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The 20 Best Thai Snacks to Try Out

The 20 Best Thai Snacks to Try Out

The proof of the pudding is in the eating and the most popular Thai snacks are truly a testament to that. While the ingredients of these oh-so-delicious gastronomic delights are regional, you’ll find them appealing to your taste no matter your origin. 

So, we won’t make you wait any longer! As you wrack your brain on what goes first on your itinerary with your limited time, remember the greatest Thai snacks we listed below so you can experience Thailand’s gastronomy fully!

Khao Neow Mamuang (Mango Sticky Rice)

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Main Ingredients: Sticky rice, coconut cream, sugar, ripe mango, yellow mung beans

Average Price: 60 to 150 Baht

Variations: With mamuang ok rong or mamuang name dok mai (mango varieties)

The golden child of Thai snacks, mango sticky rice is by far the most famous and accessible dessert in the Land of Smiles. Don’t let the simple plate of sticky rice and sliced mango fool you—there’s a reason it’s the favorite snack of locals and tourists.

As with mango as the main ingredient, mango sticky rice is sweet and it’s no surprise: Thailand is home to a whole set of sweet mango varieties. Still, the coco-milk combo creates a twist that makes it even more appealing to one’s taste.

So, this is a flexible dish with diverse flavor profiles and textures depending on the type of mango or sticky rice used to make it. But there’s no doubt about it: Mango sticky rice is so popular all over Thailand that you can dub it a “national snack.”

Pro Tip:

You’ll find mango sticky rice in almost all Thai restaurants, but the best servings of this snack are in Kor Panich, a Michelin Bib Gourmand shop on Bangkok’s Tanao Road. Their sticky rice has been called legendary. 

Khanom Buang (Thai Crepe)

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Main Ingredients: Rice flour, mung bean flour, palm sugar, egg

Average Price: 20 to 35 Baht

Variations: Egg yolk, chopped shrimp, or chopped scallion toppings

Another traditional Thai snack, khanom buang, is a tasty and eye-catching dessert that traces its roots to the Ayutthaya Period of 600 years ago. It has an explosive flavor that blends sweet and salty layers, and it can be found all over Thailand! 

The best thing about khanom buang is the freedom to choose your preferred toppings. Go for the sweet route with the egg yolk (Foi Thong) toppings or embrace the irresistible sweet, salty flavor layering with the chopped shrimp toppings. 

Those who enjoy savory flavor profiles can go for the chopped scallion toppings. If you’re not particular with one flavor profile, you don’t need to stress about the toppings because this bite-size finger food will surely hit the spot.

Pro Tip:

The Khanom Buang sold on the streets are the best because they’re made on the spot. However, if you want something to take home as a gift, you can buy one at shopping centers like MBK Center.

Tod Mun Pla (Thai Fish Cake)

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Main Ingredients: Flaked fish, red curry paste, egg, sugar, green beans, kaffir lime leaves, fish sauce, sweet chili dipping sauce

Average Price: 40 to 60 Baht

Variations: With prawns

Tod mun pla or Thai fish cake is a staple Thai snack you can find in every street, restaurant, and night market. This succulent fish cake or croquette is perfect as a quick and filling snack while you roam the busy streets of Thailand.

At its core, this is white fish ground to a pulp mixed with Thai curry paste, cilantro and fish sauce, then deep fried, so you end up with a mix of flavors. Expect a spicy umami as Thai curry paste is the strongest flavor element staying on top. 

A high-quality sauce is a must to this dish—which most commonly  is Thai sweet chilli.  Although treated mainly as an appetizer, tod mun pla’s flexibility makes it a perfect budget-friendly filling to eat with rice.

Pro Tip:

Thai fish cake will always be salty and savory, so what will make or break this snack for you is its sauce. Be sure to ask the vendor to adjust the spiciness to your liking, so you can appreciate its taste; or go for the more manageable vinegar dipping sauce.

