If dinner time is a war, this recipe for Creamy Peanut Thai Noodles is the peace treaty.
And of course it is! It’s delicious. This pasta dish is smothered in a Thai-flavored peanut cream sauce and loaded with chicken, red peppers, carrots, green onions—any vegetable you want really. And that is the wonderful beauty of this peace treaty, not only does everyone love it, but you can sneak in vegetables your family (even you, if you’re honest) might not otherwise eat: cabbage, broccoli, asparagus—even cauliflower tastes good in the rich, full flavor of the sauce. Kids who regularly spit their veggies on the ground may not even notice that what they’re eating is that same vegetable they claimed they hated last night.
One of the problems with homemade peanut sauce is that it never tastes anything like the stuff that you get at authentic Thai restaurants. It tends to taste flat instead of bold and spicy. But this recipe is like having a Thai restaurant in your kitchen! The peanut cream sauce is absolutely amazing—my friends rave about it every time I make it. When I’m planning on having guests at dinner, I often make a recipe and a half of the pasta. People love to help themselves to seconds.
I’m constantly trying out new one dish meals. They’re so convenient. Any night I don’t have to worry about making sure my side dishes cover enough categories in the food pyramid to be healthy is a good night. With this recipe, all your bases are covered—lots of veggies, a nice amount of chicken, and, of course, pasta. (Mom tip: substitute wheat pasta for an even healthier meal.)
Plus—and this is a huge plus—you can whip up this dish in under an hour. That’s right, Creamy Peanut Thai Noodles, a family favorite stocked with vegetables, will fit easily into your busy nighttime routine. In my house, that’s incredibly valuable. And if you want to save even more time, cut up the veggies the morning or night before and store them in a plastic bag in the fridge.
My family loves to eat this dish as a quick meal before an evening out—maybe at a soccer game or a movie. It’s a filling meal that gives everybody a nice energy boost. (Vegetables are a much healthier, longer-lasting source of energy than sugary snacks or pop.) And because it’s a one-dish meal, you can take a bowlful of Creamy Peanut Thai Noodles along with you in the car on a busy evening. (We’ve had to rush a kid or two out the door on more than one occasion. I bet you have too.)
Next time your family is “prepping the missiles,” defuse the tension with these delicious Creamy Peanut Thai Noodles.
Timing – The trick with pasta mix recipes is timing. It’s always complicated to figure out what should be started first to ensure everything is fresh and ready for the final dish. My trick is to always start the water boiling for the pasta first. Then, while that heats up, I cut up all the veggies and sauté them.
Sauce – Occasionally people comment that the sauce is a little too thick for them. Do not, I repeat, do not add water to the recipe to thin it out. There’s a really easy fix if you want thinner sauce: just add a little more chicken broth than the recipe calls for.
It is important to remember that the sauce does tend to thicken up a little bit as it sits on the pasta. So you’ll want to serve this dish right after tossing the pasta and sauce together—don’t wait!
Chicken – One of my favorite kitchen experiments is seeing how much chicken I can add to a dish. This recipe calls for 2-3 cups of cooked and cubed chicken. Honestly, that’s a pretty good balance for the pasta. But, if you want to make the dish heartier, adding another cup of chicken is pretty safe. (Mom tip: when serving an unexpected dinner guest, just add that extra cup of chicken to extend the dish and feed more people.)
Deciding what kind of chicken to use is a complicated game. (Should I just cut up frozen chicken breasts or buy fresh chicken from the store?) The great thing about this recipe is that pretty much any chicken will taste great in the sauce. It is a perfect dish to use up leftover chicken in your fridge. But my favorite thing is to use good rotisserie chicken. It’s moist and delicious and a wonderful compliment to the peanut sauce.
Tools– I use a Microplaner to quickly and easily zest the limes and grate the ginger.
How about some more Asian inspired recipes:
Creamy Peanut Thai Noodles
- 1 Pound Dried Farfalle Pasta
- 3 Tablespoons Asian Sesame Oil~Divided
- 1 1/2 Cups Carrots Julienned
- 4 Cups Purple Cabbage Very Thinly Sliced
- 1 1/2 Cups Green Onions Sliced on the Diagonal
- 1 Red Pepper Julienned
- 2-3 Cups Chicken Cooked and Cut into Large Cubes
- 1/2 Cup Fresh Cilantro Roughly Chopped
- 1/3 Cup Dry Roasted Peanuts
- 1 Teaspoon Cornstarch
- 1/4 Cup Water
- 2 Teaspoons Lime Zest
- 1 Can 13 Ounce Coconut Milk
- 1 1/2 Cups Heavy Cream
- 3 Tablespoons Seasoned Rice Vinegar
- 1/4 Cup Low Sodium Soy Sauce
- 1/2 Cup Creamy Peanut Butter
- 1 Tablespoon Garlic Minced
- 1 Tablespoon Fresh Ginger Grated
- 3/4 Teaspoon Salt
- Juice of 1 Lime
- 1/2 Teaspoon Black Pepper
- Cook pasta in salted water according to package direction and drain well. Return the drained pasta to the dried original cooking pot and toss with 2 Tablespoons sesame oil. Put the lid on the pot to keep it warm and set aside.
- Meanwhile, while the pasta is cooking, make the sauce; in a small bowl, whisk together cornstarch and water.Mix the remaining sauce ingredients except the lime, in a mixing bowl until smooth. Set aside
- Add 1 tablespoon of the sesame oil to a large, high sided saute pan over medium heat. Add the carrots, cabbage, green onion and red pepper, and cook over medium-high until fork tender, about 5 minutes. Pour sauce into the skillet over veggies and bring to a simmer. Add chicken and simmer until chicken is heated through and sauce is nice and thick.
- Pour sauce and veggie mixture over the pasta and toss until well combined. Squeeze lime juice over pasta, toss again, then pour the mixture into a serving dish and sprinkle the top evenly with cilantro and peanuts. Serve 🙂
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Originally published on Spend With Pennies
Source:Gonna Want Seconds