Do you love the flavor of Pad Thai but don’t know what to serve with it?
Pad Thai is a popular dish in many countries, and its delicious combination of flavors makes it one of the most beloved dishes around.
But what do you serve with Pad Thai to make your meal complete?
To make your Pad Thai meal complete, serve it with a side of crunchy vegetables like bean sprouts and shredded carrots. To add some acidity and brightness to the dish, top it off with lime wedges or freshly squeezed lemon juice. For a richer flavor, try adding chopped peanuts or cashews.
There are so many options out there that it can be hard to decide.
That’s why I’ve put together this list of 10 side dishes that pair perfectly with Pad Thai.
From fresh salads and crunchy noodles to spicy sauces and sweet desserts, these sides will add even more flavor and texture to your meal.
So let’s get started!
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Why Consider Serving Sides with Pad Thai?
Serving sides with Pad Thai is a great way to add variety and flavor to the meal.
Here are three good reasons why you should consider serving sides with Pad Thai:
- To provide balance – The flavors of Pad Thai can be quite intense, so having some milder side dishes helps to create a more balanced meal.
- To add texture – Serving crunchy vegetables or crispy fried tofu alongside your Pad Thai will help to add an interesting textural contrast that makes the dish even more enjoyable.
- To increase portion size – If you’re feeding a large group, adding sides can help stretch out the main dish and make it go further without sacrificing flavor or quality.
What To Serve With Pad Thai? 10 Best Side Dishes
Pad Thai is a popular dish, but it can be difficult to decide what sides to serve with it.
Here are ten side dishes that will perfectly complement your Pad Thai and make the meal complete:
1 – Baked Thai Turkey Meatballs
- What Is It? Baked Thai Turkey Meatballs are a delicious and easy way to add some variety to your Pad Thai. These flavorful meatballs are made with ground turkey, garlic, ginger, cilantro, and a blend of spices like curry powder and chili flakes. They’re then baked in the oven until golden brown and served with a sweet-and-spicy dipping sauce.
- Serving Them Together: Baked Thai Turkey Meatballs make an excellent side dish for Pad Thai. Serve them alongside the noodles for an extra protein boost or as an appetizer before the main course. The sweet-and-spicy dipping sauce pairs perfectly with the savory flavors of the Pad Thai while adding a bit of heat to balance out all of the other flavors. For added crunch, top off your meal with chopped peanuts or cashews!
2 – Thai Basil Chicken (Pad Krapow Gai)
- What Is It? Thai Basil Chicken (Pad Krapow Gai) is a popular dish in Thailand. It consists of stir-fried chicken with garlic, chilies, and holy basil leaves. The dish is usually served over jasmine rice and topped with a fried egg.
- Serving Them Together: Pad Thai and Thai Basil Chicken make an excellent combination when served together. To complete the meal, serve them alongside steamed vegetables such as broccoli or bok choy, along with a side of fresh fruit or pickles for added flavor and texture. For an extra kick of spice, add some chili flakes to the Pad Thai sauce before serving. This will give your meal a delicious balance of sweet and spicy flavors that everyone will love!
3 – Steamed Vegetable Dumplings
- What Is It? Steamed vegetable dumplings are a popular side dish to serve with Pad Thai. They are made from a mixture of vegetables, such as cabbage, carrots, and mushrooms, that is wrapped in a thin dough wrapper and then steamed until cooked through. The dumplings can be served either hot or cold and are often served with soy sauce or other dipping sauces for added flavor.
- Serving Them Together: Serving steamed vegetable dumplings alongside Pad Thai is an easy way to add some variety to the meal. The two dishes complement each other nicely; the savory flavors of the Pad Thai pair well with the lightness of the dumplings. To make it even more interesting, you can also add some crunchy toppings like chopped peanuts or sesame seeds on top of both dishes for extra texture and flavor.
4 – Carrot Ginger Soup
- What Is It? Carrot ginger soup is a creamy, flavorful soup made with carrots, onion, garlic, and ginger. The ingredients are cooked in a broth until tender and then blended together to create a smooth texture. The soup is often garnished with fresh herbs or spices for added flavor.
- To Serve Them Together: Pad Thai and carrot ginger soup make an excellent combination when served together. The sweetness of the pad thai complements the earthy flavors of the carrot ginger soup perfectly. To complete the meal, serve it with steamed jasmine rice or another type of grain such as quinoa or farro. For an extra touch of color and flavor, top each bowl with freshly chopped cilantro or green onions.
5 – Thai Green Papaya Salad (Som Tam)
- What Is It? Thai Green Papaya Salad, or Som Tam, is a traditional dish from Thailand. It is made with shredded green papaya, tomatoes, garlic, chilies, fish sauce and lime juice. The ingredients are pounded together in a mortar and pestle to create a spicy and sour salad that pairs perfectly with Pad Thai.
- To Serve Them Together: To serve Pad Thai and Som Tam together as part of an authentic Thai meal, start by preparing the Pad Thai according to your recipe. While the noodles are cooking, prepare the Som Tam by pounding all of the ingredients together in a mortar and pestle until they form a paste-like consistency. Once both dishes are ready to go, plate them up side-by-side for an easy yet delicious dinner!
