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Shrimp Pad Thai

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Made with easy-to-find ingredients, this shrimp pad thai tastes just like the one at your favorite Thai restaurant.

shrimp pad thai

Shrimp pad Thai is traditionally made with dried shrimp, tamarind paste, and pickled white radishes. Those ingredients aren’t readily available in most supermarkets, so I make this version with ingredients that are readily available in the Asian food aisle of my neighborhood grocery store. Happily, it tastes pretty close to the version served at my favorite Thai restaurants.

What you’ll need to make shrimp pad thai


How to make shrimp pad thai

Begin by placing the rice noodles in boiling hot water.


Let them soak, off the heat, until softened and al dente. They shouldn’t be completely cooked, but almost. Believe it or not, this is the trickiest part of making this dish: soak them too long and they’ll turn to mush in the stir-fry; under-soak them and they’ll be oddly chewy. I’ve had the best luck with Thai Kitchen Stir-Fry Rice Noodles — they seem to hold up better than other brands, even when I soak them for longer than the recommended time.


Drain and rinse the noodles, then set aside. As with any quick stir-fry, you want to get all your ingredients prepped before you start cooking.


Begin by making the sauce: whisk together the fish sauce, soy sauce, lime juice, peanut butter and red chili flakes. Set aside.


Next, heat some oil in a large nonstick pan or wok. Add the shrimp, ginger and garlic, and stir-fry for a few minutes until the shrimp are pink and cooked through. Transfer to a bowl.


Add more oil to the pan, along with the broccoli and a bit of water, and stir-fry until the broccoli is cooked through.


Transfer the broccoli to the bowl with the shrimp, then scramble the eggs in the hot pan. Add the eggs to the bowl with the shrimp and broccoli.


Add more oil to the pan, then add the drained noodles and pad thai sauce.


Cook, tossing gently, until the noodles are tender and perfectly cooked.


Add the shrimp, broccoli, and eggs back to the pan, along with the green onions; toss well. Right before serving, sprinkle the peanuts, cilantro and bean sprouts over top and toss to combine.




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Shrimp Pad Thai

Made with easy-to-find ingredients, this shrimp pad thai tastes just like the one at your favorite Thai restaurant.

Servings: 4
Total Time: 45 Minutes


  • 8 ounces flat rice noodles (linguini or fettuccini width)
  • 2 large eggs
  • Vegetable oil
  • 5 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce (use gluten-free if needed)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, from 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon creamy peanut butter
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • ½ teaspoon dried red chili flakes
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, finely chopped
  • 1 pound large (31/35) shrimp, peeled and deveined, thawed if frozen
  • Salt
  • ⅔ pound (10 oz.) 1-inch broccoli florets
  • 4 green onions, light and dark green parts, chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 cup fresh bean sprouts, plus more for garnish if desired
  • ¼ cup coarsely chopped dry roasted peanuts
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • Lime wedges, for serving (optional)


  1. Bring 6 cups water to a boil in a large pot. Off the heat, add the noodles. Let sit, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, until softened but still al dente, 5-20 minutes. (Note that the time varies greatly depending on the type of noodle and brand. The noodles I use -- Thai Kitchen Stir Fry Noodles -- take 20 minutes, even though it says 8-10 minutes on the package). Drain and rinse well with cold water. Set aside.
  2. In a small bowl, beat the eggs with a pinch of salt. Set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the fish sauce, soy sauce, lime juice, peanut butter, sugar and dried chili flakes. Set aside.
  4. Heat 3 tablespoons vegetable oil in a large nonstick pan or wok over medium-high heat. Add the garlic, ginger and shrimp; season with ¼ teaspoon salt and cook, stirring constantly, until the shrimp are pink and cooked through, a few minutes. Transfer the shrimp, garlic and ginger to a large bowl, using a rubber spatula to scrape the pan clean.
  5. Add 1 tablespoon of oil to the hot pan. Add the broccoli, ¼ cup of water and ¼ teaspoon salt; cook, stirring constantly, until the broccoli is cooked through, 3-4 minutes. Transfer the cooked broccoli to the bowl with the shrimp.
  6. Add 1 teaspoon of oil to the hot pan. Add the beaten eggs and scramble until cooked through, 1-2 minutes. Add to the bowl with the shrimp and broccoli.
  7. Add 4 tablespoons oil to the hot pan. Add the drained noodles to the pan, along with the fish sauce mixture. Cook, tossing the noodles gently so as not to break them, until perfectly cooked, a few minutes. Add the shrimp, broccoli and eggs to the pan, along with the green onions; toss gently to combine, cooking until everything is warmed through. Right before serving, sprinkle the bean sprouts, peanuts and cilantro over top and toss to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Transfer to a serving platter and serve with lime wedges and bean sprouts, if desired.

