Shrimp Pad Thai, the classic Thai street food usually made with noodles, gets a healthful update here with zucchini noodles!
Here’s a fresh, flavorful and healthful way to help you keep your New Year’s resolution to eat healthier—Shrimp Pad Thai with Zucchini “Noodles.” This shrimp pad thai is full of fresh vegetables and lower in carbohydrates than traditional pad thai.
What is pad thai?
Pad thai is a dish that’s common in Thai cuisine—especially street food. It’s made with rice noodles soaked in water, stir-fried, then combined with vegetables and proteins such as eggs, tofu, shrimp or chicken in a sweet-spicy sauce.
Tips for making Shrimp Pad Thai with Zucchini Noodles:
- As with any stir-fry, it’s important to get all the ingredients prepped and ready to roll. Once that is done, shrimp pad thai comes together quickly making it perfect for a weeknight dinner.
- Instead of rice noodles, I use spiralized zucchini instead as a low-carb alternative to rice noodles.
- Zucchini contains a fair amount of water which can dilute the vibrant flavors of this dish. After briefly stir-frying the zucchini, transfer to a sieve set over a bowl so some of the liquid drains out. (You want to be careful not to overcook the zucchini; it should still be slightly crunchy.)
- Cook the remaining ingredients, add the drained zucchini at the end and heat through.
A question I receive frequently about fish sauce is what to substitute if a fish allergy exists. You can substitute soy sauce or make your own “vegan” fish sauce such as this recipe from Feasting at Home, a fellow food blogger.
More shrimp recipes you’ll love:
- The Best Shrimp Creole
- Spicy Baked Shrimp with Tomatoes and Feta Cheese
- Spicy Shrimp and Grits Casserole with Gouda Cheese
- Shrimp and Corn Risotto with Bacon
- Pumpkin, Chipotle and White Cheddar Grits with Bacon-Wrapped Shrimp
- Smothered Shrimp and Andouille Sausage with Creamy Parmesan Peppercorn Grits
Shrimp Pad Thai with Zucchini Noodles
- 3 cloves garlic - minced
- ¼ cup brown sugar - or coconut sugar
- ¼ cup rice vinegar
- ¼ cup ketchup
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce - tamari or coconut aminos
- 2 teaspoons chili garlic sauce
- 2 tablespoons canola - vegetable or peanut oil (or as needed), divided
- 2-3 medium zucchini - spiralized
- 2 large eggs - beaten
- ½ red bell pepper - thinly sliced
- 1 small carrot - julienned
- ½ pound shrimp - 16-20 count, peeled and deveined (preferably wild-caught)
- 1 bunch scallions - white and light green part only, thinly sliced diagonally
- 2 cups bean sprouts
- ½ cup dry roasted peanuts
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- Lime wedges - for serving
- Combine first 7 ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.
- Heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet, sauté pan or wok.
- Add the zucchini and cook 2-3 minutes or until beginning to soften slightly. Transfer to a sieve placed above a bowl and set aside.
- Add ½ tablespoon oil to the pan, reduce heat to medium and add the eggs.
- Cook 1 minute or until set, stirring and breaking up the egg as you work. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
- Heat remaining oil over medium heat. Add red bell pepper and carrot. Cook 1 minute.
- Add the shrimp and cook 2 minutes per side or until cooked through and translucent.
- Stir in the sauce. Bring to a simmer. Add scallions, zucchini and egg. Stir until heated through then add bean sprouts.
- Serve immediately garnished with peanuts, cilantro and lime wedges.
These are estimated values generated from a nutritional database using unbranded products. Please do your own research with the products you're using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.