Red Curry Shrimp With Coconut

5 from 272 votes

Thai-inspired red shrimp curry with coconut milk, red curry paste, fresh cilantro & lime. This shrimp curry is bright & bold - you won't want to stop eating it!

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This red curry shrimp with coconut milk is inspired by Thai cuisine and is packed full of flavor. The lime, cilantro, and red curry paste give this shrimp curry a wonderful zing, while the coconut milk provides a delicious creaminess. The plump, tender shrimp are just an added bonus to the amazing curry! The ingredients might seem a little daunting at first, but they are all very easy to find. Don’t be afraid to try out new recipes – this red curry shrimp recipe is definitely worth it! It is sure to please even the most discerning palate.

Coconut shrimp curry in pot garnished with a drizzle of coconut milk on top, clinatro, and lime wedges.
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Red shrimp curry is one of my favorite dishes to order at Thai restaurants, so I was really happy when I found a way to recreate it at home. This is my take on a Thai-inspired shrimp curry. I found that by using red curry paste, coconut milk, ginger, and garlic, I could mimic the similar flavors and textures of red curries I’ve tasted in restaurants. 

Why you’ll love this thai-inspired red curry shrimp

  • Bold and flavorful. This red curry shrimp is made with bold flavors like lime, cilantro, and red curry paste. It’s got heat, acid, and freshness all in one dish. 
  • Easy to throw together. This Thai-inspired red curry shrimp is surprisingly easy to make. With only 10 minutes of prep time and about 20 minutes of cook time, dinner is on the table in 30!
  • Something different to make at home. It’s easy to fall back on traditional recipes like lasagna, burgers, and baked chicken, but with this red curry shrimp, you can add something new to your repertoire.
  • Versatile. This red curry shrimp can be served over rice, noodles, or even a bed of greens. Whatever you have on hand will work!

Ingredients to make red curry shrimp

  • Shrimp: I like to use large shrimp for this recipe, but you can use any size. If you do use another size, keep in mind that the cooking time will vary.
  • Red curry paste: This is the key to giving your red curry shrimp its unique flavor – don’t skimp on it! You can also use green curry for this recipe if that’s what you have on hand.
  • Coconut milk: The coconut milk gives the shrimp curry a creamy texture and a slight sweetness that helps balance out the bold flavors of the red curry paste.
  • Veggies: Thinly sliced onion and red peppers give this dish a great crunch and some added texture and flavor. You can adjust the amount you use as well.
  • Lime: The lime juice helps to brighten up the dish with its acidity. You’ll want to use fresh lime as lime juice just doesn’t have the same flavor profile.
  • Fresh cilantro, ginger, and garlic: The freshness of the cilantro, the warmth of the ginger, and the sharpness of the garlic add complexity to the dish.
  • Salt and pepper: To taste.
Ingredients for recipe before prepped: red curry paste, whole red pepper, salt and pepper, cleaned and deveined uncooked shrimp, coconut milk, ginger root, whole onion, oil, fresh cilantro, and 2 garlic cloves.

How to make shrimp curry with coconut milk

  1. Add olive oil to a large, heavy-bottomed pot and heat. Add onion and cook until the onions are softened and golden brown. Add ginger and garlic and cook until very fragrant. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. Add the red curry paste, stirring with a wooden spoon, to coat all of the aromatics with curry paste. Add the red pepper and saute until softened.
  3. Add coconut milk, then fill the can about halfway with water and add that to the pot as well. Bring to a simmer.
  4. While the coconut milk simmers, season the shrimp with the remaining salt and pepper.
  5. Add the shrimp to the simmering sauce, then cover and cook until the shrimp is cooked through.
  6. Remove from heat and stir in lime juice and cilantro before serving with steamed rice.
6 image collage making recipe in one pan: 1-large skillet with golden brown sauteed onions, garlic and ginger added, 2- red curry paste coating onion mix with red peppers added before mixed, 3-pouring coconut milk into pan and stirring with wooden spoon, 4- raw shrimp on cutting board with seasoning sprinkled on, 5- seasoned shrimp added to sauce before mixed, 6- curry after shrimp has cooked.

