Pad See Ew is a blend of sweet, salty, and tangy flavors, featuring wide noodles mixed in a rich sauce paired with crisp veggies and succulent chicken. This delicious Thai dish is winning the hearts of many with its comforting and savory taste.
Easy Homemade Pad See Ew Recipe
Are you a fan of Thai cuisine? Thai dishes, celebrated for their exciting blend of flavors, often leave me craving for more. That’s why I always have a few easy Thai recipes on hand for those moments when the cravings hit, and preparing a homemade dish is the quickest route to satisfaction. One such recipe is Pad See Ew, a wonderful dish known for its signature brown sauce and perfectly caramelized noodles, earning a special place in my family’s heart.
Pad see ew pronounced “pat-see-you,” is essentially a beloved pan-fried noodle dish that’s made its way across the globe – much like its popular cousin, pad thai. You can create your own pad see ew at home, either in a wok or a large skillet. The emphasis on perfectly-caramelized noodles will make this dish popular even with picky eaters, while the crisp-tender vegetables and chicken add some hearty nutrition.
Pad See Ew vs Drunken Noodles
These dishes are similar, but they are quite different. For one thing, drunken noodles tend to be more on the spicy side, while Pad See Ew is mild (aka kid-friendly!). Drunken noodles are also less sweet. Pad See Ew is an excellent choice if you like dishes with a sweet-salty profile. If you’re in the mood for heat, go for drunken noodles. Both are delicious!
Pad See Ew Ingredients
This dish is surprisingly simple, and most grocery stores will carry everything you need – or you can order things online. In a pinch, there’s almost always a great substitution you can use for each item. Here’s the scoop:
For the Stir-Fry
- Wide Noodles: Rice noodles are traditional in pad see ew, but you can substitute any wide noodles that you have. I used pappardelle. Cook and drain according to the package directions.
- Chicken Breast: Cut the chicken breast into bite-sized pieces.
- Soy Sauce: I like reduced-sodium soy sauce, but you could use regular soy sauce, tamari, or coconut aminos.
- Sesame Oil: If you can, go for toasted sesame seed oil – so much flavor!
- Spinach: Washed and dried. If you use baby spinach, there’s no need to tear it, but if you use regular spinach, tear it into bite-sized pieces.
- Broccoli: Chop up some broccoli stalks or florets.
- Garlic: I like fresh, minced garlic in this recipe.
For the Sauce
- Soy Sauce: Again, use your preferred soy sauce or substitute.
- Oyster Sauce: This sauce has a salty taste and delicate seafood fragrance. But don’t be put off by that – the seafood taste sort of disappears into the sauce, adding depth to that classic stir-fry taste.
- Rice Vinegar: For a light tangy note.
- Brown Sugar: Or honey, or maple syrup.
- Molasses: If you thought this was just for gingerbread, think again! Molasses is great for adding a deep, almost burned sweetness to sauces like this one – or your favorite barbecue.
- Seasonings: You’ll need some ground coriander, a little garlic powder, salt, and pepper.
- Garnishes: For garnish, I like to sprinkle on some chili flakes or crushed red pepper (be careful though, because crushed red pepper is spicier than chili flakes). Lime wedges are great, too.
How to Make Pad See Ew
The process for making pad see ew at home is quick and very simple. All you really have to do is cook the chicken and veggies, make the noodles, and stir everything together with the sauce.
- Make the Sauce and Set Aside. In a medium mixing bowl, combine all of your sauce ingredients, and give them a whisk to combine. Set the sauce aside while you work on the other ingredients.
- Cook the Chicken and Broccoli. Next, set a skillet over medium-high heat. Once the skillet is hot, add the soy sauce, sesame oil, and sliced chicken breast. Let these ingredients cook together for about 4 minutes, stirring occasionally. Then, add the chopped broccoli and the garlic. Cook for another three minutes or so, and set aside in a clean bowl. Don’t wipe or wash the pan.
- Cook the Noodles. Now, add the cooked, drained noodles to the skillet. You want these to sizzle and saute until they get dark and toasty in spots. This should take a couple of minutes.
