Did you know that you can make your own buckwheat soba noodles? We found that homemade buckwheat noodles taste twice as good as the 100 percent buckwheat soba noodles we’ve bought before, and cost half as much. Mild, tender, and delicious, they are the perfect foundation for a beautiful pasta dish, and you can even serve them to a gluten free guest!
I choose to make these buckwheat noodles out of 100 % buckwheat, so they are completely gluten free. Buckwheat, by the way, is not at all related to wheat. It’s not even considered a “grain”, but rather is a highly nutritious “seed”.
“While many people think that buckwheat is a cereal grain, it is actually a fruit seed that is related to rhubarb and sorrel making it a suitable substitute for grains for people who are sensitive to wheat or other grains that contain protein glutens. Buckwheat flowers are very fragrant and are attractive to bees that use them to produce a special, strongly flavored, dark honey. ” WHfoods.com
But if you want to add a bit more strength to your pasta dough, you could add up to half whole wheat bread flour in place of some of the buckwheat flour, though obviously you wouldn’t want to then serve it to a gluten free guest!
As it was, I was surprised at how easy it was to work with. I was imagining the dough being completely unworkable. But it holds together quite well!
Homemade Buckwheat Soba Noodles
Makes 6 servings
This recipe uses the soaking method, which neutralizes anti-nutrients in grain, so start the night before.
2 cups of buckwheat flour *See notes above for adding in wheat flour for extra strength
1/2 cup of water
1/2 tablespoon raw apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
The night before, place the flour in a medium size bowl. Pour the water and vinegar/lemon juice into the bowl and mix with a wooden spoon until you’ve combined it as much as you can. It will most likely be a crumbly mixture at this point. Using your hands, start kneading the mixture until the water and four starts turning into a ball (at which point you can knead a little on a clean surface outside the bowl). Knead for a few minutes until it forms into a firm ball. If needed, you can add 1-2 tablespoons of more water, or flour. You want a firm, but not dry, or wet ball. 1/2 cup of water to 2 cups of flour was perfect for me.
Clean out your bowl and place the dough ball back into it. Dampen a clean dish towel, and wring dry. Place over the ball of dough to keep it moist while it “soaks”. I also put plastic wrap over the bowl, just to make sure that everything stays moist. Leave the bowl out on the counter top overnight for 12 -24 hours.
When ready to roll out, first place a large pot of water to boil on the stove. While the Japanese don’t salt their pasta water, I like too, as the dough doesn’t contain any salt. So salt it generously.
Meanwhile, divide the dough into four sections. Using arrowroot powder, buckwheat flour, or even white flour (once again, only if you don’t have to be gluten free), flour the rolling surface well. If you have a large wooden cutting board, it’s nice to roll and cut directly on it. Flour the top of the dough and your wooden rolling pin. With gentle, but firm motions, start rolling out the dough. You want to roll it out to about 1/8 inch thickness or even thinner! During this process make sure that you are keep both sides of the dough well floured.
To make it easier to cut, I cut the dough into thirds (about 4 inches tall), and laid them on top of each other (just make sure they are lightly floured to prevent sticking).
Using a sharp knife, cut the noodles into 1/8 inch “slices” all the way down the dough.
Repeat this process with the rest of the dough and let the noodles rest for about 10-20 minutes.
Meanwhile, your pot of water should be ready. Make sure it’s at a rolling boil, then add all of the noodles at once, giving a gentle stir to make sure they don’t stick to each other. It should only take two minutes to cook. When done they should be tender, but still be slightly chewy.
Drain the noodles, making sure that you use a colander with fine holes so the noodles don’t fall through!
You can now rinse with cold water to cool them if you are using it in a cool dish, or keep warm for whatever dish you have planned for it.
P.S. We used a peanut sauce from this recipe, which was wonderful when tossed with the buckwheat noodles.
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Hi I have an infant who is on a very restricted diet due to allergies–do you think I could substitute cream of tarter for the vinegar/lemon juice?? I am new to the soaked grain world, but have been learning a lot! Thanks for your help & the great recipe.
You can use yogurt for soaking grains too.
Michael Lange Ocala
Love this idea! I’ve been looking for a good, gluten free/grain free noodle recipe. I’m making this tonight!
Really good recipe, been looking for a 100% buckwheat recipe for a while before i found this, the noodles turned out great, they smell really nice and taste even better. The dough is quite easy to work with too 🙂
this recipe was great, tated fantastic!! i had a little problem though ( like with most gluten free flour) the noodles kept breaking when i tried to transfer from the work space to the storage container or pot. any suggestions ???? thanks for the recipe
Well, I can’t have eggs as well as gluten, so would a “chia” or “flax” egg work the same?
