A Must-Make Dish Before You Die: Jet Tila's Drunken Noodles

Ken Goodman
Ken Goodman

Every region of the world has its drunk food. In America, it's often pizza. In parts of China and Thailand, it's drunken noodles, according to chef Jet Tila. The recipe, from his latest cookbook 101 Asian Dishes You Need to Cook Before You Die ($16), features an umami-rich sauce that coats the noodles, veggies, shrimp, and eggs.

Ken Goodman
Ken Goodman
Ken Goodman

My Famous Drunken Noodles


    • Sauce:
    • 2 tablespoons sweet soy sauce
    • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce
    • 1 tablespoon sugar
    • 1 teaspoon sriracha
    • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
    • 6 to 8 Thai basil leaves, cut chiffonade
    • Noodles:
    • 3 tablespoons canola or peanut oil
    • 2 to 3 cloves garlic, minced
    • 2 eggs
    • 1 to 2 serrano chiles, sliced thin
    • 6 to 8 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
    • 1/2 medium white onion, sliced
    • 4 cups fresh rice noodles, separated
    • 1 cup Thai basil leaves, loosely packed
    • 1/2 cup grape tomatoes, halved


    1. Make sauce: Combine all ingredients in a small bowl.

    2. Prepare noodles: In a large sauté pan, heat oil over high heat. When you see a wisp of white smoke, add garlic and sauté until it's light brown.

    3. Add eggs and serrano chiles and lightly scramble the eggs until they're barely set, about a minute.

    4. Add shrimp and onion, folding constantly until shrimp turn pink, about 1 minute.

    5. Add the fresh rice noodles, basil leaves, tomatoes, and sauce and toss to combine for about 3 minutes. Don't be scared to scrape the bits off the bottom before they burn. Cook for 1 additional minute until the noodles are cooked and coated well. Serve hot.


    Famous for being a late-night drinking dish, Drunken Noodles is a marriage between my Thai and Chinese roots. The sauce seems complicated but it’s as simple as measuring and dumping in a bowl. Fresh rice noodles are a deli item at most Asian markets. They are made and delivered fresh daily to the markets. It’s best to buy and use them within 48 hours. A way to tell if they are fresh is just to take the pack and fold it like a towel. If you can fold until the ends touch and the middles aren’t cracking, that’s a sign of freshness.