Thai Tacos with Ginger Slaw and Peanut Sauce

Just the other day my husband and I were driving around town and my mind was racing with recipe ideas, per usual. I had hopped from my usual meal planning mode into my ‘what if I tried something new’ mode, and thus, some room for creativity was born.

I love all Thai food and especially pad thai. I adore its spicy-sweet contrasts and how it utilizes fresh vegetables in such beautiful ways. I think I could stare at most Thai dishes for a good hour before digging in. (Who am I kidding I hate cold food, no way that’s happening.)

While I’ve never been to Thailand (yet), I’ve loved every Thai dish I’ve had stateside which is why dishes like spring rolls and pad thai pop up on my dinner table about once a week. Let me put if this way, if peanut sauce and sriracha were acceptable condiments to carry around in your purse, I totally would – not joking.

So I’m sure you’re wondering what Thai food has to do with tacos. Well to my knowledge, nothing – until now. I took all of my favorite Thai flavors and stuffed them inside of a taco! Ain’t it great?

5.0 from 4 reviews
Thai Tacos with Ginger Slaw and Peanut Sauce
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Spicy shrimp inside a corn tortilla, topped with a Thai slaw and peanut sauce - and don't forget the Sriracha!
Serves: 2
  • 4-6 white corn tortillas
  • 15-20 small-medium white shrimp, raw, peeled
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • equal pinches salt, pepper, garlic powder & red pepper flake
  • 1/4 cup lime juice (about 2 limes)
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger root
  • 1 teaspoon low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Asian-style chili paste
  • 2 tablespoon sesame oil (or peanut)
  • 1 tablespoon sugar or honey
  • SLAW
  • 1 cup finely sliced purple cabbage
  • 1/2 cup carrots, sliced into matchsticks
  • 3 scallions, chopped
  • coarsely chopped cilantro for garnish (optional)
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter (I use all natural crunchy)
  • 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. chili garlic paste
  • 3-4 Tbsp. brown sugar, depending on preference of sweetness
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1/3- 1/2 cup hot water
  1. Prepare your peanut sauce in a food processor by mixing the first five ingredients and then slowly adding hot water until you've reached desired consistency - slightly thick, slightly runny.
  2. Prepare your cabbage slaw by adding veggies to a bowl.
  3. Prepare your dressing by whisking all ingredients together. Taste to ensure the flavors are where you'd like (I added a bit more honey), and then add to slaw. Set aside.
  4. Cook shrimp over medium heat in a dash of olive oil. Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder and red pepper flake and remove once pink.
  5. Assemble tacos by adding shrimp to tortillas and topping with slaw and some fresh cilantro. Drizzle with peanut sauce and Sriracha or hot sauce and serve immediately.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 2 tacos Calories: 313 Fat: 9 Saturated fat: 1.7 Carbohydrates: 30 Sugar: 12 Fiber: 3.9 Protein: 27

My husband and I enjoyed this dish immensely, even though our faces were practically spiced off by the end (too much just enough sriracha). Make any changes to them you’d like – for instance subbing chicken for shrimp or going for a crispy shell instead of a soft one. These can be modified to your tastes but the core flavor combinations will blow you away, I promise.



danaHi, I'm Dana! I am a food stylist, photographer, and author of the Food Photography School and the 31 Meals Cookbook.

Find me on Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

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Talk About It

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  1. says

    This looks delish!!!
    Just wondering, how come you posted this recipe on this blog & not ML, since it has more than 7 ingredients? I guess it could take 15 minutes to make, but that seems like cutting it close.

    • dana says

      I posted it here because it’s 15 minutes or less : ) – I try and get my recipes in at least one of these categories. And really, the theme on this site above all else is simple food. And I think this recipe fits that description.

  2. Lizzie C says

    Made this tonight –after thinking about it constantly since I saw the recipe! I followed it exactly with the exception of using the flour tortillas I have on hand. The flour wasn’t as good as the corn (listed in the recipe ) would have been. They got kind of mushy..but still very tasty! Will make this again. Loved the peanut sauce recipe, also. My husband licked the container.

  3. says

    i just made this friday night and it is fantastic!! i dont usually read foodie sites but i adore yours! i added sesame seeds to the slaw for a little nuttiness and put chopped cilantro throughout. im trying the noodle bowl tonight. thanks for this little gem of a recipe. my husband loved it too!!
    i found your site through pinterest. keep up the good work!

  4. Lucy says

    Yum! This looks so tasty! I’m planning on making it tonight, but I have a question about a few of the ingredients– I don’t have the asian-style chili paste or the chili garlic paste– are they the same thing? Where do I find them? Thank you!!

    • Dana says

      Lucy, the Asian style chili garlic paste and sauce are the same thing and can be found at any asian market OR in the ethnic sections at bigger grocery stories. Our Kroger stores have an Oriental foods aisle and it’s tucked away right in there for super cheap. Hope that helps!

  5. Eleanor says

    This looks great! How might you adapt it to reduce the sugar content while maintaining the flavour? I love thai sauces as well but all the honey and brown sugar often keeps me from jumping right in.

  6. Lisa says

    I just wanted to say that this is the most delicious recipe I have found on pinterest! I lived in Malaysia, which borders Thailand, for 3 years and these flavors reminded me so much of the delicious food back there! But the best part, this recipe doesn’t leave you feeling guilty like you just ate so much fat and salt and oil. I made it for my picky Japanese boyfriend and he even loved it! (Despite how spicy I made it for him)
    Only thing I did differently, and perhaps it goes without saying, is that I marinated the shrimp in oil, garlic salt, and LOTS of red pepper flakes for about 2 hours. The shrimp were so flavorful after they were cooked.
    Also, the leftover peanut sauce is a delicious dip for veggies and chicken satay.
    Loved the recipe! Thanks so much!

    • Dana says

      Love to hear it, Lisa! So glad you enjoyed this recipe (and your boyfriend : ) Great idea on marinating the shrimp! Next time I make these I’ll have to try that trick!

  7. HanaS says

    I really enjoy your recipes, which I follow on Facebook and have to thank you for all your inspiration I get from them.
    For this recipe I have a question regarding the prawns/shrimps. Could you use frozen ones since they are easier to come by where I live. Thank you.

  8. Casey says

    These were delicious! I added red pepper to the slaw and omitted the ginger b/c I don’t care for it, and added a splash of rice vinegar. I, too, marinated the shrimp in olive oil, garlic, red pepper flakes, and salt. They were fantastic! I will definitely be making these again!

  9. Angela says

    These were fantastic–made them for a dinner party last weekend! Have quite a bit of leftover peanut sauce, was wondering if you know how long it will keep in a mason jar?

    Thanks for the recipes!!


  10. Ron says

    These are the bomb, so far have done with chicken, beef and scallops. Absolutely delightful and refreshing. We had some Thai tacos at a local restaurant and I did a search on the web, yours were the first on the list. Thank you for sharing this wonderful recipe. I added a little hoisin sauce and used coconut sugar for the sweetener.

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