7: Recipe | Thai Vegetable Red Curry (light + easy)

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This meal has been a staple in our meal plan for the better part of this year. Since we plan our meals for two weeks at a time, this appears on our meal plan every other week and we haven’t grown tired of it yet. It’s so filling and satisfying and I love that it’s a good almost-vegetarian option to get a lot of fresh veggies in. (I am sure you can find a vegetarian fish sauce substitute. I am not a vegetarian and therefore not as concerned about the tiny amount of fish sauce that goes into this recipe, but I do love me all the vegetables.)

This is also overall very light, as we use only one can of light coconut milk and then use vegetable broth to add more liquid. You can also use whatever vegetables you like (Jon is a big fan of bamboo shoots, that’s why we use two cans, but you can also use water chestnuts, baby corn, or whatever else you can think of.)

The best part: this dinner will cook in about 30 minutes (we serve it with quick-cooking brown Basmati rice).


1 14 oz can light coconut milk
2 cups vegetable broth
2 tbsp red curry paste
1 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsps fish sauce
1 tsp ginger (freshly grated or frozen)

2 cans of bamboo shoots
2 red bell peppers (cut)
1 onion (cut)
1 handful of fresh basil
8 oz mushrooms (halved)
1 head of broccoli 

1. Bring the coconut milk and curry paste to a quick boil in a wok.

2. Start cooking the rice in a separate pot.

3. Add the chopped onion, bell peppers, and bamboo shoots to the curry sauce and let simmer for 5 minutes.

4. Add the vegetable broth, brown sugar, ginger, basil, and fish sauce (no need for any other spices). Simmer for another 5 minutes.

5. Add the halved mushrooms and broccoli florets to the wok and simmer for 10-15 minutes until broccoli is tender.

6 . Serve over rice. 

Are you a fan of Thai Curries?

  1. Oh yes! I love Thai curries. I actually make a very similar dish, but I use soy sauce. I do have a bottle of vegetarian “fish sauce” which I picked up at Whole Foods a while back but never used- I think I’ll try it in this recipe. I’ll bet it’s delicious.

    1. Oh I am sure soy sauce works as well, but if you do have vegan fish sauce, give it a try! :)

  2. I love Thai curries and often order when we get take out. And the more
    Bamboo shoots the better. But I haven’t cooked one for myself . Maybe I should

    1. You should – it’s so easy to make at home!

  3. I love red Thai curry and make it once a month. For anyone interested in a vegetarian option for the fish sauce, you can use a combination of soy sauce or tamari and a splash of balsamic vinegar. It works great. I also use that same combo for making Caesar dressing, in lieu of the anchovy paste.

    1. Oh, that’s a great suggestion. Thanks so much, Nicole.

  4. I’m a big fan of Thai curry! I usually add tofu. Unfortunately it’s too spicy for the rest of my family so it’s something that I make for lunch for myself once in a while.

    1. Oh, too bad that nobody else likes it in your house.

  5. Mmmh, that sounds sooo good!

  6. YUM. This looks so good! I love a red curry (although I typically make it with chicken, because my husband likes meat; I could take it or leave it). I have an aversion to fish sauce, but my favorite recipe doesn’t call for it at all: https://www.jocooks.com/recipes/thai-red-chicken-curry

  7. Yum! I love Thai curries. I don’t make them at home much, though, as it can be hard to find GF fish sauce. So I mostly make Indian-style curries, which we also love. In general I love stir fry/curry type of dishes as they can be heavy on the veggies – so very healthy and filling!

    1. Yes, you’re right – any sort of stir fry/curry type of dishes are awesome because you can load them up with veggies and make them filling and healthy!

  8. My mouth is actually watering, even though it’s 10 PM at night and I’ve brushed my teeth and am lounging in pajamas.
    So good. We love curries, too, but never really make the Thai variety. That clearly has to change…

  9. Oh, thank you for sharing! I don’t typically get red curries at Thai restaurants but this makes me want to try it! I *really* dislike coconut milk, however, so will likely be trying it with regular non-dairy milk. We’ll see how it goes! Not sure how the quick boil will go if it’s not coconut milk…

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