This tasty vegan Thai Red Curry with sweet potato is super easy and comforting. With a simple method and using only common ingredients, this recipe is perfect for lunch or a quick weekday dinner.
We’ve wanted to publish a Thai curry recipe forever. For our wedding party we cooked up a huge batch of Thai green curry, for which we also made the curry paste ourselves. Can you imagine the amount of lemongrass we had to chop up for that?
Now we’ve finally got a Thai curry recipe on the blog, and it’s a red Thai sweet potato curry!
Not an obvious choice for a Thai curry, but sweet potato is a perfect match! Its subtle, natural sweetness melts together beautifully with the Thai curry flavours. With its orange colour, it also looks good!
You can cook it with store bought red Thai curry paste, or use homemade curry paste if you’re adventurous! Just know that there are some good vegan curry pastes you can buy that will work perfectly for this recipe, just check that the ingredients don't contain fish or shrimp.
The sweet - sour - spicy combination of flavours in this red Thai curry is something we cannot resist…
We deliberately kept this ingredient list on the short side. By using easy alternative ingredients to some traditional items such as palm sugar and fish sauce, we kept it simple and vegan.
- Coconut oil
- Garlic & ginger
- Thai red curry paste
- Coconut milk
- Sweet potato
- Red pepper
- Brown sugar
- Lime juice
- Soya sauce
- Fresh cilantro, mint, thai basil, spring onion or fresh red chili for garnish
The bulk of the curry is sweet potato, with a side kick of red pepper.
The curry paste is 100% essential for an authentic Thai red curry. Fried briefly with the garlic and ginger it forms the flavour base the curry builds on.
We use coconut oil, but you can use other oils good for frying. Or use a bit of the fatty part of the coconut milk, if the coconut milk has separated.
We recommend using some good quality organic coconut milk, as it has the least stabilisers and other unnecessary additives.
The dish is then balanced out with some soy sauce, lime juice and brown sugar to get that yummy combination of sweet, sour and salty-umami.
Step by step pictures
You'll find the full recipe below, but here's a quick visual guide on how to cook this vegan Thai red curry in just 3 easy steps!
Step 1 - Melt the coconut oil on medium-high heat and fry the garlic and ginger for about a minute.
Step 2 - Add the red Thai curry paste and fry for another minute until aromatic.
Step 3 - Add all other ingredients, bring to a gentle simmer and cook covered for 15 minutes.
Variations and substitutions
For a similar vibe, turn it into a squash Thai curry by using butternut squash or a pumpkin instead of sweet potato.
Or just mix it up and make it colourful by swapping out some of the sweet potato for other vegetables. Add some carrots, cauliflower or broccoli.
In a recipe like this, you can even use the stem of the broccoli. Chop it up into small bites and they will be soft after simmering.
If you want to add some snap peas or mangetout, don’t add them from the beginning. Instead, cook them in the curry for just a few minutes towards the end of the cooking time, so they retain some of their crisp freshness.
Instead of the lime, you can use lemon. It might not have quite the same flavour, but it sure has the sour tang to balance out the sweet and salty.
If you like a bit more heat to your curries, you can add some Sriracha on top or use a less mild curry paste.
What to eat it with
Rice is the perfect classic side dish to a Thai curry. While we prefer the more aromatic basmati rice, the type most often used in Thai cuisine is Jasmine rice. If you happen to have some leftover coconut milk, why not make some coconut rice?
As an alternative to rice, try some noodles. We love them with anything saucy and spicy. Just make sure you get vegan noodles without eggs.
As a nice addition, some stir fried or steamed greens like kale or pak choi would be a colourful, nutritious idea!
Vegan Thai Red Curry with Sweet Potato
- spring onion / scallion
- small red chili
- fresh Thai basil, mint or cilantro / coriander leaves
- In a large sauce pan or frying pan (with a fitting lid), melt the coconut oil on medium to medium-high heat.
- Add the ginger and garlic and fry for a minute until aromatic.
- Stir in the curry paste and fry for another minute.
- Add the sweet potato, red pepper and coconut milk, gently bring to a simmer and stir in the salt, sugar, soy sauce and lime juice.
- Cover the pan with a lid, reduce heat to low-medium. Simmer for 15 minutes, until the sweet potato is completely soft and tender.
- For serving, garnish on the plate with chopped or finely sliced spring onion, red chili, fresh Thai basil, mint or coriander leaves.