recipe: autumn veggie soba

my ideal stay at home lunch

If you know me post-college, you’ll know that there are only 2 meaningful seasons in my life: soba season and soup season. As in, during the summers, I eat soba salad for half my meals. And during the winters, I eat vegetable (often miso) soup for half my meals (idk, Japanese flavors are just so satisfying without being too heavy I guess).

But then there are some times where the seasons blend together. Where I want to participate in the harvest but aren’t quite committed to soup or soba.

So on a rare rainy, below 60s autumn day in California, I decided to throw all cultural tradition out the window and top a warm soba “salad” with roasted brussel sprouts. Tis the season after all.

Note that this recipe is more veg heavy in terms of the carb to veg ratio, so feel free to adjust the amount of noods as desired. Also, as written it is vegetarian, but can be made vegan by making sure your soba sauce is vegan, as it often includes dashi.


  • 2 bunches of dry buckwheat soba noodles
  • 15-20 brussels sprouts, depending on how large they are
  • 1 avocado, thinly sliced


for the sesame dressing

  • 1 generous spoonful of white sesame paste (tahini works)
  • 2-3 splashes of soba sauce (Mentsuyu)
  • 1 splash of rice vinegar
  • a drizzle of chili sesame oil
  • a little wasabi (to taste, optional)
  • about a tsp of sugar (optional)


options for toppings

  • 1 scallion, thinly chopped
  • shichimi togarashi
  • toasted white sesame
  • furikake of your choice


  1. Start by prepping the brussels sprouts. Wash thoroughly, cut off the stem, and cut into quarters. I usually then rinse them again, because there’s always stubborn dirt trapped between the leaves. Then, either blanch them, or if you’re lazy like me, pop them in the microwave (under a wet paper towel so they steam) for a couple minutes, tossing in between for even heating.
  2. Add a little bit of oil and a little salt (we’re dressing it later so don’t over salt!) and mix to coat. Roast at 400 deg for about 20 minutes until the edges turn golden and crispy. Even better, air fry them (depends on your machine, but I’d go for a lower temp, and do it for 8-10 minutes, tossing halfway.
  3. While that’s happening, bring a pot of water to boil to cook the soba. Cook it according to directions, but drain it just before it’s done. Since we’re not immediately shocking it in iced water, it’ll continue to cook as it sits.
  4. While you cook the noodles, you can start (and finish the sauce). Mix the sesame paste with some water and stir until it’s loosened (add it in a splash at a time, it’ll get thicker before it starts to thin out). Then add the other ingredients and stir until smooth.
  5. Once the soba is drained, plate the noodles into a serving bowl. Top with the brussels sprouts and avocado slices. Drizzle on the sesame sauce, and then top with scallions, toasted sesame, furikake, and sichimi togarashi.
  6. Be sure to toss evenly and serve immediately (otherwise it’ll dry out and clump together and we don’t want that).


Serves 3 moderately hungry people, or 2 very hungry people.