Quick and easy Chicken Pad Thai with broccoli and a Thai-style peanut sauce. This restaurant style recipe is perfect for a weeknight dinner and is ready in about 30 minutes!
Busy weeknights call for quick and easy chicken dinners, like this Sheet Pan Honey Mustard Chicken and Vegetables and Za'atar Roasted Chicken with Lemon and Herbs, both ready in under an hour! This delicious Pad Thai recipe is even quicker to make, especially if you prep the veggies earlier in the day.
I love Thai cuisine and all its delicious ingredients like lime, ginger, peanuts, and soy. This Chicken Pad Thai has the perfect balance of flavors and texture contrasts, making it an irresistible dish! I also make a Thai Chicken Salad With Peanut Dressing that is great served as a dinner salad.
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Why You'll Love This Recipe
- Easy recipe, ready in about 30 minutes.
- Delicious homemade Pad Thai sauce.
- Tons of colorful healthy veggies making this a complete meal.
- Made with simple and fresh ingredients.
- Customizable and family friendly! Let everyone add their own toppings for perfect customization.
Dana’s note: One of my favorite Asian inspired dishes is Pad Thai. When I have it in a restaurant, I like to add the delicious peanut dipping sauce to it. I think it's a winning combination, and I can never have enough of that sauce!
For my version of Pad Thai, I’m adding extra peanut sauce and extra vegetables. There are such a variety of vegetables in different colors in the dish that it looks like a rainbow on the plate. The colors make the dish so inviting. My kids think it's fun to add rainbow colored vegetables to their plate.
Ingredient Notes and Substitutions
See the recipe card below for a complete ingredient list and measurements.Jump to Recipe
- Rice noodles - are often in the grocery store in the Asian food section. Look for noodles that are wide and flat. Some brands that work well with this recipe are Annie Chun’s pad Thai rice noodles, Thai Kitchen stir fry rice noodles, and Taste of Thai thin rice noodles. Both regular and brown rice noodles work. I've also ordered rice noodles online. If you don’t have rice noodles, spaghetti will work as a substitute in a pinch.
- Peanut oil - Substitute for any neutral oil like grapeseed or avocado oil.
- Chicken - Use boneless skinless chicken breasts seasoned with salt and pepper.
- Peanut butter - I prefer natural, unsweetened, smooth peanut butter for this recipe. If you use a sweeten peanut butter, then cut back on the honey.
- Ginger root - Ginger root (also known as common, culinary, or Chinese ginger) can be purchased at many supermarkets in the produce section. It needs to be peeled before using. You can use a vegetable peeler or it's actually easier to peel by scraping with a spoon. I like to use what I need for a recipe, and then freeze the rest for another time. When freezing, peel first and keep in a resealable bag for up to one year. Once frozen, it’s easy to grate and quickly defrosts on its own.
- Vegetables - I am using broccoli florets, carrots, purple cabbage and green onions for this recipe. You can swap out or add in other vegetables you like. You can also add sliced red bell peppers, bean sprouts, or snow peas.
- Peanuts - Cashews work well for the crushed nuts garnish in place of peanuts if needed.
Step by Step Photos
See the recipe card below for complete directions.Jump to Recipe
STEP ONE: Cook the noodles according to package instructions, and set aside. Most brands usually have you soak the noodles in hot water for 8-10 minutes or until tender. Drain noodles, then add to the stir fry pan with the other ingredients for a couple minutes so that the noodles absorb some of the sauce.
STEP TWO: In a large sauté pan or skillet, heat ½ tablespoon of oil over medium heat. Add the chicken and stir fry until just about fully cooked. Remove from the pan, and set aside.
STEP THREE: Add the broccoli and 1-2 tablespoons of water to the pan, and cover. Stir occasionally. Steam the broccoli until crisp-tender. Remove from the pan, and set aside.
STEP FOUR: To make the creamy sauce: Add peanut butter, honey, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, broth and chili paste if using in the pan over medium heat. Stir well until the peanut butter melts, and the sauce ingredients mostly incorporate.
STEP FIVE: Add the noodles, chicken, and broccoli to the pan with the sauce. Stir to coat all the ingredients with sauce. Make sure the dish is warm, and the chicken is fully cooked. If needed, cook a few minutes more stirring periodically.
STEP SIX: Serve immediately. Let everyone sprinkle their own garnishes. Top with fresh lime juice and crushed peanuts.
- Make it spicy - You can double the chili paste for more heat, or add sriracha sauce to your serving.
- Vegetarian Pad Thai - This is a great flavorful dish to turn into a vegetarian meal. Use vegetable broth in place of chicken broth, and add additional vegetables like baby bok choy, peas, red pepper, or asparagus.
- Vegan Pad Thai - Do the above swaps for the vegetarian version, plus swap honey for maple syrup or agave.
- Add eggs - I make this recipe without eggs, but you can add beaten eggs to the skillet before adding the noodles and cook a minute or two while stirring until scrambled.
- Change up the protein - You can swap the chicken for beef, like in Chinese Beef and Vegetable Stir Fry.
I don’t recommend making the whole dish ahead of time, but you can prep the veggies earlier in the day, then cook right before serving.
Storage and Reheating
How to store: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2-3 days.
How to freeze: I do not recommend freezing this recipe.
How to reheat: This Chicken Pad Thai is best eaten right away. If you do have leftovers, re-heat with additional water or broth.
More easy dinner recipes
- Chinese Beef and Vegetable Stir Fry
- Udon Noodle Soup
- Sushi Salad Bowl
- Thai Chicken Salad with Peanut Dressing
- Weekday Lavash Flatbread Pizzas
Frequently Asked Questions
I don’t recommend freezing this Chicken Pad Thai recipe. The rice noodles will become mushy once reheated.
Chicken Pad Thai with Broccoli and Peanut Sauce
- microplane optional
- large sauté pan
- 7 to 8 ounces flat rice noodles (or substitute spaghetti)
- 2 small boneless skinless chicken breast halves (about 1 pound), cut into bite-sized pieces.
- 2 pinches Diamond Crystal kosher salt
- 1 dash black pepper
- ½ teaspoon peanut oil or any neutral oil like grapeseed or avocado
- 1 large broccoli stock cut into bite-sized florets
- 3 tablespoons natural unsweetened, creamy peanut butter
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- ½ teaspoon fresh ginger minced
- 4 tablespoons low sodium tamari or soy sauce
- ¾ cup low sodium chicken broth
- 1 teaspoon hot chile paste optional
- cilantro leaves optional
- chopped peanuts
- julienned carrots
- julienned purple cabbage
- lime wedges
- green onion sliced thin (optional)
- Cook the noodles according to package directions, and set aside.
- In a large sauté pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add the chicken, and lightly season with a couple pinches of salt and a dash of pepper. Stir fry until just about fully cooked. Remove from the pan, and set aside.
- Add the broccoli and 1-2 tablespoons of water to the pan, and cover. Stir occasionally. Steam the broccoli until crisp-tender. Remove from the pan, and set aside.
- To make the sauce: Put the peanut butter, honey, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, broth and chili paste (optional) in the pan over medium heat. Stir well until the peanut butter melts, and the sauce ingredients mostly incorporate.
- Add the noodles, chicken, and broccoli to the pan with the sauce. Stir to coat all the ingredients with sauce. Make sure the dish is warm, and the chicken is fully cooked. If needed, cook a few minutes more stirring periodically.
- Serve immediately. Let everyone sprinkle their own garnishes.