This is our take on Traditional Pad Thai noodles, which we made several times throughout our travels in Thailand. Although we have an ‘Easy’ Pad Thai version on our website using ingredients more readily available in the U.S., this recipe calls for traditional Asian ingredients. It’s a great way to learn more about Thai ingredients, check out your local Asian market, and step outside of your comfort zone in the kitchen. The result is amazing!
The full recipe details are below, or you can watch the video here:
3Tbsppalm sugar*see notes for recipe and Amazon link
3tspvegan fish sauce*see notes for recipe or Amazon link
200gramsrice noodlesthin or thick
1/2largeshallots, slicedor 1/4 red onion or 2 small shallots
1Tbspsweet pickled radish, chopped
1/2blockfirm tofuor 7 oz.
1cupmung bean sprouts
2Tbsppeanuts, chopped finely
1Tbspchili flakesoptional but recommended for heat
2Tbspcanola or vegetable oil
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Soak the Rice Noodles
Fill a large square dish with hot water, and place the rice noodles in the hot water to soak for 15-60 minutes. The amount of time they soak will depend on your noodles and how hot the water is. The rice noodles will be ready when they are no longer translucent and have a more solid white color to them. Then, drain them in a colander. You can do this further ahead of time as well.
Make the Pad Thai
The cooking process for Pad Thai goes pretty quickly, so it helps to have your ingredients and sauce close prepped and separated to easily add to the wok.
While the noodles are soaking, combine the sauce ingredients (tamarind, palm sugar, salt and water) in a small bowl and mix well. Set aside. See notes below for breaking down palm sugar easily.
Next, prep your ingredients. Thinly slice the garlic and shallots and set aside. Chop the sweet pickled radish and set aside. Chop the green onions into 1-inch pieces and set aside with the mung bean sprouts. Slice your tofu into 1-inch cubes and set aside. Crush or chop your peanuts and set aside with the red chili flakes.
Heat your wok to medium-high. Once it is hot, add 1-2 tbsp of oil to the wok. Once the oil is hot (about 15-30 seconds), add in your garlic and shallots. Cook those until they are fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add in the cubed tofu and pickled radish and cook until the tofu it is browned, about 4-5 minutes.
Once the tofu is browned, add in your rice noodles. Toss that with the garlic, shallots and tofu for a few seconds, and then add your sauce. Coat the noodles well with the sauce, using tongs if needed. After 1-2 minutes, the sauce should get sticky and liquid should start disappearing from the bottom of the wok.
As the liquid is disappearing, add in about 1 tablespoon of the peanuts and a few teaspoons of chili flakes, depending on how hot you like it. You can always add more chili flakes at the end. Toss this with the noodles for about 10 seconds.
Add in half of the green onions and mung bean sprouts. Fold them into the noodles and toss the noodles in the wok to slightly steam and cook them for about 30 seconds. Turn off the heat and remove the wok from the burner.
Your Pad Thai is ready! Put the Pad Thai onto plates, and serve with extra chives, sprouts, peanuts and chili flakes. Quarter the lime and add a slice to each plate for an option to squeeze onto the Pad Thai. Enjoy!