All the flavours of Thailand combine in this delicious meal of Pad Thai Noodles with chicken and shrimp. And it’s so quick to make. You can do the prep ahead of time, and have this dish on the table in less than half an hour.
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Pad Thai Noodles
If you like Thai flavours then you will love this dish of Pad Thai Noodles with chicken and shrimp. It’s packed with the taste of garlic, lemongrass, soy and oyster sauce, and spiced up with chili for an extra punch of heat. I’ve added broccoli and pak choi for colour, and beansprouts to give extra crunch. Apart from the noodles which are cooked separately and then added at the last minute, this is a one pan meal that you can have on the table in less than half an hour.
This is one of those meals you make when you are craving a takeout meal, but don’t have the energy/inclination to drive to the nearest takeout to fetch it. And believe me, this tastes far better anyway.
The secret to cooking it so quickly is to get all the prep done in advance.
- Mix up the sauce ingredients – they will keep in a screwcap jar in the fridge indefinitely.
- Chop up the chicken and mix it in the marinade – do it the day before and leave in the fridge
- Prepare the vegetables the day before and store in the fridge in plastic bags
- Chop the garlic and chili when you buy it and store it in the fridge, covered in sunflower oil ,in screw top jars until you need it. It stays fresh for weeks.
- You can even cook the pasta in advance. Believe it or not, I always cook more pasta than I need and freeze it in a plastic container. Then, when the urge for Pad Thai noodles comes on I just pop the container of noodles into the microwave for a couple of minutes to defrost. No waiting around for pasta to cook.
There is one thing I would like to mention, and is that this is not quite a true version of Pad Thai. The authentic version contains tofu, which I have omitted here. However, that said, I think my version of Pad Thai Noodles with Chicken and Shrimp makes for a pretty tasty dish. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!
What you need to make Pad Thai Noodles
See the printable recipe card at the bottom of this post for exact quantities and detailed instructions on how to make this dish.
This is an easy dish to adjust to feed a different number of people. This recipe will easily feed 4 people. To feed more, just add extra chicken / shrimp and vegetables.
For the sauce
There are quite a lot of ingredients here, but don’t worry you will probably have most, if not all, in your cupboard already.
- Rice vinegar – this is a sweet vinegar, often added to sushi rice. If you don’t have rice vinegar you can substitute with half and half white wine vinegar and mirin.
- Lime juice – you can squeeze fresh lime, or just use a bottle of lime juice from the supermarket.
- Brown sugar – use dark brown sugar if you have it, if not you can use light brown sugar or even granulated white sugar.
- Fish Sauce – this is an essential. This smells really fishy when you smell it in the bottle, but don’t let this put you off. It gives a salty taste to the finished dish – a bit like using anchovies, and doesn’t taste fishy at all.
- Soy sauce – use dark soy sauce, light soy sauce is too salty.
- Oyster sauce – my favourie Asian condiment. It adds a great depth of flavour to the dish. I even use it when I’m not cooking Asian food. My favourite way of cooking broccoli is to pop it in a dish with a couple of tablespoons of oyster sauce, cover with cling film and microwave on full power for 2 minutes.
- Tomato ketchup – or tomato sauce as we know it in the UK.
- Chili paste or chili flakes – bottled is fine – use your favourite brand and adjust the heat according to your own taste.
- Sesame oil – this is NEVER used or frying – it is only used as a flavouring in Asian cooking. It has a very strong taste, and a few drops is normally sufficient.
For the pasta
If you can get them, use the transparent Thai rice noodles or ribbons. Failing that, tagliatelle does the job just as well. You do need the flat ribbon type noodles though.
For the Pad Thai itself
- Chicken breast fillets – these should be sliced into bite-sized pieces
- Frozen shelled raw shrimp– don’t use the pre-cooked shrimps- they will be tough.
- Cornflour and soy sauce – this will be mixed with the chicken to marinate it before cooking.
- Sunflower oil – use a neutral flavoured oil, olive oil for example won’t work with this dish.
