Thai food is steadily becoming one of the most popular ethnic cuisines in the United States, and there’s no question why. It’s flavorful, filling, and accommodating to many dietary preferences and restrictions.
But if you’re new to Thai cuisine, the menu can feel daunting.
Read on for our recommendations on the best Thai dishes to order if you’re a beginner.
Best Thai Dishes to Order for Beginners
You can’t lose with these popular menu items!
1. Phad Thai
Phad Thai is one of the most popular Thai foods among westerners, and there’s a reason—it’s delicious!
Thin rice noodles are stir-fried with egg, bean sprouts, onion, and fresh-roasted ground peanuts with a tamarind sauce. Served with fresh-cut limes.
Most curry sauces include a lot of the same spices, with a few differences.
Green curry uses green chilies, red curry uses red chilies, and yellow curry uses a larger amount of turmeric. As a result, your green curries often have a stronger flavor, red curries are typically spicier, and yellow are often mild and sweeter.
All are combined with coconut milk for a creamy base and paired with the perfect variety of vegetables to suit their flavor.
3. Fresh Off the Grill
You haven’t experienced the full array of Thai cuisine without something fresh off the grill.
Whether it’s a salmon or steak marinated with classical Thai spices or Moo Yang (a grilled pork loin), you can’t go wrong.
Grilled seafood is a must-try on the list of Thai cuisine. Talay Paow offers a variety of seafood favorites served with a tangy chili-lime sauce.
4. Vegan Options
Tom Kha soup is a Thai staple. It’s a coconut milk-based, hot soup with lime, mushroom, lemongrass, galangal root, and cilantro. The soup is a common street food loved for its warmth and cleansing properties.
Most curries fall underneath the plant-based category as well. The only ingredient that wouldn’t be considered vegan is added meat. Just clarify on your order that you want vegetable curry only, and you’ll be served a delicious, perfectly plant-based meal.
5. Gluten-Sensitive? No Problem!
Because most Thai noodles are made of rice, you usually have a surprising number of menu items suited for gluten sensitivities. All the curries found on our menu are gluten-free.
Another favorite on our menu for those with gluten sensitivities is the seafood special, Yum Woon Sen Talay. It’s a delightful array of chopped chicken breast, calamari, prawns, scallop, and mussel topped with tomato, onion, and cilantro. It’s finished off with a spicy lime sauce with roasted peanuts.
6. Don’t Forget Dessert
Don’t forget something sweet to finish off your first Thai meal.
Our dessert menu includes classic street food like mango sticky rice. Black sticky rice pudding topped with coconut milk is another fan favorite.
Now that you’re a connoisseur of the best Thai food dishes to order, all you have to do is decide what to try first. Order on-site at one of our 4 locations in WA, or call in for take-out today!