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Pancit Sotanghon Noodles with Chicken and Tofu

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]AsianInAmericaSotanghonWChickenTofuBirthdays happen in big batches in our family so I often cook a celebratory dish like this Pancit Sotanghon Noodles with Chicken and Tofu. During May to June, our family celebrates birthdays and anniversaries in a matter of days apart. And when our friends are having birthdays throughout the year we are celebrating with food all the time. I like to cook or bake gifts to give to friends having a birthday. My favorite thing to cook are noodles. They also happen to be the easiest dish to make. Often, it makes for a unique gift.

A noodle dish enjoyed during birthdays symbolize long life and prosperity for  Filipinos and most Asians. It is a must that we have a noodle dish for birthdays. It is also considered ‘good luck’ for the birthday celebrant when all of us  are  eating noodles or pancit. So whether I’m cooking or we’re eating out, the first thing I do is plan which noodle dish we’ll have at the family meal.

My virtual friends, the “Let’s Lunch” group of food authors, writers and chefs are like family, too. We meet every month online. For this month, we are celebrating the birthday of Cheryl Tan, successful author and one of the founders of this lively virtual group who meet regularly to share recipes and stories posted on our respective blogs.

I cooked Pancit Sotanghon to honor Cheryl. It is a staple dish in Filipino homes. One finds the recipes in almost all Philippine cookbooks. For me, it is the easiest to make of all the “pancit” (noodles) dishes. I have also successfully taught many friends how to cook this dish. On other occasions, I have brought this as a potluck dish for friends and it has been a hit.

The recipe below is a combination from several cookbooks we’ve had in the family and I have added my own ingredients to come up with the right “sotanghon” dish my husband and sons enjoy. All cooking sessions become family affairs in the kitchen and so, like always, my younger son gladly helped put together this dish.

On that note, today, allow me to wish my friend, Cheryl a ‘Happy Birthday’ with this Pancit Sotanghon noodle dish. Cheryl, I bring you cheer and comfort in this bowl of savory cellophane noodles, flavored with a nutty achuete broth and fish sauce, combined with silky tofu cubes, tender chicken slivers, garnished with crisp, green scallions.

Grab your chopsticks now, dig in and twirl those soft, silky noodles, my friend!


Pancit Sotanghon Noodles with Chicken and Tofu

Pancit Sotanghon is a basic Filipino stir fry dish made with cellophane-clear noodles. You start with garlic, onions, celery and add the broth, meats, vegetables, noodles.I added chicken slices and tofu cubes to make this entree special. The dish takes minutes to cook and makes for a hearty, filling meal whether it’s a quiet night at home or a party with friends. This recipe first appeared on this blog AsianInAmericamag. Serves 4.
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time30 minutes
Course: Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine: Asian, Filipino
Keyword: Pancit Sotanghon
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 205kcal
Author: Asian in America - Elizabeth Ann Quirino


  • large skillet or wok


  • 1 Tablespoon annatto seeds (achuete) soaked in a cup of hot water
  • 16 ounces Sotanghon (cellophane noodles) about 2 to 3 cups when cooked
  • 2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled, chopped
  • 1 whole medium sized onion chopped
  • 2 stalks celery sliced thin
  • 1 whole large carrot sliced, peeled,
  • 1 pound chicken breast deboned, sliced in strips, about 1 1/2 cups
  • 1 whole (14 oz.) extra firm tofu
  • 1 Tablespoon fish sauce (patis)
  • 1 cup r chicken broth
  • 2 cups shredded cabbage shredded in thin strips
  • 1 cup sliced green beans in 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup sliced scallions in 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper powder


  • Soak the annatto seeds in a cup of hot water for 30 minutes to 1 hour. The water should look orange-colored. Set aside. Pre-soak "sotanghon" (cellophane noodles) in water for about 20 minutes, till soft. Then drain the sotanghon. Set aside.
  • Over medium high heat, in a large skillet, add the cooking oil. Once it is hot enough, pan fry the large piece of firm tofu. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes till the tofu browns on all sides. Remove tofu from skillet and drain on parchment paper to remove excess oil. Cut into ½ inch-sized cubes. Set aside.
  • Using the same skillet, over medium high heat, saute garlic and onions in hot oil. Add the celery and carrots and cook till softened.
  • Add the chicken breast strips and fish sauce.
  • Place the pre-soaked annatto seeds (achuete) in a sieve or colander. Using a fork, press down on the seeds while pouring hot water over it. The water will turn to orange. Use a cup of this annatto/achuete water and add to the skillet with the sautéed vegetables and chicken. Add chicken broth. Simmer till meat is tender.
  • Then add the cabbage, green beans and mix well, let the vegetables cook for about 5-6 minutes.
  • Add the sotanghon noodles to the pan with the rest of the ingredients. Mix all the ingredients together over low heat, making sure the orange broth coats the noodles. The noodles are quick to absorb liquid, so if after a while the dish looks dry, add a little more chicken broth or soup stock to moisten. Add the tofu cubes on top. Season with salt and black pepper. Garnish with scallions or green onions.
  • Cook's comments: here's a tip just in time for Thanksgiving day. If you have leftover roast turkey, slice some strips and add them to this sauteed Pancit Sotanghon.
  • Thanks for reading  my entry to this month's "Let's Lunch"  a virtual potluck event of food writers and bloggers from around the world. This November's theme is 'birthday foods .' For more recipes check out  Twitter using the hashtag #LetsLunch or pin with us on our Pinterest boards. Watch for a round up of the other "Let's Lunch" food writers with links on this blog soon.
  • Anne Marie‘s Sans Rival Sandwich Bites at Sandwich Surprise
  • Betty Ann’s Pancit Sotanghon (Filipino Noodles) at Asian In America
  • Cheryl’s Chinese Tea Eggs at Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan
  • Karen’s Mini Cheesecakes at GeoFooding
  • Linda S.’s Mama’s Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup at Spice Box Travels
  • Please check here throughout the day for more birthday-themed links to Let’s Lunch’s bloggers!
  • Hello, Friends! All the images and content here are COPYRIGHT PROTECTED. This means BY LAW you are NOT allowed to use my photos or content on your website, videos, books or media content  without my permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write it in your own words and simply link back to this blog to give proper attribution. It’s the legal thing to do. Thank you. Contact me at [email protected]


Serving: 1g | Calories: 205kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 73mg | Sodium: 747mg | Potassium: 529mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 124IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 19mg | Iron: 1mg

Notes on Nutrition: The nutrition information provided  in the recipe links is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.

Copyright Notice: Hello, Friends! Please DO NOT LIFT OR PLAGIARIZE Asian in America recipes on this blog,  my original recipes, stories, photos or videos. All the images and content on this blog are COPYRIGHT PROTECTED and owned by my media company Besa-Quirino LLC by Elizabeth Ann Quirino. This means BY LAW you are NOT allowed to copy, scrape, lift, frame, plagiarize or use my photos, essays, stories and recipe content on your websites, books, films, television shows, videos, without my permission. If you wish to republish this recipe or content on media outlets mentioned above, please ASK MY PERMISSION, or re-write it in your own words and link back to my blog AsianInAmericaMag.com to give proper attribution. It is the legal thing to do. Thank you. Email me at [email protected]

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  1. This looks DELICIOUS! I was just thinking yesterday that my mother would have totally scolded me for not eating noodles. (I was so focused on the eggs, I forgot!) Thanks for your comfort, cheer and good wishes. So lovely celebrating with you…xxx

  2. Yum! Makes me salivate just thinking about these noodles. I’ve never cooked any Filiino food so I really must give them a try. Thanks for sharing your story!! xx

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