Everywhere you go in Thailand you’ll see street vendors, preparing and serving a cornucopia of dishes from their simple carts and stalls. Street food is a charming aspect of life and trying it out is a cultural and culinary delight. For intrepid foodies, willing to put their taste buds to the test, we have put together some of the most famous dishes and food stalls you can find in Chiang Mai.
Here’s is our selection of 8 Must-try - the most heavenly tastes ofC hiang Mai’s street food! Just venture out and discover Thai food as the locals know it.
FRESH DOUGHNUT @ ปาท่องโก๋ โกเหน่ง
(Patongko Ko Neng Shop)
The dish : Patongko are an adaptation of the Chinese Youtiao. These crispy golden doughnut are soft and doughy on the inside, tender and crispy on the outside.
The place : Ko & Neng Shop is located in the Warorot Market area, they create irresistible doughnuts which look like dinosaurs, dragons and crocodiles.
Recommended : Patongko (20-40 THB), soy milk (6 THB) and Thai pandan custard (10 THB).
Open Daily / 6:00 - 12:00 and 14:00 - 17:00
90 Wichayanon Road. Warorot Market (turn left after Thanachart Bank, continue straight for 30 meters. Their shop is on left hand side)
KANOM JEEN @ น้ำเงี้ยวลุงพงษ์
(Nam Ngiew Loong Pong)
The dish: Kanom Jeen, or fermented rice noodles, is believed to have originated from Myanmar. This light dish can be coupled with a variety of sauces, but this time we are looking at the Nam Ngiew sauce: a spicy, slow cooked soup with pieces of
pork or beef, boiled blood, stewed tomatoes and a lot of herbs. This dish is served with crisp white bean sprouts, fresh cilantro, fried garlic and pickled mustard greens that can be added according to taste.
The place: Uncle Pong has been serving Kanom Jeen Nam Ngiew for the past 40 years and he cooks it in the traditional way. Sweet and smiling Uncle Pong is well known all around Chiang Mai, and his dish is a must try in town.
Recommended: Kanom Jeen Nam Ngiew (30THB).
Open Daily / 09:00 - 16:00
Jhaban Road. Sriphoom (turn left at police station, drive for 50 meters, the shop is on the right hand side).
SATAY @ เนื้อ สะเต๊ะใต้ต้นข่อย
(Nua Satay Tai Ton Khoi)
The dish: Satay is easily one of Thailand’s best onthe-go street snacks. These skewers of grilled pork or beef are often sold together with a bag of peanut sauce, sliced cucumber and shallots in vinegar.
The place: the speciality at this stand is beef satay only. The owner makes her own marinade. Take time to sit at one of the wooden tables while she barbecues your beef. The Thai name of the food stall literally means, “beef barbecue under the tree”. A quiet and fun eating experience.
Recommended: Barbecue Beef (60 THB/10 pcs).
Open Mon - Sat / 7:00-11:00
Ragang Rd. Changklan. (80 meters away from Lanna Palace Hotel. Look for the big tree next to street art)
MANGO WITH STICKY RICE @ ข้าวเหนียวมานะ
(Look Jin Trot Bat Kiew)
(Kao Niew Mana)
The dish: Kao Niew Ma Muang is simple but extremely delicious, made with sticky rice, fresh mango slices, and coconut cream syrup. The sticky rice absorbs the coconut cream syrup, creating a pleasantly soft texture and mild sweet taste.
The place: this stall, located in front of At Chiang Mai Hotel, is not part of the hotel; it has been here for more than 30 years. You can be sure to find this dessert there, all year round.
Recommended: Mango with sticky rice (50 THB/pack).
Open Daily / 10:00 - 17:00
Ratchavithi Road. (In front of At Chiang Mai Hotel - look for the big mangoes hanging in front of the stand).
DEEP FRIED MEATBALLS @ ลูกชิ้นทอดบัตรคิว
(Look Jin Trot Bat Kiew)
The dish: Assorted meatballs, cooked to order and sold on a stick is a common dish in Chiang Mai streets. Looking at the glass case you might think they are precooked and sold “as-is”, but look behind the cart and you will find a small gas-powered
deep-fryer. Meatballs will double in size after being fried, but just for a minute. This dish is served with your selection of spicy or non-spicy sauces.
