annatto noodles chopsticks


Vegetarian Stir-Fry Noodles with Annatto

These colorful noodles, which are made with my Annatto Oil and Annatto Water, are as delicious as they are healthful. They can be served as a main course, appetizer, or side dish. I use cornstarch noodles, but you can use glass or rice noodles. You can substitute other varieties of mushroom, and almost any cabbage will work–Napa, savoy, bok choy, green, or even red. You can use store-bought vegetable broth instead of homemade. This is a gluten-free dish, so I use tamari sauce instead of soy sauce. Bragg Liquid Aminos provides even more flavor. BENEFITS: Annatto contains vitamin E for beautiful hair, skin, and nails. Shiitake and wood ear mushrooms are good sources of selenium, which lowers cancer risk and boosts immune function. Shiitakes also contain lentinan, which has anticancer properties. Cabbage is a cancer-fighter thanks to its indoles (sulfur compounds), which also make keratin in nails, hair, and skin. 


1/4 cup Annatto Oil (see below for oil recipe)
1/2 cup julienned white onion
1 tsp. minced garlic
1 cup julienned shiitake mushrooms
1/2 cup julienned wood ear mushrooms
4 cups Homemade Vegetable Stock
1/4 cup Annatto Water
1 cup julienned cabbage
1/4 cup julienned carrots
2 Tbs. low-sodium tamari sauce
1 Tbs. Bragg Liquid Aminos (optional)
Salt or salt substitute and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/2 package (8 oz.) cornstarch noodles
Lemon wedges as garnish

1. In a large pan, saute the onion and garlic in the Annatto Oil over medium heat for 3-5 minutes.
2. Add the mushrooms, Homemade Vegetable Stock, and Annatto Water and bring to a boil.
3. Add the cabbage, carrots, sauces, and spices and cover the pan. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10-15 minutes or until the carrots are tender.
4. Add the noodles and simmer another 3-5 minutes or until they are transparent.
5. Remove from the heat, toss thoroughly, and garnish with the lemon wedges.

Annatto Oil

Yield: ½ cup


½ cup annatto or achiote seeds (whole, not ground)
½ cup olive oil


  1. Heat the seeds and oil in a pan over low heat for about 5-7 minutes or until the oil turns bright reddish-orange. The seeds will sizzle and turn dark, but do not let them turn black and burn.
  2. Strain to remove seeds.

Chef’s note: You can store Annatto Oil in the refrigerator for up to a month and Annatto Water for up to a week.

About Grace O

Grace O has been cooking and baking professionally and recreationally all of her adult life. As a child in Southeast Asia, she learned the culinary arts by her mother’s side in her family’s cooking school. She became so well versed in hospitality and the culinary arts, she eventually took over the cooking school and opened three restaurants. She is widely credited with popularizing shrimp on sugar-cane skewers and being one of the first culinarians to make tapas a global trend. She has cooked for ruling families and royalty. Grace O’s move to America precipitated a career in healthcare, inspired by her father, who was a physician. Twenty years and much hard work later, she operates skilled nursing facilities in California. Grace O strives to create flavorful food using the finest ingredients that ultimately lead to good health. Her recipes, although low in saturated fat, salt, and sugar, are high in flavor. Grace employs spices from all over the world to enliven her dishes, creating food that is different and delicious. She believes that food can be just as effective at fighting aging as the most expensive skin creams. And since she’s over 50 herself, she’s living proof of that.
What Do FoodTrients Do?
Ai Anti- inflammatories

Reduce inflammatory process in cells, tissues, and blood vessels, helping to slow aging and reduce risk of long-term disease.

Ao Anti- oxidant

Prevents and repairs oxidative damage to cells caused by free radicals.

IB Immunity Boosters

Support the body’s resistance to infection and strengthen immune vigilance and response.

MB Mind

Improves mood, memory, and focus.

F Disease Prevention

Reduces risk factors for common degenerative and age-related diseases.