Drunken Noodles


10 oz dried wide flat rice noodles
10 oz gai lan
10 oz shrimp
6 cloves garlic, minced
3-5 Thai bird peppers, minced
3/4 cup torn holy or Thai basil leaves

for the sauce:
3 tablespoons fish sauce
3 tablespoons black soy sauce
3 tablespoons golden mountain sauce or dark soy sauce
1 tablespoon palm sugar

Prep the dry noodles according to package instructions. Set aside. Whisk together sauce ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside. Heat a small amount of oil in a wok. Stir fry the garlic and chiles until fragrant. Add the shrimp, gai lan and sauce and stir fry, until it is nearly fully cooked. Add the noodles. Stir fry until the shrimp is fully cooked then stir in the basil. Serve immediately.

My thoughts:

Drunken noodles are a Thai restuarant staple. The origins of the name is somewhat cloaked in mystery but the most popular seems to be that these noodles are so spicy that you’ll want to drink a lot. I’ve also heard that they are a good dish after you’ve had too much to drink. Frankly, I don’t think you need an excuse to eat these noodles. My favorite version, which I reproduced here, has gai lan (Chinese broccoli) in it to make it more of a full meal; some versions are basically just sauce, protein and noodles. The trick to drunken noodles is using the correct sauce and if you can find it, holy basil or at least Thai basil. You can swap out the shrimp with an equal amount of chicken, pork or tofu. Ground meats work well too.


  1. This looks great. Just happen to have the rice noodles so with a little shopping I can make this!

  2. I just picked up some rice noodles at Trader Joe's on a whim and was wondering what on earth I would do with them. Enter your recipe! Looks fantastic, thank you!

  3. Do you have a particular brand of fish sauce you're partial to?

  4. EB-
    I usually use Tiparos because it is easy to find. I also use a chile spiked fish sauce I like a lot that is made by Sonaco.

  5. Kathy - My Online Meals

    I have been searching all over, looking for an exotic noodle dish with a bit of a kick and wow I think this is it! I would love to give this a try.

  6. Ok..not this looked good!!!

    I'd eat this dish even for breakfast..hahaha..:)

    Gona pick up some shrimp today,and give this recipe a try.

    It'll save me money,instead of wasting it away at the Asian Cafe down the street..:)

    Thank You..:)