George Bernard Shaw once said, ‘There is no love sincerer than the love of food’. Well, we say that the best place to experience this love is in Thailand. Thai food is a combination of sweet, sour and spicy curries mixed with veggies and meat which will entice and surprise your taste buds. Here’s a list of must try Thai dishes.    

Khao Pad:

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Khao Pad is basically fried rice which includes onions, garlic and sometimes tomatoes. The seasonings include soy sauce possibly some chilli sauce and fish sauce. You can top up this beauty with any type of meat available. This dish will win you over with its simplicity.

Vegetarian Tip: Ask the chef to just top it up with raw vegetables and voila! You’ll have the Veg Khao Pad!

Som Tam:

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This is a sweet and sour salad, using grated raw Papaya as a base, it’s made in a mortar and pestle with carrots, peanuts, tomatoes, string beans and chillies. It is then topped with a rich mixture of fish sauce, palm sugar and lime juice. As it has no meat in the making, vegetarians can indulge in consuming this one without worry.

It sounds like a bizarre combination but Som Tam is one of the most famous and recommended delicacies of Thailand. Give it a shot for sure!

Note: It is common to add tiny dried shrimp as garnishing, ask the cook at leave that out if you’re not into seafood.

Banana Pancakes:

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This sweet snack (though in no way of Thai origin) is made by filing bananas in a golden blanket of fried dough. It is glazed with condensed milk, powdered sugar and sometimes chocolate too. Many backpackers in Thailand have a great affinity for this sugary treat!

In fact, the dish was once so popular, that the South East Asian region is sometimes called the ‘pancake trail’ among backpackers.

Massaman Curry:

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This one is an amusing dish made from tamarind sauce, cardamom pods, cinnamon, palm sugar, coconut milk, roasted peanuts, potatoes and bay leaves. The nutty sweet-spicy (more inclined towards the sweet side though) taste of this curry is different. Sounds chaotic but it’s yummy!

Tom Yum Soup:

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This fiery soup will make you sweat in your seat. Tom Yum soup is extremely spicy (and tasty!), so beware. It has stock, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, lime juice, fish sauce, and crushed chilli peppers. Tom Yum soup is best topped with shrimp. But you have the luxury to choose the meat of your choice.

Vegetarian tip: For our vegetarian readers, you can have this soup with a ‘no meat’ specification – you’ll get mushrooms and tofu instead.

Pad Thai:

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Probably the most popular of all Thai dishes, this internationally known street food delicacy is a must have. It is a beautiful fusion of soaked dried rice noodles, which is stir-fried with eggs and chopped tofu and then flavoured with tamarind pulp, fish sauce, dried shrimp, red chilli pepper and palm sugar.

Vegetarian tip: Ask the chef to add only tofu instead of meat and you’re good to go!

Pineapple fried rice:

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The Thai cuisine is very fond of rice and looks like they haven’t held back in experimenting with it! Pineapple fried rice has a sweet (natural pineapple flavour) and spicy twist to it which you will simply love. It is basically Khao Pad but topped with shrimps, pineapples, cashews and raisins. In fancier restaurants, you’ll be served the dish in a carved out pineapple, so it is an exotic visual delight as well!

Vegetarian Tip: Ask the chef to exclude the shrimp pieces while making it and you can enjoy this one too.


Thai Red Curry:

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This red beauty has red chilly as its key ingredient. Have you begun sweating already? The blazing curry is mainly made of smooth coconut milk and zesty red chillies. It has a unique zing to it and is usually enjoyed with steamed rice.

Vegetarian Tip: It can be made without adding any meat, so this one is a safe choice (except for the spice!).

Thai Green Curry:

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This curry is called the ‘sweet curry’ because of its plush green colour and mellower taste compared to its fiery red cousin. Mellow is a relative term here and it is not actually that sweet! It is made from fish sauce, palm sugar, coconut milk and green chillies. The curry is typically served with steamed rice and occasionally fish balls.

Vegetarian Tip: You can have the curry made with just vegetables and fruits and dinner is served!

Even if you may not find yourself in Thailand anytime soon, There’s surely a Thai restaurant somewhere nearby. Go experience the Thai sizzle!

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