- Egg – this is scrambled with the chicken and shrimp and mixed through the dish, similar to the egg in egg fried rice.
- Onion – finely sliced
- Spring onion – or scallions as they are also known – chopped into 1cm lengths.
- Garlic – you can use fresh or bottled.
- Red chili – finely chopped. Fresh is nice because it adds a bit of colour, but you can use bottled if you don’t have fresh
- Ginger – once again you can use bottled if you don’t have fresh. If using fresh ginger, it should be very finely chopped.
- Lemongrass paste – use the bottled lemongrass paste – the flavour is perfect for this dish.
- Broccoli florets – these should be cut up into approxiately 1″ to 2″ pieces
- Pak choi – also known as chinese cabbage. Separate the stalks from the leaves. Leave the leaves whole and slice the large pieces of stem into smaller pieces.
- Beansprouts – these need to be as fresh as possible so they provide maximum crunch.
- Chicken stock – you can make this with a stock cube
- Chopped peanuts – for garnish.
How to make Pad Thai Noodles with chicken
Most of the work involved in making this dish, is in the preparation. Once everything is prepared this dish comes together in minutes.
Cook the noodles
Cook the noodles in boiling salted water according to the package instructions. Once the noodles are cooked, drain in a colander and rinse under cold running water to stop the cooking process. Leave aside until ready to use them. The noodles will be mixed into the finished dish just before serving.
- Cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces and place it in a bowl with the cornflour and soy sauce. Mix thoroughly to combine and leave to marinate for about 10 minutes.
- Defrost the shrimp and chop each one into 2 or 3 pieces depending on the size.
- Peel the onion and spring onion (scallions).
- Slice the onion into thin slices and chop the spring onion into 1cm pieces
- If using fresh garlic and chili chop finely. Place in a dish with the ginger paste and lemongrass paste.
- Rise the beansprouts under cold water and place in a dish
- Slice the leaves from the pak choi stems and cut the stems into smaller pieces
- Chop the broccoli florets into 1″ to 2″ pieces.
Prepare the sauce ingredients
Measure out all the ingredients for the sauce into a bowl and mix to combine.
Cook the Pad Thai
Once you’ve done all the prep, the cooking part is a breeze!
- Head the oil in a wok or large frying pan (with a lid) and then saute the onions, spring onions, garlic, ginger, lemongrass and chili over a low heat until softened.
- Tip – I turn the heat down as low as it will go and cover with a lid and allow to sweat slowly. When you remove the lid from the pan you will already start to get the Thai aromas coming through.
- Once the onions are softened, turn up the heat and add the chicken and shrimp and stir fry, stirring continuously, until the chicken is browned on the outside and the shrimps have turned pink. Don’t overcook – the chicken and shrimp will continue to cook along with the vegetables.
- Push the chicken to one side of the pan and add the egg. You should not add any additional oil.
- Stir fry the egg until dry and scrambled then mix through the chicken mixture. Make sure the egg is completely dry before mixing it in.
- Pour the sauce and the stock into the chicken mixture and bring to the boil
- Add the vegetables, cover with a lid and reduce the heat. Allow to simmer for about 5 minutes until the vegetables start to soften. Do not over-cook. The vegetables should still retain their crispness.
- Add the pasta and using two forks, toss to combine. Leave on the heat to allow the pasta to warm through.
- Garnish with chopped peanuts and serve immediately.
Can I freeze Pad Thai Noodles?
Yes, you can freeze this dish. Just place it in a suitable freezer container. You can keep it in the freezer for up to 3 months.
To use, defrost in the fridge or microwave, then tip it into a saucepan or large frying pan and heat gently until piping hot.
Don’t forget to check out my handy Cookery Conversion Calculator if you want to convert any of your recipe measurements from grams to cups, ounces, tablespoons or millilitres and vice versa. You can also use the calculator for converting oven temperatures between Fahrenheit, Celsius, and Gas marks.
If you live at a high altitude you may find you need to adjust your baking recipes to compensate for this. You can read all about it in this post on baking at high altitudes.
