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Top 10 Local Foods to Try in Bangkok

Don’t miss out on these Thai favourites

Bangkok, the bustling capital of Thailand, is renowned for its diverse and flavorful culinary scene that encompasses street food stalls, bustling markets, and elegant restaurants. To truly experience the city’s gastronomic offerings, it’s essential to sample local dishes that showcase the authentic tastes and aromas of Thai cuisine. In this article, we’ll introduce you to the top 10 local foods that you simply must try during your visit to Bangkok.

Street Food Delights

Pad Thai (Stir-Fried Rice Noodles)

A quintessential Thai dish, Pad Thai consists of stir-fried rice noodles with various ingredients such as shrimp, chicken, tofu, eggs, bean sprouts, and peanuts, all tossed in a sweet and tangy tamarind sauce. You’ll find this popular dish at street food stalls and markets throughout Bangkok.

Som Tam (Green Papaya Salad)

A refreshing and spicy dish, Som Tam features shredded green papaya, tomatoes, green beans, and peanuts, all mixed in a zesty dressing made from lime juice, fish sauce, garlic, and chili. This salad is an excellent choice for a light yet flavorful meal.

Moo Ping (Grilled Pork Skewers)

Moo Ping is a popular street food snack comprising marinated pork grilled on bamboo skewers. The meat is tender and juicy, with a sweet and savory flavor that comes from the marinade of soy sauce, oyster sauce, and sugar.

Gai Tod (Fried Chicken)

Thai-style fried chicken, or Gai Tod, is a deliciously crispy and aromatic dish often found at street food vendors. The chicken is typically marinated in a blend of spices, such as garlic, coriander, and white pepper, before being deep-fried to perfection.

Khanom Buang (Thai Crispy Pancakes)

These delightful Thai crispy pancakes are made from rice flour batter, which is cooked until thin and crispy. They’re typically filled with sweet or savory toppings, such as coconut cream, egg yolk threads, or minced shrimp, and folded into a taco-like shape.

Classic Thai Dishes

Tom Yum Goong (Spicy Shrimp Soup)

A fragrant and fiery soup, Tom Yum Goong features shrimp, lemongrass, galangal, kaffir lime leaves, and chili in a spicy and sour broth. The dish is a harmonious blend of flavors and is often considered a must-try when visiting Thailand.

Green Curry (Kaeng Khiao Wan)

Green curry is a rich and creamy dish made with green curry paste, coconut milk, meat (usually chicken, pork, or beef), and various vegetables like eggplant and bamboo shoots. The dish gets its vibrant color from the green chilies used in the curry paste and offers a delightful balance of spicy and sweet flavors.

Massaman Curry

A unique Thai curry with Persian influences, Massaman curry features a rich and aromatic sauce made from Massaman curry paste, coconut milk, tamarind, and a mix of spices such as cinnamon, cloves, and cardamom. The dish typically includes meat, potatoes, and peanuts, and is served with steamed jasmine rice.

Khao Soi

(Northern Thai Coconut Curry Noodle Soup) A specialty from northern Thailand, Khao Soi consists of a creamy coconut curry broth with tender braised meat (usually chicken or beef) and egg noodles, topped with crispy fried noodles, pickled mustard greens, red onions, and lime. This comforting dish is a delicious fusion of flavors and textures.

Mango Sticky Rice (Khao Niew Mamuang)

A popular Thai dessert, mango sticky rice features sweet glutinous rice served with ripe mango slices and drizzled with a rich coconut cream sauce. The combination of juicy mango, creamy sauce, and slightly chewy rice creates a delightful contrast of textures and flavors that make this dessert a favorite among locals and tourists alike.

Tips for Exploring Bangkok’s Food Scene

Trying street food at local markets and food stalls

To get a true taste of Bangkok’s culinary offerings, venture out to the city’s many street food stalls and local markets, where you’ll find a wide range of delicious and affordable dishes.

Visiting popular food-centric areas

Explore food-centric areas such as Chinatown (Yaowarat) and Ratchawat Market, which are known for their mouthwatering street food offerings and diverse dining options.

Ordering dishes with varying spice levels

Thai cuisine is known for its spiciness, but not every dish is fiery hot. Experiment with dishes that have varying levels of heat to find the perfect balance for your taste buds.

Taking a Thai cooking class

Consider signing up for a Thai cooking class to learn about the local ingredients and techniques used in preparing your favorite dishes. This hands-on experience will give you a deeper appreciation for Thai cuisine and allow you to recreate the flavors at home.

Exploring the city’s diverse dining options

Bangkok offers a wide variety of dining options, from street vendors and casual eateries to upscale restaurants. Be adventurous and sample dishes from different settings to fully experience the city’s gastronomic delights.


Bangkok is a food lover’s paradise, offering an array of local dishes that showcase the authentic flavors and aromas of Thai cuisine. Whether you’re indulging in street food delights or classic Thai dishes, be adventurous and sample a variety of local foods during your visit.

By doing so, you’ll not only satisfy your taste buds but also gain a deeper understanding and appreciation of Thai culture. Here’s to a delicious and memorable culinary journey through Bangkok!

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