Thai Red Curry Paste Recipe

Thai red curry paste

  • makes 250g
  • Easy

Shop-bought jars are widely available, but nothing compares to the fragrant, spicy hit of a homemade curry paste


Make your own Thai red curry paste using dried red chillies, lime leaves and galangal or ginger and plenty more ingredients for that classic punchy taste to add to curries, soups and seafood dishes.

Use your homemade Thai red curry paste in our recipes:



  • dried red chillies 4
  • cumin seeds ½ tsp
  • coriander seeds ½ tsp
  • red chillies 2, deseeded and chopped
  • fine sea salt ½ tsp
  • galangal or ginger 50g, chopped
  • lemongrass 2 sticks, chopped
  • shallots 4, chopped
  • garlic 4 cloves, chopped
  • coriander stems from a small bunch, chopped
  • lime leaves 6, finely shredded or the zest of 2 limes
  • paprika 1 tbsp
  • white peppercorns 1 tsp
  • shrimp paste 1 tbsp (see cook’s notes below) or use 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • caster sugar ½ tsp


  • Step 1

    Put the dried chillies into a bowl and soak in just-boiled water for 15 minutes until soft.

  • Step 2

    Tip the cumin and coriander seeds into a small pan and toast until fragrant. Put the chillies, salt and spices into a large food processor with the remaining ingredients and blitz until mostly smooth, but not puréed.

  • Step 3

    The paste will keep in an airtight jar, in the fridge, for a month – or portion into 2-3 tbsp measures in an ice-cube tray and freeze.

*This recipe is gluten free according to industry standards

Cook's notes

  • Shrimp paste is made of salted, fermented shrimps and is used to flavour curry pastes, soups and stews. Available at Waitrose, Amazon and Asian supermarkets.

Use your paste in this vegan Thai red curry recipe

Vegan Thai Red Curry Recipe