The widespread popularity of ramen is proof that Asian cuisine has actually taken the world by storm. If you’re wondering what exactly ramen is, it’s a traditional Japanese noodle soup cooked with broth, meat and vegetables. The colourful ramen toppings are another highlight of this noodle soup. Since ramen became popular, several variants have arisen.

You can rapidly brighten up your ramen with toppings of an extra ingredient or two, no matter what kind you have at home. If you’re unsure what to put in this meal, don’t worry. We’ve compiled a list of the greatest ramen toppings and condiments for you. These can be used to decorate quick noodles as well as handmade chicken, pork or beef ramen.

Wakame

Dried seaweed is the rectangular leaf-like topping you’ll see on ramen noodles in most photos. The most popular form is nori, or dried red algae. It's sold as a flattened sheet with a distinct fishy flavour. Although the texture of dried brown algae, such as that used in wakame salad, is more shrivelled up, it is a viable option.

 Aonegi

This ingredient would almost certainly be included as a garnish in the best tonkotsu recipe. Aonegi (chopped green onion) would, however, be able to boost any good ramen recipe. This vegetable gives Japanese ramen meals a fragrant character as well as a vital spike of heat that isn’t overpowering.

 Kamaboko

Surimi or kane are used to make kamaboko, a soft and chewy fish cake (white fish paste). It’s commonly made of white and pink pieces and has a whimsical form and print that lends itself to a kawaii or cute ramen style. The narutomaki, which has a characteristic pink swirl design, is the most popular variation of this fishcake. This component is optional in a bowl of classic Japanese ramen noodles, but a tasty kamaboko ramen add-on is always welcome.

 Menma

In ramen, what is menma? It’s made up of fermented bamboo shoots with a saline flavour. Menma is one of the more difficult-to-find ramen add-ons, as well as one of the more unique-tasting Japanese ramen components. This is due to the time-consuming nature of the process of making menma. Lacto-fermentation, a process used to make yoghurt and even sourdough bread, is required for the shoots. Feel free to add this pickled vegetable to your tonkotsu ramen meal today.

 Chinese Spinach

If you want to eat your leafy greens while eating a bowl of warm, hearty soup, add this to your ramen. Cooked bok choy (Chinese cabbage) and Chinese spinach leaves become quite delicate, while the stems remain highly crisp, providing texture contrast to your dish.

 Shiitake Mushrooms

Shiitake mushrooms aren’t one of the more standard ramen ingredients, but they’d provide for a unique culinary experience. Mushrooms, along with tofu and almonds, are a fantastic source of vegan protein. They also bring something unique to the table in terms of flavour. This cultivar is noted for its robust and earthy flavour, making it a delicious addition to any instant pot ramen.

 You won’t get trapped thinking about what goes excellent in the noodle soup now that you’ve become acquainted with a variety of ramen garnishes. Mix and match, or choose one or two ingredients from our ramen toppings list to incorporate into your next dinner.