Tips for making the best shrimp curry

  1. Skip the water. If you prefer a thicker curry, just skip the water, but I prefer a brothy curry, so the rice soaks up all the flavor!
  2. Taste as you go. Taste your curry each step of the way and adjust the seasoning as needed.
  3. Don’t overcook the shrimp. This may seem obvious, but it is so easy to overcook shrimp, especially in a curry, as they are still subjected to heat even when the burner is turned off. Be sure to keep an eye on them as they cook so that they are just cooked through.
  4. Don’t be afraid to customize. Feel free to add other ingredients like carrots, mushrooms, or spinach. While the customizations may not be part of a traditional shrimp curry, they can add some unique flavor and texture.
  5. Freeze leftover curry paste. If you bought a new curry paste for this recipe, you’ll have some leftovers, and it stays freshest in the freezer. I suggest pressing it into a freezer-safe zip-top bag and smoothing it into an even layer, then using your hands or a dull butter knife to make indents in the bag to create approximately 1 tablespoon-sized portions that you can break off and use as needed.
  • Swap the Veggies. Feel free to swap the red bell pepper for green beans, cauliflower or broccoli. Adjust the cooking time slightly, so the vegetables are tender before adding the coconut milk. 
  • Try different proteins. You can use the base of this red curry recipe with a variety of proteins, such as chicken or tofu.
  • Experiment with the amount of seasoning. If you prefer a spicier curry, feel free to add more red curry paste or a dash of cayenne pepper. If you want more acidity, add a bit more lime juice, etc.

What to serve with red curry shrimp

How to store & reheat shrimp curry

Store any leftover shrimp curry in an airtight container in the fridge. To reheat, just add a splash of water or stock and simmer on the stove until warmed through. Be careful when reheating. You don’t want the shrimp to turn into rubber from overheating.

How long will shrimp curry last in the fridge?

Leftover red curry shrimp will last for up to 3 days in the refrigerator.

Can i freeze shrimp curry?

Yes, you can freeze shrimp curry for up to 3 months. To freeze the shrimp curry, just let it cool completely, then transfer it to a freezer-safe zip-top bag or airtight container and store it in the freezer. When ready to eat, thaw overnight in the fridge and reheat on the stove over medium heat until warmed through.

Frequently asked questions

My shrimp is rubbery and tough. What happened?

This usually means you have overcooked your shrimp. Make sure to keep an eye on them while they are cooking, and take them off the heat as soon as they turn pink and curl up slightly. They will continue to cook in the curry sauce even after you’ve taken them off the stove.

What is red curry paste?

Red curry paste is a blend of aromatic ingredients such as shallots, garlic, lemongrass, galangal (similar to ginger), red chiles, and other herbs and spices. It is used as a base for many Thai-inspired dishes. Red curry paste can be found in most major supermarkets or online.

How do I make this dish vegan?

To make a vegan version of this red shrimp curry, simply swap the shrimp for tofu or your favorite vegetables.

Bowl with white rice with curry served over and garnished with cilantro and lime wedges.

Red shrimp curry is an easy and delicious way to bring some bold flavors into your kitchen. It’s perfect for a weeknight dinner or weekend lunch, and it can be customized with whatever ingredients you have on hand. Don’t forget to leave a comment below and let me know how it turned out! Enjoy!

