Thai red curry paste

I make Thai curry quite often, and this is my go-to recipe for Thai curry paste. I’ve never measured out ingredients for it, but I figured I’d do so today in order to write a recipe! This curry paste is versatile, as it can be used for making Thai red curry or Thai style peanut sauce. I’ll be posting recipes for both soon! It’s a bit time consuming to make curry paste from scratch, but it’s a pretty easy process! The most challenging part is probably finding some of the ingredients, but if you can get your hands on them it will make all the difference! Try it out, and if you post to Instagram use #plantbasedartist! I’d love to see your creations 🙂


yield: a little over 3 tablespoons of curry paste

1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds (I got this from an Indian store)

1/4 teaspoon white peppercorns (I got this from an Asian supermarket)

4-6 small dry chilis, chopped (less or more according to preference, seeded and rehydrated in hot water. you can also use fresh chilis)

3 tablespoons finely chopped red bell pepper

1/2 teaspoon salt (coarse sea salt is ideal for this)

1 1/2 teaspoon grated galangal (I got this from an Asian supermarket. a typical substitute is ginger, but I highly suggest looking for galangal for a more authentic taste. since it can be difficult to come by, I store mine in the freezer. freezing galangal helps it last for a long time, and it makes it easier to grate!)

2 teaspoons grated lemongrass (I got this from an Asian supermarket. Use the wider portion of the lemongrass if possible (as opposed to the green, “grassy” tops). Like galangal, I freeze this so it is easier to grate.)

1/2 teaspoon grated lime zest

1 teaspoon chopped cilantro stems

1/2 teaspoon paprika (optional, for a deeper red color)


grind together coriander seeds and white peppercorns using a mortar and pestle and set aside the powder. (alternatively, grind the spices in a coffee grinder or use powders to begin.)

using a mortar and pestle, begin to grind the rehydrated chili peppers and bell peppers with the coarse sea salt. this will take a little while, so be patient! grind until a paste is formed and add the grated galangal, grated lemongrass, lime zest, cilantro stems, paprika, and coriander/peppercorn powder. continue to grind until all the ingredients are well incorporated and as smooth as possible. note: you could try doing this in a food processor or blender if you do not have a mortar and pestle, but I haven’t tried that.

use the paste for making Thai red curry or Thai style peanut sauce. I’ll be posting recipes for both soon!

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