What is Pad Thai?
Pad Thai is a noodle dish from Thailand. It is known for its bold flavour profile, with tangy sour notes coming from Tamarind and sweetness from palm sugar.
It is served with chilli flakes and crushed peanuts which you dip your noodles into.
What is in a Pad Thai
Recipes vary, but a Pad Thai normally features flat rice noodles, some sort of meat, egg and vegetables.
Obviously, a few of these ingredients aren’t vegan.
So, What is in a Vegan Pad Thai?
A vegan Pad Thai can be made with tofu, fake meats, and even vegan egg if you are so inclined (you could try using Just Egg, or scrambled tofu instead)!
The sauce in a Pad Thai is traditionally made with fish sauce, which you can easily omit if you are cooking it yourself. But it is worth being wary of ordering a Pad Thai when you are eating out, and just asking for it without the meat and egg. Many people will forget that there is fish sauce in the Pad Thai sauce ingredients – I’ve definitely learnt this from experience (eww).
Is Vegan Pad Thai Spicy?
Thai food, as a whole, is spicy. The country is renowned for its love of spice. What you will notice quite often with noodle dishes like Pad Thai is that they serve chilli flakes on the side, meaning you can add a little extra heat to your mouthfuls if you so desire!
I use a spicy small red chilli in this recipe, but if you are worried about spice then go with something you are more comfortable with. If you love spice, then add in more 😉
Vegan Pad Thai
- Large Wok
Pad Thai Sauce
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- 3 tbsp syrup like agave
- 3 tbsp tamari or soy sauce for non GF
- 35 g tomato ketchup
- 2 tsp tamarind paste or juice from 1 lime
Pad Thai 'Meat'
- 280 g vegan chicken I use Naked Glory or THIS ' chicken'
- 280 g firm tofu
- 2 tsp sesame oil
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
Rest of the Ingredients
- 400 g flat rice noodles cooked according to packet instructions, drained, and cooled under cold water
- 1 tbsp sesame oil for cooking
- 1 leek sliced
- 1 small red chilli sliced
- 1 red onion sliced
- 150 g beansprouts thoroughly washed
- 1 thumb-sized piece of ginger peeled and grated
- 2 cloves garlic sliced
- bunch thai basil roughly chopped
- handful roasted peanuts crushed
- chilli flakes
- 1 lime cut into quarters
- Marinate the vegan chicken and tofu in the sesame oil and soy sauce, and leave for a few hours (if you have time). If not, mix with the marinade and cook straight away at 180° (fan) for 20 minutes. Make sure to stir half way through
- Make the sauce by mixing all the ingredients together and putting a medium high heat. Whisk while you wait for it to come to the boil. Then take off the heat and set aside
- Get all the prepped raw veg together in one place ready to cook.
- Once the tofu and 'chicken' are ready, heat up a large wok with the tbsp of sesame oil
- Cook all the raw veg together on a high heat for about 5 minutes, until slightly softened, stir often
- Add in the cooked tofu and chicken and heat through for a few minutes
- Stir in the sauce and cook for a few more minutes
- Add the cooked noodles to the pan and mix them in with the rest of the ingredients
- Once the noodles have been heated through, it should take just a few minutes, take off the heat and serve
- Serve up the pad thai and scatter some fresh Thai basil on the top. Sprinkle some crushed peanuts and chilli flakes by the side of each plate for dipping the noodles in (Thai style!)
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