Maruchan vs Nissin: What’s The Difference? The Ultimate Comparison Guide

Maruchan vs Nissin: What’s The Difference
17 min reading time

If you’ve ever been to an Asian grocery store, chances are that you’ve come across instant ramen brands Maruchan and Nissin. There is no mistaking their delicious smell wafting from the aisles as shoppers stroll by. But have you ever wondered what sets them apart? Here we are going to delve into the differences between Maruchan vs Nissin. From soup flavor to noodles texture, we will go over every detail so that after reading this post you’ll be able to tell your Ramen masters Maruchan from your Ramen gurus Nissin with ease!

So let’s get started on our tasty journey – grab some chopsticks and keep reading!

Maruchan – Brief History & Origin

Maruchan is a Japanese ramen noodle soup brand that has become popular throughout the world. The origin of Maruchan dates back to 1953, when the Toyo Suisan Kaisha company introduced its first instant noodles product in Japan. Initially, it was sold under the name “Chikin Ramen” or “Chicken Ramen” due to its shape resembling a chicken beak.

From early on, Maruchan recognized there was a potential market for their affordable and quick-cooking noodles outside of Japan. In 1977 they exported their product to Hawaii, making them the first Japanese food company to enter this market. Since then they have been able to make further expansions into North and South America as well as other international markets such as Australia and New Zealand.

The company primarily specializes in Asian-style noodles such as ramen, udon, and soba. However they also produce a range of other products including gyoza dumplings, miso soup mix, salad dressings and more. Additionally Maruchan recently launched their line of “Deluxe” style instant noodles which offer higher quality ingredients at slightly higher prices than regular instant noodles.

In the United States it’s estimated that over 3 billion packages of Maruchan ramen are sold every year making it one of America’s top selling prepared meals. It has become an iconic staple on college campuses due to its low cost and easy preparation as well as its ability to cater for different tastes with various flavor options being available on sale throughout the country.

Nissin – Brief History & Origin

Nissin is a Japanese food brand best known for its iconic instant ramen noodles. The brand was founded in 1958 by Momofuku Ando, an inventor and businessman who had the ambitious goal of ending world hunger with his revolutionary invention of flash-frying uncooked ramen noodles.

Originally, Nissin manufactured dried noodle products such as chūka soba and hiyashi chūka, which quickly became popular throughout Japan. In 1971, Nissin launched its first cup noodle product called Cup Noodle Curry – a convenient meal that could be boiled in just three minutes! This would eventually become the world’s most successful convenience food product.

The brand was among the first companies to introduce ready-to-eat microwavable meals to consumers around the world. It also created one of Japan’s most beloved mascots: Mr. Doughnut Man! Nissin’s portfolio includes more than 130 products available around the world, from their famous cup noodle to miso soup and side dishes. Their main markets include Asia Pacific, Europe and United States.

Over the years Nissin has expanded into other areas such as sauces and dressings, frozen foods, snacks like potato chips as well as health drinks like green tea beverages. At present, Nissin produces over 14 billion servings of its various products each year across more than 80 countries worldwide; an impressive figure for a company that was established with only 12 employees back in 1948!

Maruchan vs Nissin: What’s The Difference?

Maruchan vs Nissin: Key Differences

Maruchan and Nissin are two of the most popular brands of instant ramen noodles. Both brands offer a variety of flavors and are affordable and easy to prepare, making them a convenient meal option for many people. However, there are several differences between these two brands.

Flavors and Product Lines

In terms of flavors:

Maruchan offers both traditional flavors like Shoyu (soy sauce) and Miso Soup as well as more unique creations like Chili Tomato and Roasted Garlic Chicken. They also have several vegetarian options including Veggie Miso Soup and Vegetable Curry. All of Maruchan’s ramen products contain natural ingredients, making them an excellent choice for those looking for a healthier alternative without sacrificing flavor.

Nissin on the other hand, offers a variety of classic flavors like Tonkotsu (pork bone), Shoyu Soy Sauce, and Miso Masala along with interesting creations such as Spicy Creamy Chili Sauce and Sour Cream & Onion Ramen. In addition to these exciting options, Nissin has recently released their Original Cup Noodles range which includes varieties such as Tuna Chowder Curry and Chicken Pesto Basil Bun-less Ramen Soup in order to satisfy even the pickiest eaters!

In terms of product lines:

Maruchan offers instant ramen noodles in various formats, including packets and cups. The company also produces Yakisoba noodles, which are stir-fried noodles that come in several flavors. Maruchan also offers Instant Lunch, a line of quick and portable meals that come in cups and are ready to eat in just a few minutes.

Nissin Foods offers several instant ramen lines, including Cup Noodles, Top Ramen, and Raoh. Cup Noodles come in various sizes, including mini and big cups, and are designed to be eaten straight out of the cup. Top Ramen offers classic ramen noodle packs in different flavors, while Raoh is a premium line of ramen that comes in a larger size and boasts an authentic Japanese taste.

