Where’s Walnut? In the Dan Dan Noodles

Posted on : July 7th, 2020

Walnuts don’t stick around long at our house. Sometimes I have to hide them from certain sneaky snackers in order to have enough on hand for a recipe. But as snacks go, walnuts are one of the healthiest choices; protein-rich and with the highest amount of Omega-3 fatty acids (plant-based, the kind that’s ready to digest) of all nuts. An ounce a day will provide you with good fiber and important vitamins, minerals and polyphenols. Not to mention, they are yummy! (Thus the walnut deficit in my pantry when I most desire to cook or bake with them.)

Best of all, walnuts are versatile and interchangeable ounce-for-ounce with other kinds of nuts and legumes in everything from nut flours in cakes and pies to key ingredients and garnishes main dishes.

My carb-happy cohort loves Dan Dan Noodles, a peppery Szechwan Chinese dish. Here’s my version swapping out peanut butter or sesame paste with Maisie Jane’s Walnuts, shipped fresh from the family farm. We love heat, but if the amount here is too much for you, use ground black pepper instead of cayenne and/or omit the chili oil.


Walnut Dan Dan Noodles


  • 1-1/4 cups Maisie Jane’s California Walnuts, plus more for the garnish
  • 1 tsp. toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp. fresh or powdered ginger
  • ¼ tsp. cayenne
  • 4 scallions, shopped
  • 1 cup vegetable or chicken broth, plus ½ cup set aside
  • ¼ tsp. sugar or maple syrup
  • ¼ cup soy sauce or tamari, plus 3 tbsp. more set aside
  • 1 tbsp. hot chile oil (optional)
  • 12 ounces of any pasta (we use gluten-free rice noodles, but linguine is more traditional)
  • Add-ons if desired:red pepper, spinach, bok choy, tofu and of course, more walnuts.


  1. In a high-speed blender or food processor, combine 1 cup walnuts with the sesame oil, ginger, cayenne and 1 cup of broth. Mixture should be thick and slightly pasty.
  2. Pour mixture into large saucepan, bring to a boil, stir then let simmer on medium for 20 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, prepare pasta according to package instructions, drain and rinse with cold water in a colander to remove starch. Whisk remaining broth into walnut sauce mixture, along with remaining soy sauce or tamari, chili oil, sugar or syrup. Bring to a low boil, then remove from heat immediately.
  4. Place noodles in a large serving bowl when fully drained. Pour hot mixture over noodles and toss until noodles are covered. Top with additional 1/4 cup of walnuts (or more!), scallions and any desired add-ons just before serving.

Maisie Jane’s California Sunshine Products, Inc. was founded on strong beliefs and passion for offering unique, flavorful, top-quality nut products. We embrace earth-friendly practices that start on our family-owned and operated orchards. We use organic farming practices and continue in the process by using all-natural ingredients with no preservatives or GMOs. We believe in honest, friendly and helpful customer relations at all levels. We take pride in every task, every day, with every person.