Nutrition Information

Powered by Edamam

  • Per serving (4 servings)
  • Calories: 558
  • Fat: 18g
  • Saturated fat: 3g
  • Carbohydrates: 70g
  • Sugar: 14g
  • Fiber: 5g
  • Protein: 31g
  • Sodium: 3022mg
  • Cholesterol: 236mg

This website is written and produced for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and the nutritional data on this site has not been evaluated or approved by a nutritionist or the Food and Drug Administration. Nutritional information is offered as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. The data is calculated through an online nutritional calculator, Edamam.com. Although I do my best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates only. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the effective nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their own nutrition fact sources and algorithms. To obtain the most accurate nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator.

Gluten-Free Adaptable Note

To the best of my knowledge, all of the ingredients used in this recipe are gluten-free or widely available in gluten-free versions. There is hidden gluten in many foods; if you're following a gluten-free diet or cooking for someone with gluten allergies, always read the labels of your ingredients to verify that they are gluten-free.

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  • It is so tasty! The best pad thai ever. I love your recipe, with all the explainations, I cannot miss. Thank you!

    • — Lyse on January 30, 2023
    • Reply
  • what do you suggest I serve with this?

    • — connie sinn on January 25, 2023
    • Reply
    • This is kind of a meal in itself, but if you’d like a side, but it would pair nicely with this cucumber salad. Hope you enjoy if you make it!

      • — Jenn on January 26, 2023
      • Reply
  • I have a package of KAME express rice noodles that I would like to use for this recipe. They require 2 minutes of cooking on the stove or 90 seconds in the microwave. Should I just add them in place of the cooked noodles or maybe microwave for say 30 seconds before adding?

    • — Carlene on December 19, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Carlene, I think I’d just add the noodles at the end along with the fish sauce mixture. Hope you enjoy!

      • — Jenn on December 20, 2022
      • Reply
  • I want to serve a side salad with this Pad Thai. Which one of your Thai salad recipes would you recommend? Can’t wait to try both recipes!

    • — Phyllis on September 21, 2022
    • Reply
  • I have been using store-bought packets of Pad Thai sauce for years and my friends loved it. I tried this recipe on them last Saturday and we were all blown away at how much better it was. It was lighter, but so much more flavorful! And the sauce was so easy to make.

    I tossed all of the store bought packets of sauce I had in my pantry into the trash. This is my new go-to Pad That recipe!

    • — Rich Dezelon on August 29, 2022
    • Reply
    • So glad you liked it! 🙂

      • — Jenn on August 30, 2022
      • Reply
  • Absolutely delicious! One thing I’ve realized after using your recipes for years now Jenn is that I never have to alter a thing. You’ve got each recipe perfected and I sure do appreciate that. Tried and true!

    • — Linda Fasulo on June 30, 2022
    • Reply
  • Is there anything I could substitute for the peanut butter, when making the recipe for someone with a nut allergy? Thanks so much, Jenn. I have to say – there is not a recipe of yours I have tried, that we don’t love. Yours is my favourite recipe site and I recommend it and your two cookbooks to everyone I know! Thanks so much!

    • — Patricia Taylor on February 10, 2022
    • Reply
    • Hi Patricia, So glad you like the recipes and thanks for spreading the word about the blog and the cookbooks! I think you could get away with substituting a non-nut butter like sunflower butter for the peanut butter in this. Hope that helps and that you enjoy!

      • — Jenn on February 10, 2022
      • Reply
  • This turned out really good! Flavors are great…I did add a little more peanut butter, based on some reviews and more red pepper flakes, just a family preference.
    My noodles broke up a lot and I tried to be careful. Maybe next time heat the sauce before adding the noodles to limit the heat and toss times…?
    Thank you for another great recipe!

    • — Sharon on January 13, 2022
    • Reply
  • Hi. Sound delicious. Do you think substituting chunks of white meat chicken in place of shrimp would work for this recipe?

    • — Kelly on January 6, 2022
    • Reply
    • Sure, Kelly, that should work. Enjoy!

      • — Jenn on January 7, 2022
      • Reply
      • Absolutely amazing! I was a little nervous about the fish sauce (potent smell) but it was perfect!! As always – your recipes are spot on!!! Thank you!

        • — Kelly S on May 4, 2022
        • Reply
  • Bonjour !
    This is a winner recipe. I’ve substituted once beef filet in small thin pieces instead of shrimp and was also excellent.
    Great also when there is some leftovers for lunch:)

    • — Martine Belanger on December 19, 2021
    • Reply
  • Thanks for another great recipe and dinner!