In addition to instant ramen noodles, both brands offer other instant food products such as instant miso soup, udon noodles, and rice dishes.


Maruchan is known for its light yet flavorful seasoning that complements its noodles perfectly. The blend contains salt, vegetable oil and hydrolyzed soy protein as well as several other ingredients such as garlic powder and onion powder. This combination gives Maruchan noodles a mild taste with just enough savory flavor to give it an extra kick – perfect for adding flavor without being overpowering. The consistency of the seasoning also has a chewy texture that enhances the noodle experience.

Nissin uses a bolder approach with its ultra-spicy seasoning mix which includes chili pepper extract and a range of bold spices like cayenne pepper and red pepper flakes. This results in an intense flavor profile more suited to those who enjoy spicy dishes where no one ingredient takes center stage but all are blended together for a punchy overall sensation in each bite. The combination has created quite a cult following over numerous years amongst avid spice lovers!


Maruchan instant ramen noodles usually come with a seasoning packet that includes a powder mix to create the broth. The broth is typically thick and has a bold and savory taste. Some of the flavors, such as chicken and beef, have a meaty taste, while other flavors, like shrimp and mushroom, have a seafood or earthy flavor.

Nissin instant ramen noodles also come with a seasoning packet that creates the broth. The broth is generally lighter than Maruchan’s and has a more delicate, umami flavor. The broth is usually made with soy sauce, which gives it a slightly sweet and savory taste. Some of the flavors, such as tonkotsu and miso, have a creamier and richer broth, while others, like shrimp and oriental, have a lighter and more refreshing broth.


Maruchan instant ramen noodles tend to have a firmer texture that is slightly chewy. The noodles hold up well in the broth and provide a satisfying texture that can stand up to the flavorful seasonings. The texture of the noodles is also consistent across all flavors, making it a dependable option for those who enjoy a firmer noodles.

Nissin instant ramen noodles have a softer texture that is sometimes described as being more delicate. The noodles tend to be thinner than Maruchan’s and have a slight bounciness to them. This texture makes them perfect for absorbing the rich broth and seasoning, creating a velvety texture in the mouth. The texture of Nissin’s noodles varies across the different product lines, with the Raoh line having a thicker and more textured noodles compared to the Cup Noodle line.


Maruchan instant ramen noodles are generally more affordable than Nissin, with a single pack of noodles costing around $0.20 to $0.40 depending on location and retailer. The Instant Lunch line, which comes in a cup format and includes seasonings, is also affordable, typically costing around $1.00 to $1.50 per serving.

Nissin instant ramen noodles are generally more expensive than Maruchan’s, with a single pack of noodles costing around $0.50 to $0.80 depending on location and retailer. The Cup Noodles line, which comes in various sizes and flavors, is priced higher than Maruchan’s Instant Lunch, typically costing around $1.50 to $3.00 per serving. The premium Raoh line is even pricier, typically costing around $2.50 to $4.00 per serving.


When it comes to Maruchan’s ingredients, their noodles typically contain wheat flour, vegetable oil (possibly including palm or canola oil), salt and natural flavorings. Many of their flavors also include additional seasoning packets which typically contain monosodium glutamate (MSG), sugar, salt and various seasonings such as garlic powder and onion powder. As for the soup base itself, Maruchan has a tendency to use hydrolyzed protein from soybeans or other plant sources which adds an umami depth similar to MSG without having any substantial nutritional benefits beyond its sodium content.

Nissin on the other hand tends to have a much simpler ingredient list with just wheat flour based noodles for most flavors along with vegetable oil, seaweed extract flakes (often referred to as “furikake”) and various seasonings such as garlic powder again appearing fairly regularly. As for their soup bases they tend not just rely on hydrolized proteins but also often include dried fish extract or konbu extracts known for adding an extra depth into the broth without relying too heavily on salt or MSG like many other ramen brands do.

How do Nissin and Maruchan compare in terms of nutritional value?

Here is a comparison of the nutrition information for Maruchan and Nissin’s popular instant ramen noodle products:

BrandProduct NameServing SizeCaloriesTotal Fat (g)Sodium (mg)Total Carbohydrates (g)Protein (g)
MaruchanChicken Flavor Ramen Noodles1/2 block (43 g)1907830264
MaruchanBeef Flavor Ramen Noodles1/2 block (43 g)1907790264
MaruchanShrimp Flavor Ramen Noodles1/2 block (43 g)1907910264
NissinChicken Flavor Top Ramen Noodles1 container (43 g)1907830264
NissinBeef Flavor Top Ramen Noodles1 container (43 g)1907780264
NissinShrimp Flavor Top Ramen Noodles1 container (43 g)1907790264
Comparison Between Nutritional Value of Nissin and Maruchan Products

Note: Nutrition information may vary slightly depending on the specific product and serving size.

