Thai Dishes Your Kids Will Beg for On Your Next Family Trip!

Thailand is a treasure trove of flavours, with its vibrant street food and aromatic dishes drawing food lovers from around the globe. But what about when you travel with children?
You might worry that the spicy and complex Thai cuisine will be too much for young palates. Look around you in these streets. Some Thai children are running, playing, eating and ordering at these street vendors. So do not worry. Thailand offers a variety of dishes that are perfect for kids. Here’s a guide to kid-friendly Thai dishes that your little ones will love.

Another advantage compared to Western restaurants is that the children will see their dish before eating it. Most restaurants give you a menu, and you select your dishes. In Thailand and other parts of Asia, you can select your dish and choose between meat or seafood you would like to have cooked.

Pad Thai (ผัดไทย)

Start with the iconic Pad Thai. This dish is a fantastic introduction to Thai cuisine for kids. Made with stir-fried rice noodles, shrimp, eggs, tofu or chicken, bean sprouts, and peanuts. Pad Thai is mildly flavored and deliciously savory and sweet. You can customize the ingredients to suit your child’s preferences. You can ask for less spice or skip the peanuts in case of allergy concern.

Why Kids Will Love It:

  • The noodles are fun to eat.
  • The flavours are mild and sweet.
  • A familiar dish with chicken or tofu and vegetables.

Khao Pad (ข้าวผัด) Fried Rice

Khao Pad

Khao Pad, or Thai fried rice, is another excellent choice for children. This dish typically features rice stir-fried with eggs, vegetables, and protein like chicken, shrimp, or pork. It’s lightly seasoned with soy sauce and fish sauce, making it a comforting and tasty meal for children.

Why Kids Will Love It:

  • Similar to fried rice they might already enjoy.
  • A balanced meal with protein and vegetables.
  • Easy to eat with a spoon or fork (no knife in Thailand).

Gai Tod (ไก่ทอด) Fried Chicken

The Gai Tod, or Thai fried chicken, will be a hit with kids. The chicken is marinated in a flavorful mixture and then fried until crispy. It’s usually served with sweet chilli dipping sauce, but you can always ask for the sauce on the side or skip it altogether for a less spicy option.

Why kids will love it:

  • Crispy and delicious.
  • Chicken – is a kid’s favorite!
  • You can enjoy it with or without dip.

Satay (สะเต๊ะ) Chicken, Porc,…

Satay skewers, usually made with chicken, pork, or beef, are marinated in a mildly spiced mixture and then grilled. They’re served with a peanut dipping sauce and sometimes a cucumber relish. The skewers are fun for kids to eat, and the flavors are mild enough to be enjoyable for young palates.

Why Kids Will Love It:

  • Eating food on a stick is always fun.
  • The peanut sauce is sweet and savory.
  • It’s easy to handle and not too spicy.

Spring Rolls (ปอเปี๊ยะทอด)

Thai spring rolls are light, crispy and filled with a mix of vegetables and sometimes meat or shrimp. They are often served with a sweet and sour sauce. These can make a great appetizer or snack for kids, offering familiar flavors in a fun, crunchy package.

Why kids will love it:

  • They’re crunchy and delicious.
  • They can be eaten with hands.
  • The dipping sauce is sweet and tangy

Kai Jeow (ไข่เจียว) Thai Omelette

Thai omelette

Kai Jeow, or Thai omelette, is a simple yet satisfying dish that kids will adore. It’s made by beating eggs with fish sauce and then frying them until they’re golden and crispy on the edges. Often served over rice, this dish is both comforting and delicious.

Why Kids Will Love It:

  • It’s familiar and egg-based.
  • The crispy edges add a fun texture.
  • It’s often served with rice, making it a complete meal.

Moo Ping (หมูปิ้ง) Thai Grilled Pork 

Thai Porc

Moo Ping, or grilled pork skewers, are another street food favorite that kids will enjoy. The pork is marinated in a sweet and savory mix and then grilled. These skewers are typically served with sticky rice, making them a great handheld meal for little ones. This is more an Isan food region specialty.

Why Kids Will Love It:

  • The skewers are easy to eat.
  • The pork is sweet and tender.
  • Sticky rice adds a fun, chewy texture.

Som Tam Thai (ส้มตำไทย) Papaya Salad

Som Tam Thai, or green papaya salad, can be adjusted to be kid-friendly by asking for it to be made without chilli. This salad is made with shredded green papaya, tomatoes, green beans, peanuts, and a tangy lime dressing. When made mild, it’s a refreshing and crunchy dish that kids can enjoy.

Why Kids Will Love It:

  •  It’s a great way to introduce kids to salads.
  •  The flavors are refreshing and not too strong.
  •  The textures are crunchy and fun

Tom Kha Gai (ต้มข่าไก่) Thai coconut soup

Tom Kha Gai, or chicken coconut soup, is a creamy and mildly spiced soup that is perfect for kids. Made with coconut milk, chicken, mushrooms, and lemongrass, this soup is very flavorful. The gentle flavors and creamy texture make it an ideal introduction to Thai soups for children.