6 – Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce
- What Is It? Spicy peanut dipping sauce is a popular accompaniment to Pad Thai. This sauce is made with creamy peanut butter, chili paste, garlic, and lime juice for a spicy-sweet flavor. The combination of flavors makes it the perfect complement to the savory noodles in Pad Thai.
- To Serve Them Together: To serve Pad Thai and spicy peanut dipping sauce together, start by preparing your Pad Thai according to the recipe instructions. Once it’s cooked, plate it up and top with chopped peanuts or cilantro for garnish. Then prepare the dipping sauce by combining all ingredients in a bowl and stirring until smooth. Serve alongside your Pad Thai so that each bite can be dipped into the flavorful sauce!
7 – Panang Curry with Chicken
- What Is It? Panang curry with chicken is a Thai dish that consists of a spicy red curry sauce made from coconut milk, fish sauce, and chili paste. The sauce is cooked with chicken and vegetables such as bell peppers, carrots, and onions. The dish is usually served over steamed jasmine rice or noodles.
- To Serve Them Together: To serve pad thai and panang curry together, start by preparing the pad thai according to the recipe instructions. While it’s cooking, prepare the panang curry in a separate pot or wok. Once both dishes are finished cooking, plate them together on individual plates or platters for family-style dining. Serve each plate with a side of steamed jasmine rice to soak up all the delicious sauces! For an extra touch of flavor and texture, top each plate with freshly chopped cilantro leaves and crushed peanuts before serving.
8 – Chicken Satay Skewers
- What Is It? Chicken satay skewers are a popular side dish to serve with Pad Thai. The chicken is marinated in a flavorful blend of spices and then grilled on skewers until cooked through. The result is juicy, tender pieces of chicken that are bursting with flavor.
- To Serve Them Together: To serve the two dishes together, start by preparing the Pad Thai according to your recipe instructions. While the noodles are cooking, prepare the chicken satay skewers by marinating them in a mixture of soy sauce, garlic, ginger, and other spices for at least 30 minutes before grilling them over medium-high heat for about 8 minutes or until cooked through. Serve both dishes hot with fresh lime wedges and chopped peanuts as garnish.
9 – General Tso’s Tofu
- What Is It? General Tso’s Tofu is a popular Chinese-American dish made with deep-fried tofu cubes that are tossed in a sweet and spicy sauce. The dish is usually served over steamed white rice, but can also be served with noodles or vegetables.
- To Serve Them Together: To serve Pad Thai and General Tso’s Tofu together, start by preparing the Pad Thai according to your recipe. While the Pad Thai is cooking, prepare the General Tso’s Tofu according to your recipe. Once both dishes are cooked, plate them together on one large platter or divide them onto individual plates. Serve with steamed white rice for a complete meal. For an extra touch of flavor, garnish each plate with fresh cilantro leaves and lime wedges.
10 – Thai Mango Sticky Rice
- What Is It? Thai Mango Sticky Rice is a traditional Thai dessert made with glutinous rice, coconut milk, and sugar. The sticky rice is cooked until it’s soft and creamy, then served with fresh mango slices. This dish is often served as a side to Pad Thai or other savory dishes.
- To Serve Them Together: To serve Pad Thai and Thai Mango Sticky Rice together, start by preparing the Pad Thai according to your recipe instructions. Once the noodles are cooked through, plate them up in individual bowls or on one large platter. Then prepare the sticky rice according to your recipe instructions and spoon it onto each plate of Pad Thai or around the edges of the platter. Finally, top each bowl of Pad Thai with fresh mango slices for an extra burst of sweetness!
In conclusion, Pad Thai is a delicious and popular dish that can be served with a variety of side dishes.
The best sides to serve with Pad Thai are baked Thai turkey meatballs, Thai basil chicken, steamed vegetable dumplings, carrot ginger soup, green papaya salad, spicy peanut dipping sauce, Panang curry with chicken, chicken satay skewers, fried tofu with sweet and sour sauce, and sticky rice with mango.
These side dishes are all flavorful and will pair perfectly with your Pad Thai, making it an unforgettable meal.
So, the next time you’re looking for some delicious side dishes to serve with your Pad Thai, try one of these options.
What To Serve With Pad Thai? 10 Best Side Dishes
- Baked Thai Turkey Meatballs
- Thai Basil Chicken (Pad Krapow Gai)
- Steamed Vegetable Dumplings
- Carrot Ginger Soup
- Thai Green Papaya Salad (Som Tam)
- Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce
- Panang Curry with Chicken
- Chicken Satay Skewers
- General Tso's Tofu
- Thai Mango Sticky Rice
- Select your favorite recipe.
- Organize all of the required ingredients.
- Prep a pad Thai side in 30 minutes or less.
Jenny has always been passionate about cooking, and she uses her platform to share her joy of food with others. Her recipes are easy to follow, and she loves giving tips and tricks to help others create their own unique culinary creations.