Honey Chili Shrimp Noodles is a straight-forward stir-fry recipe taking its flavor inspiration from Cantonese & Thai cooking. Fresh Thai basil leaves, fiery red chilies, soy sauce, fish sauce, honey & garlic are added for aromatics making this not only a deliciously simple recipe to cook but also fairly quick to throw together.Jump to Recipe
I bought these noodles from an Asian market. They’re labeled as ‘Hong-Kong pan-fried noodles’ but are so similar to chow mein noodles. The main difference being – Hong-Kong style noodles have already been par-boiled so they only require a 10 minute soaking in cold water to bring them back to life. Whereas chow mein noodles are generally dried & require some cooking before adding them to stir-fries. You could also use thin wonton noodles or lo mein noodles. Even ramen noodles in a pinch. Many standard grocery stores carry noodles & wrappers refrigerated in the produce section. Read more about these different noodles here. And read the package directions for cooking or soaking as methods vary.
Thai basil really is the dominate flavor component in this Honey Chili Shrimp Noodles recipe. As much as I’d like to tell you to add your bog-standard sweet basil if you can’t find Thai basil, honestly, it won’t be the same. The two aren’t interchangeable as I’ve seen suggested (& I’m sure I have done before my transparent days). Sure, add regular basil in a pinch – the recipe will still be good but you will be missing the unique flavor that only Thai basil brings to a dish. When you’re looking for Thai basil, if it’s not marked as such, it has a distinct purple stem.
The same rings true for fish sauce: fish sauce is stinky but it adds a depth of flavor to a recipe without being fishy. It’s a key ingredient too & you’ll see fish sauce in many South East Asian recipes. And although this recipe doesn’t fit nicely into any one cuisine pigeon-hole, the flavors of the South East are dominate. I just like to call it “Asian-inspired”. Or merely “something Lovoni likes to cook”.
Really what I love about this recipe is the ease in which it comes together. A little prep work first – which is nothing too tedious or laborious, & a quick bit of stir-frying. I enjoy the bits & pieces I serve with this: the roasted peanuts; a few extra lime wedges for squeezing on just before you’re about to tuck-in adds brightness; maybe a few more slices of chili for the adventurous souls; basil leaves purely for their color & lastly a smattering of toasted sesame seeds. Done!
Happy September – autumn is just a few weeks away so enjoy the last hurrah of summer. Or, enjoy the first musings of spring if you’re in the southern hemisphere. Until next time, Lovoni xo
PS. Check out this post on Thai cooking essentials. And this recipe for Vietnamese Sticky Pork Noodle Salad.
honey chili shrimp noodles
- wok or large, deep frying pan
- 8 oz Hong Kong-style pan-fried noodles 250g
- 2 to 3 tablespoons honey
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons peanut or coconut oil
- 20 jumbo raw shrimp, peeled & deveined
- 1/2 medium red onion, cut into thin wedges
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled & thinly sliced
- 3 small red chilies, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cabbage, cored & thinly shredded
- 1 cup packed Thai basil leaves plus extra for garnish
- 1/3 cup chopped toasted peanuts or cashews
- toasted sesame seeds & lime wedges optional
- Soak noodles according to package directions. (The package I used said to soak in cold water for 10 minutes & drain thoroughly.)
- Combine honey, fish sauce, juice & soy in a small bowl; set aside.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large wok over high heat. Add shrimp & stir-fry for 1 minute or until the shrimp have turned pink; remove from wok.
- Heat the remaining tablespoon of oil in the same wok over high heat. Add the onion & stir-fry 3 minutes or until onion is soft & browned. Add garlic & chilies & stir-fry for 30 seconds or until fragrant. (Have some ventilation happening & be careful not to breathe in the chilies aromas as they can make you cough.)
- Stir the fish sauce mixture & add to the wok with the cabbage. Stir-fry for 1 minute or until cabbage is just starting to wilt. Add noodles & stir-fry for 1 to 2 minutes or until hot.
- Add shrimp & basil & stir-fry for 30 to 60 seconds or until basil is just wilted.
- Serve into warmed bowls. Sprinkle with peanuts & sesame seeds if using. Serves 3.