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9 Dishes You Can Make with Thai Red Curry Paste

When it comes to Thai cuisine, there are few ingredients as sought after as red curry paste. It’s highly versatile and tantalizing, spicy and complex. It serves as the added kick you need to jump out and take center stage, or it can play a supporting role, providing a smoldering undercurrent that keeps things interesting.

Below, we’ve gathered 9 of the most delicious recipes with Thai red curry paste. Each gives you a different take on this mouthwatering ingredient.

Table of Contents


1. Traditional “roasted duck red curry”

We begin by appreciating a time-honored, classic red curry that melds the richness of succulent duck with a spicy red curry paste infused with coconut milk. Here, your Thai red curry paste is going to do exactly what you expect it to — add a bold flavor profile that balances out with creamy coconut to create a delectable combination. It makes for a great delivery for the roasted duck.

The sweetness of the pineapple and cherry tomatoes will offer up still more excitement, leading to that rich mixture of flavors that Thai food is so well known for. Spicy, sweet, and savory all coalesce in the thick base of coconut, which is strong enough to hold everything together.

thai fishcake

2. Thai fish cakes

These are a great, greasy option that is perfect in potluck situations or for entertaining. The patties you create with the grouper fish meat give you a convenient way to serve the food, and thanks to the Thai red curry paste, they’ll deliver a lot more than your typical fried fare. In fact, these offer a bold alternative to the typical fritter.

Thai fish cakes are positively addictive. And despite their interesting flavor, they are actually fairly simple to throw together — as long as you have your ingredients on hand.

thai hor mok

3. Haw mok (steamed fish curry)

Haw mok brings together the delicate flavors of the sea with the distinct aromatic Thai curry spices in a unique culinary presentation. Traditionally, haw mok is served in a banana leaf that is folded to form the bowl. This recipe will teach you how to do that, which will take your Thai cooking game to an entirely new level. It’s a presentation that people won’t forget.

Thanks to the Thai red curry paste, the creamy blended haw mok takes on a fiery flavor profile, which never fails to make a strong impression.

thai jungle curry

4. Chicken “jungle curry”

Chicken jungle curry, or “gaeng pa gai,” skips the coconut milk but escalates in flavor with a unique combination of herbs characteristic of Thailand’s forested regions. Don’t let this recipe’s simplicity fool you; the end result is a delightful curry that will make everyone happy. Thanks to the chicken meat and plenty of eggplant, the dish is palatable to a wide range of eaters — even picky ones.

Again, the Thai red curry paste comes around to give everything a hint of drama and a burn that keeps things interesting. It works as a stand-in for other forms of “jungle curry,” giving what many people consider a better flavor.

5. Pork “pad prik khing”

This is a quick and easy Thai style stir-fry using red curry paste. Thanks to its lack of coconut milk, pad prik khing is known for being drier than other curry dishes. In Thailand, you’ll often find people making it with red curry paste, rather than the prik khing curry paste that the dish is named after. Confusing, but once you taste it, you’ll be making this a regular part of your recipe rotation!

In this version, pork gives everything a mild center to layer flavor over, which is the perfect choice for a base. The drier consistency means the flavor can become a lot more spicy, so having a relatively bland meat to soak it all in makes for a wonderful meal.

6. Stir-fried crispy catfish

A little less flaky and not quite as “fishy” as some other options, catfish has become a favorite protein worldwide. Its fairly mild flavor makes it a good base to layer on red curry paste, along with wild ginger and fresh peppercorn to create a little dazzle.

It’s also a surprisingly straightforward recipe, so you should consider it if you want something simple or would like a dish you can innovate with. You have plenty of places you can go using this as your starting point.

7. Red curry marinated fried chicken

It doesn’t really get much better than fried chicken — except for fried chicken with Thai red curry paste (“gai tod prik gaeng”). This will no doubt wind up a family favorite, so make sure you are ready for everyone to be begging for seconds.

The red curry paste is the strong note you can rely on for big flavor. Other than that, this one does not get too fancy, which is the sign of a good fried chicken recipe. One additional trick you can try is mixing a small amount of baking soda in with the flour to promote a crunchier texture.

8. Red curry fried rice

Thai fried rice dishes have become beloved the world over. They are the ultimate comfort food, and this dish gives you a version that preserves everything we love about fried rice while giving it a new twist with red curry.

If you want to meal prep but are looking for something that will stay interesting for multiple meals a week, this might be your best option. It has a lot of Thai character, and it provides you a great mix of wholesome ingredients, too.

choochee curry thai food

9. Choo chee curry with mackerel

With choo chee curry, you’ll be going a little thicker and sweeter than you might be used to. The fish is generously coated in a thick, red curry sauce made with coconut milk, which produces an irresistibly creamy texture. Kaffir lime leaves, alongside the brightness of sweet basil, pierce through the richness, infusing the dish with a refreshing citrus note.

