Thai Red Curry Chicken Soup – A hearty soup made with chicken broth and coconut milk and loaded with chicken, rice noodles, red pepper, and cilantro.
As it gets colder this time of year, I love to make soups to keep us all warm. I started making this Thai Red Curry Chicken Soup last year when I was experimenting with Thai cuisine. It quickly became one of my favorites. I love the flavors and the rice noodles just make it delightful. Even my toddler loves it!
Before we get into the recipe, let’s drool over some more pics, huh?
Layering the ingredients
The key to a great soup is layering the ingredients to develop the flavor. To do this, the ingredients are added a little at a time and then simmered together before serving. Here are the layers:
- Chicken – the chicken is cooked first to leave a layer of browned bits at the bottom of the pan that becomes the base flavor of the soup. It is removed and chopped before adding back later.
- Vegetables – the red pepper and onion is added and cooked until softened.
- Spices – the red curry paste are added with minced ginger and cooked with the vegetable for 5 minutes. This step is critical for developing the flavor so don’t skimp on time here!
- Fish sauce and brown sugar – before we set the soup to simmer, sugar and fish sauce are added.
- Herbs and lime juice – the final layer of this soup is the fresh herbs and juice. These are added after the soup has simmered to give it a fresh flavor.
Tips & Tricks
- It’s important to let the red curry and ginger flavors develop. So make sure to cook them with the vegetables for the entire 5 minutes stated in the recipe.
- Rice noodles have a great texture in this soup, but they can get gummy over time. Therefore, if you’re making this to eat multiple times throughout week, I recommend using spaghetti or vermicelli noodles instead of rice noodles.
- Many recipes will label herb additions at the end of a soup as “optional”. In this case, the green onions and cilantro are very much necessary. You NEED to have these in the soup to make the soup taste incredible.
Thai Red Curry Chicken Soup
- 2 large chicken breasts cut into 1-inch chunks
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tablespoon canola or coconut oil
- 1 red bell pepper diced
- 1 medium onion diced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tablespoons red curry paste
- 1 tablespoon grated ginger
- 6 cups chicken broth
- 1 13.5-ounce can coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon fish sauce
- 2 teaspoons brown sugar
- 6 ounces dried rice noodles or vermichelli noodles
- 3 green onions sliced
- ½ cup cilantro leaves chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- Place Dutch oven or stock pot over medium heat. Add oil. Once hot, add chicken and season with salt and pepper. Cook until done. Remove and set aside.
- Add onion and pepper to same hot pot. Cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant. Add in curry paste and ginger and stir together. Cook for 5 minutes. The bottom of the pan will probably start to brown. That's okay!
- Add in 2 cups of chicken broth. Scrape off the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Add rest of the chicken broth and coconut milk. Bring mixture to a boil. While waiting for it to boil, chop the cooked chicken and add to the soup. Once the soup is boiling, reduce to simmer. Simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add fish sauce, brown sugar, and rice noodles. Let noodles soften in the hot broth for about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add in chopped green onions, cilantro, and fresh lime juice. Taste and season, if necessary. Serve immediately.