Tom Kha Gai Recipe (Thai Coconut Chicken Soup)
December 17th, 2013 78 Comments

Tom Kha Gai Recipe (Thai Coconut Chicken Soup)

Tom Kha Gai

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Tom Kha Gai Recipe (Thai Coconut Chicken Soup)

Serves 2 | Prep Time: 15 Minutes | Cook Time: 10 Minutes
Source: Thai Cooking Made Easy Cookbook


8 oz boneless and skinless chicken (breast or thighs, cut into strips or thin pieces)
20 canned straw mushrooms
1 1/2 cups coconut milk
1 cup water
1 stalk lemongrass (cut into 3-inch lengths and pounded)
6 kaffir lime leaves (lightly bruised to release the flavor)
6 slices galangal
8 bird’s eye chilies (lightly pounded)
3 tablespoon fish sauce
2 1/2 tablespoon lime juice (or to taste)
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro


Add water, lemongrass, galangal, chilies, kaffir lime leaves into a pot and bring it to boil. Add straw mushrooms and chicken and boil it on medium heat for a few minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. Add coconut milk and boil for a couple more minutes. Turn off the heat and add lime juice and fish sauce to taste. Add chopped cilantro before serving.

Cook’s Note:

If you can’t find galangal, do not use ginger. Ginger is not the substitute for galangal. “Tom Kha” means galangal in Thai. However, if you absolutely can’t find galangal and still wish to make this because you love this soup so much, just make it without galangal.

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78 comments... read them below or add one

  1. lalitaji says:

    I love this soup! Thank you for the recipe!

    I would like to suggest that you format the picture smaller for printing. It is a small recipe, but the banner and picture took over 50% of the page, only allowing the ingredients on the first page. And the method using 25% of the second page.

    Bea you have a wonderful site, keep up the great work!

    • Thanks for your suggestion but the ads shouldn’t print out. Most readers requested to have the picture on the recipe page because they wanted to have a reference of how the dish looks.

  2. Wow photonya bagus sekali. Just so happen to have all the ingredients – making it now! looks great.

  3. Ron says:

    Tom yum khaa, it tastes just like it sounds. Whether you’re snuggled up on a cold winters night, or heating it up in that filthy lunchroom microwave, it will take your mind to the coconut filled beaches of Thailand. The sweet yet tangy aromatic flavours startle the likes of those who are not accustomed to this South East Asian cuisine. Maybe its the enoki mushrooms and cherry tomatoes floating graciously in the creamy coconut milk, or is it the spicy fragrances hurling towards my pallet .I take my first sip, not expecting the ambush of flavors that was to come. Sweet and sour overwhelms my senses and I am left with the common after burn that accompanies a Thai dish. My taste buds scream for more, ignoring the need for a freshly pored glass of cold water. As it warms my belly, I cant help but imagine the sites and sounds of that coconut filled beach, the waves crashing, the sun rays beaming down on my back, and even that old man frying fish on the side of the road. Despite the subzero temperatures and the snow covered evergreens that currently surround me, this dish seemingly transforms into a piece of Thai culture that I can forever take with me.

  4. Sue von Baeyer says:

    powdered glangal is available at Penzy’s Spices.
    So is powdered lemongrass.
    Makes thai cooking much easier!!

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