mounds on a zaru or large flat basket.
    Making mounds of soba on a traditional bamboo zaru.
  7. Serve immediately with the dipping sauce and condiments.
    Serving Zaru Soba with dipping sauce and condiments.
  8. Once you've finished eating the cold soba, reheat the boiling liquid and serve it in a teapot to add to the remaining dipping sauce to make a broth.

Nutrition Facts
Zaru Soba (Chilled Soba Noodles)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 253 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g5%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Sodium 2347mg98%
Potassium 386mg11%
Carbohydrates 49g16%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 4g4%
Protein 14g28%
Vitamin A 98IU2%
Vitamin C 7mg8%
Calcium 75mg8%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.