    • — Kathleen M Wright on December 2, 2021
    • Reply
  • This was a great quick weeknight recipe for takeout Pad Thai. For me, the peanut butter needed to be at least doubled even to just get a hint of it, and my fam wanted more spice, so maybe I’ll add more flakes next time or add in a fresh chopped pepper as I sautee. I also used low sodium soy and the salt level seemed fine. I can see how others may have found it unbalanced with more salty soy. I’d also flag that my pack of the noodles was 14 ounces and this recipe called for 8 ounces, so that explains why mine seemed too dry!! But it’s definitely worth a try and easy to make it your own with variations!

    • — Sarah DC on November 18, 2021
    • Reply
  • This was delicious and looked just like the pic. Made as instructed and thought the saltiness was perfect though I did use reduced sodium soy sauce. Next time I’ll probably skip the bean sprouts because I didn’t think they added much to the over-all flavor. Thank you for the recipe!

    • — Kt on September 30, 2021
    • Reply
  • It is excellent! The sauce has a delicate taste and in french is would be «  un petit goût de revenez-y! » To be repeated, thank you!

    • — Lyse on April 25, 2021
    • Reply
  • Wonderful recipe! I didn’t have broccoli so I used carrots and it was great. I agree that the hardest part is the noodles – mine were ready quickly, when I make it again I need to watch the noodles a bit more carefully. Thanks Jenn!

    • — Theresa on March 29, 2021
    • Reply
  • Came out great. I used oyster sauce in place of fish sauce as it was all I had, added an extra tablespoon of peanut butter, and substituted edamame for the broccoli (as I didn’t have any broccoli left). I thought it was fabulous! Thank you for a simple Thai recipe that is always a favorite at my house.

    • — Debbie on February 15, 2021
    • Reply
  • This recipe is absolutely amazing and so authentic. It’s rare not to see a perfect 5 star sweep for recipes on this great website so I was keen to read the reviews before trying it out but I didn’t alter a thing and it was perfect. One thing I hoped to get help with is this… my daughter is so sensitive to the fish sauce smell (literally gags at the smell alone) that I won’t be able to use it going forward in this recipe or the Vietnamese salad. Is there an adequate substitute for fish sauce?

    • — Janie on February 4, 2021
    • Reply
    • Glad you like the recipes! You can replace the fish sauce with more soy sauce. The dish won’t have that authentic Thai flavor w/o the fish sauce, but it will still be good!

      • — Jenn on February 4, 2021
      • Reply
  • I think this recipe has potential but it was WAY too salty for me–yikes! I reduced the fish sauce by 1 TBSP, but as I’m eating this I feel like all I can taste is salt. If I do try it again, I would reduce the soy sauce, and use reduced sodium soy sauce as well. I would also up the peanut butter because I prefer pad thai with a stronger peanut-y flavor. I did get a tip from another website for the noodles: fill a bowl with water that is 110 degrees. Then you can soak the noodles, stirring occasionally, and they came out really well without clumping together.

  • I will definitely be making this again. Made it just as the recipe directed in both ingredients and quantities. My husband does not have an adventurous palate but he actually loved this and asked that I make it again. Our friend who has traveled extensively said it was perfect! It was great as are most of your recipes.

  • This recipe is wonderful! Better than any restaurant! We loved it! Another winning recipe from Jenn. She is always spot on. I have enjoyed every recipe I have made. I always look forward to trying something new. THANKS JENN!!!

  • We liked this a lot. However, we use very little salt when we cook and have become sensitive to it. Is there a way to reduce the amount of fish sauce without sacrificing the taste? Is there a substitute we could use?

    • Hi Beth, you could try reducing the fish sauce and replacing it with more soy sauce and (and you could use reduced-sodium soy sauce). Hope that helps!

  • The seasoning of this dish was delicious . It tasted like restaurant food . The only problem I have noticed is that I struggle to cook noodles properly . This is the third time I have found that my noodles – be they udon , flat rice etc noodles comes out sticky despite rinsing in cold water – they end up with a ‘slimy’ texture . Any tips Jenn to avoid this ? I will definitely make this dish again once I manage to handle the noodles as it would be perfect for guests as well.

    • Hi Louise, After they’ve been sitting and before you incorporate them back in at the end, I’d give them a quick rinse under warm water and use your fingers to manually un-stick any noodles. Shake out any excess water and then proceed. Hope that helps!

  • Jenn, if you do have tamarind paste, what would be your recommendation for how much and when to add?

