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Thai Beef Drunken Noodles

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These Thai beef drunken noodles are the perfect take out fake out meal. PACKED full of flavor and ready in just 30 minutes! Your whole family will love these noodles. 

a large bowl full of Thai Beef Drunken Noodles

I have a confession. I love getting take out. Probably a little too much. I told Art that we need to delete Door Dash from our phone because too much take out is never a good thing. 

I especially love to order Thai food. It’s so damn good and you can get everything from fresh salads to comforting tom kha gai to spicy Thai beef drunken noodles. That’s why I knew that making these noodles at home would not only make me happy for dinner but eaten cold makes a super tasty breakfast. 

Yeah, I eat leftovers for breakfast. Don’t judge me. 

So today I’m bringing you these spicy (but not too spicy) Thai beef drunken noodles that you can make at home and will be ready in JUST 30 minutes. 

close up photo of Thai Beef Drunken Noodles

What are Thai drunken noodles?

When I first heard of these noodles I was thinking they must be cooked in some sort of Chinese wine or maybe some sort of bourbon. Well, neither is true. 

Drunken noodles (or Pad kee mao) is just a dish of broad rice noodles mixed with oyster sauce, soy sauce, fish sauce, veggies, and chilies. It’s not really known for sure how it got the name “drunken noodles” but some suggest it’s because someone came home one night after a night of drinking and in their drunk state came up with these noodles. Another theory is that the noodles are so spicy you’ll need a cold beer to quench your thirst. 

I don’t know. Both sound sorta iffy on the truth but all I know is they are delicious. 

horizontal photo of Thai Beef Drunken Noodles

What ingredients are in this Thai beef drunken noodles?

Most of the ingredients found in this recipe can easily be found in the international section of your local grocery store or in any Asian market. Of course, if you can’t find them easily you can always hit up Amazon. 

Those are the basic ingredients you’ll need to throw this dish together. I always opt to use low sodium soy sauce in the majority of my dishes since I find regular soy sauce a little too salty. If you don’t want to buy low sodium you can always do 1/2 the amount in regular soy and for the other half add water. It will help cut down on that sodium.

Oh, and the oyster sauce and fish sauce are key so don’t skimp on those! 

If you happen to live near a large Asian market you can often find fresh rice noodles but for the majority of folks, most rice noodles will be found dried. Try to find the widest noodles you can find but really any size will work fine. In a super pinch, you could even use wide pasta. It won’t be totally traditional but it will still be tasty. 

Now, I know it seems odd to thinly slice ribeye and then throw it into a stirfry BUT trust me it’s worth it! It will be slightly more expensive but it will cook up super tender and flavorful. At my local Asian market, I can find it thinly sliced right in the meat department. It makes it even easier to throw together. 

Finally, if you can find Thai basil you’ll be rewarded with the perfect little anise bite that you often find in traditional Thai food. To me, Thai basil tastes like Italian basil that has started to flower. Much heavier on the anise flavor but not overpowering. 

Cooking tips!

Don’t fear a little char on the noodles and beef. It gives it that traditional drunken noodle flavor. I like to let my noodles sit in the pan for a few seconds longer than I normally would and then stir. This helps pick up a little color without burning your noodles or vegetables. 

head on shot of Thai Beef Drunken Noodles

If you’re looking to make your noodles extra spicy you could leave the seeds in the Thai chilies or add more. The spice level can easily be controlled when you’re standing behind the wok. Or in my case, just a large high sided 12-inch skillet. 

Loving these Thai beef drunken noodles? 

Why don’t you try some of my other fake out take out dishes? 

horizontal photo of Thai Beef Drunken Noodles

Thai Beef Drunken Noodles

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

These Thai beef drunken noodles are the perfect take out fake out meal. PACKED full of flavor and ready in just 30 minutes! Your whole family will love these noodles.


  • 8 ounces wide rice noodles
  • 1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound thinly sliced ribeye steak
  • 2-4 Thai red chilies, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, cored and thinly sliced
  • 1 small yellow onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup Thai basil leaves, roughly chopped
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced, green parts only


  1. Cook rice noodles according to directions and drain. Set aside until needed.
  2. In a medium-size bowl whisk together soy sauce, water, oyster sauce, dark brown sugar, and fish sauce. Set aside until needed.
  3. In a larget high sided skillet (or wok) add olive oil and set over high heat.
  4. When the oil is hot add the beef, Thai red chilies, bell pepper, and onion.
  5. Saute quickly to help quickly cook the beef and vegetables. Move the ingredients around in the pan so they do not burn.
  6. Add in the garlic and saute for 30 seconds.
  7. Pour in the prepared sauce and noodles.
  8. Toss to combine and continue cooking until the sauce has cooked down and starts to coat the noodles. You want a little brown on the noodles so don't be scared of some char.
  9. Remove from heat and stir in Thai basil and green onions.


  • Sliced ribeye is used because it cooks up quickly and remains tender. You want to make sure the slices are paper-thin. If you live near Asian markets you can often find it thinly sliced in packages.
  • If you cannot find Thai basil you can use Italian basil as a substitute.
  • Rice noodles can often be found in the International section of your supermarket.

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Thai beef drunken noodles pin for pinterest.

Sweet and Sour Ground Chicken - and easy and delicious weeknight meal!

Saturday 12th of June 2021

[…] Thai Beef Drunken Noodles […]

Cynthia A Tisdale

Monday 21st of September 2020

Thai beef drunken noodles was over the top. Great dish, but very filling, so no need for anything else. Hats off to the Chef of this dish.

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