We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.
Advertiser Disclosure
Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.
How We Make Money
We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently of our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What Are Kuzu Noodles?

Mary McMahon
By
Updated May 16, 2024
Our promise to you
DelightedCooking is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At DelightedCooking, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject-matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Kuzu noodles are noodles made from the starchy root of the kuzu plant, also known as kudzu. These starchy noodles resemble rice sticks or sai fun noodles, tending to be thin and transparent, and they can be used in a wide range of dishes. Some Japanese foods call specifically for kuzu noodles, while other Asian noodle dishes can be made with kuzu as well. These specialty noodles are available from importers and Japanese markets.

Kudzu is a perennial climbing vine with bright flower stalks and simple, deciduous leaves. Many people in the West regard kudzu largely as a pest, but the plant also has food value. The leaves and flowers, for example, can both be used like vegetables, and the roots can be rinsed and pulped to make a flour which can be used to create the noodles. If you're wondering about the different between “kudzu” and “kuzu,” kudzu is derived from kuzu, which is the Japanese name for this plant.

The starch from kuzu roots is also used as a general thickener and geller in Japanese food. Its starchy properties can help to firm up sauces and jellies to a desired texture, and since it sets in a transparent color, it will not change the color of the food. The roots are also fairly bland, meaning that the starch can be used in delicately flavored dishes without overpowering them. Kuzu flour is also available in Asian markets, along with other unique Asian flours.

Kuzu noodles are long, thin strips which are translucent when dried and totally transparent when wet. To prepare kuzu noodles, most cooks pour boiling water over them and soak them for 10 minutes before draining and rinsing them. The noodles can tend to stick together, so they should be tossed into a stir fry or soup as soon as they are rinsed; the noodles can also be used as a side dish, much like rice.

These delicate noodles can be hard to find in some parts of the world. Other fine Asian noodles are made from ingredients like mung bean sprouts and rice, and these are more readily available. If a recipe calls for kuzu noodles, you can use these noodles as substitutes if no kuzu are available. You might also want to check with health food stores for kuzu noodles if you have no Asian markets in your area, since specialized Asian ingredients sometimes turn up at these sorts of establishments.

DelightedCooking is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a DelightedCooking researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments
By Bakersdozen — On Aug 10, 2011

@wander - your advice is invaluable. I first tried these Kuzu noodles at a friend's dinner party and they were not nice.

I do have a bit of a thing about texture, in particular I dislike mushy, slimy food, so I honestly thought it was just me. It was only after I ate them again in an Asian restaurant that I realized they can actually taste good!

By widget2010 — On Aug 10, 2011

@recapitulate- actually, there are books about all the uses of kudzu, including making your own powder and, I assume, noodles. I bet if you looked into it you could find a lot more.

I think this is interesting because I knew that kudzu had lots of uses, like soap and other household products, and I even read that it could be a potential source of ethanol, but I had no idea it had actually been a food even before that.

By recapitulate — On Aug 09, 2011

I know kudzu is a huge annoyance in the south, although they have found a lot of uses for it. I wonder if anyone has tried to use kudzu to make these noodles in the US?

By burcinc — On Aug 09, 2011

@wander-- You're right, I've made the mistake of boiling them too much and making them mushy as well. But when you learn a few good tips about cooking them, it's nothing that can't be overcome. I personally think it's worth the effort because Kuzu noodles (also called Kuzukiri) are very light and healthy. They don't cause heaviness and bloating like some other starches do.

I soak the noodles in hot water for just a few minutes and then simmer it along with the sauce for a few minutes and that's it. I also never make huge amounts of kuzu noodles because they need to be eaten right away. Or else, like you said, it will get too soft and mush waiting in the sauce. That's why I make enough for that meal only and finish it up.

By drtroubles — On Aug 08, 2011

Noodles that are clear like kuzu noodles are usually referred to as glass noodles because of how easily you can see through them. These glass noodles are really popular in Asia, though I find you don't see them much over in North America unless you go to a specialty store that stocks lots of Asian foods.

I personally think kuzu noodles don't really have much of a taste so I generally avoid using them as a side dish. One of my favorite things to use them for is in a cold broth dish that is made mostly out of mushrooms. This dish is great in the summertime and I find that the kuzu noodles have a great texture when cold.

By wander — On Aug 07, 2011

Kuzu noodles are an interesting food to try, but unless you are a pretty good chef I would steer clear of trying to make a dish with them yourself the first time.

Kuzu noodles really don't have any flavor of their own, but are great at absorbing all of the flavors around them. For this reason they can be difficult to use because unless your cooking timing is perfect they can absorb too much moisture and they can go from a great jelly texture to mush. Mushy kuzu noodles are quite frankly disgusting and since these noodles can be pricey and hard to find you don't want to ruin an entire dish due to poor timing.

I would suggest going to a Japanese restaurant and trying their kuzu noodles first. Once you learn what texture they are supposed to be it becomes much easier to prepare them yourself.

Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

Learn more
DelightedCooking, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

DelightedCooking, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.