An amazing quick and easy Thai Coconut Soup MADE FROM SCRATCH with easy to find ingredients!! The coconut milk soup broth is can’t-stop-eating-it-delicious, made as spicy or as mild as you want.
Loaded with noodles, shrimp/prawns and a variety of toppings, this coconut curry soup lends itself to all sorts of variations. Try adding tofu and other vegetables, fish or chicken. So many possibilities!
Thai Coconut Curry Soup – easy, from scratch!
This is one for all those times you have a hankering for a Thai curry fix, but don’t have the time or the ingredients to make a full blown Thai Red Curry from scratch.
It’s not an authentic Thai dish, as far as I am aware. But as regular readers know, I’m a bit picky when it comes to faux Asian dishes. It doesn’t have to be strictly authentic – but it needs to be truly in the spirit of said cuisine.
So while it might not be authentic Thai, it’s made with ingredients used in Thai cooking, and it really does tastes like a Thai coconut curry in soup form. Like a cross between Laksa and Tom Yum Soup (coming soon!).
It is way better than anything you can make using stock standard Thai curry pastes you find at everyday grocery stores – even if you brighten them up with fresh aromatics. And you are going to be astonished how easy it is to make.
Here’s what you need
All things you’ll find at your local supermarket.
These are the curry powders I typically use – but any type or brand will be fine here because it’s not a major ingredient in this recipe. Curry powder is used in all sorts of recipes, not just Indian curries, including:
Chickpea Potato Curry – very popular with readers!
Easy “shortcut” Thai curry paste
The flavour base of this Thai Coconut Soup is a “cheats” homemade curry paste made with garlic, ginger, lemongrass (fresh or paste), brown sugar, fish sauce, curry and coriander powder and chilli paste.
There are far less ingredients in this than typical curry pastes but this does not mean it’s lacking in flavour! The curry paste packs an incredible flavour punch because it’s made a little differently to usual curry pastes which are typically simply whizzed up in food processors then sautéed:
Sear shrimp / prawns – browning equals flavour, plus the fond (the bits stuck on the base of the pot) adds to the flavour of the broth. Key cooking fundamental! 🙂
Sautéed aromatics – garlic, ginger and lemongrass – to create a terrific flavour base;
Caramelise brown sugar and fish sauce – when it bubbles with the aromatics, the smell is outrageous!!!
Simple curry flavours – with all the flavours from the above, we just need a little hit of flavour from just curry powder and coriander powder to finish off our quick curry paste.
After we’ve made the curry paste, it’s as simple as adding in chicken or vegetable broth and coconut milk, then adding the prawns back in just to warm through. And the soup is done!
I like to cook the noodles separately and place into the bowls, then ladle the soup over. This way, you don’t end up with leftover noodles in the broth which become bloated and unpleasantly soft.
Thai Coconut Soup Toppings
I highly recommend toppings for this coconut curry soup. At the very least, fresh coriander / cilantro and lime juice is a must. It just adds that little hit of freshness that makes all the difference.
Other topping options shown in the photos which are optional extras include:
Beansprouts – a big handful on top or on the side. I almost always add bean sprouts to make this Thai Coconut Soup into a meal;
Fried Asian Shallots – crispy pops of salty goodness, these are sold in Asian stores and in the Asian section of grocery stores here in Australia; and
Fresh chilli – use big ones if you are a spice wuss like me, or little fiery ones if you can handle the heat!
Highly versatile recipe
This Thai coconut soup is all about the coconut curry soup broth, so other than that, it’s really up to you what you put in it. I feel like I say this with almost all my savoury recipes…. but I guess that’s a good thing! 😂
I’ve used noodles and shrimp/prawns here which is how I usually serve it. Any type of noodles will be great with this, though I’m partial to thick egg noodles.
When I’m counting calories, I skip the noodles and add vegetables, sometimes tofu. Asian greens are ideal – and tons of it, because it wilts down.
With a coconut milk soup broth this good, you could put almost anything into it and it’ll be scoffed down!! – Nagi x
If you love coconut milk sauces, you’ll love these!
MORE ASIAN SOUPS
Chinese Corn Soup – super quick and easy!
Chinese Ham Rice Soup (Congee)
WATCH HOW TO MAKE IT
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Thai Coconut Soup
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 10 prawns/shrimp , peeled and deveined (Note 1)
- 2 garlic cloves , finely grated
- 2 tsp ginger , finely grated
- 1 lemongrass , peeled, finely grated (Note 2)
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 1/2 tbsp fish sauce (or soy sauce)
- 2 tsp curry powder (Note 3)
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 2 tsp chilli garlic paste or other chilli paste , adjust to taste (Note 4)
- 400 g/14oz coconut milk (Note 5)
- 2 cups /500ml chicken broth (or vegetable)
- 2 tsp lime zest (1 lime)
- 200 g / 7 oz fresh egg noodles, prepared per packet (other noodles Note 6)
- Big handful bean sprouts
Toppings / for serving:
- Lime wedges
- Fresh coriander/cilantro leaves
- Sliced red onion (or sliced green onion), Fried Asian shallots (Note 7), sliced red chilli, more chilli paste (optional)
- Heat oil in a large saucepan over high heat. Add prawns and sear both sides until light golden (doesn't need to cook inside). Remove onto plate.
- Turn heat down to medium. If pot is looking dry, add a touch of extra oil.
- Add garlic, ginger and lemongrass. Saute for 20 seconds until garlic is golden.
- Add sugar and fish sauce. Stir and cook for 30 seconds - it should look like caramel.
- Add chilli paste, coriander and curry powder. Stir and cook for 30 seconds.
- Add chicken broth and coconut milk. Stir and bring to simmer.
- Simmer for 2 minutes, then add lime zest and return prawns into broth.
- Cook for 2 minutes just to reheat and finish cooking the prawns.
- Place noodles in bowl. Ladle over soup.
- Top with bean sprouts and coriander, plus toppings of choice (chilli, red onion, Asian fried shallots).
- Squeeze over lime juice to taste. Slurp and be happy!
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