Stir-Fried Pumpkin with Eggs (ผัดฟักทองใส่ไข่)

This may look like nothing special, but the fact that this no-frills home-style dish is a rice-curry shop staple in Bangkok tells you a lot.

Kabocha squash, also known as Japanese pumpkin, is the best choice of pumpkin/squash for this, in my opinion. The flavor is mild and sweet. Its low moisture content makes the texture dense and starchy, yet soft and fluffy — almost like chestnut. The skin, once cooked, becomes soft enough to eat as well. (In fact, I could have left the pumpkin skin on when I made this.) Any type of pumpkin or squash that becomes soft and watery once cooked will not be appropriate here.

Stir-fried pumpkin with eggs is easy and quick to make and requires only six common ingredients. This is a perfect weeknight meal.

5.0 from 3 reviews
Stir-Fried Pumpkin with Eggs (ผัดฟักทองใส่ไข่)
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Main Course, Stir-Fry
Cuisine: Thai
Serves: 4
  • One kabocha squash, weighing about 2½ pounds
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 large cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 4 large eggs
  • ¼ teaspoon ground white or black pepper
  1. Peel the pumpkin (if you would like to experience the joy of eating cooked kabocha skin, leave the skin on) and cut it into quarters. With the side of a spoon, scrape off the seeds and the fibers. Cut the pumpkin into 1-inch cube
  2. Put the vegetable oil in a wok, and set it over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the garlic; stir-fry until fragrant.
  3. Add the pumpkin to the wok along with the fish sauce. Cover it with plain water and boil until the pumpkin is soft enough for you to pierce the tip of a knife into it easily, yet still firm enough to hold it shape. This should take about 10-15 minutes. The goal is to use the water to soften the pumpkin and let it evaporate, so there's no need to replenish the water.
  4. Once the pumpkin is soft, make a well in the middle and crack the eggs right into it; stir.
  5. Once the eggs are cooked, remove the wok from heat. Sprinkle the ground pepper on top. Serve warm with rice.

27 Responses to Stir-Fried Pumpkin with Eggs (ผัดฟักทองใส่ไข่)

  1. Pam April 16, 2013 at 8:31 pm #

    My most favorite Thai dish. Thank you so much for featuring it.

  2. ElCee April 17, 2013 at 7:24 am #

    That’s tonight sorted! How well would butternut squash hold up as kabochka isn’t available in England?

    • Leela April 17, 2013 at 10:10 am #

      ElCee – Try buttercup squash which I think is related to/a variety of/same as (depending on whom you ask — conflicting info abounds) kabocha. I think I saw one at Waitrose in London, but I could be wrong. Otherwise, stick to turban-shaped squash. Failing all that, butternut should work (though I’ve never tried).

    • Clouds in the Kitchen April 17, 2013 at 11:24 am #

      Kabocha is widely availabe in health food shops like planet organic and whole foods…and also is much cheaper than one might think it is!!
      When I am in England is the only pumpkin I use !!

      This recipe is delicious.
      I have it here in Thailand with thai basil thrown in just before serving !!!

      Thanks for the recipe Leela!!!!

  3. Pey-Lih April 17, 2013 at 11:53 am #

    I am hesitant to ask, but is that not the same as acorn squash or is it completely different? This recipe looks like comfort food to me. I would eat this with rice on a weekend morning.

    • Leela April 17, 2013 at 12:17 pm #

      Pey-lih – No, they’re two different kinds.

  4. Ken April 17, 2013 at 12:07 pm #

    Sounds great, especially for a weeknight. I like the idea of cracking the eggs right into the wok. Exciting! Thanks. Ken

  5. Eileen April 17, 2013 at 12:56 pm #

    I’ve never thought to combine squash of any kind with eggs before! (I mean, besides in pie form.) This sounds like such an easy and delicious dish.

  6. Patricia April 17, 2013 at 10:58 pm #

    Sounds delicious! I haven’t seen this type of squash at my local big-chain grocery store here In Boston. Do you think it would work well with sweet potatoes?

    • Leela April 18, 2013 at 10:39 am #

      Patricia – Would you try that and let us know how it goes?

  7. Kint April 22, 2013 at 3:31 pm #

    Is this dish sometimes made to be quite sweet, or am I confusing it with another yellow Thai egg dish?

    • Leela April 23, 2013 at 8:30 am #

      Kint – Probably the first case as I can’t think of any savory pumpkin dish that could be confused with it. Pumpkin is naturally sweet; I don’t feel like this dish needs any added sugar. Then again, many Bangkokian food vendors these days add a truckload of sugar to everything.

  8. Kim May 1, 2013 at 6:45 pm #

    Yum. Yum. Yum. No leftovers and my 12 year old boy asked me if I could teach him to cook this one!

  9. Bonnie May 3, 2013 at 5:03 pm #

    Thankyou for such a nice dinner idea. It’s in the pan as we speak. FYI: I am using butternut squash and it seems to be working nicely although when I get a chance I will defintely pick up a pumpkin from the Thai store.

  10. BeeBee May 5, 2013 at 2:18 pm #

    This is one of my all time favorite dishes. Thank you for the recipe 🙂

  11. Daniel - Comedera.Com May 9, 2013 at 7:47 pm #

    hey! this looks so nice!

    it’s nice for a dinner or breakfast!
    i will buy pumpkin!!

  12. Julia May 12, 2013 at 5:50 am #

    Love your blog. I’m Thai but live in the uk, I have a blog about food too but I don’t get to eat Thai food as often as I like. Love seeing your pics! X

  13. Kara U May 22, 2013 at 8:33 am #

    I was just talking about how I wanted to learn to make this dish! I found your blog through another post on Pinterest, but am glad I looked around!

  14. Pey-Lih May 23, 2013 at 2:01 pm #

    I made this twice, and I agree…the japanese kabocha squash tastes better- mild and sweet! And I sprinkled in some chinese chives, because I love chives in my scrambled eggs. This is a perfect meal even for lunch- it’s so good!

    • Leela May 23, 2013 at 2:48 pm #

      Pey-Lih – I love your chive idea. Thank you.

  15. Chris Bird June 13, 2013 at 2:42 pm #

    Wonderful, thanks Leela. I used a slightly better (and firmer) than average butternut squash and it worked perfectly. Also had some Nam Prik Pao with my rice. A really super and super-simple dish.

  16. Jaime July 31, 2013 at 5:33 pm #

    Delicious. Thanks for sharing this recipe!

  17. Polly June 13, 2014 at 4:54 am #

    I’ve always liked last night’s leftover pumpkin for breakfast, with a fried egg, so this was a natural for me to try. Lovely, thank you for the recipe.

    Since Patricia didn’t write back about trying this with sweet potato, I will. Too sweet! And the texture was just wrong. Ended up adding a splash of lime juice to cut the excessive sweetness. It worked, and the dish was ok, but nowhere near as nice as the original. I like sweet potato, but I won’t be using it again for this dish.


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