Vegan Pad Thai is a tasty vegan version of the National dish of Thailand-Pad Thai. This stir fried noodle dish is a refreshing melody of flavors & textures.
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As a first post of the year, I am sharing the recipe for my favorite noodle dish – Vegan Pad Thai. Though I also love my other easy noodle recipes like Veg Chow Mein, Vegetable Teriyaki Noodles, and Peanut butter Ramen noodles, the freshness of Pad Thai always takes it to the top of my favorite noodle recipes.
What is Pad Thai?
Pad Thai is a stir-fried noodle dish from Thailand. It’s the national dish of the country.
The sweetness of palm sugar, the sourness of tamarind, hot chilies, smooth rice noodles, crunchy peanuts, and veggies create such an enigmatic melody of flavors that it’s impossible not to fall in love with this amazing dish.
All these different textures and flavors make it quite unique from any other noodle recipe.
Did you know that the scarcity of rice in Thailand during World War II, led to the invention of this dish which is now the national dish of Thailand?
During World War II, to manage the shortage of rice, the then prime minister of Thailand promoted eating of noodles over rice and as a result, a new rice noodle called sen chan was created and used in Pad Thai.
However, many also believe that it was created in the 1930s by the then Prime Minister of Thailand Plaek Phinbunsongkhram. It was a time when Thailand was focusing on building the nation. Pad Thai was created to give the country its own unique dish different from the Chinese noodles recipes.
In 2011, this dish also found its place in the list of ‘world’s 50 most delicious foods’.
Before my first attempt at making Pad Thai at home a few years ago, I never imagined that it will be so simple. Though it takes some time to do all the preparation if you are making everything from scratch at home like roasting and crushing peanuts, frying tofu, cutting and chopping veggies, etc. Once all the initial preparation is complete, the dish gets ready within 10 minutes.
Amit and I, both love Vegan Pad Thai so I always keep some roasted and crushed peanuts, tamarind sauce, and fried tofu in my pantry. This helps me to prepare an instant Pad Thai whenever we want to have it.
If you have never tried cooking Pad Thai at home, it’s time to try it now. You will stop shedding money in fancy Thai restaurants to try this dish.
What goes in vegan Pad Thai?
This delicious vegan noodle dish has different ingredients in it and each gives a different texture and flavor to the dish. That’s the thing which I love the most about this noodle recipe.
In this recipe, I have used mushrooms, bell peppers, tofu, and bok choy. You can choose the vegetables depending on your preference. However, I would recommend not skipping any of the following main ingredients of Pad Thai:
- Thai rice noodles
- Tamarind paste
- Palm sugar
- Lime juice
Pad Thai is made using flat Thai rice noodles. These noodles are not required to be boiled before stir-frying. Just soak them in warm water for a few minutes or follow the instructions given on the packet. Cooking these rice noodles will make them too soft and clumpy.
More easy vegan Thai recipes
Step by step photo instructions
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Vegan Pad Thai
- 300 grams Thai flat rice noodles
- 1.5 cups firm tofu cubes
- 1 cup red bell pepper juliennes
- 1.5 cups roughly chopped button mushrooms
- 1 medium-sized onion chopped
- 5-6 finely chopped garlic cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon finely chopped ginger
- 8-10 stalks chives chopped
- 10-12 stalks bok choy roughly chopped
- 2 chopped Thai red chili/ any hot pepper adjust as per taste
- 2 cups bean sprouts
- Juice of 1 lime adjust as per taste
- 1 stalk lemongrass finely chopped
- 5 tbsp roasted peanuts
- 4 tbsp cooking oil
- 4 tbsp tamarind paste adjust as per your taste
- 3 tbsp palm sugar
- 2.5 tbsp chili flakes
- 3 tbsp soy sauce
- Salt as per taste
- 2 tbsp water
- Coriander leaves for garnishing
- Soak the noodles in warm water for around 10-15 minutes and then drain. Or, just follow the instructions given on the noodles packet.
- In a bowl mix soy sauce, tamarind paste, palm sugar, chili flakes, salt, and water. Keep aside.
- Remove the skin of roasted peanuts. Keep around 1 tablespoon of nuts aside for final garnishing and roughly grind the remaining. There should be some small chunks of peanuts in the powder.
- Heat around a teaspoon of oil in a flat pan and spread tofu cubes on it. Shallow fry till they start turning golden brown from all the sides. Keep aside.
- In a large yok, heat oil and add ginger, garlic, and lemongrass. Saute for a few seconds and then add the onion. Stir fry till onion becomes translucent.
- Add the white part of bok choy and stir fry for a few seconds.
- Add mushrooms and saute for 2-3 minutes.
- Next, add the bell pepper, chilies and cook for another 2 minutes.
- Finally add the sprouts, green part of bok choy and tofu. Stir fry till the bok choy leaves become wilted.
- Add the sauce, mix everything and stir fry for around a minute.
- Next, add noodles, and ground peanuts. Mix and stir fry for about 2 minutes.
- Add fresh lime juice. Garnish with roasted peanuts, bean sprouts, and coriander leaves. Serve.