Why Kids Will Love It:

  • It’s creamy and comforting.
  • The flavors are mild and fragrant.
  • It’s a great way to introduce new ingredients.

Khao Man Gai (ข้าวมันไก่) Rice oily chicken

Khao Man Gai (ข้าวมันไก่)

Khao man gai is a popular Thai street food dish. Tender boiled chicken served over fragrant rice cooked in chicken broth. It is free of spice or any additional flavors, unlike most Thai dishes. It is however, very popular!

Why Kids Will Love It:

  • It’s easy to find
  • Chicken is king with kids
  • Can be good in case of bad stomach

Guay Teow (ก๋วยเตี๋ยว) Noodle Soup

Porc noodle soup

Guay Teow, also known as Thai noodle soup, is a versatile dish that can be customized to suit children’s preferences. The broth is usually mild, and you have a choice of different types of noodles and proteins. Chicken, pork, shrimp, seafood, or tofu, Children must try them all.

Why Kids Will Love It:

  • They can slurp the noodles.
  • The broth is flavorful but mild.
  • Warm, comforting meal.

Tod Mun Goong (ทอดมันกุ้ง) Deep Fried Shrimp Cakes

Tod Mun Goong, or Thai shrimp cakes, are delicious and kid-friendly. These cakes are made with shrimp paste, herbs, and spices, then deep-fried until golden. They’re often served with a sweet and sour dipping sauce, making them a tasty snack or appetizer.

Why Kids Will Love It:

  • They’re crispy and flavorful.
  • The dipping sauce is sweet and tangy.
  • Bite-sized and easy to eat.

Thai Pancakes (โรตี)

Thai pancakes, or Roti, are a popular street food dessert that kids will love. These are thin, flaky pancakes often filled with bananas, Nutella, or sweetened condensed milk. Rotis are cooked on a hotplate until crisp, then topped with sweet drizzles.

Why Kids Will Love It:

  • They’re sweet and delicious.
  • Kids can customize the filling.
  • They’re crispy on the outside and soft on the inside.

Mango Sticky Rice (ข้าวเหนียวมะม่วง)

Mango sticky rice is a classic Thai dessert that kids will adore. Made with sweet sticky rice, fresh mango slices, and a drizzle of coconut milk. This dessert is simple and irresistible. It’s a great way to end a meal on a sweet note.

Why Kids Will Love It:

  • Sweet and fruity.
  • The sticky rice has a fun texture.
  • A visually appealing dish.

Thai Fruit

Thai fruit

Thailand is home to a plethora of exotic fruits that kids will love. From sweet mangoes and juicy pineapples to tangy rambutans and dragon fruits, there’s a fruit for every taste. These fruits are often sold freshly cut on the streets, making them a perfect healthy snack for little ones.

Kanom Krok (ขนมครก) Thai Coconut Pancakes

Kanom Krok, or Thai coconut pancakes, are a delightful street food treat. Small, round pancakes made from coconut milk, rice flour, and sugar. Cooked until they’re crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. They’re often topped with corn or green onions for a hint of savory flavor.

Why Kids Will Love It:

  • They’re sweet and creamy.
  • The texture is fun and unique.
  • They’re bite-sized and perfect for little hands.

Tips for Traveling with Kids in Thailand

Traveling with kids in Thailand can be a wonderful experience, especially with food. Here are a few tips to ensure a smooth culinary adventure:

  • Adjust Spice Levels: Thai food is known for its spiciness, but most dishes can be adjusted to suit your child’s taste. Don’t hesitate to ask for “mai phet, ไม่เผ็ด” (not spicy) or ‘phet nit nawy’ (‘little bit spicy’ เผ็ดนิดหน่อย) when ordering.
  • Stay Hydrated: The weather in Thailand can be hot and humid, so make sure your kids stay hydrated. Fresh coconut water and fruit juices are great options.
  • Keep Snacks Handy: Street food is plentiful, but it’s always a good idea to have some familiar snacks for picky eaters. 7/11 is on every street, so head to buy some snacks
  • Try New Things: Encourage your kids to try new dishes and flavors. Children are adventurous, so let them try them tastes.

In Conclusion

Thailand offers a rich culinary landscape that is as exciting for children as it is for adults. With its range of mild, savory dishes and sweet treats, there is something for every young traveler. From crispy spring rolls and exotic fried rice to sweet mango sticky rice and fun fruit snacks, these kid-friendly Thai dishes will make your family’s culinary adventure a memorable one.

Street food in Thailand is very cheap, so let them discover, taste, explore this wonderful paradise.
If you need help planning your holidays… check out this travel consultant.

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