The BEST fried chicken and Lao sausage - Papaya Salad Restaurant, Luang Prabang, Laos

Papaya Salad Restaurant, Luang Prabang, Laos

I've had a lot of good food in Luang Prabang, Laos, but THIS is a very special secret gem in the city! The Papaya Salad Restaurant in Luang Prabang serves the most delicious and crispy fried chicken and traditional Lao pork sausage that I've ever had... and that's no exaggeration!

lao fried chicken, sausage, sticky rice, and spicy dipping sauce
Most delicious Lao sausage and fried chicken

We discovered this restaurant by accident while exploring the ancient temples in Luang Prabang. As soon as we arrived, the staff were all very friendly and welcoming. They showed us the English menu which only had a few items on it. I feel like when restaurants only specialize in just a few dishes, then you know it's going to be good (like the Obama bun cha in Hanoi).

We decided to order Lao papaya salad (called Tam Mak Houng), traditional-style fried chicken, lao sausage, and of course, sticky rice, which is a ubiquitous side to every Lao dish. They asked how spicy we would like our papaya salad. I ordered medium, hoping that it wouldn't be too much for my poor boyfriend. Michael is bravely trying to get better at eating spicy food, but he has a long way to go!

I gave fried chicken a try first... OMG.. without exaggerating, this is THE BEST FRIED CHICKEN I have EVER had in my entire life. The outside is super crispy, but the inside is so tender. It's savory, and it smells soooo good. I have no idea how they marinated this chicken, but doesn't matter.. whatever they used  as a marinade, it's DELICIOUS!

Next, I tried the lao sausage which is also very good! Lao sausage has a unique crumbly texture, and that is what make it different from other sausage. Sometimes Lao sausage can be too oily, though, and I was really impressed by how dry and tasty this one was. I was so impressed with the fried chicken and the sausage, that I had to ask the chef how she made it so delicious and crispy. She told me that the secret to the perfect crispiness is that the dishes are cooked with a hot air fryer rather than a pan full of oil. Delicious and pretty healthy too!

Tam Mak Houng or Lao Papaya Salad
Tam Mak Houng or Lao Papaya Salad
Now, it's time to try papaya salad. I immediately fell in love with this dish! It's sweet, savory, and a little sour with a perfect level of spice. The papaya is cut into flat, thin slices, which increases the crispiness of this dish. Other ingredients include fresh tomato, eggplant, chili, and garlic. Don't forget to take a thumb-sized ball of sticky rice and dip it into the dressing. Sticky rice is a vehicle for sauces - that's how you enjoy it, guys! Just use the rice to soak up all of the delicious chili sauce and juice from the papaya salad.
Everything on the menu is made fresh in their kitchen. They make everything themselves, even the sausage. The kitchen and restaurant are very clean, and the staff are friendly. It's already pretty popular with local people, but I really want to encourage lots of people to visit. This is a restaurant that I will certainly visit again and again for lunch before leaving Laos. Prices are slightly higher than other local restaurants, but it's not unreasonable, and worth every kip.
the menu at the Papaya Salad Restaurant, Luang Prabang, Laos

Papaya Salad Restaurant 

Price: 💲
papaya salad 15.000 kip / fried chicken and sausage 40.000 kip each / sticky rice 5.000 kip

Location: Papaya Salad Restaurant, Luang Prabang

Review: 😃 WOW! Don't miss the fried chicken - it's unbelievable!