Shrimp Pad Thai

My husband jokes that anyone who spends ten minutes in the car with me knows my obsession with food. Whether I’m asking what I should make for dinner that night or I’m talking about my latest chicken wing craving, it seems to be my go to car conversation. Now all jokes aside, one thing you need to know about me is that I HAVE to be excited about my dinner. If I’m coming home to make something I’m not into, it’s going to affect my entire mood. I don’t know why, but if I know I’m making something good tonight, I’m going to have a good day.

Shrimp Pad Thai is one of those meals I can get excited about. It is soo soo delicious, quenches my Thai takeout cravings, and is easy enough that I can make it on a weeknight when I get home from work. Now, don’t get me wrong, it takes a little bit of time… it’s not as fast as a crockpot or freezer meal which I do 80% of the time, but I can have it on the table in 25 minutes.

It’s also fun to experiment with. I’ve created the sauce by combining a few different recipes, and I encourage you to do the same! Let me know what you add or take out because I’m always up for new versions. The reason shrimp is my go to protein with Pad Thai is because it is so fast to cook, literally just a couple of minutes, but this recipe is very versatile as well so try it with chicken, tofu, or beef instead of shrimp! Substituting one of those should only add ten minutes or so to the prep time.

Begin by soaking your rice noodles in a bowl of hot water for 8-10 minutes.

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This helps to cut down the cooking time on the stove. I struggled with cooking rice noodles for a long time. They always seemed to be a little undercooked or they would stick together and be a giant mess. By soaking them in hot water and then finishing them in boiling water, I find that they have the best texture and don’t stick. I buy A Taste of Thai rice noodles which you should be able to find at your local grocery store.


Next, put water on the stove and wait for it to boil.

While you wait, prep your shrimp. I buy a bag of frozen, raw shrimp that are already deveined and shelled, so I literally just have to thaw them by running cold water over them. Don’t thaw with hot water because it will cook the shrimp!


Make your sauce in a medium sized bowl. There are lots of store bought Pad Thai sauces you can get in a jar, but I honestly think homemade tastes so much better, and I usually have all of the ingredients on hand anyway. Combine brown sugar, fish sauce, lime juice, peanut butter, soy sauce, chili garlic sauce, and a diced serrano pepper. Whisk together and set aside.


Is your water boiling yet? If so, throw the rice noodles in and stir! Keep stirring so they don’t stick together. Let them cook for 5-8 minutes until tender. Taste to make sure it’s cooked all the way through, and then drain and rinse.


Next dice your shallots and put in a large sauté pan with minced garlic and a couple of tablespoons of canola oil. Let cook for a couple of minutes, then add your noodles and shrimp.


Cook for just a couple of minutes until the shrimp turns pink, then move it all to one side while you crack a couple of eggs into a little bit more oil.


Note: this is the one pan option! Sometimes, I cook the shrimp and eggs in a smaller pan on the side and then add to the noodles and shallots because I think it’s a little bit easier to make sure all of the shrimp get cooked. You do you!

Lastly, add the sauce, let it cook for a couple more minutes, and plate it up! You can top with chopped peanuts, chives, cilantro, bean sprouts, or red pepper flakes.



Shrimp Pad Thai

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • Print

10 oz rice noodles
Shrimp (frozen or fresh)
3 shallots
2 tsp minced garlic
2-3 large eggs
Canola oil
For Sauce:
     1/2 cup lime juice
     6 tbsp brown sugar
     4 tbsp fish sauce
     1 tbsp creamy peanut butter
     2 tbsp of soy sauce
     1 tbsp chili garlic sauce
     1 diced serrano pepper
For topping (all optional):
     Chopped peanuts
     Red pepper flakes
     Bean sprouts
  1. Soak rice noodles in hot water for about 5-8 minutes. Bring water in a large pot to a boil. Add rice noodles to boiling water and cook for 5-7 minutes until fully cooked. Rinse and drain. 
  2. Thaw shrimp if frozen.
  3. In medium sized bowl, add sauce ingredients and whisk.
  4. Saute diced shallots and minced garlic in 3 tbsp of canola oil, brown for a few minutes.
  5. Add rice noodles and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  6. Add shrimp and cook until it turns pink.
  7. Move shrimp and noodles to side and cook 3 eggs in another tbsp of oil
  8. Add sauce and let cook for another few minutes.
  9. Top with chopped peanuts, cilantro, chives, and bean sprouts.


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