- Finish the Dish. Finally, return the chicken and broccoli to the skillet, along with the spinach and the sauce mixture. Bring all of the ingredients to a simmer and let them cook for a minute or until the sauce thickens.
- Enjoy! Serve with lime wedges and a sprinkle of chili flakes (if using).
Tips for Success
If you’re new to making Thai cuisine, Pad See Ew is a great starting point; its preparation is straightforward, yet the results are incredibly flavorful. Here are a few helpful hints I’d like to share with you for making great pad see ew the first time around.
- About the Noodles: You can use wide rice noodles, pappardelle, or whatever other wide, flat noodles you like. Another option would be to use rice noodles, but stick with the thinner ones normally used for pad thai. That way, you get the rice noodle flavor. Whichever you choose, know that it’s okay if the noodles break or stick a little bit during cooking.
- Veggie Options: Broccoli and spinach are two easy choices, but if you wanted, you could definitely add some carrots, bell peppers, or mushrooms for color and variety. Use what you have. Keep in mind that denser veggies like carrots take longer to cook than delicate veggies like bell peppers.
- Meat and Meatless Choices: This stir-fry would also be wonderful with thinly sliced beef, pork, or some peeled and deveined shrimp. For a meatless option, try scrambled eggs or tofu.
Tasty Serving Ideas
This one-bowl noodle dish is a meal in itself, thanks to the healthy noodles, hearty chunks of chicken, and nutritious veggies. But if you want to add another dish or two to the menu, here are some easy ideas!
- A Light Salad: A simple, crisp salad like this Sesame Cucumber Salad would make a refreshing side dish with hearty pad see ew, as well as this Cabbage Cucumber Salad.
- A Contrasting Stir Fry: Offer the best of both worlds with another stir-fry dish, like Steak Stir Fry with Zucchini Noodles. This recipe is full of umami flavor and will add a great contrast to your meal.
- Veggies: Sweet and crunchy Bok Choy is always welcome. If you like these nutritious veggies, you’ll also love this easy recipe for Sesame Snap Peas.
How to Store and Reheat Pad See Ew
- Store your leftover pad see ew in an airtight container in the fridge. It should keep for up to 3 days.
- Reheat in a covered skillet over medium-low heat, adding a splash of water or broth if the dish seems dry. Don’t overcook it or the chicken will be tough.
- Freezing this will depend on the type of noodles you use. Rice noodles may not freeze well, but if you substitute regular pasta like pappardelle, you may find that this freezes just fine. If you do freeze it, cool it down first. Then, pack it into a freezer bag and freeze it for up to 3 months. Thaw before reheating.
Pad See Ew (Thai Stir Fried Noodles)
- 8 ounces wide rice noodles or pappardelle, or other wide noodles
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame seed oil
- 1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce
- 8 ounces boneless skinless chicken breast, chopped into bite-sized pieces
- 1 cup broccoli florets, roughly chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups baby spinach
- lime wedges, for serving
- 1 teaspoon chili flakes, for garnish, you can also use ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper for a spicier dish
- Place all the sauce ingredients in a bowl, and whisk until combined. Set aside.
- Prepare the noodles according to the package directions.
- Meanwhile, heat a wok or a large 14-inch skillet set over medium-high heat; add the sesame oil, soy sauce, and chopped chicken, and cook for about 4 minutes.
- Stir in the chopped broccoli and minced garlic. Cook for an additional 3 minutes, stirring frequently.
- Transfer the chicken and vegetables to a separate bowl and set aside.
- Add the cooked noodles to the skillet, and saute for about 2 minutes over medium-high heat, until the noodles begin to turn toasted and dark in spots.
- Return the chicken and broccoli to the skillet; stir in the spinach and the previously prepared sauce mixture. Bring to a simmer until the sauce thickens and becomes shiny. Stir frequently.
- Remove from heat; serve warm, with lime wedges and a sprinkle of chili flakes.
Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.