Get dinner on the table in just 15 minutes with this quick and easy red Thai curry noodle soup! You'll need just 4 ingredients for this seriously flavourful dinner.
You know what makes me feel like a superhero? Getting dinner on the table in 15 minutes… especially when it contains plenty of fresh veg! And that's just the case with this quick and easy red Thai curry noodle soup. It needs just 4 main ingredients, tossed together in a pan, to create a dinner that's full of flavour and full of goodness.
Red Thai curry noodle soup
Red Thai curry is one of my all-time favourite Asian dishes.
It's got a nice amount of spice but it isn't overwhelming, and isn't overly heavy unlike some other types of curry. It's more of a sweet and fragrant spice, rather than anything too rich.
Thai curry sauce is usually fairly thin, which is why it's so easy to adapt any Thai curry to serve it as a soup!
What are the 4 ingredients in this noodle soup?
Okay, so I've taken a few liberties with counting the ingredients in this recipe, but here's what you'll need to make this insanely tasty soup:
- fresh vegetables (I used a shop-bought mixture of stir fry veggies, so I could literally just empty the bag straight into the wok - no peeling or chopping required)
- Thai curry paste (I always keep a jar in the cupboard as it's just the thing for a quick, tasty dinner!)
- canned coconut milk
- noodles (I used fresh egg noodles that don't require any pre-cooking)
If you've got these 4 things, you can have this Thai curry noodle soup on the table within about 15 minutes. So, so easy!
Quick and easy dinner
If you're one of those people who cooks everything from scratch, I know that my short cuts might make you raise an eyebrow at this recipe. I enjoy making things from scratch (e.g. my homemade enchilada sauce), but I'd be lying if I said I don't sometimes prefer the easier option.
And to be honest, there are all sorts of benefits to using shop-bought ingredient short cuts:
- it cuts down on prep time dramatically
- it also helps to keep costs down (it's much cheaper to buy a £2 jar of curry paste than to buy the ingredients individually!)
- it makes the end result more reliably delicious (why faff around with unfamiliar ingredients when someone who actually knows what they're doing has already done it?)
- it makes me more likely to cook a veg-packed dinner, since I know it can be done quickly and easily
Is this an authentic Thai recipe?
No, it's not. I am not Thai, and I make no claims that this recipe is remotely traditional.
But sometimes food doesn't need to be an authentic glimpse into another culture - sometimes it can just be something you enjoy eating. And I very much enjoy eating food that tastes incredible, is full of fresh veggies, and only takes 15 minutes to prepare.
How to make red Thai curry noodle soup
Step 1: Stir fry some mixed vegetables
The bag of stir fry vegetables that I bought contained a mixture of cabbage, yellow pepper, red onion, and carrots - but any similar stir fry selection will do just fine.
Of course, if you'd prefer to choose your vegetables individually, you can absolutely do this, but it will obviously take quite a bit longer to prepare them all one by one.
Sometimes I use a combination of the two methods - I'll start with a bag of mixed vegetables to speed things along, but also add anything extra that I particularly want to include, like a handful of mushrooms or some baby corn.
Stir fry the vegetables for just a few minutes to get them going - you still want them to retain some crunch.
Step 2: Add the red Thai curry paste
Add a few big dollops of Thai curry paste to the pan. It's up to you how much you add - if you want a milder, creamier noodle soup, just use one or two tablespoons. Or, if you really want your soup to pack a punch, use three or four.
Some shop-bought curry pastes aren't vegetarian, as they contain fish sauce, so make sure you choose appropriately.
In the UK at least, I find that the supermarket own brands are usually vegetarian, whereas more expensive brands aren't. I imagine this is because when they're trying to keep costs down, fish sauce is the first ingredient to go!
Step 3: Add fresh noodles and coconut milk
You can use any kind of noodle you like - I used egg noodles, but of course you can choose a vegan noodle if needed. I prefer to use the ones that can be thrown straight into the wok, rather than dried noodles, which will need pre-boiling.
Gently stir everything together until the coconut milk melts down, and combines with the curry paste to give a rich and creamy curry sauce. It's absolutely incredible.
You can add a splash of water if you like, if you want to make your soup more... well, soupy. Otherwise, you're all done!
What vegetables can you use in Thai noodle soup?
Honestly, there are so many vegetables that would work well in this sort of noodle soup that it might actually be quicker to list the veggies that wouldn't work so well. But here are some of my favourite vegetables to use:
- onion (red or white)
- mange tout
- baby corn
- peppers (red, yellow or green)
- pak choi
- courgette (zucchini)
Choose as many different colours and textures as you can! I love the pre-prepared vegetable mixes, as you can get a lot of variety with very little effort.
I like stir fries to retain a bit of crunch, so I try not to choose veggies that get too soft and soggy. They just need a few minutes in the pan to soften a little, while still having a great texture.
How else could you adapt the recipe?
The brilliant thing about using such simple ingredients is that it's so easy to swap things in and out of the recipe.
If you don't fancy noodles, throw in some leftover rice (or a sachet of pre-cooked rice) instead.
Add a tin of chickpeas or some fried tofu for extra protein.
Skip the additional water for a thicker, less soupy curry.
There are all sorts of ways you can make this recipe your own, and it will always be quick to make, and absolutely delicious.
Quick Red Thai Curry Noodle Soup
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- 1 tablespoon oil
- 300 g (~ ⅔ lb) mixed stir-fry vegetables (I used a shop-bought mix of cabbage, carrot, pepper and red onion, but you can use whatever combination you like)
- 2 - 3 tablespoon red Thai curry paste (make sure it’s vegetarian)
- 400 ml (~ 1 ½ cups) canned coconut milk
- 300 g (~ ⅔ lb) fresh noodles (I used egg noodles)
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- 250 ml (~ 1 cup) water or vegetable stock (optional)
- Fresh coriander (cilantro), to garnish (optional)
- Heat the oil in a large pan (a wok is ideal), and add the mixed vegetables. Cook over a medium heat, stirring regularly, for 4-5 minutes, until just beginning to soften.
- Add the curry paste (the quantity can be adjusted depending on how spicy you'd like it), the coconut milk, and the fresh noodles. Season with plenty of black pepper, and stir gently until the ingredients come together to make a smooth sauce. Simmer for 5 more minutes, or until the sauce is piping hot, and the noodles and vegetables are cooked to your liking.
- To make the dish more soupy, and to stretch it to feed more people, you can add some extra water or vegetable stock - or, serve it as is. You can serve topped with fresh coriander (cilantro), if you like.
Nutritional information is approximate, and will depend on your exact ingredients. Please calculate your own nutritional values if you require accuracy for health reasons.