Chicken Drunken Noodles

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5 from 2 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 25 minutes

Chicken Drunken Noodles are a quick dinner that can be made in less than 30 minutes. It’s easy to make and such a delicious recipe.

drunken chicken noodles in a white bowl with fresh herbs on top.

Drunken Chicken Noodles A.K.A Pad Kee Mao, is popular street food in Thailand. There are many theories about the origin of the name but the most common one is that these noodles are eaten with cold beer and they are a great cure for hangovers after a night drinking with friends.

To learn more about the flavors of Thai cuisine, visit here.


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What We Love About This Drunken Chicken Noodles Recipe

  • 25 Minute Meal: These Thai drunken noodles are ready in 25 minutes or less.
  • Family Friendly: My family is obsessed with chicken drunken noodles and so will yours.
  • Adaptable: The great thing about this recipe is that you can swap in other veggies like Chinese broccoli and even make drunken noodles with beef.
A fork in the noodles.

Ingredient Notes for Spicy Drunken Noodles

  • Flat Rice Noodles: You will need flat rice noodles, you can find these in the asian sub-section in the international food section of your grocery store.
  • Oil: You will need a neutral oil such as peanut, vegetable, or canola oil.
  • Garlic: Fresh cloves garlic is best for this recipe, but you can also use garlic powder.
  • Ginger: Fresh Ginger will give the best flavor, you can also use ground ginger.
  • Onion: You will need one small or medium sized white onion.
  • Chicken: I used boneless skinless chicken thighs, you can also skinless chicken breasts or tenderloin.
  • Bell Peppers: You will need 1 green pepper and 1 red, yellow, or orange bell pepper.
  • Green Chilis: For this Thai drunken noodles recipe, you will need 2 fresh green chilis.
  • Thai Basil: You will need fresh Thai holy basil as it works best for cooking.
  • Oyster Sauce: Oyster sauce is staple in this recipe, you can find this in the asian food section in your grocery store.
  • Thai Fish Sauce: Thai fish sauce is also a very important flavor component in Thai drunken noodles, you can find this asian section of your grocery store.
  • Black Pepper Powder: You can use finely ground or powdered black pepper.
  • Brown Sugar: For this recipe, you will need brown sugar.
  • Soy Sauce: You will need both light and dark soy sauce.
Sauces and noodels for the dish.

Equipment Needed for Drunken Thai Noodles

How to Make Drunken Chicken Noodles

These are the basic steps for making Chicken Drunken Noodles. Please refer to the recipe card below for more detailed instructions.

Chicken noodles with frunken sauce cooking.

STEP 1: COOK NOODLES

Add your rice noodles to boiling water. While the noodles are cooking, combine all of the sauce ingredients in a small bowl and chop up the onion.

STEP 2: SAUTE THE CHICKEN

In a large pan, over medium-high heat sauté the garlic and ginger with neutral oil. Once fragrant, add the chopped onions then chicken strips to the pan and fry until fully cooked. Then add green chiles and bell peppers.

STEP 3: ADD THE NOODLES AND SAUCE

Then to the pan, add the rice noodles, basil, and the sauce, mix gently and cook for 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and serve immediately.

cooking the chicken, noodles and the sauce.

Prep and Storage Tips

HOW TO MAKE THIS RECIPE AHEAD OF TIME

To make these chicken drunken noodles ahead of time, you can make them as usual and just store in the fridge in an airtight container until you are ready to serve them.

HOW TO STORE THIS RECIPE

You can store the leftover drunken noodles chicken in an airtight container for 3-4 days in the refrigerator.

HOW TO FREEZE THIS RECIPE

Freezing is not recommended for this recipe.

HOW TO REHEAT THIS RECIPE

To reheat this recipe, heat in microwave safe container in the microwave for 1-2 minutes or until hot. Time will vary depending on your microwave.

Frequently Asked Questions about Thai Drunken Noodles Recipe

HOW TO MAKE THIS RECIPE MEAT-FREE

Instead of using chicken, you can sub for tofu. To make the tofu taste amazing use this freezer technique for a more meat like texture, this technique is actually used often to prepare tofu in asian countries.

WHAT ARE DRUNKEN NOODLES?

Drunken noodles are a popular Thai street food recipe made with rice noodles, a savory sauce, chicken, and loaded with veggies.

