Top Ramen vs Maruchan | Which one is better? Final verdict

                by Joost Nusselder | Updated:  September 7, 2021

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Instant ramen is part of every broke college student’s diet. The odds are you’ve had instant noodles at some point in your life. But you probably didn’t think much about the differences in brands.

They all look the same, so shouldn’t they taste the same?

However, that is not the case at all! Top Ramen is usually the preferred brand for many. Here is how it breaks down.

Top Ramen vs Maruchan | Which one is better? Final verdict

Nissin Top Ramen

Top Ramen vs Maruchan | Which one is better? Final verdict Nissin Top Ramen Noodle soup

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Top Ramen is part of a Japanese company called Nissin. If you are going to make their most popular flavor, chicken, there are 380 calories in the package. However, there is quite a bit of sodium, too, at 1,820 mg worth.

You can find these classic, instant meals in any grocery store or online here on Amazon.

Preparation

Making Top Ramen is pretty simple. Start by boiling two cups of water, add the noodle block, then mix in the flavor packet when it’s cooked.

The whole process takes very little time, so you can be eating almost right away.

Taste

Taste is the most crucial part of every meal. Top Ramen’s chicken flavor is creamy and has plenty of herbs. There is a good amount of flavor here.

The soup tastes like chicken and includes onion powder and soy proteins for more flavoring. You can even taste some vegetables in the soup.

Many people feel that Top Ramen has an excellent quality noodle. When cooked properly, they are not mushy or too chewy.

Many people love the “bounce” the noodles have when you pull them from your bowl. The noodles absorb the soup’s flavor well too.

Overall, there is a lot to love about a classic bowl of Top Ramen.

Nissin Cup Noodles

Top Ramen vs Maruchan | Which one is better? Final verdict Nissin Cup Noodles

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Next, let’s compare Nissin’s chicken flavored cup ramen. It is different in taste and preparation compared to the classic packages we usually see.

Preparation

For the Cup noodles, you boil water then pour it into the styrofoam cup. After three minutes (and your soup cools down), it is ready to eat! The process is still straightforward.

Taste

There are some dried veggies in Top Ramen, but not many.

The noodles absorb most of the liquid- this option is better for anyone who doesn’t want as much soup. The broth is very salty but still has a classic chicken flavor.

Many people prefer the packaged noodles over cup noodles. These noodles are thinner and hold less flavor than the packaged ones. Still, they are a great option.

Also read: How to pronounce “ramen noodles” in different countries & languages

Maruchan Ramen Noodle Soup

Top Ramen vs Maruchan | Which one is better? Final verdict Maruchan ramen noodle soup

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An American-based company owns Maruchan. This brand is very popular and has its goods in most grocery stores today.

Their chicken flavor also comes with 380 calories in the package but comes with 1,660 mg of sodium. While slightly less than Top Ramen, this is still a ton of salt.

This ramen brand is also cheap, and many people keep packs of them in their pantries.

The ramen noodle packages of Maruchan are much more popular than the cup ones.

If you are buying ramen, you are most likely to run into the chicken flavor from Maruchan.

Preparation

You make Maruchan ramen in the same way. You boil your two cups of water, let the noodles cook, and then add your seasoning packet. The process is the same- fast and simple.

Taste

However, where the two differentiate the most is taste. Maruchan has bouncy noodles too, but they are a bit chewier.

The soup is also good but comes across as very oily. It also tastes saltier and has minimal flavor. There is no herb or seasoning taste either.

Still, Maruchan offers another classic bowl of ramen. As a bonus, they are cheap and fast to make.

Maruchan Instant Lunch

Top Ramen vs Maruchan | Which one is better? Final verdict Maruchan instant lunch

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If you prefer cup ramen, Maruchan also offers a chicken flavor.

They are very similar to Top Ramen’s option- you get a styrofoam cup containing dry noodles, veggies, and powdered flavoring. Their noodles are also very thin and stringy.

Preparation

You make Maruchan’s cup ramen in the same way. Simply add boiling water to the cup for three minutes, stir it, and wait for the food to cool down.

Taste

Maruchan’s cup noodles are a lot drier than Top Ramen’s noodles, even after being fully cooked. The soup is a bit less salty but still could use more of the chicken flavor.

The noodles also absorb most of the liquid, leaving very little soup in the cup. Maruchan does also give you more vegetables than Top Ramen.

Our final verdict

While you can prepare both of these instant noodle packs, in the same way, Top Ramen has a better flavor and stands out as the better of the two.

Its flavor is creamier and has more hints of seasoning. Plus, the broth tastes more like chicken, and it is less oily than Maruchan’s soup. Their noodles are also bouncier and taste better.

Their noodles also have an enhanced consistency and absorb the flavor better.

Still, if you love ramen, then both options are good!

Have you ever heard someone say, “there is no such thing as bad pizza”? The same idea applies to ramen noodles.

Both options are cheap and fast; you can eat them whenever you are craving a relaxed meal.

These two brands both have plenty of flavors for you to choose from. Plus, you can also add your own seasonings at home to make your own unique bowl of ramen.

Try making this 12 minute instant ramen with egg for a fast & easy meal.

Many people like to add meat, eggs, herbs, and cheese to theirs. You can get very creative with instant noodles!

You might wonder: Can you reheat ramen noodles? Yes! Just keep this in mind

Ever had trouble finding Japanese recipes that were easy to make?

We now have "cooking Japanese with ease", our full recipe book and video course with step-by-step tutorials on your favorite recipes.

Joost Nusselder, the founder of Bite My Bun is a content marketer, dad and loves trying out new food with Japanese food at the heart of his passion, and together with his team he's been creating in-depth blog articles since 2016 to help loyal readers with recipes and cooking tips.