Chicken Pad Thai Recipe (No Tamarind)

For the Pad Thai Sauce:

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons rice vinegar (or white vinegar)
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce (or tamari for gluten-free)
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1-2 teaspoons chili-garlic sauce (or Sriracha, adjust to taste)

For the Pad Thai:

  • 8 ounces dried flat rice noodles
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs, thinly sliced
  • Salt and white pepper
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-inch piece ginger, grated (or substitute 1/2 tsp ground ginger)
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions, divided
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup bean sprouts
  • 1/3 cup roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped
  • Fresh cilantro for garnish
  • Lime wedges for serving

Instructions

  • Make the sauce: In a small bowl, whisk together all Pad Thai sauce ingredients. Taste and adjust sweetness, spiciness, and saltiness to your liking.
  • Prepare the noodles: Cook rice noodles according to package directions. Drain, rinse with cold water, and toss with sesame oil to prevent sticking.
  • Cook the chicken: Heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in a large wok or skillet over medium-high heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Cook in batches if needed, until browned and cooked through. Remove the chicken to a plate.
  • Sauté the aromatics: Add the remaining tablespoon of vegetable oil to the pan. Add garlic, ginger, and half the green onions and stir-fry for 30 seconds, until fragrant.
  • Scramble the eggs: Push the aromatics to the side of the pan. Crack the eggs into the empty space and scramble them quickly. Mix the scrambled eggs with the vegetables.
  • Assemble the Pad Thai: Add the cooked noodles, cooked chicken, bean sprouts, and 1/2 cup of the prepared Pad Thai sauce. Toss everything together until the noodles are well coated and heated through. Add more sauce as needed.
  • Garnish and serve: Divide the Pad Thai onto plates. Garnish with chopped peanuts, remaining green onions, cilantro, and lime wedges. Enjoy immediately!

Tips:

  • Don’t overcook the noodles: They’ll continue to soften as you assemble the dish.
  • Adjust the flavors: The balance of sweet, salty, and sour is key. Tweak the sauce to match your taste preferences.
  • Add-ins: Feel free to include other vegetables like sliced bell peppers, broccoli florets, or shredded carrots.
  • Vegetarian version: Substitute the chicken with firm tofu or your favorite plant-based protein.

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