It’s worth noting that instant ramen noodles are generally not considered a healthy food choice due to their high sodium and low nutritional content. However, they can be enjoyed in moderation as a quick and convenient meal option.

Maruchan vs Nissin: Which Is Better?

When it comes to comparing Maruchan vs Nissin, there is no clear answer to which one is better. Choosing between these two brands depends on personal preferences, including taste, nutrition, and ingredients.

In terms of taste, both brands offer delicious instant ramen with a variety of flavors to choose from that make them both great options for quick meals. Although some may find Maruchan’s classic flavor more salty or savory while others may prefer Nissin’s spicier varieties such as its Hot & Spicy Shrimp Ramen Bowls or its Chili Tomato Flavor Ramen Bowls.

In terms of convenience, Maruchan makes their ramen microwavable and cookable in three minutes making it an incredibly easy meal for those short on time without having to sacrifice quality or flavor. On the other hand, Nissin also offers convenient microwave-ready packages as well as noodle cups with even easier prep instructions that are especially great when you’re on the go and in need of something fast and filling that doesn’t compromise taste.

Overall, when it comes down to deciding between Maruchan vs. Nissin – each brand offers delicious quick meal solutions with convenient prep instructions and tasty variations so ultimately choosing either one depends on whether your preference leans more towards one brand over the other based on personal tastes and health considerations alike!

Maruchan vs Nissin: Which Is Better for Vegetarians/Vegans?

Deciding which is better for vegetarians/vegans when comparing Maruchan and Nissin ultimately depends on what type of diet you follow. Both brands offer a range of vegan-friendly instant ramen noodles, but some products may not be suitable for everyone due to their ingredients.

Maruchan offers many options that are labeled as “suitable for vegetarians” or simply state that there are no meat, poultry, seafood or dairy products within the ingredients list. The company also has some varieties which contain no animal-derived ingredients at all, such as its vegetable ramen noodle soup and Maruchan Yakisoba, both of which is gluten-free certified and vegan friendly.

Nissin Cup Noodles line is also suitable for vegetarians in general since it does not contain any eggs or dairy products in the grains and vegetables used. However, it does use chicken flavor powder so strictly vegans would need to double check before purchasing one of those packet noodles. On the other hand, Nissin’s Top Ramen Soy Sauce with Vegetables variety is indeed vegan friendly (as claimed by the company) since there are no animal derived flavors nor preservatives used in its manufacturing process

Top Ramen Vs Maruchan Vs Nissin: Which Is Better?

When it comes to deciding which of the three ramen brands—Top Ramen, Maruchan, and Nissin—is truly the best, there are a lot of factors that need to be taken into consideration.

Firstly, you must consider your personal tastes. Do you prefer the light taste and texture of Top Ramen or do you lean towards a thicker broth with more flavor like Maruchan or Nissin? Each brand has its own unique flavor profile so everyone has different preferences here.

Another thing that can help determine which one is better is cost-effectiveness. All three brands offer packs in varying sizes with different price points; some have just enough for a single serving while others contain several servings so it’s important to compare these options before making a decision.

Nutrition-wise, all three brands provide virtually the same amount of calories per serving but vary slightly in terms of sodium levels so if you are looking out for healthier choices then this should also factor into your decision as well.

Finally, when deciding between Top Ramen vs Maruchan vs Nissin another important factor is convenience – how quickly do each prepare and how easy they are to transport? Top Ramen usually cooks faster than other two (usually around 3 minutes) whereas both Maruchan and Nissin take longer due to their thicker broths (around 5 minutes). Furthermore, because packets weigh less than traditional packages they are easier to transport when on-the-go or travelling abroad which gives them an added advantage over canned varieties available in most supermarkets On this note particularly Maruchans Instant Lunch Cups come pre-packaged in microwavable cups which makes them even more convenient for consumption wherever you go!

In conclusion, choosing between Top Ramen Vs Maruchan Vs Nissin really comes down to personal preference as well as budget constraints since all offer something different from one another – mostly concerning price point efficiency nutrition content convenience and overall savoury flavour profiles – therefore enabling customers tailor their choice accordingly based on what best suits their individual needs!

Are there any unique or limited edition flavors exclusive to Nissin or Maruchan?

Nissin and Maruchan are two popular Japanese brands of instant noodles. Both companies produce a variety of flavors that can be found in most grocery stores around the world.

Nissin offers several limited edition or regional exclusive flavors, such as the Nagasaki Salt Ramen from their Top Ramen range and the Tokyo Shoyu Gekikara Uma-Kara flavor from their Cup Noodle range.

