Thai cuisine food is naturally rich in many keto-friendly foods, such as coconut milk, curry, meats, fish, tofu, and low-carb veggies. However, many dishes contain oyster sauce and added sugars.
You can eat low-carb at most Thai food restaurants by opting for a meat and vegetable stir-fry dish without the brown sauce. You’ll want to make sure the meat is not breaded. Hold any rice that may come with the dish.
Depending on the restaurants’ offers, where you live, and how authentic the dishes are, you might have a wide range of varieties to choose from.
Here are the top lowest carb food options you can order when eating out at Thai restaurants and how to order them to keep it low-carb.
Tom Yum Soup
Tom yum soup (also known as tom yam or sour and hot soup) is a type of hot and flavorful soup with sour and spicy taste. It is usually served with a variety of vegetables (such as tomato, onion, cauliflower, mushroom, lime juice etc…) cooked in the soup and a choice of protein such as chicken or shrimp.
Tom yum noodles is the tom yum soup that is served with noodles. Therefore, you should order the soup version because noodles are not keto-friendly.
What to order: Go with chicken or prawn tom yum soup.
This is a type of chicken curry, usually made with grilled chicken, bell peppers, lime leaves, zucchini, celery and Thai basil.
Simply order this dish and you’re good to go.
A stir-fry large shrimp with garlic, pepper and some herbs and spices.
Thai BBQ Beef
Some restaurants will have this Thai barbecue beef option on their menu. It’s a grilled beef served with sauce and steamed vegetables on a hot BBQ plate.
Your local Thai restaurant might or might not have it, but it’s worth asking for it.
Thai Chicken Satay Skewers
This is a delicious grilled chicken skewers cooked on a BBQ or over hot charcoal and served with vegetables and peanut sauce.
Pad Bai Kra Prow
This stir-fry dish is made in a wok and comes with Thai basil, chili peppers, jalapenos, bell peppers, onions, and a brown savory sauce.
You can get it with your choice of protein, such as chicken, beef, seafood, pork, or tofu.
Be sure to order this without the brown sauce, which usually contains sugar. You’ll also want to make sure the meat is not breaded.
What to order: the Pad Bi Kra Prow with grilled meat, tofu, or seafood. Hold the brown sauce and any rice that comes with the dish.
The primary ingredient in Pad King is ginger, which has incredible anti-inflammatory benefits.
This stir-fry dish also contains chili peppers, onions, mushrooms, bell peppers, and your choice of meat in a brown savory sauce.
Be sure to hold the sauce to keep it low-carb. Also, hold any rice that accompanies the dish.
What to order: the Pad King with your choice of grilled meat, tofu, or seafood minus the sauce and any rice that comes with the meal.
Pad cashew is a stir-fry dish made with your choice of meat or seafood, bell peppers, celery, water chestnuts, carrots, onions, and cashews wok-tossed in a sweet chili sauce.
You can keep it low-carb by opting for grilled (not breaded) meat and holding the sweet chili sauce.
What to order: the Pad cashew with grilled meat, tofu, or seafood without the sauce.
Pad Kra Tiem
The primary ingredient in this stir-fry is garlic. It contains fried garlic, your choice of meat or seafood, and a sweet brown sauce served on a bed of lettuce.
Be sure to go with grilled meat, tofu, or seafood and hold the brown savory sauce to keep it low-carb.
What to order: the Pad Kra Tiem with no sauce. Opt for grilled tofu, meat, or seafood as your choice of protein. This dish is served with lettuce instead of rice, but be sure to hold any rice if offered.
Pad Prik King
This stir-fry dish features red curry paste, which is usually made with red chili peppers, garlic, lemongrass, Thai ginger, lime, peanut or coconut oil, coconut milk, and other spices.
It’s an excellent source of anti-inflammatory nutrients. Plus, it’s a low-carb sauce that you can add to meat and vegetable dishes. A one-tablespoon serving contains around 3 grams of carbs.
Pad Phrik King comes with green beans, bell peppers, jalapeno and your choice of protein in a red curry paste.
You can reduce the carbs by asking for no sauce if you’d like.
What to order: the Pad Prik King without sauce (if you’d like). Also, hold any rice that comes with the dish.
Pad Keaw Wan
This dish contains fresh basil, bell peppers, jalapeno, bamboo, lime leaves, and your choice of protein wok-tossed in a green curry paste.
Most green curry pastes are made with red chili peppers, lemongrass, garlic, onions, salt, pepper, spices, peanut or coconut oil, and sometimes coconut milk. A one-tablespoon serving contains about 3 grams of carbs.
Be sure to order this dish with grilled meat (not breaded). You can hold the curry if you’d like.
What to order: the Pad Keaw Wan with no sauce (optional). Hold any rice that comes with the dish.
This dish comes with your choice of protein and vegetables (bell peppers, fresh basil, jalapenos, bamboo, and lime leaves) wok-tossed in panang curry paste.
Panang curry paste is usually made with lemongrass, chili peppers, various spices, peanut or coconut oil, rice vinegar, and sometimes coconut milk.
You can order it as is or ask to hold the curry if you want to reduce the carbs. Make sure the meat is not breaded.
What to order: the Pad Panang with your choice of protein. Hold the curry if you’d like and any rice that comes with the meal.
Thai Peanut Salad
Thai peanut salad is usually made with fried tofu, hard-boiled eggs, and a blend of low-carb vegetables, such as lettuce, cucumbers, onions, bean sprouts, and tomatoes.
It’s served in peanut sauce with a side of rice. You can make this dish low-carb by holding the peanut sauce, which may have sugar in it, and the side of rice.
What to order: the Thai peanut salad without dressing. Hold the side of rice.
Pra Goong or Yum Nua
This Thai shrimp salad is made with shrimp, cucumber, tomatoes, onions, lemongrass, cilantro, and lime leaves tossed in Thai chili sauce and served over lettuce.
You can make this dish low carb by asking for no chili sauce.
You can also order Yum Nua, which is the beef version of this dish.
What to order: the Pra Goong or Yum Nua without dressing. Also, hold any rice that may come as a side.
Garlic Frog Legs
This dish comes with fried frog legs in a sweet garlic sauce over a bed of lettuce.
Frog legs contain 0 grams per serving, which makes them a suitable low-carb food. You will want to make sure the frog legs are not breaded.
You can reduce the carbs by asking to hold the sweet dressing.
What to order: the garlic frog legs (as long as they are not breaded) without the sweet sauce. Fish sauce is a great alternative.
Thai dishes pack a lot of flavor into their meals. We recommend trying a curry-based stir-fry dish that contains non-breaded meat, seafood, or tofu and vegetables, and unfortunately, no chicken pad thai.
You will want to hold any sugary sauces that come with your dish. Also, hold any rice that is served as a side. You can ask for lettuce or steamed veggies to serve with.
Most restaurants should be able to make you a wok-tossed meal with sauteed meat and vegetables in a healthy oil without added sugars. Stick with water or unsweetened tea as your beverage choice.
*Photo by DragonImages/depositphotos