Drunken Noodles Vs Pad Thai – Differences and Similarities


Drunken noodles and Pad Thai are the Thai cuisine which are now increasingly popular around the word. If you are just new to overseas culinary, then you must stay with us to find out their similarities and differences.

Drunken Noodles Vs Pad Tha
Source: christieathome.com

In general, drunken noodles taste so spicy and are available in a wide range of varieties. On the other hand, Pad Thai has a nuttier and crunchier flavor. However, both of them are traditionally made with rice noodles.

In this guide, we are going to lean Drunken noodles Vs Pad Thai. What are the details of each? Scroll down the page.

About Drunken Noodles

In the word of common street dishes, Drunken Noodles are ones of the popular street foods in Thailand and in other parts of the world, too. To differ these noodles from Pad Thai, there are many kinds of sauces used in Drunken Noodles dish. They are soy sauce, garlic sauce, fish sauce, and oyster sauce. Other ingredients include a variety of vegetables, meat, seafood and tofu.

Drunken Noodles is spicy. This is due to the use of different spices in the dish like black pepper, holy basil and chili.

About Pad Thai

Similar to Drunken noodles, Pad Thai is also one of popular choices. It is a type of stir-fried noodle dish served in rice noodles, tofu or beef and peanuts, scrambled eggs, chicken and many kinds of vegetables based on your personal preference.

Pad Thai noodles primarily contains special Pad Thai sauce, making it tastes sweet and salty. Yes, Pad Thai sauce is made of tamarind paste with oyster and fish sauce, too.

Major Differences of Drunken Noodles and Pad Thai

Though both Drunken Noodles and Pad Thai use one common main ingredient that is stir-fried rice noodles, there are some major differences that everyone should notice. Below are the major differences between the two popular Thai dishes:


People also called Drunken Noodles as Pad Kee Mau. It gains its popularity from the Chinese who live in Thailand. As the name suggests, Drunken Noodles are believed to be suitable if consumed while drinking alcohol. However, some other people believe that ancient people used rice wine in the noodles.

Meanwhile, Pad Thai was firstly made by the Thailand’s former prime minister, Plaek Phibunsingkhram, in purpose of cultural and historical reasons. Later, these noodles became popular during the stage of World War II. They were also brought to United States.

These times, Pad Thai becomes one of the most popular noodle dishes in Thailand and US as well as in other countries around the world.

The Ingredients Used In The Noodles

Learning Drunken noodles Vs Pad Thai should also learn the ingredients used in the noodles. In this way, the major differences lay on the used ingredients.

As we have mentioned, Drunken noodles are more savory and spicier than the Pad Thai ones. This is due to the fact that the noodles use a variety of sauce including soy sauce and fish sauce. Besides, Drunken Noodles also come with many different kinds of vegetables for toppings. For protein, these noodles add chicken, ground pork, tofu, and beef.

On the other hand, Pad Thai tastes are dominated by sweet and nutty taste since the noodles use tamarind sauce, fish sauce, palm sugar and peanuts as the ingredients. For protein, the noodles add tofu, chicken, shrimp and tofu. Different from Drunken Noodles, Pad Thai includes only carrots and cabbages as vegetables on top.

About ingredients, Drunken noodles can go with almost any source of protein but Pad Thai tends to go with chicken or shrimp.

Taste or Flavor

In most reviews, both Drunken Noodles and Pad Thai are similar in taste. However, ones of them are sweeter than the others.

Drunken Noodles are spicier as they also use Thai basil as the source of spiciness and a wide range of sauces. Hence, the sauce is thicker and tasteful. On the opposite, Pad Thai noodles have umami favor that Drunk Noodles never have. And, peanuts make them crunchier than the Drunken Noodles.

Nutrition Facts

Do you know why Thai cuisine is healthier than other countries cuisine? Believe it or not, Thai foods contain only fewer calories and more protein due to the ingredients used like chicken, beef and tofu. In this case, both Drunken Noodles and Pad Thai also share fewer calories and more protein. However, slight differences are found in the calorie content and health factor.

Drunken Noodles contain around 390 calories per cup and high sodium. Meanwhile, Pad Thai noodles contain 375 calories per cup along with the high sodium due to the varieties of sauces used. Wow, Drunken Noodles Vs Pad Thai calories are just closely similar. If you are on low-sodium diet, you had better not consume these two kinds of noodles.

Aroma and Color

Drunken noodles Vs Pad Thai discussion also notices aroma and color. In this case, there are minor difference in aroma and color both in Drunken Noodles and in Pad Thai. This is because the noodles use different sauces. Noticeably, both noodles have strong aroma that some people may not be comfortable with.

Both Drunken Noodles and Pad Thai have the same colors. But according to the Drunken Noodles recipe, drunken noodles are lighter than the Pad Thai. Pad Thai has more distinctive orange color than the Drunken since Pad Thai contains tamarind paste. Furter, Pad Thai noodles are topped with shrimp, making its color different from the Drunken.

Read more What Is The Difference Between Pan Fried Noodle Vs Lo Mein?

Final Words

At last, you may be able to choose which noodles you are going to order when visiting Thai restaurant someday. Well, both Drunken and Pad Thai noodles are tasty and popular. But the tastes and toppings are different.

Even without going to Thai restaurant, you can make the noodles at home. Just keep our Drunken Noodles and Pad Thai review for your best preference and read the cooking instructions available in the package. Don’t forget to prepare the ingredients and sauces as suggested. That is aimed to create the real taste of both noodles right away.

Finally, happy enjoying time with families or friends and don’t forget to take these two noodles to accompany your dinner.