Pad Kee Mao, also known as Drunken Noodles, is the supercharged aromatic and herbaceous Thai version of Chow fun using the same wide flat rice noodles. I can eat Pad Kee Mao anytime and definitely do not need to be drunk to enjoy it.
The girls and I love Pad Kee Mao. The pungent, well-balanced flavor of the sauce and amazingly smelling Thai basil leaves make this one of the most addictive Thai dishes ever. This is one of the must-order dishes every time we go to a Thai Restaurant. I just hate that the portions are so small! That’s why it’s so much more economical and better at home because you can control the number of ingredients for over half the price.
This dish is very customizable and as long as you have all the ingredients prepped it can be made to order. Since the girls can’t handle the Thai chili spice very well, I make a batch of Pad Kee Mao with them without any Thai chilies and customize it with the ingredients they want and I make another batch with extra spice for me and wifey to enjoy.
8 ounces flat rice noodles, preferably fresh
4 ounces boneless chicken thighs, cut into small cubes
4 ounces shrimp, shelled and deveined
1 ounce bell peppers, cubed
1 ounce asparagus, cut into bite-size pieces
1 ounce canned baby corn, halved lengthwise
1 small Roma tomato, quartered
1/4 yellow onion, thinly sliced
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 garlic cloves, finely minced
2-3 Thai chilies (optional)
1 cup Thai basil, loosely packed
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon vinegar
1 tablespoon water
1 teaspoon dark soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Make Sauce – Add oyster sauce, fish sauce, soy sauce, sugar, vinegar, water, dark soy sauce, and black pepper into a small bowl. Mix well and set aside.
Prepare Ingredients – Prepare and organize all the protein and veggies in separate bowls and/or plates and set them aside.
Make Pad Kee Mao – Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the skillet is smoking hot, add 1 tablespoon vegetable oil and stirfry chicken for about 3 minutes. Add shrimp and 1 tablespoon of sauce and stir fry for about 2 minutes. Remove proteins from the skillet. Add remaining vegetable oil, garlic, and Thai chilies (if using) to the skillet and stir for about 15 seconds. Add vegetables to the skillet and stir-fry for about 2-3 minutes. Add rice noodles, cooked protein, and remaining sauce into the skillet and combine until noodles are coated in sauce. Turn off the heat and add Thai basil. Give one final toss and plate.
- Substitute beef, pork, tofu, or any other protein for protein choices in this recipe.
- 8 ounces of protein is ideal for this recipe. Adjust the protein combination to your liking.
- Add your favorite veggies or remove the veggies you do not like.
- Some other good veggie options are broccoli, zucchini, carrots, mushrooms, and bok choy. The options are endless!
- For a spicier kick, add more Thai chilies.
- If you can’t find fresh rice noodles, find extra wide dried flat rice noodles and cook it according to the package directions.
- If you are buying fresh noodles, try to find the widest looking ones. I like to use the one that says Banh Uot or find something that says Chow Fun or Hu Tieu on it.
- If you really can’t find flat rice noodles, substitute spaghetti noodles or udon noodles for the flat rice noodles and cook it according to the package directions. It works great too!