That will add a ton of needed mouthfeel to the mackerel, which delivers a wonderfully fresh fish taste. Those two features are the heart and soul of the recipe. You’ll be relying on the red curry paste to sharpen everything up. It’s an important role to play, keeping things bright and flavorful.


  • Red curry paste ¼ cup
  • Vegetable oil
  • Concentrated coconut milk 1 cup
  • ½ Roasted duck meat (chopped)
  • Fish sauce 3 tablespoons
  • Palm sugar 2 tablespoons
  • Regular coconut milk 2 cups
  • Pineapple (chopped) 200 grams
  • Cherry tomatoes (sliced in half) 100 grams
  • 5 Kaffir leaves
  • Thai basil 1 cup
  • Spur chili (sliced) and Thai basil leaves for decoration

How to cook

  • Put vegetable oil into a pan. Once it’s heated up, put red curry paste and concentrated coconut milk and stir until coconut oil forms a layer. After that, put in roasted duck meat and stir well.
  • Season with fish sauce and palm sugar
  • Put coconut milk and heat up until boiled, then add pineapple, cherry tomatoes, and kaffir leaves. Once the curry is boiled, again, turn off the heat and add Thai basil. Plated with spur chili and more Thai basil leaves. Ready to serve!


  • Minced spotted knife fish or spotted featherback fish meat 500 grams
  • Red curry paste 100 grams
  • 2 eggs
  • 5 Kaffir leaves (chopped)
  • Long beans (chopped) 1 cup
  • Sugar 2 teaspoons
  • Fish sauce 2 tablespoons
  • Vegetable oil for deep fry 1 liter
  • Sweet chili sauce for serving

How to cook

  • Make fish ball: in a bowl, mix fish paste and eggs, followed by red chili paste, chopped kaffir leaves, and chopped long beans.
  • Season the mixture with sugar and fish sauce.
  • Roll in small balls and flatten them. The thickness should be around 0.5 to 1 cm.
  • Deep fry the fish ball: in a pot, heat up the vegetable oil with medium heat. Wait until the oil is hot.
  • Put in the fish balls and fry until cooked. Scoop up and set aside to drain the excess oil.
  • Plate nicely and serve with sweet chili sauce


  • Minced spotted knife fish or spotted featherback fish meat 500 grams
    2 eggs
  • Palm sugar 1 tablespoons
  • Red curry paste 2-3 tablespoons
  • Finger root (sliced) 20 grams
  • Fish sauce 2 tablespoons
  • Coconut milk 1 cup
  • 5-10 Shrimp (chopped)
  • Thai basil 20 grams
  • White cabbage (boiled) 40 grams
  • Spur chili (sliced)
  • Kaffir leaves (chopped)

Ingredients for coconut milk cream top

  • Coconut milk ½ cup
  • Salt ¼ teaspoon
  • Cornstarch 1 tablespoon

How to cook

  • Use a blending machine to blend minced fish with eggs, palm sugar, red curry paste, finger roots, and fish sauce together.
  • Use boiled white cabbage to layer at the bottom of small bowls you will use to steam. Put in the mixture to around ½ of the bowl, add shrimp, and put more mixture over to the top
  • In a large pot, boil water with medium heat, stream the mixture the bowl until cooked (approximately 15 minutes)
  • Make coconut milk cream top by mixing coconut milk, salt, and cornstarch. Put in microwave for 1-2 minutes or heat up in a small saucepan/pot with low heat until it’s thickened.
  • Top the steamed haw mok with coconut milk cream and decorate with chopped spur chili and kaffir leaves. Ready to serve


  • Vegetable oil 1 tablespoon
  • Red curry paste 100 grams
  • Chicken thigh or drumstick (chopped) 100 grams
  • Coconut shoots ¼ cup
  • Boiled bamboo shoots ¼ cup
  • 3-4 Green brinjal or eggplant (cut in smaller pieces)
  • Finger roots (sliced) ¼ cup
  • 3-4 young peppercorn
  • 2 Spur chili (sliced)
  • Fish sauce 1-2 tablespoons
  • Sugar ½ teaspoon

How to cook

  • Heat up a pot with low to medium heat, add a little bit of vegetable oil.
  • Add red curry paste and stir in the pot until the smell comes out then add fish sauce and sugar. Be cautious not to burn the paste.
  • Once the paste and seasoning are well mixed, add chicken and stir until moderately cooked.
  • Add water just to the same level as the chicken. Turn the heat up to high.
  • Add boiled bamboo shoots and coconut shoots. Wait until the soup is boiled and the chicken is cooked, then taste it before adding more seasoning if needed.
  • Add green brinjal or eggplant, finger roots, young peppercorn, and spur chili. Wait until the soup is boiled again before turning the heat off. Ready to serve.