You don’t need to add an egg. Work the dough the best you can the night before. Do let it rest even the 24 hours might be better for you. The next day I broke the dough into 6 balls and bounced them back and fourth in my hands squeezing and squashing. Once you get it to be like a soft playdough balls then you can work them out.
Sounds like your dough was a little too dry. It’s better to err on the wetter side. Be sure to work the water in fully and let it rest again for an hour or so.
I have been looking for a good recipe for buckwheat noodles. I am so excited to try this recipe! Thanks for sharing it and posting great pictures of the steps. I really appreciate it!
These look great– do you think they could be dried for eating later?
Sounds so easy – going to pick up some buck wheat flour and try this – thx for sharing!
Kath (My Funny Little Life)
Thank you so much for posting this! I’ve been looking for 100 % buckwheat soba noodles but couldn’t find any. And the g buckwheat noodles from the organic supermarket are *so* expensive. 🙁 I’ll definitely try this! 🙂
Can you run the dough thru the pasta roller and dry it for later use.? I understand using Japanese buckwheat flour like `Cold Mountain soba flour` or Japanese buckwheat flour will be easier to work with. Mitsuwa.com sells the flour but the shipping costs twice the cost of the flour.
Thanks for the recipe. I have Celiac’s and have to do a completely “no-grain” diet, and most of the commercial gluten free pastas are made with corn or rice flour, so finding this recipe was nice. I’ll be eating pasta tonight! Yum. ; )
From what I’ve learned with cooking gluten free cooking adding the egg to help keep the noodles together sounds like a good idea, suppose you wouldn’t be able to let it sit out overnight however and would have to refrigerate it instead. Bet they will dry nicely also.
I was just wondering if anyone has tried freezing the noodles, or drying at all?
If I go to this much effort, I’d want to make a HUGE batch, and be able to have noodles for months down the road.
FYI, a while back I made oat noodles, and they were delicious!!!! I have no idea which recipie I used, but I’m not sure if some other people on here would want to try that or not.
Hi Kylie, did you have any luck with storing noodles for later use? I am also keen to make a huge batch to keep for later on, but have never made pasta before and unsure how I could store them!
Soba loses its fragrance and flavor quickly. If you’re wanting to store it long term you’re better off buying the dried stuff.
Would love the oat noodles and any other non- wheat, egg, soy, diary, corn free noodles! Spinach that is or anything else like pumpkin.
Thank-you. I just can’t find these at the store whithout wheat added. 🙂 You’ve made my day.
Thanks for sharing this recipe! It’s a great alternative for people who can’t have gluten. (or soy, or rice!)
I am also celiac and have been missing my noodles, now thanks to you I can tuck in again.
Wonderful, I still have to be tested but my dr suspects this pregnancy brought on celiac because wheat bread, pasta, even rice brings me pain. I look forward to using this recipe!!!
Why do you need to “soak” since buckwheat is not a grain?
you need to soak the Buckwheat flour to reduce the phytic acid and to get the most nutrients from the Buckwheat.
Hi , this looks a great recipe I will def try as soon as I can. But one question, I was clearing out my pantry after being told by my Dr not to eat wheat or gluten products. I read the packet of the half used Burgal as I used to use it for Tabulei , it said that it was not gluten free…. I thought Burgal was the same as Buckwheat?? Now I am confused as I am not sure if I can eat Buckwheat or not!
Thanks for any help
As far as I know, burgul is anothr name for bulgar wheat, hence not gluten free.
My noodles turned out kind of gritty. Am I doing something wrong?
Wow, I tried to make these and failed spectacularly. Can you help me figure out what went wrong? First, my dough was very dark, far darker than your photos are. I used Bob’s Rd Mill buckwheat flour. Second, when I tried to roll it out, it behaved exactly like wet sand. I guess maybe I had it too dry, but to me it seemed like a firm dough – not dry or wet. Help! I would love to make this recipe work for me.
I am looking forward to making and eating some fresh soba. I’ll add yam. Anyone have ideas about how much yam proportionally or what else is needed to accommodate it?
Darn! I hear that Bob’s won’t work, but there are other choices, see the LA Times article – 12/30/2009
“The type of buckwheat flour you use is paramount to the success of your soba (which in Japanese means both “buckwheat” and “buckwheat noodles”). The way the buckwheat is harvested, threshed, dried and milled all play a part in determining whether the flour can be used for soba. You can’t use Bob’s Red Mill buckwheat flour, for example (we tried and ended up with a wet, sandy mixture instead of smooth dough). But stone-milled buckwheat flour from Cold Mountain worked well and is available at select Japanese markets.”
