Tom Kha Gai

Total time:
50 minutes

There are so many different versions out there of Thai Coconut Chicken Soup, or Tom Kha Gai, but I wanted to give it to you in its truest, most authentic form. So much more than a chicken soup, this classic Thai dish is known for its many layers of sweet, creamy, spicy and woodsy flavors. Finding all the ingredients can be an adventure sometimes, but the soup itself is easy to execute. TIP: Remember to add the coconut milk to your pot at the very end so the cream doesn’t break from the heat.


lb of chicken thighs
cup of fresh lime juice
tablespoons of fish sauce
lemongrass stalks, 1 thinly sliced and 2 whole
Kaffir lime leaves
Thai chilis, cut lengthwise
cup of white onion, thinly sliced
galangal, thinly sliced pieces
cups melange of mushrooms (shiitake, button)
cups of chicken stock
cups coconut milk (1 can)
cilantro, chopped
scallions, sliced
garlic cloves, sliced


Step 1

In a large soup pot, heat some cooking oil and add chicken, onions, garlic, galangal

Step 2

Add 2 lemongrass stalks and kaffir lime, lightly ripped

Step 3

Stir together and allow aromatics to bloom in the pot

Step 4

Add fish sauce, stir

Step 5

When onions become translucent, add mushrooms and sliced lemongrass

Step 6

Stir and allow to cook

Step 7

When mushrooms are tender and chicken almost cooked, add Thai chilis, stir

Step 8

Add lime juice and chicken stock

Step 9

Allow to simmer on low heat

Step 10

When soup is ready to serve, add coconut milk to pot and stir

Step 11

As you transfer from pot to serving bowl, remember to avoid the whole lemongrass stalks, galangal and kaffir lime leaves, as those are meant to infuse the broth

Step 12

Add chopped cilantro and scallions for garnish, and serve

Specialty ingredients you'll need:

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