This Thai red curry recipe with shrimp or prawns is easy to whip up and can be ready in about 30 minutes! Made with succulent shrimp in the yummiest Thai red coconut curry sauce, it's served over jasmine rice. It's easy to customize with your favourite veggies!
❤️ Why you'll love this recipe
- Love going out for Thai food? Me too! But with this easy recipe for Thai red curry with shrimp or prawns, ready in half an hour, I'm happy to eat in!
- Served over jasmine rice, this makes a complete meal. It's made with the creamiest coconut red curry sauce and of course, it's naturally gluten-free.
- It's also very easy to adapt to your tastes. This recipe as written below makes a mild curry. Feel free to amp it up by adding more red curry paste and a little more fish sauce.
- It's another one of my favourite 30-minute meals!
Love to cook with shrimp and prawns? Wondering what's the best way to buy, cook or thaw shrimp? You'll find all the answers in this Complete Guide to Cooking Shrimp and Prawns.
And you'll discover over 20 favourite ways to cook shrimp in this round-up of my Best Healthy Shrimp Recipes.
🛒 Ingredients and substitutions
You'll find a complete list of ingredients with amounts in the recipe card below. But before we get to the full recipe, here are a few notes about some of the key ingredients.
- large shrimp or prawns: I've made this dish with both Ocean-Wise imported shrimp and with locally caught spot prawns. Both are delicious, but for me, the naturally sweet spot prawns are my number one choice. However, they're not always available, so use what you have where you live.
- coconut milk: I like to use a whole can in this recipe. The full-fat coconut milk gives a creamy texture and lots of mellow flavour.
- fish sauce: Don't be put off by the smell. You will not detect this in the finished dish. Fish sauce adds an important layer of umami flavour to this Thai red curry.
- red curry paste: I use Thai Kitchen red curry paste, but any brand of red curry paste you can find at your local store will work in this recipe. Other brands may vary in their level of heat, so taste it first.
- sugar: you need sugar to balance the flavours in this dish. I like to use coconut sugar for its lower glycemic index and its caramel flavour. You can substitute brown sugar if you'd like.
- ginger: fresh grated ginger brightens the flavours in this curry. If you don't have any, you could use half the amount of ground ginger, but I highly recommend using fresh. It really amps up the flavour.
- cilantro leaves: you'll add half to the coconut curry sauce and save the remainder to sprinkle on top before serving.
- basil: If you can find Thai basil, use it. If not, regular fresh basil adds amazing flavour. Just like the cilantro, you'll use half in the curry sauce and save half to garnish.
- limes: you'll need two, one to squeeze for the juice and the second to slice into quarters for garnish and an extra squeeze over the finished dish
🔪 How to make Thai red coconut shrimp curry with Jasmine rice
Here's an overview of what you'll do to make this recipe perfectly. You'll find complete instructions in the recipe card at the end of this post.
This shrimp curry recipe takes very little time to cook. You'll want to watch carefully to make sure you don't overcook the peppers or the shrimp/prawns.
I suggest having everything sliced, diced or combined before you start cooking. If you have the shrimp marinating, the curry sauce ingredients combined and the aromatics prepped, this red curry recipe will turn out perfectly!
First, put your rice on to cook, either in an Instant Pot or use my Never-Fail Thai Coconut Rice recipe.
Once you have everything for the curry prepared, start by sautéing the onions and peppers. Once they've softened, you'll remove them to a bowl.
Next, cook the shrimp in the same skillet, then remove it to a separate bowl.
Now you'll add the onions and peppers back into the skillet and combine them with the coconut curry sauce.
Bring this mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until it has reduced by half. At this point, you'll add the shrimp or prawns back into the sauce along with half the herbs.
Serve over fluffy Jasmine rice and garnish with more cilantro, basil and green onion. Offer lime quarters for an extra squeeze of yum!
🔁 Possible Variations
Feel free to add a different protein, like chicken. Add extra vegetables! Try
- snow peas or sugar snap peas
- thinly sliced carrots
- chopped kale
👍🏼 Helpful Tips
The best curries are made with lots of aromatics, like onions, fresh garlic and ginger. This recipe also adds lots of fresh herbs for another layer of flavour.
This recipe as written is mildly spicy. Taste the coconut curry sauce once you've simmered and reduced it. Not spicy enough? Add a little more red curry paste, a small spoonful at a time, or another tablespoon of fish sauce and grate a little more ginger if you like.
❓ How long do I cook shrimp or prawns?
It's very easy to overcook shrimp or prawns. Shrimp become tough and rubbery when cooked too long, so watch carefully. You'll know they're done when they curl into a C-shape and have lost their translucence. If they become so curled that the ends overlap, they've been overcooked.
🍽 Serving Suggestions
I like this Thai red coconut curry over jasmine rice, but you could easily serve it over rice noodles, 100% buckwheat soba noodles, or your favourite gluten-free pasta.
⏰ Storage Instructions
You can store leftover curry covered in the fridge for a day or two. Reheat gently in a skillet or in a microwave (add a little water if you've stored it with rice.)
🗒 More 30-minute recipes
Enjoy! When you make this Thai shrimp curry recipe, please leave a comment and a rating below. I love hearing from you! Thanks in advance. Subscribe to my newsletter and receive new recipes delivered straight to your inbox once a week.
📖 Recipe Card
Thai Red Curry with Shrimp
- 1 cup jasmine rice
- 1 pound large shrimp or prawns, tails on
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- ½ teaspoon dried red chili flakes
- 1 small onion, peeled and diced
- ½ large red bell pepper, seeded, diced or sliced
- ½ large yellow bell pepper, seeded, diced or sliced
- ½ large orange bell pepper, seeded, diced or sliced
- 1 14 oz. can (396 ml.) full-fat coconut milk
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 2 tablespoons red curry paste
- 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, finely grated
- 1 tablespoon coconut sugar, or brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons lime juice, freshly squeezed
- ¼ cup cilantro leaves, finely chopped
- ¼ cup basil leaves, finely chopped
- 1 green onion, thinly sliced
- 1 medium lime, quartered, for garnish
- Begin by cooking the rice. You can either cook it in an Instant Pot (1 cup rice with 1 cup water and a pinch of salt) for 5 minutes with a 10-minute natural release OR use my recipe for Never Fail Thai Coconut Rice, cooked on the stovetop. (link to recipe in Notes, below.)
- Peel and devein the shrimp or prawns. You can leave the tails on (they add flavour) or remove them first, your choice.
- Toss the shrimp with 2 teaspoons olive oil, minced garlic and red chili flakes. Set aside.
- Make the Thai red curry sauce. Combine the coconut milk with the fish sauce, curry paste, ginger, sugar, and lime juice. Set aside.
- Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a skillet over medium heat. Sauté diced onions and bell peppers until softened but not browned, about 5 - 7 minutes. Remove to a bowl.
- Add 2 teaspoons oil to the skillet. Cook shrimp (prawns) for a minute or two on each side, just until no longer translucent. Remove to a separate bowl.
- Transfer the onions and peppers back to the skillet and add the coconut curry sauce mixture. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until reduced by half.
- Add the shrimp back into the skillet. Stir in half the cilantro and basil leaves.
- Serve over jasmine rice. Garnish with the remaining cilantro, basil and sliced green onion.