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Char Kway Teow

Char Kway Teow is a delightful street food classic that hails from Singapore and Malaysia, it’s easy to create my version of the stir-fried noodle hawker dish at home with this quick and speedy recipe. Get ready for spicy, smoky noodles and a good chilli kick. Delicious!


Char Kway Teow

10 minutes
30 minutes

2 tbsp vegetable oil, plus 1 extra tablespoon

4 garlic cloves, roughly chopped

50g (1.7 oz) thinly sliced Chinese sausage*

50g (1.7 oz) thinly sliced Asian fishcakes*

8 small prawns, peeled and deveined

2 eggs, lightly whisked

350g (12 oz) fresh rice noodles

¼ cup bean shoots

2 stems Chinese garlic chives, cut into batons (alternatively, use spring onion/scallions)


Chilli paste:

50g (1.7 oz) dried red chillies

3 fresh mild red chillies, roughly chopped

3 Asian red shallots, roughly chopped

2 tsp sea salt

4 tbsp vegetable oil


Stir-fry sauce:

2 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp oyster sauce

2 tsp fish sauce

1 tsp dark sweet soy sauce

1 tsp sugar

¼ tsp ground black pepper

  • Step 1

    For the chilli paste, soak the dried red chillies in hot water for 15 minutes or until softened. Then use tongs to remove them from the soaking liquid. Reserve the soaking liquid in case you need it when blending. Roughly chop the chillies and place them in the bowl of a food processor. Add the fresh chillies, shallots and salt. Blend until smooth (add a tablespoon of the chilli soaking liquid if your food processor gets stuck).

  • Step 2

    Heat 4 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the chilli paste and cook, stirring, for about 5 minutes. Transfer the chilli paste to a jar.

  • Step 3

    For the stir-fry sauce, mix the ingredients in a small bowl and set aside for later.

  • Step 4

    Heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a wok or large frying pan over high heat. Add the garlic and stir-fry for 5 seconds. Then add the Chinese sausage and stir-fry for another 10 seconds. Then add the fishcakes and the prawns. Stir-fry until the prawns are almost cooked. Then add 2 heaped tablespoons (or to taste) of the chilli paste. Toss to combine. Then push the ingredients out to the side of the pan to make room in the middle. Add a tablespoon of oil to the centre of the pan. Then pour in the eggs. Use your spatula to spread the eggs out. Once the eggs are set, toss them around with the remaining ingredients.

  • Step 5

    Now add the noodles and the stir-fry sauce. Stir-fry until well combined. Then toss through the bean shoots and the Chinese chives. Remove from heat and serve.

  • Notes

    – You’ll have more chilli paste than you need for this recipe. Simply store it in the fridge for up to a month. Use it to add a chilli kick to just about anything… stir-fries, grilled meats or breakfast eggs.

    – Chinese sausage, also known as lap cheongis a sweet preserved pork sausage. It can be bought online or from an Asian grocery store.

    – Asian fishcakes are available in the fridge or freezer section of any Asian grocery store.

Is char kway teow the same as pad Thai?

Char kway teow is not the same as pad Thai. They are both stir fries, and both use rice noodles… but that’s where the similarities end. Char kway teow is more smoky and savoury when compared to the tanginess and sweetness of pad Thai. Not only that, but the main components are different. Char kway teow uses some extra ingredients that aren’t found in pad Thai, like Chinese sausage and fish cakes.

What does char kway teow taste like?

Char kway teow is quite similar to pad see ew, but again has a more smoky, savoury taste as opposed to a sweet one. It also shares similarities to chow fun.

Marion's Kitchen is for everyone who finds joy in flavour and happiness in every bite. Marion's Kitchen is for everyone who finds joy in flavour and happiness in every bite.

What our customers say

5.0 out of 5 stars (based on 1 review)
Very good0%

Char Kway Teiw Wow!

January 12, 2023

This is simply smoky, noodly heaven. So easy to make. So tasty. So satisfying and good. One of the family staples now.

Avatar for Gaylene

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