These Thai Basil Noodles are perfect if you’re craving some bold favor for dinner. The recipe is easy to make and ready in about 30 minutes.
Thai food has become one of my favorite cuisines lately. I just can’t get enough of the bold flavors and liberal use of vegetables. Many Thai dishes are vegan friendly or can be made vegan like my Quick Curry Noodles and Mongolian Soy Curls.
My Thai Basil Noodles came about when I was browsing round my local Asian market looking for some vegan hot sauce. After finding that and picking up my favorite rice noodles, I went over to the produce section to see if anything looked good. I was excited to see lots of fresh mushrooms and bok choy so I grabbed those and then a huge bunch of Thai basil (for only $2 btw) caught my eye! I love basil sauces so I knew I needed to make a tasty dinner with it.
My Thai Basil Noodles dish is full of veggies and has lots of flavor because of the basil. If you’ve never had Thai basil before, it’s a little different than the basil usually found in supermarkets which has rounder leaves and a sweet-ish, milder flavor. Thai Basil has pointier leaves and purple stems with a slightly spicy, licorice-like flavor. But don’t let the idea of licorice scare you off if you don’t like it, I am not a fan of licorice myself but the basil tastes amazing.
I used rice noodles so the meal is both vegan and gluten free. I also added some tofu for protein but feel free to use any other protein you might like. I think vegan chickn’ strips would be tasty as well!
Yields Serves 4
- 1 package of firm tofu, drained, pressed, and cubed (or you can use any pre-cooked tofu of your choice)
- 2-3TB olive or sesame oil
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 cups mushrooms (I used shiitake), chopped
- 1 cup (3 clusters) bok choy, chopped
- 1/2 package (8 oz) rice noodles
- 1./2 cup Thai basil cut into ribbons*
- 1/4 cup tamari (or soy sauce if not gf)
- 1 TB chili paste
- 1 tsp maple syrup
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 TB rice wine vinegar
- Heat 1 TB oil in a non-stick pan and add the tofu. Cook for a few minutes on each side until browned. Remove from pan and set aside.
- In a large saute pan, heat 1 TB oil and add onions and garlic. Cook for 3-5 minutes until onion is translucent.
- Add mushrooms and bok choy (as well as another TB of oil if needed) and cook until tender.
- Meanwhile heat a large pot of water for rice noodles. When water is boiling, turn off heat and add rice noodles for about 4 minutes or until al dente. You don't want them too soft becasue they will cook more later on.*
- When noodles are al dente, drain and add to pan.
- Mix sauce ingredients, add to pan and cook everything for a another 3-5 mintues.
- Turn off heat and add basil and mix through,
- Fold in tofu and top with sesame seeds.
*If you can't Thai basil, you can always substitute regular sweet basil, but it will be a little less "spicy".
*If you're using pre-cooked tofu, just heat it in the pan with the olive oil.
*You can also use any type of noodle if you're not using rice noodles and cook to package directions.
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