The world of Thai food can be an exciting place, so get ready to try some of the world’s most delicious and unusual food.
Thailand is known as the land of smiles, a country with beautiful beaches, smiling people and gorgeous animals, but its delicious food is something else! Can you think of a better way to get to know a country than through your stomach. Your taste buds will be thrilled.
Thai street food is cheap and delicious, it typically costs from 30 to 80 Baht ($0.90-$2.30 or 0.70€-2€). You’ll see so many stalls in the city streets, especially in Bangkok. There are so many options, you’ll scream… mostly because of the spiciness 🙂
When we started our Thailand trip, the only thing on our minds was what can we eat so that we don’t get sick. We both have a sensitive stomach but in the end, we can say that we didn’t have any major digestion problems along the road, maybe a harmless liquid product here and there.
So is it safe to eat in the streets of Thailand? We managed just fine sticking to these tips:
- How do you know a particular stall is a (probably) a good choice? Follow the crowd, look around where most locals and tourists eat. Also, pay attention to what they eat and when. Take note of the length of the food stall lines, those most popular probably serve the freshest street food. Fully cooked and freshly made food is the safest way to go.
- If you don’t want your mouth to feel like a volcano be careful on what you order, even if they tell you the food is just a little bit spicy, if you are not used to it, you’re going to have a bad time. In Thailand “spicy food” gets a whole new meaning.
- Look to see how the food is handled, does the cook wash hands or wear gloves, especially if he or she is handling food and money at the same time.
- Use baby wipes or sanitizers to clean your hands before eating.
- Knowing the water source especially in smoothies and fruit shakes is really important since water tends to be the main problem. Try to avoid ice if you don’t know if it was made from bottled or tap water. Usually, they just add cold bottled water to the shakes, which is perfect.
- Drink only bottled water and more important, brush your teeth using only bottled water.
- Take it slow, when introducing new foods to your stomach. Try and see what food is best for you.
Take advantage of this hot tropical climate and try as many of the exotic fruits as you can. On every corner, you will find amazing fruit, such as a really delicious mango, papaya, and pineapple, strange looking dragon fruit, mangosteen, rambutan, juicy lychee, passion fruit, watermelon and pomelo to some very taste specific fruit as durian. There are different ways to enjoy the fruit from fresh in a juice to fruit chips or dried fruit.
Here are some of our favorite street food dishes you need to try when traveling to Thailand:
Som Tum (Spicy Green Papaya Salad) – spicy salad made from unripe papaya, sour lime, chili, salt, fish sauce, palm sugar, tomatoes, yard-long beans, hog plums and Thai eggplant.
Pad Thai (Thai style Fried Noodles) – the most typical street food made out of stir-fried rice noodles, eggs, tofu, tamarind, fish sauce, shrimp, shallots, red chilipepper, palm sugar, lime, vegetables, and peanuts.
Khao Pad (Fried Rice) – Thai jasmine rice with meat, fish sauce, soy sauce, sugar, salt, possibly some chili and vegetables.
Spring Rolls – rolled appetizers which can be made with a variety of meat, vegetables, and spices.
Geng Kheaw Wan Gai (Green Curry Chicken) – made with meat/fish, coconut milk, green curry paste, palm sugar, fish sauce, Thai eggplant and pea aubergine or other vegetables.
Massaman Curry – mild Thai curry with meat, coconut milk, onion, peanuts or cashews, potatoes, bay leaves, cardamom pods, cinnamon, star anise, palm sugar, fish sauce, chili and tamarind sauce.
Tom Yum Goong (Spicy Shrimp Soup) – spicy soup made of stock, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves, lime juice, fish sauce, crushed chili peppers, and shrimp.
And our favorite desserts:
An interesting observation for us was, there’s no such thing as breakfast in Thailand. Well not quite like we are used to it at home when we start the day with some bread, cereal or fresh fruits. Breakfast in Thailand typically includes some kind of noodle soup or pretty much any other food that you can eat for lunch or dinner.
If you want to get a more authentic experience go to a cooking class, where you’ll get the knowledge of some traditional food, that you can cook when you are back home. You will get to know some interesting spices like Thai basil, turmeric, lemon grass and vegetables like a long bean, Thai eggplant and essential ingredients of Thai cooking like fish sauce, curry paste and coconut milk.
We must say that we fell in love with Som Tum (Spicy Green Papaya Salad) and Mango Sticky Rice. Incredible how you can mix fruit with vegetables, sugar, and chili and it can taste so good.
We’d be lying if we said that Thai street food isn’t some of the most amazing food we’d ever tasted. Yummy! Have you tied some of Thai food, tell us which is your favorite?
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Just stick to these food tips while traveling to Thailand and you’ll have an amazing experience tasting Thailand street food.