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How to make authentic Thai Green Curry

This authentic Thai Green Curry is an absolute treat to make at home, and very easy once you have the ingredients! This curry is one of the most requested meals I get asked to make when we host friends and family, and it tastes like you ordered it from a restaurant, for real!

Take a photo of the Thai Curry ingredients before going to the store to help you find them faster.

The only problem with loving Thai food and wanting to eat it ALL the time is that I have my American spices in the cupboard and fridge, and then my OTHER cupboard 🙂 Full of Asian food ingredients. If you don’t have any common Thai ingredients yet, take a photo of the ingredients below so you can use it to help you find ingredients at the Asian food store or Asian food isle. 

One last tip for making an Asian market shopping list, for those of us who grew up eating “American” food, whatever that is, is that you may not be familiar with different brands of say curry, fish sauce, or even all the eggplant choices available.

I take an iPhone pic of the computer screen when I’m looking up a recipe, or google it in the store, and if they don’t have that exact brand/container then just get what they have, or ask someone nice in the store to help you.

How to make authentic Thai Green Curry

Ok, here is what I make at home after much Youtube video watching. My husband LOVES it, as do all our friends who love spice and curries! 

This is a very traditional recipe, made with beef (choose your meat type just like at a restaurant between pork, beef, chicken, and seafood).  When we are being nontraditional, I use whatever veggies we have like green beans, snap peas, ect, but that is no longer authentic green curry…but this curry sauce is amazing on anything.

You may also love: Vegetarian Pad Thai

Ingredients (makes about 3 servings):

  • 1 can full fat coconut milk (reduced fat will not be the same!)
  • 2 tbsp green curry paste(I use this one)
  • 1 lb meat of your choice, sliced thinly
  • 5-6 Thai Eggplant, quartered
  • 1 red bell pepper, for color (or sweet chili pepper if you can handle MORE heat)
  • 1.5 tbsp Palm Sugar(I use this one)
  • 2 tbsp Fish Sauce
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 3 Sprigs Thai Basil (tastes different than common Basil used for pesto)
  • 3-4 lime leafs (cannot substitute lime juice, totally different flavor!)
  • 1 Lime for topping, if desired. (My FAV but Peter does not like it)
  • Prepared Jasmine or Brown Rice for Bowls.

Photos of each ingredient you need for Thai Green Curry

ingredients for thai green curry including fish sauce, palm sugar, mae ploy green curry paste, coconut milk, thai eggplant, red bell pepper, and lime leaf
All the ingredients except optional fresh squeezed lime and the Kaffir Lime Leaf (a must have).
Fresh ingredients for thai green curry including 4-5 thai eggplant, red bell pepper, thai basil, and lime
The Fresh ingredients: Thai Eggplant, Red Pepper, Lime, and Thai Basil
Mae Ploy Green Curry Paste
This brand Curry Paste has been fairly easy to find, even at some American markets. Around $3 a tub, and it makes a LOT of batches! Confession, my green curry in these pictures was used with a tub I opened a while back and it is less green and beautiful because of it. Still tastes amazing but loses its fresh bright color after a while.
pure palm sugar in a package
Palm Sugar tastes so rich, I think similar to how a roasted marshmallow smells. You can substitute brown sugar but know every ingredient matters when creating that authentic taste.
green thai eggplant sliced into 4 pieces on a cutting board for thai curry
Inside of the Thai Eggplant. Cut off the stem, and quarter them or make them even smaller if they are too big for you. These cook longer than the rest of the veggies and they become so tender. You barely notice the seeds once cooked just right. Cut just before cooking to avoid them turning brown.
fresh ingredients prepared for thai green curry
Prep your ingredients so they are ready to toss in. Once you turn on the burner you are 10 minutes from go time, and have to stir so have everything cut up!
raw beef thinly sliced on a cutting board
We used a beef cut, but chicken is cheaper. I cut this meat still frozen just slightly thawed, as it is SO much easier to cut into thin slices. Or, if you have fresh meat, you can pop it in the freezer for 15 minutes to make it a tad easier to slice as well.
lime leaf ready to be cooked in thai green curry
Frozen Kaffir Lime Leaf (my Asian store only sells this frozen in packs for a couple bucks). An exquisite ingredient you cannot leave out and have it taste like restaurant quality. You also cannot just sub lime juice. I would try your sauce before adding these and then after, to see what an amazing flavor these bring! They smell just like lime but don’t bring a sour taste, rather a deeper flavor.

Step 1: 

Place about half the solid fatty part from the coconut milk can into a pan on medium to medium-high heat. Let it start bubbling, then add curry paste. This brand is pretty spicy to me, so you can always add less at first and more at the end if you can handle heat.

step one of making green curry, curry paste simmering in coconut milk

Step 2:

Stir in all of your curry paste, until green oil starts to pull out and it smells fragrant.  Then add the rest of the coconut milk can.

curry paste mixed into coconut milk

Step 3:

Add in your sliced meat, and cook until meat is partly cooked, a few minutes.  It will finish cooking in the boiling curry sauce later.

thin slices of raw beef cooking in green curry paste and coconut milk
Cook sliced meat in curry about halfway or more, before adding the eggplant.

Step 4:

Add the water and eggplant, and let cook for about 10 minutes, or until eggplant feels soft. These are nasty and hard if not cooked all the way! One of my first try mistakes 🙂

Note: If your can of coconut milk is super thin you can add less water.  (I have had the same brand of full fat coconut milk have anywhere from almost all solid coconut creme inside to about only half creme half coconut milk).

Step 5:

Add bell peppers & Kaffir Lime leaf.  Cook till tender just a couple of minutes.  Leave the leaves in.

thai green curry cooking in a pan

Step 6:

Add cut up palm sugar & fish sauce.  This has less sugar than red curry and is supposed to taste less sweet than a red curry. If you absolutely can’t find palm sugar, then you could substitute brown sugar. It has a slightly different taste but will bring in the sweetness you need. 

Step 7:

Add Thai basil last, or put it on top in individual bowls.  If you do it too early then the beautiful green color gets to be not so pretty. And wala…authentic thai green curry on your table!

fresh thai basil tossed on the top of cooked green curry in a cast iron pan
green curry with beef in a scarlet fiestware bowl
So good. This sauce should be a tad more green however my green curry paste was on its last legs. Whoops 🙂 Still tasted great.

Hope you enjoy this, and now you are ready to make authentic Thai Green Curry at home! I would love to hear how it turns out in the comments, or if you make another amazing dish!

You may Love: Vegetarian Pad Thai Recipe! and How to make homemade beef Pho

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Judy Crabtree

Wednesday 17th of January 2024

So amazing! Thanks for teaching me how to make this at home! I would definitely tip the cook! I added extra veggies and the possibilities are endless. My husband loves it too! The pictures of the ingredients was very helpful.


Saturday 20th of January 2024

How awesome! We still make and enjoy this exact recipe years later! I hope it'll be a special one for you and an easy recipe to make for guests too.