Instant Pot Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup (牛肉面)

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Video Taiwanese beef noodle soup instant pot

Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup is the comfort food we all need for the chilly winter months ahead. It combines a fragrant broth with tender beef and chewy noodles, and best of all, you can make it in an Instant Pot!

Overhead view of two bowls of Taiwanese beef noodle soup topped with green onions

I wasn’t sold on the idea of getting an Instant Pot until my mom told me she uses hers to make Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup. Suddenly, “I don’t need another kitchen appliance in my home!” turned into, “I should buy an Instant Pot immediately.” The recipe below is the one that my mom makes, so you know it’s tried-and-true!

I LOVE Taiwanese beef noodle soup (牛肉面). The best is eating it in Taiwan, where it’s wildly popular year-round. I vividly remember going to the market with my parents and visiting stalls with lines of people getting beef noodle soup for lunch, then sitting on benches in suits and dress clothes, slurping away in 90 degree heat and humidity. WORTH IT.

Of course, soup is best enjoyed on a chilly day. While they say chicken noodle soup is good for curing what ails you, I think this beef noodle soup is my favorite home remedy. I love the warming spices, the garlic cloves and ginger will boost your immune system, and the chilies will clear your sinuses in no time flat.

Overhead view of beef noodle soup in white bowl, topped with green onions

What You’ll Need

When my mom makes this recipe, she eyeballs the ingredients, so feel free to adjust things to your liking.

  • Bone-in beef shank – Good substitutes for beef shank are beef arm, oxtail, chuck roast, skirt, and silverside.
  • Onion
  • Tomatoes
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Soy sauce – You can use tamari instead if you prefer.
  • Shaoxing wine (Chinese cooking wine) – Dry sherry can be used in a pinch.
  • Star anise
  • Cinnamon sticks
  • Ground fennel seed
  • Ground cloves
  • Ground cumin
  • Thai red chilies – You can skip these for a milder soup, or use red pepper flakes if you can’t find them at the grocery store.
  • Asian noodles – You can use any variety you like, and you can add as much or as little as you want, depending on your ideal broth-to-noodle ratio.
  • Green onions
Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup in white bowl with noodles and beef being picked up with chopsticks

How to Make Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup in an Instant Pot

Since this is an Instant Pot recipe, it’s super easy—it probably takes more effort to assemble the ingredients than it does to actually cook the soup! Here’s what you’ll need to do.

Prep the beef. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, then carefully drop in the beef shanks for 2 to 3 minutes to cook off the impurities. Remove the beef from the pot and discard the water. Make the soup. Add the beef shanks to your pressure cooker, along with the remaining ingredients. (You don’t need to add water because the beef naturally releases liquid throughout the cooking process.) Use the meat preset (or similar) to pressure cook the beef for 25 to 26 minutes.

Prep the noodles. Cook the noodles according to the package instructions and divide them into soup bowls.Finish. Once the soup is done and the pressure is released, divide the meat and soup into the bowls with the noodles.

Overhead view of ladle full of beef noodle soup with Instant Pot in background

Tips for Success

Here are some hints and tips for perfect Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup.

  • Adjusting the recipe. If you feel the spices and liquid amounts are not enough, feel free to add more. This recipe is easy to customize!
  • About the spices. You can tie the anise, cinnamon sticks, and chilies in a cheese cloth if you like, then pull it out before serving.
  • Serving suggestions. We serve this soup with a side of cooked spinach, but you can enjoy it as-is, use another cooked green, or substitute a different vegetable.
Beef Noodle Soup in white bowl, topped with sliced green onions

How to Store and Reheat Leftovers

Transfer leftovers to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days. For best results, reheat in a pan on the stovetop over medium heat.

Can This Recipe Be Frozen?

Yes, you can freeze this soup. Place it in an airtight container and freeze it for up to 2 months. Let it thaw in the fridge overnight, then warm it on the stovetop.

Bowl of Taiwanese beef noodle soup topped with minced green onions
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