These spicy vegan drunken noodles (pad kee mao) are so flavourful and can be on your table in under 20 minutes!
In case you hadn’t noticed, thai food is one of my favourite cuisines. These noodles are spicy, salty, fragrant, a little bit sweet and perfect whether you’re hungover or not!
Rumour has it someone threw this dish together whilst drunk, hence where the name drunken noodles comes from.
Traditionally this isn’t a vegan dish so there are a few substitutions I have made to make it vegan friendly.
The sauce is made up of dark soy sauce, regular soy sauce, ‘fish’ sauce, sriracha and maple syrup/sugar, it is that simple.
I really recommend buying some vegan fish sauce for this recipe and other asian dishes which call for it. If you’re in the UK, there is a brand called Thai Taste which sell one, I picked it up in Waitrose. It is made with seaweed and soybean giving it a salty, fishy flavour.
The great thing about this recipe is that you can throw whatever vegetables you have in the fridge. I love the combination of broccoli, baby-corn and vegan ‘chicken’ pieces. Peppers, courgette or asparagus would also be really yummy! You can sub the vegan chicken pieces for tofu, seitan or leave it out!
Pad kee mao is usually made with wide rice noodles however I struggled to find these in any shops near me so I used regular rice noodles.
You’ll be able to find them in an asian supermarket, but if you can’t regular rice noodles work just as well. Just note, you don’t want to use the vermicelli noodles as they’re too thin and will break apart.
Another ingredient I really recommend using in this dish is thai basil. You can pick it up in most big supermarkets and it adds another depth of flavour to this dish which you can’t get from regular basil.
This recipe begins with frying the vegan chicken pieces in oil until they are crispy and browned. You’ll then put these aside and fry the onion. garlic, ginger, chilli and vegetables. Whilst these are cooking you can cook your noodles.
Cook the rice noodles according to packet instructions, usually you’ll let them sit in boiling water for a couple of minutes but this may vary. You want them to be al dente, if you leave them in too long they’ll go mushy and soft which you don’t want!
Set the vegetables aside with the vegan chicken pieces and toss the noodles in the wok with the sauce. Let this cook/caramalise for about 30 seconds and then add the vegetables, mix and serve!
There you have it, vegan thai food on your table in under 20 minutes! I told you it was easy!
Other thai recipes you might enjoy:
As always if you make these vegan drunken noodles be sure to leave me a comment, rate this recipe and tag me on Instagram. I love seeing all your photos of my recipe recreations!
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- 250g vegan 'chicken' pieces
- 200g tenderstem broccoli
- 175g (about 10) babycorn
- 1 onion
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1/2 tsp freshly grated ginger
- 3 birds eye chillies
- 225g/8oz instant rice noodles
- 20g/1 cup loosely packed thai basil
- 3 tbsp dark soy sauce
- 2 tbsp regular soy sauce
- 1.5 tbsp maple syrup/brown sugar
- 2 tbsp vegan 'fish' sauce
- 1-2 tsp sriracha*
- In a wok, heat a tbsp of oil on high heat and fry the vegan chicken pieces until browned and crispy. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- Add a little more oil and place the thinly sliced onion, crushed garlic and grated ginger.
- Wash and cut the ends of the broccoli and babycorn and throw in the wok too. Stir fry for a few minutes and then place in the bowl with the chicken pieces.
- Cook the noodles according to packet instructions (usually in a bowl of boiling water for a couple of minutes). Time this so that you don't over/under cook them.
- In a small bowl, whisk the sauce ingredients together.
- Drain the noodles and add to the wok with the sauce, stir and cook for around 30 seconds.
- Add the remaining ingredients, thai basil, mix and serve! If the noodles are a bit sticky add a tbsp or two of water to help loosen.
- Optional - top with some extra chilli and sliced spring onion.
*add sriracha depending how spicy you like it.
I use Fry's vegan chicken pieces.
Sauce recipe adapted by Recipe Tin Eats
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 3 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 414Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 97mgSodium: 2317mgCarbohydrates: 52gFiber: 5gSugar: 13gProtein: 32g