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Shrimp Pad Thai

Rice noodles are very delicate; for best results, have the other ingredients cut and measured before you begin, and make sure to undercook the noodles in the first step. The combination of anchovy paste and soy sauce is a good substitution for Asian fish sauce, which is used to flavor many Thai dishes.

  • prep: 45 mins
    total time: 45 mins
  • servings: 6




  • 8 ounces rice-stick noodles
  • 1/4 cup tomato-based chili sauce
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons light-brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon anchovy paste
  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pound peeled and deveined medium shrimp
  • 3 cups bean sprouts, plus more for garnish
  • 8 scallions, trimmed, halved lengthwise, and cut crosswise into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten

Assorted Garnishes (Optional)

  • 1/3 cup chopped dry-roasted peanuts
  • Pinch of red-pepper flakes
  • Bean sprouts
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro
  • Lime wedges


  1. Step 1

    Bring a large pot of water to a boil; remove from heat. Stir in noodles; let soak until softened (but still undercooked), 3 minutes. Drain; rinse under cold water until cool.

  2. Step 2

    In a small bowl, whisk together chili sauce, lime juice, soy sauce, brown sugar, and anchovy paste. In a large nonstick skillet, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Add garlic, and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add shrimp; cook, tossing often, until just opaque throughout, about 3 minutes. Transfer shrimp to a plate.

  3. Step 3

    Return skillet to medium-high heat. Add remaining 2 tablespoons oil along with the noodles and chili-sauce mixture; cook, tossing, until combined, about 1 minute. Add bean sprouts, scallions, and shrimp. Pour in egg; toss until noodles are coated and cooked through, about 2 minutes. Serve, topped with garnishes, if desired.

Everyday Food, May 2004



Reviews (16)

  • 29 May, 2012

    This recipe has no tamarind and in my opinion, it is essential in any Pad Thai recipe. I'm surprised Martha allowed this to slip by.

  • 11 Mar, 2010

    Are rice stick noodles the same as cellophane noodles? What type of chili sauce did you use?

  • 21 Dec, 2009

    Just tried this recipe and it really is quick, easy and most importantly delicious!
    I'll definitely whip this up again sometime soon!

  • 16 Oct, 2009

    You can also use oyster sauce in place of the anchovy paste

  • 14 May, 2008

    1/4 cup of Sriracha would be enough to hurt most people. I think the recipe writers mean Heinz Chili sauce, not anything Asian. The substitution of anchovy and soy for fish sauce suggests an attempt to use readily-available ingredients, rather than "exotic" Asian items.

  • 14 May, 2008

    I do a lot of Thai cooking, and agree that fish sauce could be used in place of anchovy paste. It is strong tasting, so you may want to use less. One commenter seems to suggest Sriracha as a substitute for the tomato-based chili sauce (like Heinz chili sauce). Sriracha is nuclear hot! If you put 1/4 cup into this recipe, it would be inedible. It is great to use in small amounts to kick up the heat in chili, catsup, etc. I agree that the Taste of Thai site has lots of great items.

  • 13 May, 2008

    Frankly, fish sauce should be available in most larger grocery stores. It is sometimes referred to as Namplar (the Thai name). Fish sauce is a bit of a misnomer as the sauce is actually made from squid or cuttlefish. On the chili paste or sauce issue, try using Lee [filtered word] Kee's chili garlic sauce. Experiment and enjoy. Sawasdee krap.

  • 13 May, 2008

    Sriracha is a common one available at supermarkets (at least here in SoCal) on the International foods aisle. It comes in a chubby plastic bottle with white asian lettering and a green pop-up top.

  • 13 May, 2008

    Taste of Asia makes one under their Maggie brand. It's ok, I would recommend the Taste of Thai Spicy Chili Sauce. Although not tomato based, a more authentic sauce. If you don't want the heat their Sweet Chili is very good as well. Good luck!

  • 13 May, 2008

    The recipe just calls for tomato based chili sauce -- just try Heinz Chili Sauce

  • 13 May, 2008

    I don't think it's meant to be asian, chili sauce can be found in the condiment isle.

  • 13 May, 2008

    Tuong Ot Sriracha (think that's the correct spelling) is available at most grocery stores in the asian food section. I keep it on hand always!

  • 13 May, 2008

    The recipe doesn't specify "asian" chili sauce, just tomato-based. Why not just use Heinz chili sauce?

  • 13 May, 2008

    I think they mean red curry paste. That is what is used a lot in Thai cooking. We are able to get it at our local grocery or you of course can find it in a Asian market. It is wonderful.

  • 13 May, 2008

    For my pad thai sauce, I use 2 T tamarind chutney, 1 T sugar, 1 t fish sauce, 1 t chili powder. It's DELICIOUS and you can find tamarind at any asian food store.

  • 25 Apr, 2008

    I haven't been able to find an asian tomoto-based chile sauce. Does anyone have a brand to recommend?