Drunken noodles

The common misconception is that “drunken noodles” have alcohol in them. But it’s really named that way because it’s supposed to be for people who are so drunk that they can’t really taste anything unless the flavor has been pushed up to 11. TLDR: It’s extra spicy and garlicky and is meant to wake you up like a bullhorn in your face but much better than that, obviously. This recipe can be served with either rice noodles of any thickness or the everyday spaghetti in your pantry. Whatever you choose, it will be delicious. It’s also important to have fresh green peppercorns for this recipe; it’s just not the same without it. Less important but still nice to have: holy basil leaves and shavings of wild ginger.

drunken noodles with pasta

Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Dinner, Lunch, Side Dish
Cuisine Thai
Servings 4 people


  • 250 g rice noodles or spaghetti
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons green peppercorns
  • 2 tablespoons bird’s eye chillies sliced
  • 2 tablespoons garlic minced
  • 250 g shrimps deveined
  • 200 g squid rings cleaned
  • 3 tablespoons water set to the side of the stove
  • 40 g baby corn
  • 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon shaved palm sugar
  • ½ teaspoon white vinegar
  • 15 g Thai basil leaves use Holy basil if available
  • 1 tablespoon ginger minced or grachai (wild ginger), if you have it


  • Cook the noodles according to the package instructions and set aside.
  • Heat a pan and add the oil. Heat the oil until smoking. Add the green peppercorns, chillies, and garlic. Fry until the garlic is browned but not black. Add some water if the ingredients start sticking to the wok.
  • A big cloud of cough-inducing smoke might waft into your face; try your best to minimize your coughing fit. Add the seafood. Wait until the shrimp turns pink and the squid gets more opaque before adding the noodles. Allow the edges to char, but not burn. If any burning is imminent, add a splash more water.
  • Then add the baby corn, oyster sauce, dark and light soy sauce, fish sauce, and palm sugar. Stir to mix well.
  • Once the sauce is fully incorporated, add the vinegar, basil leaves, and ginger. Taste for seasoning. Stir for a few more seconds to wilt the basil leaves, and take off the heat. Serve immediately.
Keyword dairy free
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