Anson Mills is another good supplier of quality buckwheat.
For some unknown reason, Bob’s Red Mill buckwheat flour is milled from the entire berry, including the inedible hull – that’s why it’s much darker than every other buckwheat flour. Unlike some other grains, buckwheat hull is a hard black shell – similar to a nut – and needs to be removed for the cereal to be edible. I have a bag of Bob’s Red Mill that’s been sitting in my cupboard for years. Once in a while, when I feel particularly penitent, I throw a tablespoon into a long cooking stew and can taste the grittiness even after hours of simmering. One good – and fairly inexpensive brand – is Wolff’s, with the additional benefit that the buckwheat is grown in the U.S., unlike 90% of groats that are grown in China and repackaged in other countries.
@Jacqui, bulgur is cracked, steamed wheat. Buckwheat is in the chenopodia family (rhubarb, sorrel, etc.) and therefore not a type of wheat at all. It is completely free of gluten and therefore safe for celiacs 🙂
I’m very anxious to try this as I so miss good noodles.
I have sprouted buckwheat flour. So I wouldn’t need to soak it. What would you suggest for water amounts and do I need to add anything else?
is the soaking process required w/ all stone ground buckwheat flour? this is something new to me. the buckwheat flour i purchased has a recipe for making buckwheat dumplings and it does not say anything about the “soaking” process before making the dumplings. i would prefer to roll out the dough and cut into strips for pasta rather than drop dumplings. also could you use the buckwheat pasta strips for making mac and cheese? (my family’s big on mac & cheese) has anyone tried? thanks
Tapioca flour and ground flaxseed made into a gell with hot water help keep the noodles together and you can also put them through a pasta maker for thinner noodles.
Thank-you so much. I can’t have any wheat, so i made these a few nights ago and they were BEAUTIFUL, and fresh. Even my boyfriend LIKED them and he likes the good old white flour pasta. I did add one egg to the recipe and cut the portions in half, i found i got 2 full servings. 5 stars!
VERY NEW to the idea of soaking grains.
The paragraph under the recipe that starts with “The night before, place the flour in a medium size bowl. Pour the water and vinegar/lemon juice into the bowl…”
does that paragraph constitute the “soaking”???
Hope to try this once we get out of the obscene heat wave.
My family loves soba and I’ve been looking for a recipe like this for my son who is sensitive to gluten! Thanks so much.
Can I use soaked buckwheat groats and blend them instead of using soaked buckwheat flour? I can’t get my hands on any buckwheat flour but I live in China and buckwheat groats are readily available (and very reasonable priced).
I too would like to know if these freeze well. My supplier of 100% buckwheat soba noodles has changed factories, they tell me, and can no longer provide them.
Can I use this dough in my pasta roller/cutter, or is it too frail to use in a roller, and I need to roll out by hand with a wooden rolling pin? Thank you!
These noodles are a family favorite! They compliment chicken Alfredo very well! The first time I made them they were a bit dry, but since then I just add extra water when rolling them out! This is a must try recipe!
Maybe they noodles can be frozen for later too?
what a great recipe! how can i store left overs?? do i have to store it in the dough form???
The dough crumbles apart no matter how much I presoak it. I presoaked it for 24h. The ball is all wet inside and outside. Yet when I push it it just crumbles into pieces. Lemon juice doesn’t help.
Are we sure there are anti nutrients in buckwheat since buckwheat is not a grain?
Can I use a a potato press ..idk what you call it to make the noodles ???
I gave this recipe a go. I could tell from the start that my dough was going to be too dry. So I couldn’t roll it as thin as I hoped, and they did break a lots. most noodles ended up breaking in 2-3 inches pieces but they tasted good. So overall I am satisfied! Peanut sauce was delicious!
I usually dont Comment on recipe Posts but I just had to. This is the best noodles I’ve ever Had in my entire Life! Soaking the dough with ACV Overnight made all the difference. I added a bit more water to the leftover dough to make bread and my oh my! I just started to Live, like seriously it Had a mixture of nutty sourdough salty umami taste that was a result of soaking the dough Overnight. Thanks a lot.
Do you think that there is a way to do this with buckwheat kernels? I have lots of inexpensive whole buckwheat but no grinder (will get one someday). I really want to make use of it because since being pregnant I can’t stand the texture. I would prefer it to be slightly sprouted too.