Made using simple ingredients, homemade Pad Thai Noodles come together in under 30 minutes. Customize with whatever vegetables, tofu, meat, seafood, or sauces you prefer.
Here are a few more Thai recipes lined up for you – Thai Red Chicken Curry, Thai Fried Rice, Thai Sweet Chilli Sauce, Thai Peanut Sauce, Thai Basil Chicken, Thai Watermelon Salad and Thai Squash Fritters.
About This Recipe
Pad Thai is a popular Thai stir-fry dish made using flat rice noodles, an array of vegetables, meat or seafood, garlic, bean sprouts, and crushed peanuts. These ingredients are sauteed in a wok over high heat and then tossed in a spicy, sweet, and tangy sauce with an umami kick.
Also, know as Phad Thai Noodles, this dish is commonly sold on the streets of Thailand as well as in Thai restaurants all around the world.
Pad Thai Noodles are super easy, flavorsome, and just take 30 minutes to come together. The homemade version of these noodles is as good as the ones you might have tasted on the streets of Thailand. And the best part about making these at home is that you can customize them as per your taste preferences and dietary regulations.
Serve these super comforting Thai noodles for brunches, get-togethers, potlucks or just enjoy it on a lazy weekday night with your favorite glass of wine.
Noodles – Pad Thai is traditionally made with ¼ inch wide rice noodles (rice sticks). You will find these in the Asian section of the grocery stores or online.
Vegetables – Vegetables add a nice crunch to these noodles. I like to use red bell peppers, yellow bell peppers, onions, and bean sprouts but others such as napa cabbage, snow peas, mushrooms, broccoli, carrot, zucchini, etc can also be added.
Skip bean sprouts if they are not easily available.
I made the vegetarian version of these noodles but feel free to add chicken, shrimp, beef, pork, eggs, or tofu.
Pad Thai Sauce – To make this spicy, sweet, and tangy sauce, you will need soy sauce, vegetable stock, brown sugar, red chili paste, tamarind paste, fish sauce, salt, and water. Skip adding fish sauce for a vegetarian version.
Tamarind paste is the star ingredient here, so make sure you do not miss it. Traditionally palm sugar is added to this recipe but I replaced it with brown sugar.
Oil – Use toasted sesame oil for authentic taste or else use vegetable or canola oil.
Others – You will also need garlic, Thai red chilies, cilantro, and lime. Thai red chilies add a spicy kick to these noodles. Adjust the chilies as per your liking.
Peanuts – Crushed peanuts give a lovely crunch to these noodles.
How to Make Pad Thai Noodles
Soak 10 oz (300 g) flat rice noodles in boiling hot water for 5-8 minutes until they are tender.
Drain the water and toss the noodles with a few drops of oil. Set aside.
In a saucepan, stir together ¼ cup vegetable stock, 3 tbsp soy sauce, 3 tbsp brown sugar, 1 tsp tamarind paste, 1 tsp red chili paste, 2 tbsp fish sauce, salt to taste and ½ cup water.
Bring the mixture to a boil on high heat. Reduce the heat to low and cook for 3-4 minutes. Remove the pan from heat and set it aside. Pad Thai Sauce is ready.
Note – Taste and adjust the ingredients as per your preferences.
Heat 2 tbsp sesame oil in a wok over high heat.
Once the oil is hot, add 2 tsp chopped garlic and 1 tsp chopped Thai red chili. Fry for 4-5 seconds.
Add ¼ cup sliced onions, ¼ cup sliced red bell pepper, ¼ cup sliced yellow bell pepper and ¼ cup bean sprouts and fry for a minute.
Now add the cooked noodles and the sauce to the wok and toss well to coat the noodles. The noodles will be watery at this stage but they will soak up the sauce in another 3-4 minutes and also become darker in color.
Transfer them to the serving bowls and top with ¼ cup crushed roasted peanuts, 2 tbsp chopped cilantro, and 5-6 lemon wedges. Serve hot.
Frequently Asked Questions
To make this dish healthier, reduce the quantity of noodles and add more veggies. Use brown rice noodles instead of white rice noodles. Use low sodium soy sauce and replace brown sugar with honey.
If you don’t want to eat rice noodles, you don’t have to give up Pad Thai. You can give this recipe a healthy twist, by adding zucchini noodles (zoodles) to it instead of rice noodles.
You can make zucchini noodles using a spiralizer, julienne peeler, or a mandoline slicer. Either use raw zucchini noodles or boil them in water for just 1 to 2 minutes.
Pad Thai Noodles are different from Drunken Noodles (Pad Kee Mao). The noodles used in Drunken Noodles are thick, creating a rubbery, chewy texture, whereas Phad Thai Noodles use flattened thin rice noodles. Pad Thai also has fewer calories than Drunken Noodles.
Flat rice noodles are also used to make Pad See Ew, another popular dish in Thailand. While Pad Thai is nutty and a little sweet, Pad See Ew is sour and has a fantastic char-grilled flavor to it.
Add in Preferred Protein – For vegetarians, you can go for tofu, and non-vegetarian can choose from egg, chicken, beef, pork etc.
Make it Mild/Spicy– Want it to be spicier, increase the quantity of red chili paste or add an extra red chili.
Veggie Loaded – Add in as many veggies as you want. It is a great way to use up all the leftover vegetables.
Vegan – Skip fish sauce or opt for vegan fish sauce. All other ingredients are vegan/vegetarian friendly.
Gluten-Free – Use gluten-free tamari instead of soy sauce. Do not use noodles prepared with plain flour or whole wheat flour.
You can also serve some Momos, Dimsums, or Potstickers on the side with these spicy yummy Noodles.
Pad Thai Noodles will last in the fridge for about 3 to 4 days when stored in a clean and dry air-tight container. Reheat it in a pan or microwave before serving.
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Pad Thai Noodles Recipe
- 10 ounces Pad Thai noodles (300 g)
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil (or any other oil that you prefer)
- 2 teaspoons chopped garlic
- 1 teaspoon chopped Thai red chili
- ¼ cup sliced onions
- ¼ cup sliced red bell peppers
- ¼ cup sliced yellow bell peppers
- ¼ cup bean sprouts
- ¼ cup crushed roasted peanuts
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- 5-6 lime wedges
For the Pad Thai Sauce
- ¼ cup vegetable stock
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon tamarind paste
- 1 teaspoon red chili paste
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce (skip for vegetarian version)
- salt (to taste)
- ½ cup water
- Soak flat rice noodles in boiling hot water for 5-8 minutes until they are tender.
- Drain the water and toss the noodles with a few drops of oil. Set aside.
- In a saucepan, stir together vegetable stock, soy sauce, brown sugar, tamarind paste, red chili paste, fish sauce, salt and water.
- Bring the mixture to a boil on high heat. Reduce the heat to low and cook for 3-4 minutes. Remove the pan from heat and set it aside. Pad Thai Sauce is ready.
- Heat sesame oil in a wok over high heat.
- Once the oil is hot, add chopped garlic and chopped Thai red chili. Fry for 4-5 seconds.
- Add sliced onions, sliced red bell pepper, sliced yellow bell pepper and bean sprouts and fry for a minute.
- Now add the cooked noodles and sauce to the wok and toss well to coat the noodles. The noodles will be watery at this stage but they will soak up the sauce in another 3-4 minutes and also become darker in color.
- Transfer the noodles to the serving bowls and top with crushed roasted peanuts, chopped cilantro, and lemon wedges. Serve hot.