Restaurant-Style Tofu Pad Thai

This tastes very similar to, if not the same as, the pad thai that I’ve had in many Thai restaurants and is a typical American restaurant-style Thai dish, combining sweet and spicy flavors.

This recipe makes a lot of pad thai. Cut it in half if you don’t need as much (who doesn’t need a lot of pad thai though?)!

Most noodles will give explicit directions on how long they need to soak in order to be stir fried afterwards. Follow those directions!

Adapted from Food and Wine.

This recipe is: vegetarian, gluten free


  • 16 oz pad thai straight cut rice noodles (Taste of Thai or Thai Kitchen preferable)
  • 3 tbsp fish sauce (for simple vegan “fish sauce”: mix 2 parts broth and 1 part soy sauce)
  • 5-6 tbsp light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice, plus more for serving
  • 4 Thai bird chiles, stemmed and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp oil of choice
  • 6 large shallots, thinly sliced
  • 6 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 block tofu, pressed and drained
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 6 scallions, thinly sliced
  • optional: chopped roasted peanuts, fresh cilantro, and bean sprouts for serving


  1. Start to soak the noodles in hot water according to package directions, which could be up to 25 minutes.
  2. Preheat the oven to 375°F and cut tofu into small cubes. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large skillet (the largest cooking vessel you have) over medium heat. Add tofu and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring or shaking every couple of minutes to get each side crispy. Transfer tofu to baking sheet and bake for about 15 minutes or until tofu reaches desired level of firmness. Remove from oven and set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together the fish sauce, brown sugar, lime juice, and chiles. Set aside.
  4. In the same skillet over high heat, heat 6 tbsp oil until shimmering. Add the shallots and garlic and cook, stirring to avoid burning, until lightly browned, 2-3 minutes. Add the noodles and stir fry until heated through, about 2 minutes.
  5. Scrape the noodles to one side of the pan and add the remaining 4 tbsp oil to the other. Add the eggs and cook until nearly set, about 1 minute.
  6. Add the tofu and scallions and toss everything together. Add the sauce mixture and stir fry until everything is evenly coated, 2-3 minutes. Serve immediately with lime wedges and topped with peanuts, cilantro, and bean sprouts.

Serves 6-8.


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