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Thai Beef Waterfall Salad Recipe (Nam Tok Neua)

Thai Beef Waterfall Salad Recipe (Nam Tok Neua)

Namtok Neua is a Thai dish consisting of meat and vegetables served in a fish sauce with palm sugar, spring onions, lime juice, parley and mint. The meat is marinated, grilled then sliced thinly and then tossed in herbs, seasonings and a dressing.

Namtok Neua is also known as Thai beef waterfall salad. Neua means beef and namtok means waterfall, possibly a reference to the juice dripping from the meat as it cooks. Thai waterfall salad can also be made from other types of meat. Mu or Moo Namtok is the pork version of Namtok Neua. Mu means pig or pork.

Unlike salad in Western culture, salad in Thailand does not always refer to a dish of mixed leafy greens. Thai salads usually consist of a mixture of herbs, spices, meats or fish, nuts and vegetables though not necessarily raw, green leafy ones.

Namtok Neua is usually served with sticky rice and eaten by balling up the sticky rice then pressing into the salad, picking up the dressing and bits of meat.

Origin & Cultural Significance

Nam Tok Neua originated from North Eastern Thailand which is bordered by the country of Laos where Namtok is also popular. Despite a troubled history between the two countries, they share many cultural similarities, including language and cuisine.

Thai Beef Salad Recipe (Namtok Neua)

Thai Beef Salad Recipe (Namtok Neua)

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes

Namtok Neua is a Thai dish consisting of meat and vegetables served in a fish sauce with palm sugar, spring onions, lime juice, parley and mint.


Meat & Marinade

  • Rib Eye Steak - 20 oz.
  • Tomato Sauce – 3 tbsp
  • Oyster Sauce – 2 tbsp
  • Seasoning Sauce – 2 tbsp
  • Palm Sugar – 1 tbsp
  • Cooking Oil – 2 tsp
  • Pickled Garlic Water – 2 tbsp

Thai Beef Salad Dressing

  • Stock – 12 tbsp
  • Palm Sugar – 8 tsp
  • Fish Sauce - 8 tsp
  • Red Chili Flakes – 2 tsp
  • Lime Juice – 8 tsp
  • Roasted Rice – 4 tbsp
  • Red Onion, sliced – 4 tbsp
  • Parsley, chopped – 4 tbsp
  • Spring Onion, chopped including the green uppers. – 4 tbsp


  1. Slice the beef into steaks about 1/2 to 3/4 inch thick leaving the fat on. If there are any hardened sections of fat then trim these off minimally.
  2. In a large bowl add the sugar together with the other marinade ingredients and mix them together with the beef steaks, gently squeeze them into the meat.
  3. Leave to marinate for an hour.
  4. After the beef has marinated, grill the meat or fry quickly in a skillet. They taste best rare or medium rare.
  5. Let the cooked beef steaks rest a few minutes.
  6. Cut the steaks into bite-sized slices.
  7. Chop up the red onion, parsley and spring onions and set aside
  8. Mix the other dressing ingredients together and divide into 4 portions. Each serving will get its own portion of dressing.
  9. Place one serving of the steak slices together with one portion of the dressing ingredients excluding the onion and herbs in a saucepan and heat, stirring to mix well.
  10. Then, add in the onion and herbs at the end and stir to coat thoroughly for a minute or two.
  11. Repeat with the other 3 servings. All the meat and dressing may be cooked together if you prefer.
  12. Serve warm.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 528Total Fat: 31gSaturated Fat: 12gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 17gCholesterol: 113mgSodium: 1635mgCarbohydrates: 25gFiber: 2gSugar: 17gProtein: 39g

Photo Credit: Timothy Vollmer

Photo Credit: Takeaway

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