I view my gluten free Pad Thai recipe as the Thai version of leftover night, only unlike a typical leftover dinner, this is a dish everyone can get excited about. Open your refrigerator and start throwing in ingredients – literally, just toss them into the wok or large skillet and sauté with yummy Thai sauces until all the flavors aromatically permeate your house and call everyone to the meal.
There are many commercially available Pad Thai sauces you can pick up at an Asian grocery or even your regular grocery store. Brands like Thai Kitchen® are easy to find, just always double check to see that there are no ingredient changes (like adding wheat-containing soy sauce). The Pad Thai sauce I particularly love is Maesri from Thailand – I get it at my local Asian Market. My favorite San-J Thai Peanut Sauce is also wonderful in many recipes, adding spice and flavor to any rice, egg, fish, chicken or vegetable dish you like; mix in with Pad Thai sauce and it’s truly something to behold!
As for noodles, you can get those at Asian markets as well, or choose a readily available American brand like Annie Chun’s Brown Rice Noodles if you want some extra fiber (4 grams of fiber and protein in every serving). There is no taste difference between white rice noodles and brown rice noodles, so I opt for the brown rice whenever I can! Also consider new black bean noodle options for extra protein.
Another great option is to use spaghetti squash for your noodles. You’ll need less sauce, so go easy on that until after you’ve added in the spaghetti squash “noodles,” since they won’t absorb the sauce like rice noodles will.
Get creative with your leftover night, but be sure to write down what you do so you can repeat what is sure to be a new favorite dish! I usually double the recipe I’ve written for you, so we have plenty of leftover-leftovers for another night! It’s delicious reheated (or, dare I say, cold?!), so if you want to be sure to have some for later, double the recipe below!
- 8 oz. rice noodles or one large spaghetti squash
- 1 Tbs. toasted sesame oil
- 14 oz.+ cubed, unflavored tofu or chicken, or uncooked, deveined shrimp
- 1 Tbs. granulated cane sugar
- 6-9 oz. gluten-free Pad Thai sauce (e.g. Maesri or Thai Kitchen®) – add more if the final dish is too dry
- 1/8-1/4 cup San-J Thai Peanut Sauce (or may use additional Pad Thai sauce)
- 1 ½ cups chopped mushrooms or other chosen veggies (e.g. green beans, carrots, diced zucchini, okra …)
- ½ cup bok choi, spinach, kale or other greens
- 1 cup bean sprouts, rinsed well
- 2 tsp. peeled and chopped, fresh ginger (optional)
- chopped peanuts for garnish (optional)
Prepare noodles according to package directions. Cook, drain and set aside.
Preheat a large wok or skillet and heat the sesame oil over medium-high heat.
Add your chosen protein (tofu or chicken – do not add the shrimp at this point or it will over-cook and be tough) and sprinkle with sugar. Sauté until lightly browned at the edges, then add the sauces (add shrimp at this point, if using) and the mushrooms or other chopped vegetables of your choice. The longer you can cook your protein in the sauces, the more rich the flavor; just be sure not to let them burn!
When cooked through, add the greens, bean sprouts and ginger, tossing until heated, approximately 2 minutes.
Serve warm with chopped peanuts for garnish.
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