A healthy spin on an authentic Thai dish. This dish is low in calories but packed with so much flavor: spicy, sweet, salty. and a little boozy. Hey, it’s called drunken noodles for a reason!
I seriously have the best boss in the world. I walked into work the other day with a gift on my desk chair. It was the Chrissy Teigen cookbook, Cravings. I had wanted this cookbook since Christmas. My boss knew that I had lost it during a company white elephant gift exchange and how bad I wanted it. When she learned I had yet to get a copy, she surprised me with one. A just because gift.
No better way to start a work day then with an unexpected gift. It put a big smile on my face for the entire day! I know, she’s amazing!
I had to make my boss proud and cook up one of the dishes from the cookbook and put my healthy, danilicious spin on it!
One weekend, I was perusing through the cookbook to see what it had to offer. This cookbook is fire. It has delicious, indulgent, and many thai-inspired creations. It was hard to select the first dish I wanted to test because all of them look so amazing.
While flipping through the pages, I landed upon Chrissy’s Actual Drunken Noodles. It literally has whiskey in the sauce. This was perfect. For one, I love Asian noodle dishes, with the noodles soaking up the delicious sweet and spicy sauce. Yum! My husband and I also have a ritual of ending our weekend with a bourbon old fashioned, which would pair perfectly with this dish.
I decided I would lighten up the dish by slightly readjusting the sauce to use less sugar and using carrot noodles instead of traditional wide rice noodles. I also topped it with a soft boiled egg because, well why not! And of course, I added in the same bourbon that was in our old fashioned’s. They say cook with what you would drink.
The final product turned out wonderful. It’s sweet, pretty darn spicy, and slightly boozy. A totally addicting, basically guilt free dish.
Let’s get to cooking.
First, let’s make the sauce. Whisk together low sodium soy, hoisin, oyster sauce, brown sugar, mirin, chili paste, ground ginger, and garlic. Oh, and of course some bourbon! Sauce is done.
I adjusted Chrissy’s recipe by lowering the amount of brown sugar used as I wanted to lower the sugar content (make it a little healthier). I also added ginger and hoisin. I think hoisin has this wonderful sweet, umami flavor that would amp up the sauce. I also just love ginger and thought its spicy, floral bite would help to tone down the sweetness.
The sauce is money. It’s packed with flavor. A nice spicy punch. The perfect amount of sweetness. Full of umami goodness. And a boozy kick to round it all out. Chrissy was genius by actually adding booze. I mean it’s called drunken noodles, so the sauce should make you a little drunk, right!? (just getting, you won’t get drunk, maybe just a little tipsy :)).
The second adjustment I made to the recipe is swapping the rice noodles with carrot noodles. Traditionally, drunken noodles are made with a thick, flat noodle. It’s easy to mimic this shape with the carrot noodles. You just need to use a vegetable peeler to make long, flat, thin strips that resemble a noodle.
Time to cook. With a wok or large skillet, heat about a tablespoon of avocado or peanut oil (both of these oils have a high smoking point, so will cook the veggies quickly).
First, add in the broccoli and a pinch of salt and cook until browned.
Next, add in the spinach and cook until it’s wilted. Also, season with a little salt. Remove the broccoli and spinach from the pan and set aside.
Heat a little more oil in the wok and add in the carrot noodles. Cook for about 3-4 minutes, or until the noodles start to soften but are not mushy.
Add back in the broccoli spinach mixture and stir until it is well combined with the noodles. Pour in that luscious, delicious sauce until all of the noodles are coated. You may have extra. Go ahead and store this gold in your fridge to use later and liven up other dishes!
The last change I made to the recipe is forgoing scrambles eggs, and instead adding a soft boiled egg. I have been obsessed with soft boiled eggs lately. It’s basically a hard boiled egg cooked a little less so the yolk is still runny. It makes any dish look pretty and fancy and the runny egg yolk mixes with the sauce to make magic.
To make a soft boiled egg, you need to fill a sauce pan with cold water and a teaspoon or more of salt. Add in the eggs. Bring the water to a boil. As soon as the water starts bubbling, take the pot off the heat and cover with a lid. Let it sit for 5 and 1/2 minutes. Take the eggs out of the water and immediately into an ice bath. The ice bath stops the cooking process and also shocks the egg so it releases from the shell ands makes it easier to peel.
Finally, garnish with lime juice, sliced scallions, and crushed cashews.
You can basically top anything with a soft-boiled egg. Avocado toast. Soup. Or drunken noodles!
This dish is my new favorite. I have been eating it 2-3 times a week. It’s that good.
It’s such a fun, delicious, seriously addicting dish!
I cannot wait to try out other recipes in the cookbook. I have a feeling I will not be disappointed!
Thai Drunken Carrot Noodles
A spicy, sweet, slightly boozy authentic Thai dish with a healthy spin.
- 1/2 cup soy
- 2 tablespoon coconut or brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 2 tablespoons hoisin
- 1 tablespoon mirin
- 2 1/2 tablespoons bourbon
- 1 1/2 tablespoons chili paste less if you don't want it too spicy
- 1 tablespoon fresh garlic
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 pound carrots cut into ribbons
- 1 head of broccoli cut into pieces
- 1 bag spinach
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup sliced green onion
- 1/4 cup crushed cashews
- 6 soft boiled eggs
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds
- 1 lime cut into wedges
Cut carrots into ribbons. I used a vegetable peeler to make big, thick slices. They should resemble a wide rice noodles.
Make the sauce by whisking together all of the ingredients. Set aside.
In a wok, heat 1 tablespoons avocado or peanut oil. When it starts to smoke, add in the broccoli and a pinch of salt. Cook until brown. Add in spinach and cook until spinach wilts. Season with salt and pepper. Take out of wok and set aside.
Heat another tablespoon of oil in the pan and add the noodles. Cook for 3-4 minutes, or until cooked and more pliable. Add in the broccoli and spinach. Pour in desired amount of sauce.
Divide the dish into 6 plates. Top with sliced green onion and crushed cashews. Add a soft boiled egg to each plate. Sprinkle salt, pepper, and toasted sesame seeds on the soft boiled egg.
The sauce will last in your fridge for up to two weeks.
This dish was inspired, and adapted from Chrissy Teigen's Actual Drunken Noodles.