Ingredient Notes, Cook’s Tips, and FAQs
- Thai ingredients: Tamarind paste/concentrate and yellow bean sauce (fermented soybean paste) can be found in Asian or Thai specialty grocery stores, or you can order it online. Make sure to use a Thai tamarind paste and not an Indian one. Different brands will have varying levels of acidity, so you may need to adjust the amount indicated if yours is on the tangier side.
- Soak the noodles when you are about to start making the sauce. If you soak them too soon, they will clump together and stick to each other. You can also toss them with a bit of oil after draining to prevent sticking.
- Toss noodles using both tongs and a spatula when stir-frying. Use the tongs to lift the noodles up and drop them, then fold in the other ingredients with the spatula to combine. This way, the noodles will get coated with the sauce without clumping together.
- Can I make this with a different non-vegetarian protein? Ground chicken, turkey, beef, or shrimp will all taste great. I’ve also made this with thinly sliced skinless pork belly rashers. Depending on how fatty your pork belly is, you may need to scoop out and discard some of the rendered fat.
- Can I make this milder? Reduce the amount of (or omit) the fresh chilies and chili powder if you prefer a milder dish.
- Can I make this gluten-free? Use a gluten-free soy sauce, gluten-free fish sauce, gluten-free oyster sauce, and gluten-free sweet dark soy sauce like this GF kecap manis. Also, use miso paste instead of the yellow bean sauce. It won’t be the same flavor, but will still taste good.
- Can I make this vegetarian or vegan? Use crispy pan-fried tofu cubes, diced pressed firm yellow tofu, Omnipork®, Beyond Beef®, or other ground plant-based meat substitute instead of the pork. Also, use soy sauce instead of fish sauce (or a vegan fish sauce). If making this vegan, omit the egg as well. Add the tofu after stir-frying the garlic and chilies in step 2, then proceed with the rest of the recipe as indicated.
- Can I make this ahead? I do not recommend making it ahead as the noodles will absorb the sauce as it sits. Pad Mee Korat tastes best when eaten immediately after cooking, or at least within 2 hours of cooking. Heat it up in the microwave for a 1-2 minutes if not serving immediately.
- Recipe adapted from Marion’s Kitchen.