How To Make Thai Tom Kha Soup

Tom Kha Soup is a popular dish in Southeast Asian cuisine, particularly in Thailand, Laos, and Myanmar(indigenous to the Thai people). The dish is believed to have originated in Thailand, where it is commonly made with coconut milk, lemongrass, ginger, and other ingredients. It is typically made with chicken or shrimp and is known for its balance of sweet, sour, and spicy flavours.

In Thailand, Tom Kha Soup is often served as a starter or as part of a larger meal. It is a popular dish in street food and casual dining settings, as well as in high-end restaurants. The dish is also commonly found in Thai restaurants around the world.

In Laos and Myanmar, the dish is also called Tom Kha, but it’s made with a different kind of broth than the Thai version. It is less sweet and more spicy and sour.

The dish is an important part of Thai culture, as it reflects the country’s focus on balance and harmony in food. The use of coconut milk, lemongrass, and other ingredients is also indicative of the country’s tropical climate and its abundance of fresh herbs and spices.

In Laos and Myanmar, the dish is also a traditional dish that is passed down through generations, with each family having their own unique recipe. It is also an important part of their culture, reflecting the country’s focus on balance and harmony in food and the use of fresh herbs and spices.


  • 1 quart of chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 can of coconut milk
  • 2 stalks of lemongrass
  • 1 thumb-sized piece of ginger, thinly sliced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 4-6 kaffir lime leaves
  • 2-3 red chillies, sliced
  • 1 pound of mushrooms (such as shiitake or button)
  • 1 pound of chicken or shrimp (optional)
  • 2-3 tablespoons of fish sauce
  • 2-3 tablespoons of lime juice
  • Fresh cilantro and green onions for garnish


  1. Bring the stock to a boil in a large pot.
  2. Add the lemongrass, ginger, garlic, kaffir lime leaves, and red chillies to the pot and simmer for about 10 minutes.
  3. Add the mushrooms and chicken or shrimp (if using) and continue to simmer for another 5-10 minutes.
  4. Add the coconut milk, fish sauce, and lime juice to the pot and stir well.
  5. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
  6. Serve the soup in bowls and garnish it with cilantro and green onions. Enjoy!

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