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Recipe – Pad Thai Noodles with Chicken and Shrimp
Pad Thai Noodles with Chicken and Shrimp
(Click the stars to rate this recipe)
- 8 oz (225g) dried Tagliatelli noodles
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 saucepan boiling water for cooking the noodles
Chicken and Shrimp
- 200 g frozen shelled shrimp defrosted and cut into3 pieces each
- 4 medium chicken breasts sliced (approximately 75g each)
- 2 Tablespoon Cornflour for marinating the chicken
- 4 Tablespoons dark soy sauce for marinating the chicken
- 2 Tablespoons Sunflower Oil for frying the onions
- 1 large onion peeled and finely sliced
- 2 medium spring onions peeled and chopped
- 1 large egg beaten
- 3 cloves fresh garlic (minced) or use the equivalent from a jar
- 1 inch fresh ginger (peeled and grated) or use the equivalent from a jar
- 1 small red chili (chopped) or use the equivalent from a jar
- 1 cup small broccoli florets
- 1 head pak choi
- 1 cup fresh beansprouts
- 1 cup chicken stock you can use a stock cube dissolved in 1 cup of boiling water
- 2 Tablespoons rice vinegar or use half Mirin and half white vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon lime juice
- 2 Tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 Tablespoons fish sauce
- 2 Tablespoons dark soy sauce
- 2 Tablespoons oyster sauce
- 1 Tablespoon tomato ketchup
- 1 teaspoon chili paste use your own discretion on this
- 6 drops sesame oil
- Fill a large saucepan with boiling water, add 1 teaspoon salt and bring to the boil.
- When the water comes to the boil, add the pasta and allow to boil until done. Follow the instructions on the packet for the exact timing.
- Once cooked, drain into a colander and rinse under cold water to stop the cooking process. Leave in the colander to drain.
- Slice the chicken into bite-sized strips. Mix with the cornflour and soy sauce and set aside to marinate for 10 minutes.
- Defrost the shrimp and cut into either 2 or 3 pieces, depending on the size of the shrimp.
- Peel the onion and slice into thin slices. Peel the spring onion and chop into 1 cm lengths
- Peel the garlic and ginger. Mince or finely chop the garlic. Grate or finely chop the ginger.
- Chop the chili into a very fine dice.
- Place the chopped garlic, ginger and chili, along with the lemongrass paste into a dish. Leave to one side until needed.
- Mix all the ingredients for the sauce together.
- Dissolve one chicken or vegetable stock cube in 1 cup of boiling water
Chicken and Shrimp
- Heat the sunflower oil in a wok and fry the onions, spring onions, garlic, ginger, chilies and lemongrass over a low heat, stirring continually, until the onions start to soften.
- Add the chicken and shrimp and contine to stir fry until the chicken is no longer pink and the shrimp has turned pink.
- Push the meat to one side and pour the beaten egg into the wok. Stir the egg until itis cooked then mix through the chicken and shrimp in the wok.
- Add the sauce and the stock, stir and bring to the boil.
- Taste for seasoning. If you need more heat, add chili flakes. You could also add a little salt if it seems too bland.
- Add the broccoli, pak choi and beansprouts, cover with a lid and simmer for 5 minutes until the vegetables start to soften. Do not overcook the vegetables.
- Add the cooked, drained pasta and mix through. Leave on the heat until the pasta is warmed.
- Serve sprinkled with chopped peanuts, and a slice of fresh lime on the side for squeezing over.
- Chop the shrimp and chicken and put the chicken into a marinade.
- Cook the pasta, drain and rinse.
- Mix all the ingredients for the sauce together in a bowl.
- Clean the chop the vegetables (onion and spring onion, broccoli, pak choi, beansprouts).
- Clean and chop the aromatics if you are using fresh (garlic, ginger, chili).
- Prepare the stock (if you are using a stock cube).
- Beat the egg in a small bowl.
I am not a nutritionist. The nutrition information has been calculated using an on-line calculator, and is intended for information and guidance purposes only. If the nutrition information is important to you, you should consider calculating it yourself, using your preferred tool.
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