Eating on the Cheap – Bangkok Street Food

Bangkok is a true mecca for street food. There are a million online guides (like here and here) telling you where to find the best, but truth be told, it’s all good, and there’s no way in hell you can try everything. Tiny metal shacks and wooden carts are precariously stuffed into every possible sidewalk space, and are literally strewn across the ENTIRE city. You cannot walk two minutes without being met with a glorious onslaught of sensory overload- fresh garlic and ginger frying, the sweet sticky scent of banana coconut crepes, fresh fish on a charcoal grill, and steaming vats of broth hinting at hours simmering with herbs and meat and spices. It’s impossible to try everything but you’ll sure want to. Below is a taste of the things I sampled- and I can honestly say everything was out-of-control delicious, cheap, and I didn’t get sick once. The usual advice is to go somewhere busy, which looks decently clean. Chinatown is the most popular area, but there are hoards of tourists.

First, some visual impressions. . .


Chinatown, packed full



Vats of broth, ready for noodles


Many many varieties of noodles



Sushi galore


Dumplings aplenty


Street food tent near Phaya Thai Rail station


Deep fried heaven.



And now, my favorites:


Red curry fried snake fish: Honestly one of the best fish meals I’ve ever had, eaten on the side of a four lane road, seated on a metal stool. Light crispy batter housed perfectly cooked fish, bathed in a spicy garlicky red curry. Price- $4 usd


Roasted baby yams: a testament to the fact that the most simple thing can be the best. This were literally nothing more than roasted yams, their natural sugar bursting with flavours and a hint of smoke from the grill. Price – $0.6 usd.

Roasted white corn with coconut shreds: price – $0.8 usd.


Courtesy Wikipedia

Coconut juice: this is NOT the same as coconut water, and so delicious on a 35 degree day with 80% humidity. One coconut costs ~$1.20 usd.


Sour mango: not sour at all, in fact incredibly sweet. $0.8 usd for a full mango.


Deep fried pork: $1 usd for a bag.


Sweet corn pancakes: my favorite of the whole list. They may not look like much, but these little pockets surround condensed milk and sweet corn. Cooked in a pan with tiny depressions, they are turned out onto a rack and then handed to you hot, so you have a glorious mixture of pancake and thick cream dripping down your chin in seconds. 10 cents per pancake.



Seafood pancakes: the same as the above, but savory. The giant pan is hiding the small depressions.


Chicken soup: the best chicken soup ever of my life!! Roasted shredded chicken is added to a steaming bowl of noodles and broth – the broth alone I would have paid a million bucks for. It’s topped with fresh Thai basil, bean sprouts, crushed peanuts, and red chilies. Cost – $1.60 usd.


Garlic chili squid: SOOOOOO good. $3 usd.

Categories: Running around cities, Running on beachesTags: , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. Im hungry now!

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