The place: this meatball station is the most famous in Chiang Mai. So famous that you will have to take a ticket and wait for your number to be called.
Recommended: Any meatball stick (5-10 THB/stick), Mixed choice at 20 THB.
Open Daily / 15:00 - 20:00
Moon Muang Road. (stall on the main street, a few meters from 7/11).
ROTEE @ โรตีป้าเด
(Rotee Pa Dae)
The dish: Rotee is a Thai take on a classic Muslim dish, it has become a street food favorite. It is similar to a pancake or crêpe, with dough surrounding a filling of bananas along with condensed milk or chocolate. Don’t miss the opportunity to watch your
rotee being prepared by the skilled vendor stretching the dough extremely thin and then expertly frying it on a large hot plate.
The slightly-browned dough is quickly folded around the filings to create a square, which is then chopped up into snack-sized pieces.
The place: Antie Dae has been selling rotee at this stall for ages, she does it only in the evening. In addition to tasting delicious rotee, the experience is very pleasant, as her stall is located in front of a temple offering attractive views.
Recommended: Normal Rotee (8 THB), Rotee banana + nutella (40 THB), Roti egg + cheese(30 THB).
Open Daily / 18:00 - midnight
Thapae Road. (at the intersection with soi 4)
SOM TUM @ ส้มตำ-ไก่ย่างหน้าวัดพันเตา
(Papaya Salad in Front of Pan Tao Temple)
The dish: Som Tum is one of the most popular dishes in Thailand and comes in a variety of serving styles. The basic dish consists of shredded green papaya, tomatoes, carrot, peanuts, dried shrimp string beans, sugar, garlic, fish sauce, lime juice and plenty of chilies. The ingredients are mixed together using a mortar and pestle, which blends the flavors beautifully. This dish tends to be quite spicy by default, so depending on your tolerance level, it’s often best to ask for it mai pet (not spicy).
The place: This stall is located in the old city and easy to find: it is outside Chedi Luang temple.
Recommended: Papaya salad (not spicy) (30 THB).
Open Daily / 12:00 - 18:00
Phra Pok Klao Road. Sriphoom.
KHAO KHA MOO @ ขาหมู ช้างเผือก
(Kha Moo Chang Puak)
The dish: Khao Kha Moo is a simple but satisfying dish consisting of stewed pork leg served over rice. The pork is cooked in a mixture of soy sauce, sugar and spices until juicy and tender. If you prefer less fatty, you can ask for it “mai ow nang” (no skin). It is often served with Chinese broccoli and a hardboiled egg on the side.
The place: Chiang Mai Gate Market is very famous for evening street food. This stall is easy to notice thanks to its red color and massive pots filled with stewing pigs’ legs. Also, the lady who manages this stall often wears a cowboy hat.
Recommended: Stewed pork over rice with egg (50THB/plate). Eat in or take away.
Open Mon - Sun / 17:00 - midnight
Manee Nopparat Road. Chang Puak Gate.
FAMOUS STREET FOOD AREAS:
While street food is everywhere you look in Chiang Mai, there are certainly some areas which are more visited than others, and they are worth mentioning:
1/ The Street Food area at Pavilion Night Bazaar includes everything, from fruit juices, to fried raviolis, tom yam soup, fried noodles, barbequed beef and vegetable as well as delicious desserts. Plus there is live music entertainment every evening from 6pm and a large seating area. The great thing about Pavilion Night Bazaar is that you can enjoy delicious street food and then go shopping without crossing the whole city.
@ Pavilion Night Bazaar.
Chang Klan Road.
2/ Another popular area for informal dining is the Chiang Mai Gate Market, at the southwest corner of the moat. This is a treasure trove of roadside goodies starting around sunset. A huge variety of food stalls crowd together on either side of the street with plenty of seating moatside of the road. When the sun goes down, noodle stands start appearing like fireflies. Give it a try!
Wherever you go, just be adventurous and try one of a kind dishes you might never taste elsewhere. Take a little bit of everything, sit at a small table and spend some time sampling each dish.
@ Chiang Mai Gate Market.
87 Bumrung Buri Rd, T. Phra Sing.