Recipe from chubbylawyer


    • Pork 500 grams
    • Red curry paste 30 grams
    • Ginger 15 grams
    • Vegetable oil for stir fry 30 ml.
    • Palm sugar 10 grams
    • Fish sauce 30 ml.
    • Long bean (chopped into an inch long pieces) 30 grams
    • Kaffir leaves for decoration (sliced)
    • Spur chili for decoration (sliced)

How to cook

  • In a mortar, pound the red curry paste and ginger together.
  • Heat up a pan with low to medium heat, add red curry paste into the pan and stir until the smell comes out.
  • Add palm sugar into the pan and stir until the sugar is melted and mixed well with the paste.
  • Add pork and stir until the pork is cooked, then add the green beans. Stir fry until the beans soften a bit.
  • Add fish sauce and taste to your liking. Turn off the heat and plate well. Top with kaffir leaves and spur chili. Ready to serve.

Recipe from


  • Holy basil 1 cup
  • 1 whole catfish
  • Water ¼ cup
  • Crispy flour 2 tablespoons
  • Red curry paste 3 tablespoons
  • Finger roots (finely chopped) 3 tablespoons
  • Spur chili (sliced) ¼ cup
  • Fish sauce 2 tablespoons
  • Palm sugar 1 tablespoon
  • Sugar 1 teaspoon
  • Vegetable oil (for deep fry) 2 cups

How to cook

  • Wash holy basils and dry them before deep fry until crispy. Set aside.
  • Chop the cat fish into big pieces, wash with salt or potato starch until all the blood comes out otherwise the fish would smell.
  • Chop the cat fish into smaller piece if you like, dry it then coat each piece with crispy flour
  • In a pan, add vegetable oils and turn the stove to medium heat. Once the oil is hot, put in coated cat fish and fry until the outside turns yellow. Rest the fish to remove excess oil.
  • In a pan, fry red curry paste with a little bit of vegetable oil until the smell comes out.
  • If the paste gets too dry, add a little bit of water so it isn’t burnt.
  • Add spur chili, finger roots, and kaffir leaves and stir into the paste. Season with fish sauce, palm sugar, and sugar to your liking.
  • Add fried catfish into the sauce and stir well. Serve with crispy holy basil on top.


  • Chicken wings 500 grams
  • Red curry paste 1 tablespoon
  • Fish sauce 3 tablespoons
  • Brown sugar 1 teaspoon
  • Ground pepper ½ teaspoon
  • Crispy flour 3 tablespoons
  • Water 2 tablespoons
  • 10 kaffir leaves

How to cook

  • Wash kaffir leaves and dry them before deep fry until crispy. Set aside.
  • In a bowl, mix crispy flour and water until the flour is dissolved.
  • Add red curry paste and stir until mixed, then add fish sauce, sugar, and ground pepper.
  • Add chicken into the bowl, mix until the mixture coats the chicken, and marinate for 30 minutes.
  • In a pot, add vegetable oil and turn the stove to medium heat. Once the oil is hot, fry the chicken until yellow– make sure the inside is cooked. Rest the chicken to remove excess oil.
  • Serve the chicken with crispy kaffir leaves on top.


  • Pork belly (sliced) 80 grams
  • Red curry paste ½ tablespoon
  • Green beans (chopped) 50 grams
  • Carrot (diced) 50 grams
  • Babycorn (chopped) 50 grams
  • Steamed rice (cold down already) 150 grams
  • Sugar 2 tablespoons
  • Fish sauce 1 tablespoons

How to cook

  • In a pot, boil water with a pinch of salt. Once the water is boiling, put in the vegetables and wait for the water to boil again. Take out the vegetables and rinse them with cold water. Set aside.
  • In a pan, roast pork belly over medium heat to render the fat. Stir until the pork belly turns golden yellow and crispy.
  • Add red curry paste and stir until well mixed.
  • Add rice, then season with sugar and fish sauce. Stir until the rice is heated through and well seasoned.
  • Add the boiled vegetables and mix until everything is combined. Ready to serve.


  • 3 fresh mackerel
  • Low fat milk 4 tablespoons
  • Red curry paste 2 tablespoons
  • Salt ½ teaspoon
  • Water 1/2 cup
  • Brown sugar 1 teaspoon
  • 4 Kaffir leaves (chopped)
  • Vegetable oil 1 teaspoon
  • 2 Spur chilies (sliced)

How to cook

  • In a pan, add vegetable oil and heat the stove to medium heat. Once the oil is hot, add red curry paste and stir until the aroma emerges.
  • Add low-fat milk and water. Mix them with the paste until well combined. Season with salt and brown sugar.
  • Add mackerel into the mixture. Close the lid and wait for a few minutes for the fish to cook.
  • Once the mackerel is cooked, turn off the heat and prepare them on a plate.
    Top with kaffir lime leaves and Thai bird’s eye chilies. Ready to serve.