Make this wonderfully seasoned Pad Thai dish, packed with vegetables and noodles, in the Instant Pot for a simple, fast, homemade meal that's better than takeout.
INSTANT POT PAD THAI RECIPE
Pad Thai is a delicious Asian dish, that can be found and ordered from Thai restaurants everywhere. It's rice noodles tossed in a sweet and savory sauce, usually topped with chopped peanuts, hot peppers, and bean sprouts.
Traditional pad thai includes tamarind paste and fish sauce, but we're leaving both of those out in favor of using simplified, vegan ingredients instead.
This dish is slightly different everywhere you order it, and can very easily be customized with meat, tofu, and vegetable add-ins, especially when you make it yourself.
This Instant Pot Pad Thai recipe is gluten free, vegetarian, vegan, and full of veggies. I've included all of my favorites, including snow peas, carrots, and zucchini to make a colorful and flavorful Pad Thai that rivals dishes I've eaten at Thai Restaurants.
Making takeout dishes at home lets me control all of the ingredients, and eliminates any risk of cross-contamination of gluten, so I'm more than happy to do it. Using the Instant Pot makes quick, simple work of it too.
Prefer to make dinner using the stovetop? Try this recipe for Tofu Pad Thai.
INGREDIENTS IN INSTANT POT PAD THAI
Vegetable Stock - You can use water if you don't have stock. This is the liquid needed to operate the instant pot, and what cooks all of the ingredients.
Brown Sugar - A bit of sugar gives our Pad Thai its distinctive sweet/savory flavor.
Sesame Oil - This nutty oil is used in the sauce to add a warm, savory flavor.
Lime - The juice of one lime gives us a fresh, citrus kick.
Minced Garlic - Mince your own, or use the jarred prepared kind. Both work perfectly.
Grated Ginger - You need about 1 inch of ginger to get the amount that we need for this recipe. Prepared ginger can also be found at most grocery stores in tubes and is very convenient, particularly if you only need a little bit of ginger every once in a while.
Green Onions - These mild onions add a home cooked flavor to Pad Thai.
Carrots - Slice your carrots into matchstick pieces so they are easy to eat with the noodles.
Zucchini - Slice the zucchini the same as you did the carrots.
Rice Noodles - For this recipe you'll need dry noodles rather than fresh ones.
Bean Sprouts - I love these crunchy sprouts, and they are a traditional Pad Thai inclusion.
Snow Peas - We'll add these in the end so as not to cook them too much. I love the color and crunch that they add. I cut them in half so they are easy to eat with chopsticks.
Chopped Raddish and Chopped Peanuts - Garnish the top of your Pad Thai bowls with these too for flavor and more crunch.
If you have any questions, please leave a comment below and I will get back to you ASAP!
WHAT TO SERVE WITH INSTANT POT PAD THAI
This is a full meal on it's own, but could benefit from some extra protein.
For a filling Asian meal, serve pad thai with these Vegetarian Thai Lettuce Wraps stuffed with crumbled tofu in a delicious sauce.
WHAT CAN I PUT ON TOP OF PAD THAI INSTEAD OF PEANUTS?
If you don't like peanuts or have an allergy, you can just leave them off. Your Pad Thai will still be delicious! Alternatively, you can top your dish with sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, or chopped almonds.
MORE DELICIOUS VEGETARIAN TAKE OUT RECIPES:
Sesame Tofu is one of my favorites. Crispy pan fried tofu is tossed with a sweet, savory and spicy sauce. It's delicious served with rice.
Need a quick and easy meal? Try Air Fryer Fried Rice!
Another instant pot Asian meal, Instant Pot Ramen is a favorite at my house. It's comforting and so tasty.
Make Air Fryer Edamame to enjoy this veggie snack in just a few minutes.
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Instant Pot Pad Thai
- Instant Pot
- 1 ¾ cup Vegetable Stock or water
- ½ cup Soy Sauce If you are gluten-free make sure the soy sauce is gf
- 2 tbsp Brown Sugar
- 1 tbsp Sesame Oil
- 1 Lime Juiced (about 1 tablespoon)
- 1 tsp Minced Garlic
- 1 tsp Grated Ginger
- 2 Green Onions thinly sliced
- 8 oz. Pad Thai Rice Noodles
- 2 Carrots thinly sliced or in matchsticks
- 1 cup Bean Sprouts
- 1 cup Snow Peas
- 1 zucchini thinly sliced or in matchsticks
- 2 tbsp chopped radish
- ½ cup chopped peanuts
Optional to add more flavor:
- red pepper flakes
- Sriracha (to taste)
- lime (additional fresh lime juice squeezed on serving)
- Gather all ingredients together. Press Saute on the Instant Pot and add in the vegetable stock, soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil, lime juice, garlic, and ginger. Whisk the sauce and allow it to cook until the brown sugar dissolves-- about 2 minutes.
- Add the green onions and pad thai noodles. Spoon some of the sauce mixture over the noodles so they get saturated.
- Turn the Instant Pot to Pressure Cook-Manual for 3 minutes. Make sure the valve is in the sealing position. When the Instant Pot has finished cooking, let the mixture "natural" release for 2 minutes, then release the pressure manually by switching the valve to the venting position-- be careful, it will steam.
- Remove the lid and stir to make sure the noodles do not stick to the bottom of the insert. Add in the carrots, bean sprouts, snow peas and zucchini.
- Attach the lid and once again, turn the Instant Pot to Pressure Cook-Manual for 0 minutes. Once the timer goes off, immediately release the pressure manually by switching to the venting position. Mix together.
- Garnish with sliced radish and chopped peanuts and enjoy.
- These proteins can be added after the Pad Thai has already cooked: Cooked scrambled or hard boiled eggs, cooked tofu.
- TIP: I like to spoon the sauce over the uncooked pad thai noodles before you place the lid on the Instant Pot. I find it helps them soak up more liquid and cook more evenly.
- I like to spoon the sauce over the uncooked pad thai noodles before you place the lid on the Instant Pot. I find it helps them soak up more liquid and cook more evenly.
- I find that the vegetables get too mushy if put in to cook with the pad thai noodles, so I like to add them after the noodles have already cooked. To let them steam and cook through, immediately after the noodles have finished cooking and the pressure is released, I open up the lid and add the vegetables. Immediately put the lid back on the Instant Pot, set the valve to sealing and set the timer for 0 minutes. Basically, the pressure will build up and then once it builds, the timer will go off. It takes just 4-5 minutes, which is enough for the vegetables to cook through. I also like to place my vegetables in the Instant Pot in the order they are listed in the ingredients list. Carrots go on the bottom since they are heartier and need a little extra heat to cook through. Zucchini goes on the way top, since it doesn’t need as much cooking time and tends to get mushy easily.
- If you find that your noodles have soaked up all the liquid and you don’t have a little extra liquid before you place the vegetables in the Instant Pot, just add an additional ¼ cup of water or vegetable broth and give it a quick stir. This will help ensure that the noodles don’t get stuck to the bottom of the pan while the vegetables steam.
All though this website attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, the information should only be considered an estimate. Varying factors such as different product types, different brands, etc. can change nutritional information. It is your responsibility as a consumer to read all labels to make sure the ingredients fit your dietary needs as well as calculate your own nutritional information as a double check.