Khao Niao Sangkhaya (Custard Sticky Rice)

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Main Ingredients: Black Sticky Rice, Coconut Milk, Coconut Cream, Palm Sugar, Salt, Egg

Average Price: 40 to 60 Baht

Variations: With White Sticky Rice

Born during the Ayutthaya period, this Portuguese cuisine-inspired Thai snack uses local ingredients found in the region during that time. Since then, khao niao sangkhaya has become a staple dessert with deep traditional significance.

Like the mango sticky rice, this snack’s simplicity can be misleading. The sticky rice and custard toppings are sweet, but they offer two distinct flavors and textures that complement each other.

While this snack can be too sweet for some, it pairs wonderfully with coffee. It’s a surprisingly good breakfast combination to start your day in Thailand.

Pro Tip:

Surprisingly, Khao Niao Sangkhaya also goes nicely with ripe mango. This combination is a massive improvement over the typical mango sticky rice, so it’s definitely worth trying.

Mamuang Nam Pla Wan (Green/Unripe Mango)

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Main Ingredients: Unripe Mango, Sweet Chili Shrimp Sauce 

Average Price: 20 to 40 Baht

Variations: Using other fruits or a Salt and Chili Dipping Powder

By far, mamuang nam pla wan is the simplest Thai snack on our list—it’s just sliced green mangoes with a dipping sauce. But don’t be fooled: Thailand is a master of making flavorful snacks from the most common and plain-looking ingredients.

Tourists actually tend to miss out on mamuang nam pla wan since an unripe fruit isn’t something they often consider eating. 

But here’s the kicker: you don’t have to stick with green mangoes, even though it’s the most commonly used ingredient. 

Nam pla wan’s dipping sauce hits the spot when paired with other tart and firm fruits like apple and santol (cotton fruit) giving you the perfect combination of sweet and sour flavors.

Pro Tip:

Although the nam pla wan sauce is the highlight of this snack, the fish sauce’s strong smell can be off-putting if you’re not used to it. As an alternative, you can ask for salt and chili powder dip since it’s easier to consume.

Kluai Thot (Thai Fried Banana)

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Main Ingredients: Thai banana, rice flour, tapioca flour, palm sugar, sesame seeds, salt, shredded coconut, coconut milk

Average Price: 20 to 40 Baht

Variations: Kluai hom, kluai namwa, or kluai kai (banana varieties)

The deep-fried banana fritters or kluai thot are a familiar sight along the busy streets of Thailand, with various food stalls serving them from every direction. It’s a snack that foreigners won’t have an issue eating since they’re but sweet bananas.

The best part is that you can find variations that use different varieties of Thai bananas, with kluai namwa being the most common. 

What’s not to love? This snack has such a crunchy and savory outer layer, which complements the soft and sweet banana underneath.

Pro Tip:

It’s ideal to get kluai thot from local food carts because you can always get it fresh off the wok. Although it’ll still taste nice after a while, the banana will get soggy so you’ll lose that satisfying crunch.

Sai Krok Isan (Isan Fermented Sour Sausage)

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Main Ingredients: Pork shoulder, sausage casing, sticky rice, garlic, pepper, salt

Average Price: 10 to 20 Baht

This northeastern delicacy from the Isan region has become a country-wide obsession, thanks to its distinct succulent flavors. Because sai krok Isan undergoes fermentation, the result is a savory blend of explosive salty and sour flavor profiles.

The flavor elevates the fatty and succulent pork inside the sausage casing, making it the perfect beer food. That explains why they’re common in night markets and busy streets where you can find food cart vendors selling them in skewers.

However, this savory Thai snack isn’t only good for eating on the go. You can pair it with rice for a filling breakfast, lunch, or dinner meal.

Pro Tip:

Mam Yai Goong in Non Kha is a popular food place for Thailand’s best sai krok Isan. They’re also famous for their Isan sausages. 

Luk Chin Ping (Meatball Skewers)

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Main Ingredients: Ground pork, tapioca starch, baking powder, garlic, pepper, salt, soy sauce, sugar, sweet chili dipping sauce

Average Price: 10 to 20 baht

Variations: Beef and chicken luk chin ping

One of Thailand’s classic street foods, luk chin ping is an excellent option for those looking for an affordable and accessible snack or meal. 

