Food in Phuket
Savory Food in Phuket
You’ve probably had Thai food in your home country and maybe you’re wondering what it’s like in Thailand. It’s similar… with more fish options (think fish balls). You can get Pad Thai, green curry, chicken basil, chicken cashew, spring rolls, noodle soup, and plenty more. You can get all these things in a variety of ways:
- Meat options are usually chicken, pork, shrimp, or fish (e.g. Pad Thai with chicken)
- You can get a dish spicy or often you can request it not spicy (“Not spicy” in Thai: mai pen)
- You can get each dish at a wide range of costs (For green curry I’ve paid 50 baht, 90 baht, 120 baht, and I’ve seen it for 150 and up at nicer places)
It’s said that it’s hard to find a bad Thai restaurant because if it existed, it would quickly go out of business. Thai people love food. Thai people love food in a “way of life” kind of way, similar to how you might imagine an Italian feels about food. I was told that the Thais do not chat about the weather, like we often do in Western societies. Instead, small talk for Thai people is about food. “Have you eaten yet?” is a common greeting. Needless to say, if you like food you should visit Thailand.
None of the below dishes cost more than $3.40
Below is BBQ-ed pork with rice, chili sauce, and awesome Thai soup. Total cost, 50 baht ($1.65). The restaurant is a local place with plastic chairs and a street-side kitchen. In Thailand, even in tourist destinations, you don’t need much to afford great meals.
An even better local lunch, 50 baht per entree:
With all the sauces added:
If you’ve got a sensitive stomach, go to Russia. Or Canada. Just kidding (-: You don’t have to cancel your trip, there’s plenty of good stuff for you here. Order a simple stir-fry: chicken, vegetables, and rice. Sweet and source chicken is popular too.
Whatever you do, get Pad Thai! The below Pad Thai was from a street vendor with a canopy and some plastic tables and chairs. It cost 50 baht and was as delicious as anywhere I’ve been.
If street side restaurants are a bit too rough for you, or if you’re an atmosphere junkie, you’re going to end up paying more for the same quality. Still, if that is fine by you, there’s no shortage of swanky places to get your meals.
Still, you shouldn’t short change yourself. Get at least some street food! Street food not only cheap, it is often better or not even on the menu at restaurants. I doubt you will find corn with coconut and sugar at any restaurant but for about 80 U.S. cents a street cart can hand you some of the oddest, greatest food you’ll ever have:
And you haven’t experienced Thailand until you’ve eaten 10 baht (30 U.S. cents) spring rolls from a street vendor. Those little babies get me so excited I wrote an entire post on them.
If you get your dinner from a street cart, for dessert all you have to do is walk ten feet to the next street car. In tourist destinations like Patong, you’ll find a dozen crepe options (banana+nutella is a specialty).
To read more about ‘Sweet Food in Thailand’, read this guide!
Thai Grocery Stores
Can’t live without the occasional Western-food indulgence? No problem. Go get yourself some:
- Ritz crackers
- Chips O’Hoy
- A Mars bar
- Cookies’n Cream Hershey Bar
Phuket has several places to find Western indulgences. Here’s our full guide.