Enjoy a taste of Thailand with our authentic Thai food recipes
Tan-THAI-lise your tastebuds with our list of authentic Thai food recipes for you to try at home.
Sun, sea and sensational Thai food await your return to Phuket. While you wait, we have put together our most popular Thai food recipes to keep you satisfied while dreaming of Thailand.
Take a food masterclass of our most popular Authentic Thai food recipes. The perfect balance of sour, sweet, bitter, salty and spicy is the key to authentic Thai food. When trying our Thai food recipes below the spice level is definitely one you can adapt to suit your heat tolerance. When ordering food in Thailand you should familiarise yourself with these:
- Not spicy = mai pet
- A little bit spicy = pet nit noi or pet noi
- Very spicy = pet mak
Most popular Authentic Thai food recipes:
1. Pad Thai
Authentic Thai food recipes do not come any more famous than the Pad Thai. Simply put Pad Thai is Thai-style stir-fried noodles (pad is stir-fry in Thai). Moreover, it is likely one of the first dishes that come to mind when someone mentions Thai food. And, this iconic dish is considered Thailand’s national dish. Therefore, a flavorful stir-fry dish that can be customised in many variations to suit your dietary requirements.
Traditionally Pad Thai is made up of rice noodles, tofu, dried shrimp, bean sprouts, and eggs. Once you have mastered the basic recipe and the intricate combination of sweet, sour, and salty you can add a range of meat options; prawns, chicken and pork are some of the most popular choices.
This authentic Thai food recipe is a winner winner, Pad Thai dinner. In other words, perfect for the whole family, with a few spice level adjustments to suit.
Pad Thai Recipe:
WHAT YOU NEED
- 8 ounces flat rice noodles
- 3 Tablespoons oil
- 3 cloves garlic , minced
- 8 ounces uncooked shrimp, chicken, or extra-firm tofu, cut into small pieces
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup fresh bean sprouts
- 1 red bell pepper , thinly sliced
- 3 green onions , chopped
- 1/2 cup dry roasted peanuts
- 2 limes
- 1/2 cup Fresh cilantro , chopped
FOR THE PAD THAI SAUCE
- 3 Tablespoons fish sauce
- 1 Tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
- 5 Tablespoons light brown sugar
- 2 Tablespoons rice vinegar * see note
- 1 Tablespoon Sriracha hot sauce , or more, to taste
- 2 Tablespoons creamy peanut butter , optional
- Boil noodles just until tender. Rinse under cold water.
- Mix the sauce ingredients together. Set aside.
- Heat 1½ tablespoons of oil in a large saucepan or wok over medium-high heat.
- Add the shrimp, chicken or tofu, garlic and bell pepper. The shrimp will cook quickly, about 1-2 minutes on each side, or until pink. If using chicken, cook until just cooked through, about 3-4 minutes, flipping only once.
- Push everything to the side of the pan. Add a little more oil and add the beaten eggs. Scramble the eggs, breaking them into small pieces with a spatula as they cook.
- Add noodles, sauce, bean sprouts and peanuts to the pan (reserving some peanuts for topping at the end). Toss everything to combine.
- Top with green onions, extra peanuts, cilantro and lime wedges. Serve immediately!
2. Tom Yum Goong
A close second in terms of most popular Thai food recipes, Tom Yum Goong is a clear hot and sour soup. Again, there are many meat variations, but can be enjoyed as a vegetarian soup with mushrooms as well. Goong, which means prawn in Thai is the most popular option enjoyed by locals. Certainly, this fragrant soup boasts strong aromas of lemongrass, kaffir lime leaf and bird’s eye chilies.
Tom Yum Goong Recipe:
WHAT YOU NEED
- 4 cups of water
- 2 stalks fresh lemongrass, trim off the very end of the root and smash with the side of a cleaver or chef’s knife; cut into 1 inch pieces; or 2 pc dried
- 3 slices fresh galangal root (smashed) or 2 pc dried
- 3 fresh kaffir lime leave or 4 pc dried
- 1 tbsp. tamarind paste, with or without seeds
- 1 tbsp. fish sauce, Golden Boy brand preferred
- 3/4 lb shrimps, medium to large size, shelled and de-veined; butterfly if desired
- 12 fresh Thai chili peppers, whole or 2 medium sized jalepenos, cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch strips.
- 1/2 small white onion, cut 1/4 inch slices
- 2 tbsp. roasted chili paste (nam prik pao)
- Can of straw mushrooms, drained and rinsed
- A small ripe tomato, cut into wedges 1/4 inch thick
- Small lime, squeezed
- 2 sprigs fresh cilantro
- Bring water to boil over high heat in a medium-sized saucepan.
- Add the lemon grass, galangal, kaffir lime leaf, fish sauce and tamarind paste (break apart the tamarind paste with your fingers as you add it).
- Next, add the shrimp, bring to a boil and cook for 3 minutes.
- Then, the onion, nam prik pao and straw mushrooms. Boil for another 7 minutes until the shrimp is cooked through.
- Add the chili peppers and tomatoes.
- Turn off the heat. Add lime juice.
- Taste to adjust the seasoning, adding fish sauce to taste.
- Garnish with cilantro, roasted whole chili peppers and a splash of coconut milk if desired and serve hot.
3. Pad Kra Pao or authentic Thai basil stir-fry recipe
A very simple and delicious authentic Thai food recipe is Pad Kra Pao, Thai Basil Stir-Fry. Equivalent to a sandwich or a burger, this Thai ‘fast food’ if you like is a quick and easy recipe. Moreover, it is a staple lunch dish in many Thai restaurants, street food stalls and food courts.
