Tip: Don’t be afraid to eat the street food in Bangkok!

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Bangkok is easily one of my favorite cities in the world, and that is mostly due to the fact that it is one of the best food destinations. The food is truly some of the best and it is still so so affordable. From spicy curries to sweet coconut ice creams, street food stalls and Michelin star dining, Bangkok really has it all. Enter the scene: my Bangkok food guide.

Let’s dive into the best places to eat in Bangkok, Thailand.

Stir-fried chicken and veggies in Bangkok, Thailand
Stir-fried chicken and veggies in Bangkok, Thailand

Thing article will cover everything you need to know about dining and drinking in Bangkok. But first, if you’re planning a trip to Thailand, here are some other articles that you should check out:

Tips for dining in Bangkok

  • The simpler the restaurant, the better the food
  • Don’t be afraid to eat the street food
  • Most restaurants won’t require a reservation, unless they are super upscale
  • Portions usually aren’t too big, which is great because it means you can try more things
  • Thai food can be really spicy (which I love). If you’re not good with spice, as them to tone it down.

Helpful links for your trip to Bangkok

Bangkok Food Guide

Okay, first things first it is important to understand that all of the best food in Bangkok is either food on the streets or at tiny local restaurants (the same is true in Chiang Mai and Pai).. My typical rule of thumbs is that if a restaurant has plastic chairs and no A/C, the food is going to be great! The owners may not always speak English (nor should we expect them to), but luckily everything in Thailand is delicious!

Soi Silom 20

If you only have time for one food stop in Bangkok, make it this street food stall street. This is because not only is everything absolutely delicious, but there is so much variety so you can really get a taste of so many things.

Unlike many other street food stall areas, many of the vendors here know a few words of English (or maybe have an English menu) but still offer super delicious, local dishes.

A few things you need to try while here:

  • Papaya Salad (watch out, it is spicy) – they make it right in front of you and it is the best I’ve ever had
  • Tom Yum Soup
  • Stir-fried chicken
  • Fresh fruit shake
Papaya Salad on Soi Silom 20
Papaya Salad on Soi Silom 20

Pen Little Coffee & Restaurant

I have visited Bangkok five or six times over the years, and I always find myself coming back to this tiny little roadside restaurant. There are only a few tables, plastic chairs, and a menu wrapped in flimsy plastic – the telltale signs of a good Bangkok restaurant. 

The restaurant closes early so you’ll have to settle on a hearty lunch, or early dinner.

My lunch recommendation is a red curry shrimp, chicken Penang curry, large mango fruit shake and a mango with sticky rice for dessert. 

In recent years the exact location of the restaurant has moved slightly, but the food is still just as good. 

Lunch at Little Pen Coffee & Restaurant
Lunch at Little Pen Coffee & Restaurant
Stir-fried shrimp
Stir-fried shrimp

Jeng Noodles

Cheap prices, rich flavors, and a great atmosphere tucked away in a quiet neighborhood in Bangkok, Jeng Noodle is one of my favorite restaurants in Bangkok.

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MaeThum Padthai

Although you can find plenty of pad thai on the streets of Thailand for next to nothing, if you want a really delicious plate of Bangkok’s classic dish then head to MaeThum Padthai.

MaeThum Padthai is a cute and casual spot for some of the best pad thai in town. Definitely worth a stop in you’re in the neighborhood.

Mit Ko Yuan Restaurant

We stumbled upon this restaurant on our most recent visit, as it was just down the road from our hotel. It is super casual with a few different vendors operating under one roof. It is a great place to try a number of local dishes at a cheap price.

Plus, make sure to grab one of their (HUGE) fruit shakes for dessert.

Raan Jay Fai

Raan Jay Fai is easily one of the most popular street food stalls, despite its high prices and long lines,. This is because this famous seafood stall earned its first (well deserved) Michelin star back in 2018. The signature crab omelette is priced at 1000 THB (around $32), due the high quality ingredients and the fame the restaurant has received over the years.

Due to the popularity of this restaurant, in order to score a spot for lunch or dinner you will want to add your name to the waitlist many hours in advance (ideally right when they open).

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Chinatown Street Food

If you’re looking for a fun night with a ton of delicious food, head to Chinatown. You’ll find hundreds of different street stalls serving both Thai and Chinese dishes.

I recommend not limiting yourself to just one spot, and trying a number of different stalls instead. And don’t forget about dessert!

nahm

Nahm was rated as one of the best restaurants in Asia a few years back, so I think it deserves a spot on this Bangkok food guide.

It is definitely on the pricier end, as far as Thai dining goes, but it is well worth the prices. The average entree is about 700 THB (~$23USD).

If you’re interested in dining here, definitely make a reservation (well) ahead of time! I called 3 weeks in advance and was only able to swing lunch reservations.

Kor Panit’s Sticky Rice 

Mango and sticky rice is a staple dessert in Thailand, so if you’re visiting any Bangkok restaurant and you see it on the menu, order it. You won’t regret it. But if you are looking for the best mango and sticky rice restaurant in Bangkok, then head to Kor Panit’s Sticky Rice. This restaurant sells one thing, and one thing only – mango with sticky rice. 

Kor Panit’s has been open since 1947, since you can guarantee it is some of the best in town. 

Open from 7AM to 6PM daily, except for Sunday 

Mango and sticky rice from Kor Panit’s Sticky Rice 
Mango and sticky rice from Kor Panit’s Sticky Rice 

Natthaphon Coconut Ice Cream

I think we can all agree that any Bangkok food guide needs to cover the best desserts in the city. One of my favorites is a small ice cream shop known for their coconut ice cream. They have a selection of flavors to choose from, like coconut, mango, and Thai milk tea. All of the ice cream is homemade and made from scratch by the local family that runs the place.

You’ll then have a wide range of toppings to choose from as well. Popular toppings included toasted rice, red bean, sticky rice and aloe vera jelly. 

Open from 8AM to 5PM daily, except for Sunday

Mango ice cream from Natthaphon Coconut Ice Cream
Mango ice cream from Natthaphon Coconut Ice Cream
The best dessert in Bangkok - mango with sticky rice
The best dessert in Bangkok – mango with sticky rice

Getting to Bangkok

If you are are arriving from outside of Thailand then you will most likely be flying into Bangkok directly as it is Thailand’s capital city. It is important to note that there are two airports in Bangkok. BKK is serviced by larger airlines and is connected to the city by the BTS line. DMK is a bit closer to the city but is mostly serviced by low-cost carriers.

To find the cheapest flight options from your city, you can use the search form below: 

temples in bangkok thailand
There is so much to see and do in Bangkok, Thailand

Where to stay in Bangkok

If you’re planning a trip to Bangkok, I recommend picking lodging that falls into one of two criteria:

  1. Is walking distance to a BTS stop (Bangkok’s metro line)
  2. Is walking distance to the main temples in Bangkok

If you’re lodging falls into at least one of these categories then you should be good to go.

Here are a few top-rated recommendations for places to stay in Bangkok:

TRAVEL TIPS

🏘️ Book your accommodation

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✈️ Book your flight in advance

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🧾 Get your tickets and tours

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Heading to Thailand? Here are some articles to check out:

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