PAD THAI VS DRUNKEN NOODLES

Both are thai noodle stir fries, but pad thai noodles have a sweet and nuttier flavor where as drunken noodles have a more savory and spicy flavor.

WHAT IS DRUNKEN NOODLE SAUCE MADE OF?

This drunken noodle sauce is made of light and dark soy sauce, oyster sauce, fish sauce, and brown sugar.

A closeup on the noodle dish.

Expert Tips for Making This Recipe

  • Soy Sauce: You can substitute dark soy sauce with more light soy sauce. However, don’t use all dark soy sauce as it will be too strong.
  • Spicy Drunken Noodles: This noodle dish comes spicy as it is, but depending on the spice level you like, you can add Thai chilis or a tsp of chili paste along with green chillies for an extra kick of heat.
  • Other Basils: You can substitute Thai basil with other types of basil, however please note that Thai basil is best for for cooking as it will retain its flavor better.
  • Protein: You can switch chicken out for other proteins such as pork, shrimp, or beef.
  • Asian Grocery Stores: If you are having a hard time finding some ingredients at your grocery store, try checking out a local asian grocery store where you’d be able to find all of ingredients.

What to Serve with Drunken Chicken Noodles

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drunken chicken noodles in a white bowl with fresh herbs on top.
5 from 2 votes

Chicken Drunken Noodles

Yield: 4 servings
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
If you are looking for a quick dinner then these Chicken Drunken Noodles can be made in less than 30 minutes.
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Ingredients

FOR CHICKEN:

  • 7 oz rice noodles
  • 2 tablespoon oil, peanut or canola
  • 1 tablespoon garlic , minced
  • 1 teaspoon ginger, minced
  • 1 onion , chopped
  • 10 oz boneless chicken thighs cut into strips
  • 1 green bell pepper, sliced
  • 2 green chilies , finely chopped
  • 1 yellow bell pepper , sliced
  • 1 cup Thai basil

FOR SAUCE:

  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 2 tablespoons light soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Thai fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper powder
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • ¼ cup of water

Instructions

  • In a bowl combine all the ingredients given under the sauce and cook the rice noodles according to package instructions and set aside.
  • Heat a large pan over a high flame and add 2 tablespoons of oil to the hot pan, add garlic, and ginger, and cook for 10 seconds until garlic is fragrant.
  • Next add onions and fry for 1 minute.
  • Add chicken and fry until chicken is cooked (2-3 min), add green chilies, and sliced bell peppers, and cook for 1 minute (do not overcook).
  • Add rice noodles, basil, and the prepared sauce, gently mix, and cook for 1-2 minutes.
  • Turn off the heat and serve immediately.

Expert Tips

  • Soy Sauce: You can substitute dark soy sauce with more light soy sauce. However, don’t use all dark soy sauce as it will be too strong.
  • Spicy Drunken Noodles: This noodle dish comes spicy as it is, but depending on the spice level you like, you can add Thai chilis or a tsp of chili paste along with green chillies for an extra kick of heat.
  • Other Basils: You can substitute Thai basil with other types of basil, however please note that Thai basil is best for for cooking as it will retain its flavor better.
  • Protein: You can switch chicken out for other proteins such as pork, shrimp, or beef.
  • Asian Grocery Stores: If you are having a hard time finding some ingredients at your grocery store, try checking out a local asian grocery store where you’d be able to find all of ingredients.

Estimated Nutritional Information

Calories: 300kcal | Carbohydrates: 52g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 0.03g | Sodium: 1084mg | Potassium: 237mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 493IU | Vitamin C: 85mg | Calcium: 39mg | Iron: 1mg
The nutritional information provided are estimates. To learn more about how I calculate this information go to www.itisakeeper.com/about-its-a-keeper/privacy-disclosure-policies/
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Course: dinner, Lunch, Main Dish
Cuisine: Asian, Thai
Keyword: bell peppers, chicken, drunken noodles, noodles, pad kee mao, thai food

This recipe is my personal adaption of an ethnic inspired recipe. It is not intended to be an authentic recipe.  I’ve recreated this recipe because I enjoy the flavors and I want to encourage my readers to expand their tastes and try new flavor combinations. The recipe, ingredients and processes may have been adapted to make the recipe accessible for the average American. I have provided links to authentic versions of the recipe in the post above. I encourage you to visit these pages and learn more about the traditional version(s) of this recipe.

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