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6 tasty recipes to spice up your next meal

Chicken and Shrimp Pad Thai (Yield: 10 portions)

Thai rice noodles (wide) as needed
Raw shrimp (shells removed) 20
Chicken breast, chopped up into small pieces 3 lb (5 x 8 oz breasts)
Soy sauce ½ cup
Green onions sliced (keep white & green parts separate) 10
Cloves garlic, minced 10
Ginger, grated 1 ½ tsp
Fresh red or green chilies, finely sliced 3-5
Eggs 3
Bean sprouts 7 cups
Cilantro, chopped rough 2 ½ cups
Unsalted peanuts, chopped ½ cup
Olive oil as needed
Lime wedges for serving

Pad Thai Sauce:

Tamarind paste 2 Tbsp
Chicken stock ¾ cup
Fish sauce ¼ cup + 1 ½ tsp
Soy sauce 2 ½ tbsp
NSCC Sweet Thai Spice Blend 2 Tbsp
Brown sugar 6 Tbsp


For the Noodles:

Bring a large pot of water to boil, then switch off heat. Dunk in noodles and soak 3-4 minutes, or until noodles are limp but still firm and a little "crunchy". Tip: The noodles must remain 'undercooked' at this stage, as they will be fried later. This is the key to chewy 'al dente' rice noodles. Drain and rinse thoroughly with cold water. Set aside.

For the Dish:

1. Toss sliced chicken in soy sauce and set aside.

2. In a small bowl or cup, combine all 'Pad Thai Sauce' ingredients. Set aside.

3. To Finish: Warm a wok or large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add 1 Tbsp. oil and swirl around, then add the white parts of the onion (reserve green parts for serving), plus garlic, ginger and chili. Stir-fry 1 minute.

4. Add chicken and stir-fry 2 minutes. Add shrimp and continue stir-frying 2-3 more minutes, or until shrimp are pink and plump.

5. Push ingredients aside, making room in the center of your wok/pan and crack in the eggs. Stir-fry quickly to scramble (30 seconds to 1 minute).

6. Add the noodles and drizzle over 1/3 of the Pad Thai sauce. Using two utensils and in a gentle turning motion, stir-fry everything together. Keep heat between medium and high - you want it hot enough to cook the noodles, but not so hot that they'll burn. Add more sauce every 30 seconds to 1 minute as the pan/wok dries out. Continue stir-frying until sauce is gone and noodles begin to get sticky and 'glossy'.

7. Turn off heat. Fold in bean sprouts and taste-test. If not flavourful or salty enough, add more fish sauce. If too salty or sweet, add a drizzle more tamarind or a good squeeze of lime. If not spicy enough, add more chili sauce or fresh-cut chilies.

8. Sprinkle over the green onion, nuts, and coriander, and garnish with lime wedges (to be squeezed over before eating).

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