Global Comfort Food: Thai Chicken Soup

By Carolyn Williams, PhD, RD | January 27, 2021 | Rally Health


Serves 6

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

This comforting soup is inspired by the Thai dish Tom Kha Gai, which relies on a creamy broth base made from coconut milk, red curry paste, ginger, lemongrass, lime juice, and fish sauce. To keep things simple, I like to purchase a rotisserie chicken and then remove the skin before shredding the breast meat to add to the soup.

Fresh lemongrass stalks are simmered in many traditional Thai dishes to impart a citrus flavor. However, fresh stalks can be hard to find in some grocery stores. If that’s the case, opt for lemongrass paste (usually near the refrigerator herbs, in a tube), as I did in this recipe. If you’d prefer to use fresh lemongrass, substitute two trimmed stalks for the paste. Then, remove and discard the stalks just before serving.


  • 1 pkg (32-oz) low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 (13.5-oz) can light coconut milk
  • 1 Tbsp red curry paste
  • 1 Tbsp grated or minced fresh ginger
  • 2 tsp lemongrass paste
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 3 cups shredded, cooked chicken breasts
  • 1 cup sliced mushrooms (white, oyster, shiitake, or a combination)
  • 1 Tbsp lime juice
  • 1 Tbsp fish sauce
  • ⅓ cup chopped green onions
  • Garnish: chopped basil and/or cilantro, lime wedges


1. Combine broth, coconut milk, curry paste, ginger, lemongrass, and garlic in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat.

2. Stir in chicken, mushrooms, lime juice, and fish sauce. Reduce heat and simmer 6 to 8 minutes until fragrant and hot throughout. Stir in green onions. Garnish with basil or cilantro, and lime wedges.

NUTRITION FACTS (per 1 ¼ cups of soup): Calories 160; Total Fat 5g (Saturated Fat 2.5g); Cholesterol 60mg; Sodium 350mg; Total Carbs 3g (Dietary Fiber 0g, Total Sugars 1g, Added Sugars 0g); Protein 24g.

This recipe is from Comfort Foods From Around the World.


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