Kids, in particular, enjoy eating this popular Thai snack, especially with its sweet chili sauce. It’s a delicious snack on the go, even for picky eaters. After all, it’s essentially just meatballs on a stick.

Pro Tip:

Luk chin pin is a traditional Thai street food so you can only get the most authentic version from food stalls. However, local restaurants may also serve this as an appetizer (but with a higher price tag).

Khaep Mu (Thai Pork Rinds)

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Main Ingredients: Pork skin, salt, soy sauce, lard

Average Price: 30 to 45 baht

Tracing its roots in the Lanna people of Northern Thailand, khaep mu is a traditional crunchy snack made by deep-frying pork rind. Those familiar with the Spanish chicharrones won’t be wrong to think they’re the same thing.

If you love eating chips, you’ll understand why khaep mu is among the most popular Thai snacks. This deep-fried pork rind snack has the perfect crunch and salty seasoning that matches cold drinks well.

It’s an excellent finger food when drinking with friends or binge-watching. 

Pro Tip:

Pork rinds are easy to store because they stay fresh for months when packed, so you’ll find them sold at convenience stores like 7-11 or supermarkets like Big C. It’s also convenient to carry around because it’s dry and doesn’t have an offensive smell.

Roti Sai Mai (Cotton Candy Crepe)

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Main Ingredients: Wheat flour, tapioca flour, oil, sugar, water 

Average Price: 15 to 40 baht

Variations: Pandan, strawberry, blueberry, taro, or banana-flavored roti

The Indian-inspired roti sai mai is a Thai snack popularized by Muslim street vendors in Ayutthaya. Once here, you’ll see why this historic city is a cultural melting pot, thanks to its welcoming atmosphere that attracts people of all backgrounds.

Its paper-thin roti is the one thing that sets this snack apart from the traditional Indian roti, which wraps around many sugar threads. As you may have expected, this is threads of sweet that’s super-fun to eat. 

Plus, it’s an eye-catching display, to say the least, as the roti and candy strings can come in different colors and flavors. So, it’s a must if you have kids with you—or even if you’re a kid-at-heart with a sweet tooth!

Pro Tip:

If you want the most authentic roti sai mai, visit Ayutthaya in Northern Thailand. The food stalls across Ayutthaya Hospital serve the best Roti Sai Mai in the region.

Khanom Khrok (Rice Pancake)

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Main Ingredients: Jasmine rice, rice flour, coconut milk, shredded coconut, palm sugar, salt, green onion toppings

Average Price: 20 to 30 baht

Variations: With sweet corn, black sesame seeds, or cubed taro toppings

Khanom khrok is a bite-size rice pancake or pudding widely available at food stalls and carts. What makes this Thai snack standout is the contrast between its toasted bottom layer and the sweet custardy center.

The snack turns out this way because vendors use unique pans with a circular indentation, similar to a takoyaki pan. 

Once you get your fair share of khanom khrok, you won’t forget the unique aroma of the cooked Jasmine rice-coconut combination. The classic version of this delicious Thai snack has green onion toppings, but various topping options exist. 

Pro Tip:

The best way to experience khanom khrok is to find a local food cart that serves various toppings so you can try all its variations in one sitting.

Thot Man Kung (Thai Shrimp Fritters)

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Main Ingredients: Shrimp, flour, bread crumbs, kaffir lime leaves, black pepper, salt, sugar

Average Price: 50 to 70 baht

Variations: Prawns thot man kung

Quick and simple to make, thot man kung is a staple seafood snack available in most night markets and food stalls. Mixing chopped shrimp into a pancake batter creates these bite-size fried cakes that are a delight to have as appetizers.

But like other protein-rich Thai seafood snacks, you can have thot man kung with a plate of rice. This flexibility makes it fantastic if you’re looking for either a quick bite or a filling but affordable meal.

Thot man kung often comes with Thailand’s staple sweet chili dipping sauce. The pairing works well, thanks to the fresh and zesty flavor and aroma from the added Kaffir Lime Leaves.