    • Hi Julie, I’d guesstimate you’d need about 2 teaspoons and I’d add it to the sauce ingredients (so with the fish sauce, soy sauce, lime juice, peanut butter, sugar and dried chili flakes). Hope you enjoy!

  • Unfortunately, the extreme quantity of fish sauce called for here rendered this dish borderline unpalatable. From now on, I would use a MAXIMUM of 2 tbsp, maybe just 1 tbsp, of fish sauce here. The sauce was horribly salty and fishy – 5 tbsp completely overwhelms the dish. Quantities could definitely use tweaking.

  • Wow this was so good and I made it! This is the best Pad Thai that I have ever made I left the broccoli out and added sliced jalapenos to give it a little heat. This is a restaurant quality recipe thanks so much for sharing this with us.

    • — Barry Schwenzer
    • Reply
  • I made this recipe yesterday and followed it as written EXCEPT that we used regular green cabbage instead of broccoli only because I forgot to get the latter on my shopping trip and we had cabbage in the fridge. No problem! We cooked the cabbage until tender/crisp before combining everything and the dish was absolutely delicious! It’s a keeper, this one.

    I found the tip on cooking the noodles especially useful and made them just right, too. No more mushy rice stick! 🙂

  • Hi Jenn! I plan to make this tomorrow evening for the first time and was wondering if I use half tofu/half shrimp, at which stage would I add the tofu? Also, love ALL of your recipes I have tried and am now working my way through your cookbook. Thanks so much for all you do and keep up the good work! 😊

    • Hi Candice, So glad you like the recipes and thanks for your support with the cookbook! I’ve never cooked tofu before so I don’t know exactly when it should be added — I’m sorry I can’t be more helpful!

      • Thanks for the reply Jenn….I’ll let you know how it turns out! 🙂

  • Made the Shrimp Pad Thai for dinner tonight. It was wonderful! Yes, salty…but wonderful! Made it with fresh Beaufort, SC shrimp – right from the roadside shrimp shack. Added some diced zucchini, onion, and shredded carrots, otherwise followed the recipe as written. Another great Jen recipe to add to our rotation!

  • Hi Jenn, I’d love to make this recipe, but my husband is allergic to nuts. Is there a good substitute for the peanut butter?

    • Hi Zahra, you could use a different nut butter like almond or sun butter hope that helps and that you enjoy!

  • I made this tonight with one major substitution, I spiralized a couple of kolrabi for the noodles and it turned out great. Kolrabi spiralizes very nicely and looks much like real pasta. I skipped the pre-boil step but I should have done a quick pre-fry with them as they released a lot of water and diluted the sauce but it still tasted really good. We’ll have this again!

  • I love most all of Jenn’s recipes and thank her for sharing them however this one was just too salty. SO much sodium in fish sauce and would have liked to have incorporated something a little more healthy.

  • Killer and easy Pad Thai! Loved by all in my home. I usually don’t have bean sprouts, so add a little finely shredded cabbage (red this time) at the end. Added 1 T or so of tamarind paste since I had it (adds extra tangyness), also slightly reduced the sugar. You can switch up the veggies some, but the sauce, peanuts, green onions and cilantro are non-negotiable in my opinion. I wouldn’t even miss the shrimp that much. Also I always top with some sriracha. this was my third time making it and definitely not waiting so long to make it again!

  • I’ve attempted to make Shrimp Pad Thai several times. But this recipe is the absolute best, most authentic that I have tried. I did make a few alterations based on personal taste:
    * I inverted the ratio of fish sauce to soy sauce as I find fish sauce, in abundance, to taste like funky feet
    * I added crisply sauteed, sliced carrots
    * I made 1.5 x the amount of sauce and added garlic red chili paste ~1 Tbsp.
    * I used prepared, refrigerated minced garlic instead of fresh and added the same type of ginger ~ 1 Tbsp.
    After we enjoyed this so much, I recreated it using chicken and regular spaghetti noodles. Still absolutely delish!
    Thanks for this recipe!

    • Hi! My shrimp is frozen but already cooked. Should I just warm it at the same time I cook the broccoli? Thanks!

      • Hi Allison, that should work, but I’d add the shrimp at the tail end of the broccoli cooking-time as they won’t need 3-4 minutes in there. I think you could get away with about a minute or so as it will be added back in and warmed again right before serving. Hope that helps!

  • I make this recipe at least once a month! I actually add tofu in addition to the shrimp and it is so delicious. Highly recommend!!

  • Way too salty — not my cup of tea, but I’m glad others enjoyed!

  • How bad is it to use crunchy peanut butter?

    • Hi Ssd, I like this with smooth peanut butter, but it’s certainly doable with chunky. Hope you enjoy!

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