Easy Pad Thai recipe made with homemade stir fry sauce and simple cupboard friendly ingredients. You can create your own restaurant-style Pad Thai at home in 20 minutes!
As soon as we hear the word “Pad Thai”, the picture of “stir-fried flat rice noodles with prawns, chicken and vegetables” directly comes up to our mind. Isn’t it? Its sweet, sour and savoury taste is that you will never forget once you’ve tried. For me, whenever I get the scent of freshly cooked Pad Thai, it makes my stomach growls with great appetite.
Our whole family love this stir fried noodle so much. We normally make by ourselves and enjoy at home very often. My dad asks me to cook it quite often as he admits it’s his favourite dish and my little boy loves it too. So, it means whatever the age group is, it’s still our favourite one.
What’s Pad Thai Exactly?
Pad Thai is one of the most famous authentic foods in and out of Thailand. You can order and eat everywhere, at hawker centers, at very famous restaurants, or even via food delivery services, while you are in Thailand. Although it is known as Thai favourite dish, it is now available at many Thai restaurants in worldwide, not only in Asian countries but also in the US & UK.
The strong history of this particular noodle is pretty interesting. While it was the time of World War 2 nearing, it was the creation of Thai government, using this noodle as a sense of national unity. There was a national campaign called “Noodle is Your Lunch” in which people receive free carts to sell Pad Thai and the restaurants receive the recipes. In 2002, the Thai government had launched Global Thai program which is promoting the country’s tourism industry. Then, food tourism has played as main part as well and Pad Thai takes over.
Ingredients you need
The necessary ingredients in this recipe are not very hard to find. You can easily buy them all at your nearby supermarkets or stores. Though we can skip some of the traditional ingredients such as dried shrimp, we cannot miss the major ones such as:
Fish sauce & Tamarind Paste - which can be simply bought at any grocery stores.
Dry rice noodles stick - You can easily find dry flat rice noodles stick at supermarkets or grocery stores with very reasonable price. Unlike noodles made with flour, rice noodles are healthier as they are more digestive and much lower in fat.
Chicken & Prawns – Tender boneless chicken breast or thigh meats can be used easily alongside with peeled, deveined prawns. But aside from chicken, you can also choose to use beef, fish fillets, or use seafood for the protein source.
Vegetables - Yes, firm Tofu and bean sprouts are the vital taste source in this particular dish. But if you are not a fan of bean sprouts, you can skip them. When this fried delight is well combined with clove garlics, stems chives, shallots, Thai preserved radish (Or radish pickle), you will get the perfect Pad Thai which is appealing in both smell and taste, that you may ever dream of. When it’s almost cooked well, don’t forget to sprinkle a few more savoury and spicy ingredients like roasted crushed peanuts, roasted chili flakes (You can skip chili for kids’ friendly ones).
Eggs - I’m sure that you don’t want to miss eggs as they surely can make your fried noodles more delicious.
And finally, of course fresh lime is necessary for both scent and taste.
How to serve this dish
Mostly, we love to have this dish with Tom Yum Soup or Hot and Sour Soup. I normally have it together with Spring Rolls, Crispy Wonton or fishcake in order to get “So Thai” feeling as much as I can. For drink, it is very computable with coconut water, lime juice, lemonade or sometimes with soft drinks.
How to make it
Although, Pad Thai seems like a complicated dish to make, it’s very easy to try. Its appearance is so inviting and it can make your mouth water for sure. Also, the freshly cooked scent of Pad Thai smells so nice and you will get hungry instantly. Now Let's get ready to cook! Here is a few simple steps to follow:
Preparation : Soak the rice noodles stick in warm water for about 15 minutes, drain the water out and set aside. Prepare the vegetable by finely chop the garlic, shallot and preserved radish. Slice the garlic chive into 2" pieces. Slice the chicken into small pieces and cut tofu into small cubes. In a small mixing bowl, add sugar, tamarind paste, fish sauce and water, mix well until sugar well dissolved. Set aside.
Cooking Process : In a pre-heated wok/pan, drizzle a bit of oil and sauté the tofu cubes for 1-2 minutes until the skin is brown. Remove from pan and set aside.
In the remaining pan, stir fry the chicken pieces then follow with the prawns. Remove from pan and set aside. Then sauté the garlic and shallots and radish for few minutes.
Add the noodles and pour the sauce in, stir fry with medium-high heat for 1 minute and bring the chicken, prawns and tofu back to pan. Add bean sprouts and garlic chives in. Toss well to combine all ingredients evenly. Break 2 eggs on one side of the pan, by pushing the noodles on one side. Toss all ingredients together and cook for another 1-2 minutes and ready to serve!
Transfer to serving plate. Garnish with roasted crushed peanuts, roasted chilli flakes and fresh lime. Super delicious Pad Thai is ready! Enjoy!
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- 120 g Dry rice noodles stick (5 mm) ( pre-soaked in warm water and drained )
- 150 g Boneless chicken thigh/breast ( cut thin slices )
- 150 g Prawn ( peeled, deveined )
- 100 g Firm Tofu ( cut in small cubes )
- 3-4 cloves Garlic ( finely chopped )
- 1 Shallot ( finely chopped )
- 3 tbsp Thai preserved radish Or radish pickle ( see details in note )
- 100 g Bean Sprouts
- 4-5 stems Chives ( or spring onions )
- 2 Eggs
- 2-3 tbsp Oil
Pad Thai Sauce
- 4 tbsp Brown Sugar
- 4 tbsp Tamarind Paste/Concentrate
- 2 tbsp Fish Sauce ( see details in note )
- 2-3 tbsp Water
- Roasted curshed peanuts
- Roasted chilli flakes
- Fresh Lime wedges
- Soak the rice noodles stick in warm water for 15-20 mins. Drain out the water and set aside.
- Cut chicken into thin slices. Cut tofu into small cubes.
- Finely chop the garlic cloves, shallot and preserved radish. Cut the chive stems into 2" pieces.
- In a small bowl, mix all the sauce ingredients and set aside.
- Heat the wok/pan to medium high heat, add 1 Tbsp of oil and saute the tofu pieces till the color changed into light brown. Remove from pan and set aside.
- Then add the chicken slices in the pan and stir fry for 1 min. ( Add more oil if needed. )
- Then add the prawns together and stir fry for 1-2 mins. Remove from pan and set aside.
- Drizzle 2 Tbsp of oil in a pan and saute the garlic and shallots for about 1 min till the nice smell come out. Then add the preserved radish, stir for 1 min.
- Add the rice noodles. Pour the sauce in and stir fry with medium high heat for 1 min.
- Then add the chicken, prawns and tofu and stir well for 1 min.
- Then add the bean sprouts and chives. Mix well to combine all the ingredients and sauce together for 1-2 min.
- Push noodles to one side of pan and drizzle a bit oil and fry the eggs. Then mix all together well.
- Transfer to serving plate. Garnish with roasted crushed peanuts, roasted chilli flakes and fresh lime.
- Super delicious Pad Thai is ready! Serve immediately!
- Chives - If you cannot find garlic chives at your supermarket you use spring onions.
- Preserved Thai radish ( turnip ) - You can substitute with pickled daikon radish.
- Fish Sauce - Fish sauce is the key ingredients in Thai cuisine. It brings umami, pungent flavour to the dish. I highly recommend to add for this recipe. But if you are not a fish sauce fan, you can substitute with light soy sauce or add salt to taste.