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Thai tom kha gai in a bowl on the table.

Authentic Thai Tom Kha Gai (Chicken Coconut Soup)

  • Author: Suwanee
  • Total Time: 25
  • Yield: 5 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free


Get ready to experience a burst of authentic Thai flavors with this authentic Thai Tom Kha Gai (chicken coconut soup). This easy recipe combines tender pieces of chicken, creamy coconut milk, stock, and a medley of aromatic Thai ingredients, creating a harmonious balance of sweet, savory, and creamy flavors.


  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 3 slices galangal, around 1.5 inches wide and slightly larger than the thickness of a quarter. Smash lightly to release oils.
  • 3 lemongrass stalks; use only the rounded light green part at the bottom. Smash lightly to release oils.
  • 5 kaffir lime leaves.
  • 1 pound chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 cups of thinly sliced mushrooms (i.e., button, shitake, Enoki, or oyster mushroom)
  • 3-4 tablespoons fish sauce. Adjust as needed as each brand of fish sauce has a different saltiness level.
  • 1 can (13.5 ounces) of coconut milk
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • ¼ cup cilantro stems and leafy parts chopped
  • 2 fresh Thai chili pepper (optional)


  1. In a large saucepan or Dutch oven on medium heat, add stock, galangal, lemongrass, and kaffir lime leaves. Bring to a gentle boil. (You are making a quick stock here for the soup base.)
  2. Add chicken and mushroom. Lower heat to medium-high. Cook until the chicken is done (anywhere from 7-8 minutes, depending on your stovetop).
  3. Add the entire can of coconut milk (I used Aroy-D for this recipe). Stir together and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Add the cilantro stems and fish sauce, stir, and cook for two more minutes. Taste and adjust the flavors with more fish sauce, lime juice, or sugar. Turn the heat off and serve.
  5. Add lime juice and Thai chilis (if using) and stir in one last time. Turn the heat off and remove the saucepan from the stovetop.
  6. Let cool for a few minutes and portion out in soup bowls for serving.  That's it! Simple, easy, healthy, creamy, light, and super delicious!


  • Lemongrass-use only the rounded bottom part of the lemongrass for cooking. Cut the stalk around 3-5 inches long and bruise them with a heavy kitchen tool to help release the flavor and fragrance even more.

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  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Category: Soups, chicken recipes, healthy recipes
  • Method: Stove top
  • Cuisine: Thai

Keywords: Thai coconut soup, thai chicken coconut soup, tom kha gai, Thai coconut chicken soup, Tom Kha, authentic Tom kha soup, Tom Kha soup recipes