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If you are obsessed with Thai food, making your own curry paste could be a potential craving. Store-bought curry pastes are just fine but homemade ones hold more freshness and the best part is your control over the ingredients. So here’s an authentic Thai yellow curry paste recipe that you can use to make many dishes.

Thai yellow curry paste is way more different than the red curry paste or the green curry paste. It has a more spicy, curry overtone and include key ingredients such as Lemongrass, Galangal, Turmeric, Curry powder, Kaffir lime leaves and Thai chiles.

Refer to the list of ingredients and be ready to put together the best yellow curry paste ever!

Authentic Thai Yellow Curry Paste Recipe (Prik Gaeng Garee)

A scoop of homemade yellow curry paste could be all you need to add a wonderful spicy warmth to anything savory! You can try making various curries with this ingredient while being creative with dishes you wouldn’t expect!

Thai Yellow Curry Paste Recipe!

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Recipe by SpiceRally


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  • Spices & Herbs
  • 4 oz 4 Dried Thai red chiles (mild chiles)

  • 3 oz 3 Fresh Thai red chiles (hot chiles)

  • 1/2 tsp 1/2 White peppercorns

  • 1 1/2 tsp 1 1/2 Cumin seeds

  • 1 1/2 tsp 1 1/2 Coriander seeds

  • 3-4 3-4 Whole Cloves

  • 1/2 tsp 1/2 Ground Cinnamon

  • 1 tbsp 1 Turmeric (fresh, finely chopped)

  • 6 cloves 6 Garlic

  • 2 tbsp 2 Fresh Ginger (chopped)

  • 2 tbsp 2 Fresh Galangal (chopped)

  • 1 tbsp 1 Curry powder

  • 1 stalk 1 Lemongrass (outer peel removed, innermost part finely chopped)

  • 4 4 Cilantro roots

  • Other Ingredients
  • 2 tsp 2 Fermented Shrimp Paste

  • 1 tsp 1 Salt

  • 1/2 cup 1/2 Shallots (finely chopped)

  • 2 tsp 2 Kaffir lime zest

  • 1 cup 1 Freshly Boiled water



  • Preparation
  • You may start by preparing the chiles to make the yellow curry paste.
  • Cut the dried chiles into pieces and remove the seeds as much as possible to prevent your curry paste from becoming too hot.
  • Put the cut chile pieces into a bowl and pour 1 cup of freshly boiled water.
  • Let the chiles soak for about 10 minutes.
  • In the meantime, cut the flesh into halves and carefully remove the seeds and membranes. Roughly chop the chiles and set aside until required.
  • Then, add the whole dry spices (cloves, white peppercorns, coriander seeds, and cumin seeds) into the coffee grinder and grind until you get a smooth powder.  Leave the ground spices aside until you need them.

  • Making The Yellow Curry Paste
  • Drain the chiles from water and put them in the jar of your food processor/ blender. Reserve about ½ cup of chile-soaking water.
  • Follow up with chopped fresh chiles, garlic, ginger, turmeric, lemongrass, galangal, ground cinnamon, cilantro roots, shallots, kaffir lime zest, curry powder, fermented shrimp paste, salt and the ground spice mixture.
  • Add the reserved chile-soaking water and blend until you get a fine, smooth paste. Add a splash of neutral oil like canola or avocado oil to ease blending if you think the paste is too dry.
  • Scrape the rims of the blending jar and make sure everything has come together to a fine paste.
  • Move your prepared yellow curry paste into a well-fitting glass jar and keep it in the refrigerator or use it immediately.
  • You can also use a mortar and pestle for the entire grinding process according to the traditional way. Refer to the notes for instructions.

Tasty Notes and Suggestions by SpiceRally

  • According to the traditional method of Thailand to make yellow curry paste, you can use mortar and pestle too. For this, soak the chiles for at least 30 minutes and grind the white peppercorns with cumin seeds, coriander seeds, and cloves. Then set them aside and pound the soaked chilies with the fresh chiles and salt into a fine paste. Add the ground dry spices, turmeric, ground cinnamon, and curry powder. Pound until you get a smooth paste. Add the galangal, lemongrass, ginger, cilantro roots, and kaffir lime zest and pound again until well combined. Add the shallots, garlic and continue pounding into a fine paste. Mix in the shrimp paste and pound until you get the desired consistency.
  • You can customize the usage of red chiles according to your desired heat level. Use yellow or orange chiles if possible to have more authenticity.
  • You may use ground turmeric if you can’t find fresh turmeric.
  • Skip or reduce the curry powder you’re using in your batch if you need less spiciness.
  • To make vegan yellow curry paste, use miso paste instead of shrimp paste.
  • You may also use 10-12 cilantro stems if you can’t find the cilantro roots.
  • Storage- Store this curry paste in the refrigerator in a glass air-tight container for up to three days and in the freezer for several months. Use freezer zip lock bags or silicone ice cube trays if using the freezing option. If freezing in ice cube trays, you may cover your yellow curry paste with a layer of oil like canola or avocado oil. This will prevent your curry paste from drying out.

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If you need to learn more interesting ways to incorporate Thai yellow curry paste into your daily dishes, we have a fully detailed article right here. Click on this link for more information!

How To Use Yellow Curry Paste?

As the name suggests, you can use Thai yellow curry paste as the key ingredient in traditional Thai yellow curries. However, in addition to this, this curry paste is versatile to go as the base of a variety of soups, and stews, flavor up fried rice, incorporate into sauces, dips and even mix with savory batters.

Is Our Thai Yellow Curry Paste Too Spicy?

Thai yellow curry paste is not overwhelmingly spicy. But still, it has a considerable spiciness due to the use of curry powder and a few additional spices. You may always adjust the spiciness of this recipe by using more or less spices and fresh herbs depending on your preference.

How Does Thai Yellow Curry Paste Differ From Thai Red Curry Paste and Thai Green Curry Paste?

The yellow curry paste holds more spiciness than the green or red curry paste. However, it is way less hot than the red curry paste and contains a lesser herbal undertone than the green curry paste. But still, the base flavor of all three curry pastes is comparable due to similar ingredients.

Does This Thai Yellow Curry Paste Recipe Contain Gluten?

Not a single gluten-related element is included in our yellow curry paste recipe. Thus, anyone with a gluten sensitivity or who follows a gluten-free diet can undoubtedly include this curry paste.

Is Our Thai Yellow Curry Paste Recipe Vegan-friendly?

Since we have included fermented shrimp paste in this yellow curry paste recipe, this is not favorable for vegans. But you can skip the shrimp paste, substitute it with miso paste, and make a vegan-friendly yellow curry paste.

Can Keto Dieters Include This Yellow Curry Paste In Their Meals?

Yes, this curry paste is low in carbs and is excellent to be included in a low-carb or ketogenic diet. You can use this curry paste as a rub for your proteins like salmon or seafood. This is also great to go with most of your veggies!

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