Your Ultimate Guide to Chiang Mai Food
Traveling to Thailand takes you to a place like nowhere else on Earth. Whether you’re all about the buzzing nightlife of Bangkok or you’re interested in seeing as many beautiful beaches as possible, Thailand has what you’re looking for. Along the way, though, you’ve got to make time for food! The food is one of the best attractions in this part of the world. Between all the spices used to cook and the age-old traditions of how certain things are made, you have to get every bite of Thai food you can. If you’re headed to Chiang Mai and not sure what to try first, here’s a list of the top Chiang Mai food dishes to save room for.
Khao Soi – Egg Noodle Curry
Khao Soi is everywhere in Chiang Mai. It’s one of the most popular dishes for locals and visitors alike, and for good reason.
Imagine your favorite ramen and curry dishes mixed together. This is the best way to describe the interesting flavors, smells, and textures of the dish. It’s savory without being too heavy, and it’s a great first dish to have when you get off the plane and need a good meal.
Tom Sab – Hearty, Delicious Soup
Another dish you can slurp and sip is Tom Sab. This soup has a few variations, so if you like it, it’s worth ordering it more than once as you visit all the best restaurants in Chiang Mai.
The main difference you’ll find among Tom Sab dishes is whether the soup comes with pork or fish. This changes the broth a bit, too. Still, the soup’s hearty protein mixed with mushroom, chilies, and local vegetables is an undeniably delicious combination.
Tam Khanun – Jackfruit Salad
Soups and curry are a nice way to start exploring the cuisine of Chaing Mai. They’re true representations of local food without being anything too far from what you might normally have at home.
If you’re interested in expanding your taste buds, though, you have to try Tam Khanun. The base for this dish is jackfruit – an exotic fruit that tastes kind of like an apple and pineapple mixed together, with the texture of calamari.
Once the dish is ready, though, you can barely recognize the jackfruit! The cooking process requires the fruit to be slow-cooked, shredded, and mixed with all kinds of spices. It looks more like pulled pork than fruit when plated, but one bite gives you a world of sweet, spicy, and savory flavors.
Khao Ko Moo – Slow-Cooked Pig Leg
There are things that look kind of like pulled pork, and then there’s Chaing Mai food that’s centered around a slow-cooked pig leg. If you’re looking for a delicious, hearty meal, order Khao Ko Moo.
This pig in this dish is slow-cooked for 15-20 hours! It’s super tender and comes with the perfect blend of spices and a touch of smokiness from sitting over a fire for so long.
As if the pork itself isn’t good enough, Khao Ko Moo comes with rice, a rich gravy, and a few variations depending on where you go. Some people serve it with an egg, others with vegetables, and others as-is, which is super good, too.
Sai Oua – Grilled Herb Sausage
Another meat dish you have to try is Sai Oua. This isn’t your average sausage link. Sai Oua is mixed with chilies, garlic, shallots, and a blend of other herbs and spices.
It has a rich, meaty texture combined with a very interesting flavor mix. The result? A local food you won’t be able to get enough of!
Sai Oua is great as a snack, an appetizer to share, or a meal for yourself. Whichever way you order it, you won’t be disappointed.
Miang Kham – Bite-Size Wraps
Speaking of appetizers, if you need a snack in-between adventures and exploring, make sure you order Miang Kham. These are light, bite-size wraps that come with all kinds of filings.
Some are strictly veggie while others have some meat included, but all of them are very tasty. Grab a few to share with friends or order this as your own starter for a meal.
Khanom Krok – Sweet Dumplings
What’s missing on this list? Something sweet!
As great as all the savory dishes and big plates are in this corner of the world, the desserts deserve their time to shine, too. Always save room for a bit of mango with soft rice or if your sweet tooth is really hungry, order a plate of Khanom Krok.
These sweet dumplings will blow your mind. They begin with rice flour and coconut milk, then they’re cooked with toppings like sweetcorn or pumpkin. The result is a melt-in-your-mouth sweet goodness that is just too amazing to explain right – you have to try it yourself to understand.
Don’t forget to order a cup of coffee with your dumplings, too. The coffee in Thailand is unlike anything else in the world. It’s worth trying if you consider yourself somewhat of a coffee connoisseur.
Discover the Best Chiang Mai Food, Attractions, and More!
Most people heading to Chiang Mai are eager to find the best pad Thai in town or maybe thinking about biting into an insect on a stick or two. After all, when in Thailand… right?
Beyond these well-known dishes, though, there’s plenty of incredible Chiang Mai food to try. You just have to find it all – and make sure you save room for the next dish!
Howie’s HomeStay introduce you to the best Thai recipes when you stay with them. For more insights on what to do in Chiang Mai and Thailand as a whole, click here for food recommendations, fun attractions, shopping destinations, and much more.