How much do Ramen Noodles Cost?

Last Updated on December 16, 2023
Written by CPA Alec Pow | Content Reviewed by Certified CFA CFA Alexander Popinker

Probably the most beloved Asian food, noodles are Asian pasta often cooked with sauces or in soups. As primary ingredients, they can often contain wheat, buckwheat, or rice.

Ramen noodles can be served either dry or in a noodle soup. They come with meat and fish, and sometimes they are prepared as a dish on their own.

How much does a pack of ramen noodles cost?

Ramen noodles can be purchased for $0.35 to $0.55 a pack, making them one of the cheapest food items out there. But you’re probably wondering why. The answer is simple – ramen noodles ingredients are very cheap and lightweight packaging when compared to other foods. It’s made up of water, wheat, flour, salt, and a few more unimportant components which make it cost-effective for manufacturers.

Ramen noodles can cost as much as $0.62 per package on Amazon.com, for example. The Maruchan brand ramen costs around $20 for a box of 36 packages.

At Walmart.com, you can get a 12-pack of Maruchan ramen noodles for $3.25 or grab a six-pack of 2.25-ounce soup package which costs just about $2.5. Ramen Noodles ingredients are enriched wheat flour (wheat flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), and vegetable oil.

For the Maruchan Ramen Noodle Soup Chicken Flavor, the soup base ingredients are salt, sugar, monosodium glutamate, and maltodextrin, contains less than 1% of spices (celery seed), hydrolyzed corn, wheat and soy protein.

Samyang Ramen is a more expensive alternative to the cheap and easy Maruchan instant lunch. A five-pack instant noodle can cost about $15, which brings each pack’s price close to $3.

A 24-pack of Nissin Top Ramen Chicken Flavor Ramen Noodle Soup is available for purchase on Amazon for approximately $19.99, which is approximately $0.83 per package.

You might also like our articles about the cost of lasagna, spaghetti, or tamales.

There is a cheaper option: buying in bulk. A pallet usually includes 120 cases and costs $10 per case, bringing the total to about $1,200 for all of them combined.

With an average price of $0.30 per pack, the Huffington Post says it would only cost you around $180 to eat ramen for a whole year.

Ramen noodles details

Ramen Noodles CookedThere are two main forms of ramen noodles. First, you can purchase a package with dry noodles and boil water to cook them yourself. The packaging will come with a sauce packet that adds flavor once the noodles are cooked for those who enjoy soup instead of just a noodle dish.

The second form of ramen noodles is microwaveable soup. They are a little bit more expensive, but still cheap compared with other food products. The container will contain dry noodles and flavor packets and needs to be filled with water (to a designated fill line) and then microwaved for a cooking time specified on the package.

Ramen noodles come in a variety of flavors, based on dehydrated vegetables, with the most popular ones found at local grocery stores. The different types include chicken ramen, creamy chicken, mushroom chicken, beef, picante beef, chili, roast beef, shrimp, lime shrimp, and spicy shrimp.

Ramen noodles are meant to be consumed before the expiration date. However, if you don’t encounter a different taste or smell when cooking them after this time frame has passed by, it means that they are still good to eat. Ramen is known for its long shelf life meaning that even though there may no longer be an “expiration date”, ramen will still retain most of its nutrients and flavor which makes them safe enough to consume as well.

What are the extra costs?

Adding eggs, miso broth, veggies soy sauce, powdered cooked chicken, different flavors, or greens to instant ramen noodles makes it a quick and easy meal but also a nutritious one. One can also add meat and/or spices in order to enhance the flavor of their individualized bowl of ramen noodles.

Important things to consider

Ramen is a quick and cheap meal, but it can be filled with high levels of sodium carbonate. A single serving contains half the recommended daily intake of 2,000 calories. However, there are many ways to reduce the amount of sodium in your ramen.  The simplest way is by not using the seasoning packet that comes with it, and instead, using healthier spices like garlic powder or pepper flakes.

Are ramen noodles vegan? When researching this particular issue, we found that the answer is yes and no. They’re made from wheat flour, oil, and additional fillers such as salt, but the seasoning packets can contain meat-based ingredients like the powdered chicken flavor or dehydrated beef extract which aren’t vegetarian at all. The noodle package itself has nothing to do with these seasonings that aren’t vegan though so they’re safe, but we still recommend checking out what you’re eating.

Similar items that are frequently bought together

Ramen noodles are a popular pantry staple, often purchased along with other ingredients to make quick, customizable meals. Shoppers will often enhance the basic ramen with proteins, vegetables, herbs, and spices sourced from their pantry or grocery store.

Here is an overview of some common items purchased alongside ramen noodles and their typical costs:

  • Eggs – A classic ramen add-in. Eggs provide protein and richness. Average cost is $2-$3 per dozen eggs.
  • Vegetables – Broccoli, carrots, cabbage, peppers, etc add freshness. Typically $1-$3 per pound or bunch.
  • Green onions – Popular crunchy topping for ramen bowls. Usually $1 per bunch.
  • Protein – Chicken, pork, shrimp or canned tuna. Proteins range from $3-$6 per pound generally.
  • Soy sauce – A few teaspoons enhance flavor. Bottles run around $2-$3.
  • Sesame oil – Just a drizzle infuses aroma. Around $2-$5 for a small bottle.
  • Hot sauce – Sriracha and related hot sauces add a spicy kick. The cost is $2-$4 per bottle.
  • Frozen vegetables – Blends like stir-fry mix offer variety. Often $1-$1.50 per bag.

How can I save money?

For the lowest cost, choose instant ramen with flavorings, like a chicken instant.

Try seasoning your food with things like salt and pepper. This can save you money because they cover the need to buy other flavor enhancers.

Buying in bulk is the best way to save money. If you buy a whole box of your favorite ramen, then not only will you have more for yourself but you’ll also get a lower price per pack.

You can save some money by searching on the internet for coupons from popular name brands.

Dollar Tree’s five-count package is a great affordable way to stock up on supplies at any given time.

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