Pro Tip:

Choose to stuff thot man kung on mini brioche buns using the same sweet chli dipping sauce and some cabbage to make a complete meal. 

Thai Roti (Sweet Crepe Pancake)

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Main Ingredients: Flour, salt, ghee or butter, egg, banana, condensed milk, sugar

Average Price: 10 to 30 baht

Variations: Roti canai, roti pisang, roti tissue, roti durian, roti planta

Thai roti is a widely popular snack that has different variations depending on where you’re staying in Thailand. The most common version of this Indian-inspired snack is roti pisang, which vendors make with roti, banana, egg, and condensed milk.

Before serving the roti pisang, the vendor will slice it into bite-size pieces and stick a toothpick or disposable plastic fork in it for easy consumption.

Note that they may sprinkle extra sugar to boost the sweetness, but some will find that overkill. Meanwhile, some establishments make their roti similar to its Indian counterpart, pairing it with savory curry making it more of a meal than a snack.

Pro Tip:

Different stalls have their own take on Thai roti, so trying various types is worth it. However, nothing beats going to a specialty shop with a Michelin Gourmand Bib, like Roti Taew Nam in Phuket, especially with their signature shredded roti.

Khanom Khai Nok Kratha (Fried Sweet Potato Balls)

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Main Ingredients: Sweet potato, tapioca starch, rice flour, sugar, baking powder, salt

Average Price: 40 to 80 baht

Variations: Khanom khai hong (with mung bean stuffing)

A sweet Thai snack you’ll see while roaming Thailand’s busy streets is khanom khai nok kratha. These tiny, delectable balls of deep-fried sweet potato are the perfect nibbles between meals or during your Thai excursions.

Depending on the sweet potato the vendor uses, they come in purple or orange color, but it’s common for them to have both for a more eye-catching serving. Since it isn’t overwhelmingly sweet, you won’t get tired of them even after many bites.

It’s fun popping them into your mouth one after another because their thin, crispy outer layer breaks to reveal the soft, chewy insides, which can be addicting.  Yet, it’s best when freshly cooked as its quality drops quickly and turns ugly when reheated.

Pro Tip:

Keep in mind that khanom khai nok kratha doesn’t do well in storage, so only buy them from street food stalls since they always make new batches.

Khanom Phing (Coconut Tapioca Cookies)

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Main Ingredients: Tapioca flour, sugar, coconut milk, egg yolk

Average Price: 100 to 150 baht

Khanom phing is another Portuguese-inspired snack from the Ayutthaya period. These days, many convenience stores and supermarkets sell this Thai snack in packs due to its good shelf life.

However, khanom phing remains a popular item in local bakeries around Thailand, where you can get it fresh. 

Due to this tapioca cookie’s tiny bite-size, it’s easy to nibble through a pack in a minute or two. It’s hard to control yourself when they crumble and melt in your mouth at every bite. 

Pro Tip:

The best khanom phing you can get is freshly made ones from your local Thai bakery. You can also find this sold in online stores, which is an excellent gift to friends outside Thailand.

Thapthim Krop (Red Rubies)

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Main Ingredients: Water chestnut, tapioca flour, red food coloring, coconut milk, sugar, salt, pandan leaves, water

Average Price: 35 to 55 baht 

Variations: With durian or jackfruit

Thapthim krop, a vibrant red dessert consisting of water chestnut and coconut milk, is a popular Thai dessert, which isn’t without merit. This dessert has fancy, ruby-looking nibbles swimming in a pandan-scented syrup.

One look at thapthim krop makes you contemplate whether to eat or frame it. But one thing is sure: once you taste the cold, syrupy chestnuts, you’ll understand the secret behind its allure.

Not only does it have the sweetness you look for in a dessert, but the aroma from the pandan brings a distinct flavor to each bite. The harmony between taste and scent is a stimulating experience that only the best of Thailand can offer.

Pro Tip:

The popular thapthim krop is available at almost every shop or restaurant in Thailand. Some stores add a scoop of vanilla ice cream to their Thapthim Krop, which is worth a try! 

