Skip to Content

Thai Red Curry Paste

This post may contain affiliate links. This means that if you make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. View my disclosure policy for details. Thank you for your support!

Make your own authentic Thai Red Curry Paste at home from scratch! With just a few minutes of prep time, you will have countless options for Thai Red Curry dishes any day of the week!

thai red curry paste in a jar

Curries are a quintessential part of Thai cuisine. They are packed with so much flavor and when served over rice, fantastic comfort food. 

Thai Red Curry gets is bright red color from dried red chilies and its classic Thai flavors from ingredients like fresh lemongrass and galangal. A wonderful combination of spice and flavor.

It is so quick and easy to make your own authentic Thai Red Curry Paste at home from scratch. With just a few minutes of prep time, you will have countless options for Thai Red Curry dishes for any day of the week. Simply add coconut milk, your favorite protein and veggies and a handful of simple ingredients for your very own Thai Red Curry at any time.

How to Make Homemade Thai Red Curry Paste

Rinse and soak 15 – 20 (about 2 cups) dried red chilies in warm water for about 30 minutes.

After the chilies have soaked, remove them from the water and cut them into approximately 1-inch pieces. As you cut the chilies, gently shake the seeds out of each piece. It helps to do this over the kitchen sink as the chili seeds will tend to fly everywhere. 

soaking dried red chili

Traditionally, a mortar and pestle are used to grind all of these ingredients into a paste but it takes a very long time and a lot of effort. Even modern Thai kitchens are using blenders and food processors for convenience.

Using a blender will yield a much smoother paste if that is your preference. Even a Magic Bullet works quite well for this task. 

Place the cut dried red chili into a food processor or a blender along with the ingredients below.

  • 2 fresh red chilies – cut into approx 1/2 inch pieces, seeds removed
  • 3 stalks lemongrass (only the white portion, thinly sliced)
  • 1 inch galangal, grated. (If you are not able to find galangal at your local Asian supermarket, you may substitute this with an equal amount of ginger)
  • 5 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 4 shallots (small), peeled
  • 3 stalks fresh cilantro
  • 3 kaffir lime leaves, julienned
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons white peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon Thai shrimp paste (optional but recommended)
  • Have about 1 cup of water prepared on the side (but don’t add it to the food processor or blender yet)

ingredients for thai red curry paste

Pulse it a few times, then slowly add about a tablespoon of water at a time to blend the ingredients to a paste. I typically use between 1/2 cup to 3/4 cup of water for each batch. 

This Red Curry Paste recipe yields approximately 1 cup. 

Storing Thai Red Curry Paste

Your homemade Thai Red Curry Paste will keep in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for about 6 months. 

When freezing any curry paste, I recommend using ice cube trays. The ice cube trays with lids are super handy for this purpose. If you use more than one tray, you can easily stack them if they have lids.

Most Thai curry recipes typically call for 2 – 3 tablespoons of curry paste, so I recommend pouring 1 tablespoon of curry paste into each section of your ice cube tray – you’ll be able to easily take exactly how much you need for each recipe you prepare.

1 cup is 16 tablespoons, so you will get about 16 individual frozen Red Curry Paste cubes per batch.

You could store these cubes in the ice cube trays, or put the frozen curry paste cubes into a Ziploc bag to save space in your freezer.

frozen thai curry pastes in ice cube tray

Other Thai Curry Pastes:

Thai Green Curry Paste

Thai Yellow Curry Paste

Red Curry Recipes to try:

Try these Thai Red Curry recipes with your new homemade paste!

Thai Red Curry Paste

Char Ferrara
Make your own authentic Thai Red Curry Paste at home from scratch! With just a few minutes of prep time, you will have countless options for Thai Red Curry dishes any day of the week!
4.50 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Soaking Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Cuisine Thai
Servings 1 cup

Ingredients
 
 

Instructions
 

  • Soak the dried red chilies in warm water for 30 minutes.
  • Remove soaked chilies from the water, cut into 1-inch pieces. Remove the seeds as you cut the chilies.
  • Place cut chilies into a blender or food processor, along with fresh red chilies, lemongrass, galangal, garlic, shallots, cilantro, kaffir lime leaves, coriander seeds, cumin, white peppercorns, and Thai shrimp paste (if using).
  • Pulse it a few times, then slowly add about a tablespoon of water at a time to blend the ingredients to a paste. (As soon as you get the consistency you want, stop adding water).

Notes

The main purpose of the water is to help the blender or food processor blend the ingredients. As soon as the curry paste is blended evenly, stop adding water.

Nutrition

Serving: 1gCalories: 735kcalCarbohydrates: 43gProtein: 46gFat: 43gSaturated Fat: 14gPolyunsaturated Fat: 18gCholesterol: 127mgSodium: 2502mgFiber: 4gSugar: 8g
Keyword thai red curry paste
Tried this recipe?Tag @wokandskillet on Instagram or Facebook!
Recipe Rating




Thai Peanut Chicken - Wok & Skillet

Saturday 13th of June 2020

[…] a spicy kick, you could add about a tablespoon of Thai Red Curry Paste or […]

Thai Green Curry Paste - Wok & Skillet

Saturday 13th of June 2020

[…] Thai Red Curry Paste […]

Asian Pantry Essentials - Wok & Skillet

Sunday 24th of May 2020

[…] using them for sauces or curry pastes, be sure to soak the chilies for a few minutes in warm water before using. Remove the seeds to […]

Thai Red Curry Deviled Eggs - Wok & Skillet

Sunday 26th of January 2020

[…] add 2 tablespoons of mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon of coconut oil, 3 teaspoons of Thai Red Curry Paste (homemade or storebought), 2 teaspoons of lime juice, and a dash of salt and pepper to […]

Thai Red Curry Chicken | Wok & Skillet

Friday 19th of July 2019

[…] Learn how to make your own homemade Thai Red Curry Paste in this blog post here: Homemade Thai Red Curry Paste. […]