Thai cooking ingredients form the foundation of Thai cuisine and may be very exotic and mysterious to anyone not born and raised in Thailand. The ingredients which make up every real Thai food recipes are crucial to not only providing authentic flavor, color and texture to the dishes, but also in representing the very soul of the Thai national identity.
During this article and all the pages which make up the ingredient section, I will demystify the common and basic ingredients found in Thai cuisine and explain how they are used, their significance and how to purchase them for use at home.
Common Thai Cooking Ingredients
Here are some of the many special ingredients used in cooking Thai food. I detail many of these through this website and hope that you will learn to love them!
- Thai food ingredients provides authentic tastes and sensations to variety of delicious dishes. These common items are essential to prepare food in Thai kitchen
- Thai food spices add a bit of kick to many of the national dishes. Thai cooking spices can be easily modified for taste and personal preference, making the cuisine more appealing to less adventurous eaters!
- Thai chili peppers are seemingly ubiquitous parts of some many real Thai food recipes.
- Thai basil is much different than other types of the herb, offering more minty and spicy flavors which are wonderful in Thai cooking or any type of cuisine. I love to add it to my Italian dishes, as well!
- Lemon grass is a common part of many Thai recipes and adds a unique flavor characteristic to the best Thai cooking.
- Cilantro is a favorite among Thai herbs.
- Thai cuisine does not use lemon, but the lime is found in a great number of authentic recipes. Always keep lots of limes on hand when considering preparing any Thai food at home!
- Fish sauce is another virtually universal ingredient in a great number of dishes. The preparation of this product is rather complicated and I recommend buying it bottled from an Asian market. It’s cheap and a little goes a long way.
- Soy sauce is utilized in many noodle dishes and Thai soup recipes. This sauce gives a salty taste. It is perfect for vegetarian and vegan.
- Seasoning sauce is all-purpose sauce offering a unique flavor to season many Thai dishes. Golden mountain or Maggi brown seasoning sauce work just great.
- Oyster sauce provides tons of flavors to variety of stir-fried dishes.
- Sriracha hot sauce is commonly paired with Thai omelet. This sauce is utilized to mix with other sauces to create variety of dipping sauces.
- Yellow bean sauce is utilized in many noodle recipes and stir fried recipes. This sauce creates nice salty bean flavor to lots of delicious dishes.
- Jasmine rice is the definitive rice found in Thai cuisine which Thai people usually eat for every meal.
- Sticky rice is the short gain rice which has a gluey texture. I typically prepare sticky rice to be served with northern Thai cuisine, northeast Thai cuisine, and Thai desserts. The consistency is really different than other type of rice.
Buying Thai Cooking Ingredients
Thai food is all about enticing flavors. In order for your recipes to have the needed characteristics of true and authentic Thai food, you need to use the very best ingredients. Luckily, many popular Thai food items are available at your local grocery store or Asian market.
If this is not the case in your area, many are available on culinary websites and online specialty food shops. When you are really stuck for an ingredient, but really want to try a recipe, I will always try to suggest some substitutes for the harder-to-find ingredients in my recipes.
Thai Cooking Ingredients Summary
In order to create anything worthwhile in life, you need to have the raw materials. Shopping for Thai food ingredients can be rather intimidating for those who have never done it before, but it is not too difficult and can actually be really, really fun.
Remember, cooking is an artistic expression and should truly be a joy. Shopping for your recipes can be just as enjoyable as making the dishes themselves. Experiment! Take chances! Try something new and exciting! If you are lucky enough to have an Asian market near you or within a reasonable distance, make a trip to check it out. You will be delighted at all the wonders you will find!
If not, many major food stores have an Asian section where most ingredients can still be easily found. If you are really stuck, then consider purchasing some of the needed ingredients online. This is fast and possible for virtually anyone who wants to cook Thai, but does not have access to the real raw materials they need. If you have any questions about Thai cooking ingredients, you can write to me anytime!