Kalamare (Thai Caramel)

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Main Ingredients: Sticky rice, shredded coconut, coconut milk, sugar

Average Price: 50 to 100 baht

Variations: Pandan or chocolate-flavored kalamare with sesame seed or peanut toppings

A Thai caramel snack made with glutinous rice and coconut milk, kalamare (or kalamae), is a sweet and sticky dessert. Although it’s a typical snack found in various shops and food stalls, it plays a more significant and cultural role in wedding ceremonies.

Thai people believe that the stickiness and sweetness of kalamare symbolize a long-lasting and happy relationship. As the dessert takes time to prepare, it also serves as a lesson for the patience a successful married life requires.

But don’t let that stop you from trying this snack if you’re single. At its core, Kalamare is a sweet delicacy, and your relationship status won’t affect your enjoyment of this dessert unless you’re eating it after a terrible breakup.

Pro Tip:

If you’re in Phuket, kalamare is called kan-mare; the right term used at the right place should get you your order in no time. It’s often sold at weekend markets, like Chatuchak in Bangkok.

Tom Yum Shrimps

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Main Ingredients: Dried shrimps, dried kaffir lime leaves, cashew nuts, dried chili, fish sauce, onion, garlic, sugar, lemon juice

Average Price: 50 to 100 baht

Variations: Dried squid

Tom yum shrimps is a dried shrimp snack sold at markets and shops around Thailand. 

Due to the tom yum flavor’s popularity, they even make cup noodles and chips based on it! No wonder even dried shrimps get the tom yum treatment, which works wonders.

This shrimp snack is the perfect salty nibble to share with your friends and family, especially if they love Thai cuisine. That said, be careful who you share this exotic snack with as it packs a strong seafood smell and spicy tom yum flavor, which the faint of heart won’t appreciate.

Pro Tip:

The most authentic tom yum shrimps are the unbranded packs sold at local markets, but there are also store-bought versions. The popular brands of tom yum shrimp crisps are Thai Tanya and Good Green, which are available in most supermarkets.

Pla Muek Yang (Grilled Squid)

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Main Ingredients: Squid, fish sauce, chili, lime juice

Average Price: 40 to 120 baht

Variations: Grilled chicken, grilled fish, grilled pork

Marinated in classic Thai spices and seasonings, pla muek yang or the grilled squid from the streets of Thailand is another pleasant surprise. Squid has a rather mild sweet taste minus the fishiness and the meaty chewy texture is one massive appeal. 

What’s more, it always comes with nam jin, the same green chili seafood sauce that goes with your pad Thai. The flavor layering nam jin adds umami to a simple grilled squid making you grab some more; it’s the secret to a great pla muek. 

Pro Tip:

The spiciness of pla muek yang depends on the sauce, so expect food stalls at tourist hotspots to offer milder sauces. You can also ask for vinegar dip instead of the nam jim, for a more acidic snack that goes well with beer.

Deep-Fried Insects

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Main Ingredients: Grasshoppers, red ants, silkworms, crickets, scorpions, water bugs, sago grub

Average Price: 40 to 60 baht

Variations: Stir-fried insects

If you have an adventurous spirit, the best way to test it is with classic deep-fried insects. This exotic snack is common in Thailand’s streets, temples, and night markets and it’s one pleasant surprise you’ll look forward to. 

Mostly crunchy, fried insects have a distinct and bitter aftertaste, which you might find off-putting the first time around. And the good news is insects are not incredibly delicious but are highly nutritious as they’re high in protein yet low in calories. 

Plus, they do make for affordable and accessible finger food. One thing’s certain: though a bit greasy, they go well with beer or your favorite brand of booze. 

Pro Tip:

For some, deep fried silkworms (hon mhai) are the easiest to tolerate. It’s crunchy and commonly served with a secret sauce that makes everything palatable.

If you don’t feel like trying out hon mhai in the streets, you can grab Erawan Crispy from the market—and in four flavors: cheese, tom yum, BBQ, and paprika. Though it may seem like regular chips, it’s actually hon mhai in a pack!

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