Ultimate Guide to Thai Street Food

Thailand is renowned for its vibrant and exciting street food culture, which plays an important role in shaping its culinary identity and traditions.

We highly recommend exploring the bustling streets for a unique, mouth-watering adventure. Join us on a journey to discover the ultimate guide of what to expect from the fragrant aromas and exotic spices of Thailand’s beloved street foods.

Thai street food is a true fusion of flavours, textures and colours, where each region boasts its own unique specialties. Here are just a few dishes to inspire a gastronomic experience like no other:

Som Tam
Although there are a few variations of this renowned papaya salad, the basic preparation for this timeless dish includes finely shredded green papaya, tomatoes, string beans, peanuts, dried shrimp, sugar, garlic, fish sauce, lime juice and a variable number of chilies; depending on your tolerance for heat. These ingredients are skilfully combined using a mortar and pestle, resulting in a tangy, sour and often extremely spicy salad.

Phad Thai
This iconic dish is one of the most popular street foods and offers a harmonious medley of stir-fried rice noodles, tofu, crunchy bean sprouts, fish sauce, chili, palm sugar and lime. These flavours offer a traditional balance of sweet, sour and savoury. Phad Thai can be found at street vendors with huge woks, often preparing the dish with prawns or chicken. Once ordered, add a squeeze of fresh lime and crushed peanuts and enjoy.

Oyster Omelette
Locally known as “hoy tod” this Thai-style oyster or shellfish omelette is an unusual culinary experience. While it may not be the obvious choice for an omelette ingredient, this dish has gained popularity over the years, being enjoyed by foodies at Bangkok’s food stalls for more than a century. The dish is a crispy pancake-like creation, cooked on a robust iron skillet, fiercely heated by a charcoal-burning stove. Served atop a bed of fresh bean sprouts, it comes accompanied by a spicy dipping sauce for added punch.

Thai Fish Cakes
Also known as Tod Mun Pla, Thai fish cakes are a readily available street snack sold across Thailand. Fish cakes are a deep-fried savoury treat consisting of minced fish blended with curry paste, lime leaves, Thai basil and long beans. They are typically accompanied by a Thai dipping sauce that combines spicy, savoury and sweet flavours, enhancing the overall experience of these delightful little fish patties.

A firm favourite for all ages, grilled satay is a widespread choice at street stalls. Pieces of meat, usually chicken or pork, are marinated in a combination of seasoning and coconut milk before being threaded onto bamboo skewers. The meat skewers are then grilled over an open flame, generating fragrant aromas. Typically served with a rich peanut dipping sauce and accompaniments such as a side of sliced cucumbers and shallots.

Sweet Roti
Here in Thailand, this popular street market delicacy is similar to a pancake or crepe, brimming with sugary fillings. Take the opportunity to watch your roti being crafted by a skilled food stall vendor, who will expertly stretch the dough and then fry it on a large hotplate, before swiftly enveloping it around the popular combination of bananas accompanied by either condensed milk or chocolate sauce.

The energetic and bustling atmosphere, plus the friendly exchanges with stall vendors all contribute to the unique charm of Thai street food; leaving you with a journey filled with tasty treats and unforgettable memories.


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