Santa Fe
Credit: taylorandayumi on flickr / Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic

Love Pad Thai But

Kinda Off Bean Sprouts?

I've been dying to have a good pad thai (aka phat thai) for ages. I'm allergic to seafood, so I need to make it at home.
For the longest time, I avoided bean sprouts. And if you're like me, you were also grossed out by the grocery store recalls on it due to salmonella.[1][2]
Canned bean sprouts won't work in pad thai - too mushy.
Lately, I've been wondering what to do with the edamame in my freezer. Then it hit me: why not use it instead of bean sprouts?
Those who follow me, know I primarily write gluten-free, peanut-free recipes. Yet if you don't have the same dietary restrictions, just use regular ingredients (in the same quantities) and your pad thai will turn out just as fabulous.

My Inspiration and Tweaks

I adapted my version from Nestlé (maker of Carnation evaporated milk). I prefer to use unsweetened evaporated milk in place of cream since its lower in milk fat.

Coconut milk, although quite popular, needs to be consumed within a few days. And too often, I end up tossing half of it out.

Nestlé's recipe, "At Home" Pad Thai with Creamy Peanut Sauce[3] calls for peanut butter. Instead, I use my favourite substitute, WowButter - which tastes better and mixes in beautifully with sauces. It doesn't have an oily layer, like peanut butter does, that you need to constantly stir. Plus, WowButter is more nutritious than peanut butter.[4]

I've had wonderful results using WowButter in cooking and baking. My daughter loves the giant WowButter cookie I make and my man-servant is crazy about my WowButtery chicken pot pie

Even though I used edamame in my pad thai, doesn't mean you have to.

Other excellent substitutions include snow peas, shredded carrots with celery, and even lettuce. The bean sprouts add crispiness rather than flavour to pad thai.

If you add more green onions, be careful to not go overboard, as they can be overpowering.

If you love Indian food, you might also enjoy my butter chicken made with WowButter. Another recipe I use WowButter in is my chicken & veggies in WowButter sauce (which is perfect for the BBQ or oven).

Sprout-Free Pad Thai With WowButter

Sprout-Free Pad Thai With WowButter RoseWrites 2015-02-15 5.0 0 5

Sprout-Free Pad Thai With WowButter

Serves: 6 - 8 | Prep: 30 mins | Total: 1 hour


Peanut-Free WowButter Sauce
1 can (12 oz/354 mL) unsweetened evaporated milk
3/4 cup WowButter (Creamy or Chunky)
2.5 tbsp. gluten-free soy sauce
2/3 tsp. ground ginger
Pad Thai
16 oz. dried thin rice noodles OR 12 - 15 oz. gluten-free linguine (prepared according to package directions, made al dente)
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup ketchup
2 fresh limes, cut into wedges
1/4 - 1/3 tsp. ground cayenne pepper
3 - 4 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
2 large, boneless chicken breasts OR 15 oz. small shrimp, peeled and deveined
5 - 6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 - 3 eggs beaten
4 cups fresh bean sprouts OR 2 cups snow peas, shredded carrots and celery, or edamame
2 bunches (about 1.5 cups) green onions, sliced
Optional garnish: fresh sprigs of cilantro
In hot tap water, soak rice noodles for 30 mins - they should be flexible but not as soft as cooked noodles OR cook linguine noodles just until al dente (firm to the bite). Whichever noodle type you use, drain and set aside. TIP: I use about 1/2 a 900 g bag of linguine; a 12 oz. box of gluten-free linguine is about right.
If using fresh, boneless chicken, place in freezer for 20 mins. so you can dice it easily into 1/2-inch cubes. If using frozen chicken, thaw it partially in your microwave on defrost mode (cover chicken loosely to avoid splatter) for about 2 - 3 minutes. Chicken is less apt to shred when its partially frozen when you dice it. 

In a large bowl, add WowButter, soy sauce, and ginger. Add unsweetened evaporated milk, a little at a time, and whisk until smooth (about 5 mins).
In a medium bowl, mix together water (or chicken stock), ketchup, soy sauce, sugar, 1 tbsp. lime juice (about 3 wedges squeezed), and cayenne pepper.
In a large skillet, over med-high, heat oil for 30 seconds. Then add chicken cubes OR shrimp and stir-fry. Shrimp will need about 3 mins (it should turn pink); chicken will need 7 - 9 mins. Then fold in noodles and add garlic. Next, pour in mixture from medium bowl (broth/water, ketchup, soy sauce, sugar, lime juice, cayenne pepper) and stir continuously for 2 mins (or until sauce is absorbed).
Lastly, create a well in the center of the skillet by pushing noodles to the sides. Add eggs, let set a bit and stir until cooked. Next, add in edamame (or carrots or whatever you desire) and 1 cup of green onions. Stir up everything until combined. Add peanut-free WowButter sauce, combine, and serve on plates. Garnish each dish with lime wedges and a sprinkle of the remaining green onions.

The WowButter Sauce Blends Beautifully

My WowButter Sauce for Pad Thai
Credit: RoseWrites on InfoBarrel / All rights reserved

My Pad Thai With Edamame

My G-F Pad Thai With WowButter
Credit: RoseWrites on InfoBarrel / All rights reserved

Want an Egg-Free, Meat-Free Pad Thai?

What I recommend using in place of the chicken, shrimp, and eggs in my recipe is 2 packages of firm or extra-firm tofu (for a total of 24 - 28 oz). Most packages of tofu are 12 - 14 oz each. You'll need to drain it, cut it into 1/2-inch slices, and then pat it dry once again before you cook it.

Add the tofu slices to the pan just after you add the oil. Cook them for about 4 minutes per side until light brown, then place them on a platter to cube later. They are less likely to break apart if you add them back to the skillet with the WowButter sauce last.

Tofu is a wonderful substitute for chicken, shrimp, or eggs in pad thai but it tends to add water to the dish. Since it comes soaked in water, you want to drain it so that it absorbs the yummy flavours of the pad thai and WowButter sauce.

Tofu Pad Thai With Egg and Lime Wedges

Without Eggs It Still Tastes Great With More Onion

Tofu pad thai
Credit: Stacy Spensley (notahipster on flickr) / Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic