crossroads kc restaurants
Lulus Thai Noodle Shop

Although the Thai community in Kansas City is modest in size, the authentic cuisine they bring to the city’s culinary landscape is bold in flavor. The aromatic blend of sweet, sour, spicy, and salty flavors that characterize Thai cuisine can be found at several exceptional establishments around town – as confirmed by us Kansas City locals.

Don’t think that you’ll only find familiar dishes on the menu in Kansas City – our Thai restaurants are authentic with the owners bringing decades-long recipes with them from their homeland. In addition to Pad Thai, you’ll find lesser-known, authentic dishes.

Thai is a cuisine that’s deeply rooted in tradition, yet open to adaptation and innovation. With zesty ingredients like lemongrass and kaffir lime, heat from chilis, a sour zing from tamarind and lime, and umami from fish sauce and shrimp paste, Thai cuisine is beloved here in the heartland.

So, let’s get into it – below are our top Kansas City Thai food recommendations!

entryway at waldo thai restaurant with thai artwork
Waldo Thai

Kansas City’s Best Thai Restaurants

Whether you’re dining in or opting for carry out, you can’t go wrong with these local favorites!

1. Waldo Thai Place

Neighborhood: Waldo
Pricing: $$

Waldo Thai Place is a vibrant showcase of Northern Thai cuisine, led by an executive chef who has earned several local and national accolades, including being a James Beard semifinalist.

When you step into Waldo Thai, you’re entering a space that’s a bit more upscale than your average Thai spot. The place has a trendy, date-night feel with an impressive cocktail program. It’s not just about great food; it’s about the ambiance too.

dark dining room at waldo thai restaurant
Waldo Thai

Waldo Thai is a celebration of Lanna culinary traditions, offering a truly authentic Northern Thai menu. The menu is set, with no room for customizing spice levels or swapping ingredients.

They offer a variety of dishes that cater to every palate, from mild and delicate options like the Tom Kha Goong to bolder choices such as the Nam Prik Orng. Their salads and share plates are not to be missed.

The dining experience varies depending on where you sit. The south side offers a more traditional fine-dining ambiance, complete with professional and personable service. The bar side is a bit more casual and bustling, especially during happy hour.

The cocktails are innovative, incorporating unique ingredients that complement the flavors of the Thai dishes.

dark dining room at waldo thai restaurant with blue wall and thai artwork
Waldo Thai

The restaurant doesn’t just serve food; it tells a story of Northern Thailand’s culinary heritage. The decor, with its nods to Thai culture, adds another layer of authenticity.

We personally love their Small Plate Wednesdays – a weekly celebration of traditional Thai cuisine with a modern take.

Menu highlights include crispy garlic chicken wings, pork dumplings, gaeng gai, and lettuce wraps.

2. Baramee Thai Bistro

Neighborhood: Crossroads Arts District
Pricing: $$

Since its opening in January 2019, Baramee Thai Bistro has been a haven for lovers of Northeastern Thai cuisine, offering a range of dishes cooked in authentic Thai style.

The name ‘Baramee’ in Thai signifies the joy of making others happy, a philosophy clearly reflected in the bistro’s approach to food and service. The ambiance is warm with brightly colored decor and Thai cultural depictions on the walls.

kansas city thai restaurant crossroads arts district
Baramee Thai Bistro

The focus is on fresh, locally sourced ingredients, including produce from the City Market. This commitment to quality and authenticity shines through in their menu, which features a variety of Northeastern Thai dishes alongside vegetarian options.

Baramee Thai Bistro is more than a restaurant; it’s a story of passion, culture, and the joy of sharing a piece of home through food. It’s a must-visit for anyone in Kansas City looking to experience genuine Thai cooking.

Menu highlights include the traditional Pad Grapow, a stir-fried chicken dish with Thai basil and a fried egg, Tom Yum soup, and the richly flavored Red Curry.

kansas city thai restaurant crossroads arts district
Baramee Thai Bistro

3. Lulu’s Thai Noodle Shop

Neighborhood: Crossroads Arts District
Pricing: $$

Lulu’s Thai Noodle Shop has been a beloved fixture in Kansas City’s culinary scene since 1997. Stepping into Lulu’s in Crossroads Arts District is like entering a sanctuary. With welcoming sawasdee statues, a Thai spirit house, and a dining room staff known for their warmth and friendliness, the atmosphere is one of genuine hospitality.

Lulu’s is renowned for its authentic Thai dishes, which are rooted in family recipes handed down from the owner’s grandmother. The menu is a vibrant tapestry of Thai flavors, offering inventive dishes alongside an array of familiar Thai classics.

Lulu’s caters to diverse dietary preferences, with a range of vegetarian options and a commitment to ensuring that even strict vegetarians and vegans can enjoy their offerings. Most of the dishes are prepared to your preferred spice level.

While the ambiance makes dining in a great experience, their carryout service is quick, and a personal staple of ours.

Menu highlights include the Wild Mushroom Curry, Drunken Noodles, Pad Thai, Lulu’s Spring Rolls, Blazing Wok Bowl, and Basil Fried Rice.

kansas city thai restaurant
Lulus Thai Noodle Shop

4. Phikul Thai Bistro

Neighborhood: River Market
Pricing: $$

Phikul Thai Bistro is a more recent addition to Kansas City, but it has a strong foundation – it’s a concept from the owner’s of Baramee Thai Bistro. From this new venture you can expect the same level of authentic, delectable Thai dishes.

The restaurant’s interior exudes warmth and elegance, creating an inviting atmosphere for diners with thoughtful decor and vibrant colors.

Menu highlights include the Pad See Ew, Panang Curry, Pad Ka Prao, and Labb Isaan.

entryway of Phikul Thai Bistro
Phikul Thai Bistro

Thanks For Supporting Local!

Kansas City is home to a vibrant and diverse Thai culinary scene. With several restaurants offering a wide range of flavors and styles, you’ll find something to satisfy every craving.

Indulge in the rich and aromatic curries, savor the delicate balance of sweet, sour, and spicy flavors, and experience the true essence of Thai cuisine. And, as always, thank you for supporting local!

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