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Red Shrimp Coconut Curry

Thai-inspired red shrimp curry with coconut milk, red curry paste, fresh cilantro & lime. This shrimp curry is bright & bold – you won't want to stop eating it!
5 from 272 votes
Servings 4 servings
Course Entree
Calories 379
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
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  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons prepared red curry paste
  • 1 red bell pepper thinly sliced
  • 1 14.5 ounce can coconut milk
  • 1 pound large shrimp cleaned and deveined
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • Steamed white rice for serving


  • Add olive oil to a large, heavy bottomed pot and set over medium heat. Add onion and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the onions are softened and golden brown. Add ginger and garlic and cook for 1 minute more, or until very fragrant. Season with ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • Add the red curry paste, stirring with a wooden spoon to coat all of the aromatics with curry paste. Add the red pepper and saute for about 3 to 4 minutes, or until softened. Add coconut milk, then fill the can about halfway with water and add that to the pot as well. Bring to a simmer.
  • While the coconut milk simmers, season the shrimp with remaining salt and pepper. Add the shrimp to the simmering sauce, then cover and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the shrimp is cooked through.
  • Remove from heat and stir in lime juice and cilantro before serving with steamed rice.


Tip: Avoid overcooking your shrimp by removing your curry from the heat as soon as they turn opaque and serve immediately. 


Calories: 379kcal, Carbohydrates: 9g, Protein: 26g, Fat: 29g, Saturated Fat: 19g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 6g, Trans Fat: 0.01g, Cholesterol: 183mg, Sodium: 442mg, Potassium: 639mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 2184IU, Vitamin C: 44mg, Calcium: 114mg, Iron: 4mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

Cuisine Thai
Course: Entree

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  1. Dina says:

    Can you use yellow curry powder instead of red curry paste? I’m just concerned about the spice level. If yes, how much?
    Thank you!

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Using a yellow curry powder will change the taste of the dish since yellow and red curries use different aromatics. I recommend using less red curry paste instead so you can get the same flavors and still adjust to your spice preference. Let me know how it turns out!

  2. Tami says:

    Can you cook it with tofu? How would you suggest doing it if so!

    1. Yumna says:

      Sure! I would just swap the shrimp for tofu and let the tofu simmer for a bit in the flavorful broth.

  3. Deb says:

    Is this freezable?

    1. Yumna says:

      Yes, I might suggest doubling the base of the curry, then freezing just half of that (without shrimp). That way, when you reheat, your can cook your shrimp fresh which will prevent them from getting overcooked.

  4. Jatis Flowers says:

    My daughter and I made this Amazing Dish! It is Magnifiet!

    1. Yumna says:

      Thanks so much!

  5. Mary says:

    Simply delicious. I did add about 1 tablespoon of Sesame Tahini because I love that flavor, and added some chopped basil, and peanuts in addition to the cilantro an extra yum.

    1. Yumna says:

      Sounds great!

  6. Shannon says:

    Could I add chicken with the shrimp???!

    1. Yumna says:

      Sure, if you like! I would suggest adding it a few minutes before the shrimp since it will take longer to cook.

  7. Wanda Best says:

    I really enjoyed preparing this meal. I loved all the ingredients and the aromas were beautiful. I served mine over Jasmine rice and did not add water I actually added some heavy cream as I like it very creamy. I served it with Naan and the taste and flavors were absolutely delicious. Would highly recommend it

    1. Yumna says:

      So happy you enjoyed this recipe, thank for sharing how you made it your own!

  8. Katie says:

    I added some zucchini and carrots. This was the best red curry we have had in quite a while. Thank you!

    1. Yumna says:

      Yay, so glad you enjoyed it!

  9. Kate says:

    You are my go-to for Lebanese recipes which my husband, from Beirut, appreciates, but we also love south Asian flavors. This is a delicious and easy to make dish. I am making it tonight with crispy tofu instead of shrimp.

    1. Yumna says:

      So happy to hear, thank you!

  10. mark omell says:

    We have been searching for a good red curry since we moved from Michigan to New Mexico. We have tried many restaurants and many recipes, but this is the one which my wife.said has most duplicated the good curry we got in Detroit. We added eggplant and it worked great.

    1. Yumna says:

      So glad you loved it, thanks fo sharing!

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