Kosher Pad Thai

There aren’t many kosher Thai restaurants out there, are there? After The New York Times published a recipe that seemed much easier than we thought making pad thai was, we decided to give it a try, only slightly differently. Using bits and pieces from other recipes around the internet, we decided upon this recipe, tasting and adding ingredients when needed. This better-than-a-restaurant meal was a satisfying dinner for four hungry people, with enough left over for one of us to pack for lunch the next day. After “marinating” in the fridge overnight, the flavors intensify, making tomorrow’s lunch extra flavorful.

Our version wasn’t vegan – we used eggs. Nor was it gluten-free – we used soy sauce. But these two ingredients can easily be omitted or substituted to make your pad thai vegan and/or gluten free! If you know where to buy kosher fish sauce, use that instead of the soy sauce (and let us know where to get it!). Or use tamari; either way, this can be an awesome gluten-free Passover dish.

(This recipe has been adapted from New York Times)

1 (13.2 oz) package of rice noodles
1/4 cup peanut oil
5 tablespoons tamarind concentrate
4 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 bunch of scallions, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 eggs
1/2 head cabbage, thinly sliced
1 package extra firm tofu, drained and sliced
1/2 cup roasted peanuts, chopped
handful of cilantro, chopped
lime, cut into wedges

1. Cook noodles according to package directions. After draining, drizzle with one tablespoon peanut oil to keep from sticking and set aside.
2. Meanwhile, put tamarind, soy sauce, honey, and vinegar in a small saucepan over medium-low heat and bring to a simmer. Stir in red pepper flakes and set aside.
3. Put the rest of the peanut oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat; add scallions and garlic and cook for about a minute. Add eggs and scramble until just done. Add cabbage and cook until it begins to wilt. Add tofu.
4. When the tofu begins to brown, add the noodles and sauce to the pan. Toss until everything is evenly coated with sauce.
5. Serve, sprinkling each dish with peanuts and garnishing with cilantro and lime wedges.

Wasn’t that much easier than you thought? Most of the ingredients are probably already in your pantry. Look for tamarind in Indian or Middle Eastern markets.

~ Recipe submitted by Stephanie and Jessica of The Kosher Foodies

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9 thoughts on “Kosher Pad Thai”

  • There are so many easier pad thia recipes!! This one seems hard and complicated.


    4 chicken breasts, cut
    1 cup salsa
    1/3 cup peanut butter
    2 teaspoons soy sauce
    2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
    2 teaspoons water
    1 teaspoon chili powder
    1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
    2 teaspoons oil
    3 cups rice or noodles

    Bring to boil salsa, peanut butter, soy sauce, vinegar, and water, stirring often. Keep warm.

    Combine chili powder, and garlic powder in plastic bag. Add chicken strips to bag and shake to coat.

    In skillet or wok, stir-fry chicken in oil over meduim-high heat, 2-3 min. or until cooked.

    Spoon sauce over rice on plates; arrange chicken and sprinkle with sesame seed (if wanted).

    Optional: Garnish with green onion and chives.

    • Help me to understand how your recipe is Pad Thai. Salsa? Rice (rather than rice noodles)? Chili powder? OY VAY!

  • I bought kosher, hechshered nam pla — the fish sauce — from (Alyssa I think was the contact). It come in sporadically. But since you’re in NYC she might have an easier time getting it for you. Also bought Thai red and green curry paste from her. Yum

  • Actually, I’m from Thailand, and this is more or less how one makes it. Personally, I think the tamarind is sour enough that you don’t need to be adding more vinegar. Basically, the Paad Thai sauce is composed of fish sauce (nam plah), water, palm sugar (you can sub brown sugar or raw agave syrup), and something resembling paprika in the US. You can also use chili powder. The sauce will be very salty and strong, but that’s okay, because the rice noodles are pretty bland and aren’t usually seasoned.

    If you would like chicken paad thai and you don’t mix meat and fish, a vegan alternative to fish sauce is some hot water infused with some nutritional yeast flakes, a little soy sauce or Bragg’s Liquid Aminos, lots of salt, and dried seaweed. Strain out the seaweed before you use it.

    The trick to the sauce is to test often. Thai cooking relies upon a subtle balance between sweet and salty, which is what gives it its unique flavor. :)

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