How to Eat Thai: Must-Try Dishes

Many Thai restaurants offer their own unique dishes and preparations, but look for these delicious staples on the menu.

©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Navigating the Menu

Heading out for Thai food? Menus can vary widely from restaurant to restaurant, but here are some classics you'll want to zone in on if they're offered.

Por Pai (Spring Rolls)

Crisp spring rolls filled with shiitake mushrooms 

Egg Fritter

A small, savory, deep-fried egg cake topped with chopped scallions and snipped chives

Som Tum (Papaya Salad)

A spicy salad of fresh green papaya served here with apple, pear, cashews, cherry tomatoes and garlic, in a Thai chile-lime-tamarind dressing

Tom Kha (Thai Coconut Soup)

A spicy and sour hot soup made with coconut milk, usually available with chicken or with vegetables as a vegetarian option

Gai Yang (Grilled Chicken)

Fresh grilled chicken seasoned with herbs and a sweet tamarind-chile sauce 

Yum Woon Sen

Spicy glass noodles dressed with fish sauce and topped with shrimp, tomatoes, garlic, chiles, bean sprouts and ground peanuts 

Shrimp Pad Thai

Thailand's most well-known noodle dish — a combination of cooked rice noodles, shrimp, tofu, crushed peanuts, nam pla, bean sprouts, garlic, chiles and eggs, all stir-fried together

Chicken Pad Thai

A stir-fry of the aforementioned ingredients, but with chicken in place of the more traditional shrimp

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