Once you are happy with the basic recipe you can play around with different meat varieties. Pork or chicken mince are amongst the favourites with the locals. And, off course topped with a crispy fried egg to complete the dish. As always you can play around with the quantity of chilies to suit your taste. For garlic lovers this authentic Thai food recipe can be adapted to a purely garlic inspired dish and remove the chili all together.
Pad Kra Pao Recipe:
WHAT YOU NEED
- 5-10 Thai chilies, up to your spice preference
- 5 cloves garlic, depending on how much garlic you like
- ½ cup long beans, cut into short pieces
- ½ small onion, diced
- 300g chicken, coarsely ground
- 1 Tbsp oyster sauce
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tsp fish sauce
- 1½ tsp black soy sauce
- 2 Tbsp water
- 1 ½ tsp sugar
- 1 ½ cup holy basil leaves, loosely packed
- Vegetable oil, as needed
- In a pestle & mortar pound chilis and garlic to release the oils and flavour
- Combine oyster sauce, soy sauce, fish sauce, black soy sauce, water and sugar; stir to dissolve the sugar.
- In a wok, fry the garlic-chili paste in a little vegetable oil over medium high heat until the garlic starts to turn golden.
- Add chicken or protein of choice and toss until they are no longer in big clumps.
- Then, the sauce and continue tossing until the meat is almost done.
- Lastly add the onions and long beans; toss until the meat is done.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the holy basil.
- Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
And, then finish with 1 crispy fried egg and serve on steamed jasmine rice.
Authentic Thai food recipes, curry style.
4. Chicken Green Curry
Curries are an essential part of Thai cuisine. Colorful spectrum of red, yellow, or green. Thai curries are fragrant, and powered with an array of fresh flavours. Authentic Thai curry recipes have many versions, but they all follow some basics and they all rely on some vital ingredients to achieve the classic balance of flavour elements.
Green curry is thick and creamy and is one of the most famous and sought-after dishes. Its vibrant green colouring comes from the addition of Thai basil, cilantro, and makrut lime leaf and peel.
Chicken Green Curry Recipe:
WHAT YOU NEED
For the Green Curry Paste:
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 stalk lemongrass, minced
- 1 thumb-sized piece ginger, grated
- 3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 loosely packed cup fresh cilantro leaves and stems, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
- 1/4 cup diced shallot
- 1/2 to 1 green chile, sliced
- 1 teaspoon shrimp paste (or 1 tablespoon fish sauce)
- 2 1/2 teaspoons fish sauce
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 can coconut milk
For the Chicken Curry
- 2 teaspoons peanut oil
- 3/4 can coconut milk
- 1 1/2 pounds boneless chicken breast or thighs, cut into bite size pieces
- Handful of green beans or any vegetable you like
- 1 medium red or green bell pepper, coarsely chopped
- 4 makrut lime leaves (or 1 teaspoon grated lime zest)
- A generous handful of fresh Thai basil (or sweet basil) if you have
Make the Green Curry Paste
- Place all of the ingredients for the curry paste in a food processor. Use only half of the green chile. Process until all ingredients are blended and have a smooth consistency. Taste. If you’d like it spicier, add the remaining half of the green chili. Reserve.
- Blending ingredients in a food processor
Make the Curry
- Warm a wok or large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the peanut oil and swirl around. Add the green curry paste. Briefly sauté the mixture to release the fragrance, about 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Add the coconut milk to the wok. Stir well to combine.
- Add the chicken pieces, stirring to incorporate. When the curry sauce comes to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 5 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through. Stir occasionally.
- Add the green beans, pepper, and lime leaves to the wok. Stir well to incorporate. Simmer until the vegetables are cooked to your liking. Taste for seasoning and adjust accordingly, either adding more fish sauce for salt or more lime juice if too salty for your taste.
- If using, add the Thai basil to the pan and stir well.
- Serve with the Thai jasmine rice on the side.
5. Massaman Curry
Completing our list of authentic Thai food recipes is a popular southern Thailand dish, Massaman curry. This dish is a rich, relatively mild curry very common in Phuket. Fusing the history of Thai and Indian cultures with a mix of local Thai ingredients as well as spices brought to Thailand from Persian traders, an Indian subcontinent.
Using both a red-style curry paste. The Thai influence and dry whole spices like cumin, coriander, cinnamon, and nutmeg influenced by Indian style curries.
Chicken Massaman Curry is one of the easiest and most delicious savory Thai curry dishes. With chicken and potatoes cooked in a sweet, slightly spicy sauce, it’s a flavor explosion!
Massaman Curry Recipe:
WHAT YOU NEED FOR CURRY PASTE
- 1/4 cup dry roasted unsalted peanuts
- 2shallots, sliced
- 5cloves garlic, peeled
- 1 – 2red chilis (or 1/2 to 1 teaspoon dried crushed chile)
- 1thumb sized piece galangal or ginger, thinly sliced
- 1stalk lemongrass, minced
- 1teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg, preferably freshly ground
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 1 teaspoon shrimp paste
- Teaspoon palm sugar (or brown sugar)
- A few tablespoons of coconut milk (1-3)- depending on how thick you want your paste
WHAT YOU NEED FOR CURRY SAUCE
- Protein of choice
- Potato and peanuts
- Firstly heat the wok. Add coconut milk and Massaman Curry Paste. Stir until the coconut milk breaks into oily bubbles and becomes aromatic.
- Add chopped chicken or protein and stir until cooked. Add water to cover the meat and simmer at low heat until boiled.
- Then, add potato and peanuts then simmer until ingredients are cooked. Remove from stove.
- Add fish sauce and seasonings as preferred.
As always, serve this delicious authentic Thai food recipe with steamed Jasmine rice.
Become a Thai Masterchef with Pullman Phuket
We hope you enjoy these delicious authentic Thai food recipes at home. Or, next time you visit us at Pullman Phuket resort why not take a Thai cooking class and become a Thai master chef.