Maruchan has also released several unique flavors, including their Oden flavor from Japan, their Mabo Tofu flavor exclusively for Taiwan, and a Singapore Laksa Hot & Spicy soup in Malaysia. Other limited edition flavors include spicy jumbo prawn cucumber ramen exclusively for Vietnam, curry seafood ramen available only in Thailand and German Sausage Curry flavor sold exclusively in Germany.

Some Recipes Using Maruchan & Nissin

Here are some of the recipes using Maruchan & Nissin:

1. Maruchan Ramen Stir Fry: Cook Maruchan ramen noodles according to the package instructions, drain, and set aside. In a pan, sauté vegetables like bell peppers, onions, and carrots until tender. Add cooked chicken, shrimp, or tofu, along with cooked ramen noodles. Season with soy sauce, ginger, and garlic for a quick and easy stir fry.

2. Nissin Top Ramen Pizza: Cook Nissin Top Ramen noodles according to the package instructions, drain, and mix them with an egg. Spread the mixture thinly on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 400°F for 10 minutes. Top the crust with pizza sauce, cheese, and your favorite toppings like pepperoni or veggies. Bake for an additional 10-15 minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

3. Maruchan Yakisoba: Cook the noodles according to the package instructions and set aside. In a pan, sauté sliced pork, chicken, or beef until browned. Add sliced cabbage, onion, and carrots and cook for a few minutes until vegetables are tender-crisp. Add the cooked noodles, yakisoba sauce (or a mixture of Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, and sugar), and toss to coat evenly. Serve hot.

4. Nissin Cup Noodles Omelette: Cook Nissin Cup Noodles according to the package instructions and drain. In a bowl, whisk two eggs with salt and pepper. Heat a nonstick pan over medium-high heat, add noodles to the egg mixture, and mix well. Pour the mixture into the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes on each side until golden brown. Serve hot with ketchup or hot sauce.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS)

Has the production of Maruchan Ramen been stopped permanently?

A: While rumors have circulated about Maruchan Ramen being pulled from shelves, the truth is that it is still available and widely sold in stores across the country.

Can you microwave Nissin cup noodles?

A: You can microwave Nissin Cup Noodles, but there’s a bit of a catch. it’s important to keep in mind that the styrofoam cup that the noodles come in is not microwave-safe. To avoid any potential hazards or mess, simply empty the noodles into a microwave-safe dish before heating them up.

Can Maruchan and Nissin Ramen be used in recipes other than soup?

A: Yes, both brands of instant noodles can be used in a variety of recipes beyond just plain soup. Some popular options include stir-fry dishes, noodle salads, and even as a substitute for pasta in dishes like spaghetti carbonara.

Bottom Line:

All in all, Maruchan and Nissin are two fantastic options for instant ramen. While they vary slightly in terms of nutrition facts and ingredients, both have the potential to be a tasty part of any meal or snack. Furthermore, with their availability and versatility, it is no wonder why so many enjoy these products. Whether you are preparing a delectable pork & shrimp broth ramen dish like that of Maruchan’s, or opting for a more subtle yet savory experience with soy-based soup for Nissin’s, there is something out there to satisfy almost everyone’s taste buds!

No matter which one you choose, always make sure to read the nutrition label to ensure that you are getting the most out of your instant ramen meal.

Read Also:

About Author


  • Lydia Miles

    Maruchan all the way! 🍜

  • Bethany Morrison

    As someone who enjoys instant noodles regularly, I found this comparison between Maruchan and Nissin quite interesting. It seems Maruchan is more affordable and offers a creamier broth, while Nissin is praised for its bouncy noodles and richer garnish. However, the saltiness of Nissin might not be to everyone’s liking. It would be great if the article delved deeper into the nutritional aspects of these two popular brands. Still, it’s a good read for any instant noodle enthusiast

  • Libby Power

    Tried both, prefer Nissin. 👌

  • Emma Burns

    Does it even matter? They’re just instant noodles. 🙄

  • Demi Reynolds

    Nissin too salty for me. 😝

  • Katie Buckley

    Battle of the noodles, huh? Didn’t know my late-night snack was such a hot topic! 😂

  • Lydia Hyde

    This article does a great job comparing two popular instant noodle brands. I’ve always leaned towards Maruchan because of their variety of flavors, but I may give Nissin another try after reading this. I’m curious about the ‘bounciness’ of their noodles and wouldn’t mind a change from the usual. It would be interesting to see a similar comparison between other popular brands and regional variations of instant noodles.

  • Rosie Shaw

    Honestly, both are unhealthy options. We should be promoting better eating habits instead of comparing instant noodles. 🥦

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * Protection Status

Win one of the 20 coolest kitchen gadgets!

Image of Chefd giveaway Nessie Ladle.

Surprises every month. The fun twist is that you can choose your own in the next step.


Chefd subscribers - contest