Som Tam – Thai Green Papaya Salad

Prep time: About 30 minutes or less – no cooking is involved
Recipe size: 1 big plate

Thai green papaya salad, known as som tam in Thai, is one of the most commonly available and consumed dishes in Thailand. It originates in the northeastern part of the country (Isaan), but nowadays you’ll find it everywhere from Chiang Rai to Krabi. Throughout cities in Thailand, green papaya salad is one of the staples of street food cooking and dining. It’s healthy and easy to prepare, and has a really fresh taste.

Ingredients needed

  • ½ green papaya (if not available substitute either with apples or a cucumber)
  • ½ carrot
  • 1 tomato
  • 2 clove of garlic
  • 2 green bean or 1 Chinese long beans
  • 2 red and green chilies (optional to add more)
  • 1 tsp of fish sauce or soy sauce (vegetarian option and depending on taste preferences)
  • 4 tsp of fresh lime juice
  • 1-2 tsp of brown sugar or palm sugar
  • 2 tsp of roasted peanuts
  • 1 tsp of small dried shrimps (optional)

Equipment needed

  • Mortar, Bowl or something similar
  • Grater
  • Knife
  • Tea spoon (tsp)
  • Cutting board
  • Plate


  1. First of all peel both the green papaya and the carrot and grate them afterwards into thin slices. Cut the green bean and the tomato into slices. Then put aside.
  2. Put the chilies and the garlic into the mortar and grind them up to receive full flavor.
  3. Add brown/palm sugar, lime juice, fish/soy sauce and a small hand of roasted peanuts and keep on grinding them up.
  4. Mix in the tomato
  5. Add the shredded green papaya, carrot and sliced green bean into the mortar and mix it for around 30 seconds.
  6. Add the dried shrimps and mix it
  7. Next step: Taste test. Depending on your own preferences of sour, salty, sweet or spicy taste you can either add more lime juice, fish/soy sauce, sugar or chilies.
  8. Grab a plate and put the papaya salad on it. Some more peanuts on top and here you go…

Enjoy your delicious Som Tam!!

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