A Recipe for Sesame Noodles with Broccoli and an Organized Refrigerator

I was so excited when my friend and fellow dietitian, Janet Helm, announced the release of her new book, The Food Lover’s Healthy Habits Cookbook: Great Food & Expert Advice That Will Change Your Life Forever, written with the editors of Cooking Light magazine. When my copy arrived in the mail, I tore through it and stuck sticky notes everywhere. A recipe for Sesame Noodles with Broccoli made with whole-wheat spaghetti and lots of veggies caught my eye, so last weekend I decided to make it.  Here’s what followed …

The recipe called for dark sesame oil, lower-sodium soy sauce, rice vinegar, and a few other Asian ingredients. I knew I had most of them in my fridge, but when I started looking, Pandora’s Box blew wide open. Turns out my fridge was a disorganized disaster. (Clearly, I’d been living in denial for quite some time.) The more I looked and the more bottles and jars I pulled out, the more I realized my fridge was in desperate need of a spring clean up!

Hours later, the fridge was clean, my condiments were assigned to various shelves, and I was ready to get cooking.

Getting organized is a great feeling. I should do it more often!

Sesame Noodles with Broccoli

Makes 4 Servings (it made 6 servings at my house)

The Healthy Habits Cookbook outlines 12 new, life changing habits — Go For Whole Grains,  Eat More Fish, Go Meatless, Veggie Up — and it features recipes from Cooking Light magazine. How can you go wrong?!


  • 2 tablespoons tahini (sesame seed paste)
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1½ tablespoons dark sesame oil
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (I used kosher salt)
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated peeled fresh ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon chile paste with garlic (such as sambal oelek) *I did not have this ingredient so I added a pinch of chili powder
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced


  • 8 ounces uncooked whole wheat spaghetti
  • 5 cups broccoli florets
  • 2 cups matchstick-cut carrots
  • 3/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 3 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (I used kosher salt)

1. To prepare sauce, combine tahini and next 9 ingredients (through garlic) in a small bowl; stir with a whisk.

2. To prepare noodles, cook pasta in a large pot of boiling water 5 minutes, omitting salt and fat. Add the broccoli to the pasta pot, and cook 1 minute. Add the carrots to pan; cook 1 minute. Drain; place in a large bowl. Sprinkle with onions and remaining ingredients. Drizzle with sauce; toss well. Serve immediately.

Nutrition Information per Serving (2 cups): 400 calories, 13.7g fat (2g saturated), 800mg sodium (will be lower if you use kosher salt), 62g carbohydrate, 13.5g fiber, 15g protein

Print Recipe

Janet will be a guest on our Cooking with the Moms radio podcast in a few weeks. We’ll also be sharing a falafel recipe from the book and giving away a copy, so stay tuned.

4 responses to “A Recipe for Sesame Noodles with Broccoli and an Organized Refrigerator”

  1. Oohhh…those noodles look absolutely fantastic! And I bet it feels good to have the fridge organized!

  2. love cooking says:

    This looks delicious and healthy. I am thinking to use egg noodles or lamian (Chinese noodle) for this. Maybe add a little bit of mustard. 🙂

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