You had me at 30-minutes. I love making recipes that require love and a time commitment but let’s be honest, that doesn’t happen every day. During the week we all are pressed for time but we still want healthy meals. This 30-minute Gluten Free Pad Thai fits the bill. It doesn’t take all night to make it, and it is loaded with protein, fresh veggies and nutritious noodles. As we are getting back to the hustle and bustle after the holiday season, this recipe is just what you need.
is pad thai vegan?
A traditional pad thai recipe usually calls for fish sauce, making pad thai NOT vegan. BUT this healthy pad thai recipe IS vegan. There is no fish sauce, but I promise the vegan sauce that covers the pad thai is NEXT LEVEL. It is sweet, tangy and flavour-packed. It doesn’t disappoint. So you can still enjoy this gluten free pad thai and all of it’s flavours even without the fish sauce.
my favourite vegan thai noodles
I’m a huge fan of Lotus Foods. Their pad thai noodles are truly life-changing. They are gluten free and so delicious. Even my Picky Husband, who still eats wheat says that these noodles are his absolute favourite. They are a little on the pricier side but I truly think they are worth the splurge. They truly take this gluten free pad thai up a notch. The texture is spot on. Note, I do always add a little splash of oil into the pot while the noodles are boiling just so they don’t stick together.
here are a few reasons why i love this gluten free pad thai, so listen up.
- This is a 30 minute vegetarian meal for the books. I hope I got you at 30 minutes. I’m always on the lookout for quick meals that are yummy and don’t skimp on taste. And this healthy pad that is just that. It’s been a staple in our house over the last few weeks and I don’t see it disappearing anytime soon from the weekly menu.
- This dish is loaded with vegan protein thanks to the extra firm tofu in it. I only used half a block of tofu in this recipe but if you are crazy about your protein, go ahead and add the whole thing. The tofu in this healthy pad thai isn’t overly noticeable. My Picky Husband who isn’t a huge tofu fan loved this recipe even with the tofu. Because the tofu is scrambled into small pieces, it is not overwhelming mixed amongst the vegan thai noodles and the veggies. It’s the perfect addition for protein to this dish.
- The vegan sauce used in this gluten free pad thai requires a little finesse but I promise it isn’t over the top. Simply start by creating a slurry and set it aside. A slurry in basic terms is a combination of arrowroot starch or corn starch mixed with water. This is what thickens a sauce and what will thicken this specific vegan sauce. While the slurry is sitting, combine the coconut sugar, sesame oil, sriracha, tamari, and vegetable broth into a pot. Once this mixture comes to a slight boil, remove it from the heat and add in the slurry, whisking constantly. The sauce should immediately thicken. If it thickens too much and forms a gluey texture add 2-5 tbsp of water to thin it out. Then toss this sauce over the vegan thai noodles and veg.
Looking for more 30 minute vegetarian meals? Look no further
If you are partaking in #veganuary or if you are already plant-based and just on the hunt for some epic 30 minute vegetarian meals then look NO FURTHER!! This gluten free pad thai is loaded with a crazy good vegan sauce, scrambled tofu, fresh vegetables and kick ass noods. What could be better than this bowl for a healthy, yet comforting winter bowl? NOTHING.
Gluten Free Pad Thai
- 227 g Pad Thai Noodles (I like Lotus Foods)
- 125 g extra firm tofu (half of a 350g block)
- 1 tbsp oil (for the pan)
- 1 tbsp nutritional yeast
- 1/8 tsp turmeric
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 red pepper (thinly sliced)
- 1-2 carrots (thinly sliced/ spirialized)
- handful of bean sprouts
- 2 green onion (thinly sliced)
- 1 tbsp arrowroot starch
- 3 tbsp water
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 3 tbsp tamari
- 3 tbsp coconut sugar
- 1 tbsp sriracha
- 2/3 cup vegetable broth
- juice of 1 lime
- handful of chopped peanuts
- Pasta: Begin by bringing a pot of water to a boil. Once boiling, add the pasta in and follow the package instructions until al dente.
- Tofu Scramble: While water is boiling for the pasta, heat a medium pan over medium heat and add 1 tbsp of oil. Once hot, begin breaking up the tofu with your fingers and add the crumbled pieces to the pan. Break the pieces further apart by using a wooden spoon. The size is a personal preference. After a few minutes, add the nutritional yeast, turmeric, salt and pepper to the tofu. Continue to cook until the tofu begins to brown a little, but you dont want it to completely dry out. Set aside.
- Veggies: Heat a pan over medium heat and add a small amount of oil. Thinly slice the pepper (option to use a mandoline slicer) and chop the garlic. Add both to the pan and saute for 5 minutes. While the pepper and garlic are cooking, cut the carrots with a mandoline or a knife and thinly slice the green onion and set them aside to be added at the end as fresh veggies along with the bean sprouts.
- Sauce: Begin by making the slurry- add 1 tbsp of arrowroot starch to a bowl with 3 tbsp of water and let sit for 5 minutes. Whisk them together to remove any clumps. Set aside. In the same pan that the pepper and garlic were in (remove them into the tofu pan for the time being), heat 1 tbsp of sesame oil over medium heat. Add the tamari, coconut sugar, sriracha and vegetable broth. Bring to a slight boil while whisking. Then remove the pan from the stove and add in the slurry right away and whisk. The sauce should instantly thicken. If the consistency of the sauce gets kind of "gluey" add in 2-5 tbsp of water to help thin it out. You want the sauce to be thick but smooth and not gluey. If your sauce does not thicken. Add it back to the stove and bring to a slight boil, while whisking constantly until it does thicken.
- Assemble: Drain the water from the pasta, and add the pasta to the tofu, pepper and garlic pan. Add the carrots and top with the sauce. Toss the sauce evenly over the noodles, tofu and vegetables. While dishing out, top each bowl with green onions, bean sprouts and peanuts. Juice 1/2 lime over each bowl. Best enjoyed fresh.