It is so simple to make your own Thai Green Curry Paste at home with a few fresh ingredients. Quickly and easily throw cilantro, lemongrass, chili peppers, ginger, garlic, and a few other things into your food processor. In about 10 minutes, you have a homemade paste ready for all the curry recipes.

Gluten-free Thai Green Curry Paste is made with fresh ingredients at home.

Green Curry Paste Recipe

Finding a really tasty store-bought green curry paste that’s not too spicy and is made with wholesome ingredients is well, um, how do I put it…

Pretty darn difficult.

Just when I’m craving a big ole’ bowl of some Thai food, like this Thai Green Chicken Curry, I go to the grocery store and whaddayaknow. They’re out of the Thai Kitchen curry paste.

Instead of becoming disgruntled that this curry craving will be left unappeased, I decided to make my own simple recipe at home.

And ya’ll – lemme tell you. Not only is it SO packed full of Thai flavors…

Fresh cilantro, lemongrass, peppers, ginger, and garlic being the stars of the show.

But once you have all of your ingredients gathered together, it is SO easy to make. Like ready in under 10 minutes, easy!

The best homemade Thai green curry paste is lifted up with a spoon.

What is Green Curry Paste?

Green curry paste is traditionally made by using a mortar and pestle to grind together green chilis (or Bird’s Eye chilis), garlic, ginger (or galangal), lemongrass, kaffir limes, and cilantro. Often, cumin and some type of ground peppercorn is added too.

The paste is then used in a coconut milk-based soup or stew along with other vegetables, chicken, or shrimp.

It’s typically quite a bit spicier than other Thai curry pastesGreen curry is normally hot to medium-hot, red is medium, and yellow curry is mild to medium.

Rather than buy this paste at Asian markets or an Asian grocery store, or run to the local Thai restaurant, simply make your own fresh curry paste at home.

Chili peppers, garlic, cilantro, limes, ginger, lemongrass, spices, and other ingredients are used in homemade Thai green curry paste recipe.

Ingredients

Initially it may seem like there are quite a few ingredients necessary for this green curry paste. But they’re really not that difficult to locate at most grocery stores. The simple ingredients you need to make this traditional Thai green curry are:

  • Cilantro. Fresh herbs make up the bulk of the paste and helps to give it that beautiful green color. When preparing the cilantro, make sure you remove the stems and cilantro roots and only use the leaves. Also, pack the cilantro into the measuring cup to make sure you are using enough.
  • Lemongrass. You want about 12-15 inches of medium-thickness lemongrass stalks. Depending on their length, this will be about 2-3. Before using them, make sure to trim and discard the ends.
  • Peppers. Thai chili pepper and Bird’s eye chilis are the most authentic type to use but can be difficult to locate. Serrano and jalapeño peppers make great substitutions that are easier to find. If you would like to make the paste spicier, keep in some of the seeds and use more peppers. If you want to make the curry milder, only use 1-2 peppers that have been seeded.
  • Ginger. Fresh ginger root or a prepared ginger paste can be used interchangeably. If using the paste, look for it in either the produce section or on the Asian food aisle at your grocery store.
  • Garlic. Fresh cloves that have been either crushed or finely minced are key. It’s not recommended to substitute this for garlic powder.
  • Spices. Ground turmeric and coriander give a subtle earthiness to the paste.
  • Lime. A little bit of freshly squeezed lime juice adds a hint of acidity and citrus. If you’d like more lime flavor, add in a touch of the lime zest.
  • Sugar. This is completely optional, but it does help to balance out the pungency of the other ingredients. You can also choose to stir this in at the end of making curry recipes. Either white or brown sugar will work.

Pro tip: The first time you make this recipe, opt for a milder pepper. The next time, take it up a notch if you like the spice.

How to Make Green Curry Paste

The simple steps to follow to make this authentic Thai green curry paste are easy to follow:

Prepare the Ingredients

First, you will want to use a sharp knife and cutting board to coarsely chop the cilantro and the lemongrass. Then, seed and finely chop the peppers.

It’s very important that you actually chop these ingredients before adding them into your processor or blender.  If you do not, you will have a hard time getting them to fully break down and will end up with large chunks throughout the paste.

Garlic, cilantro, and peppers are chopped and prepared on a cutting board.

Process Everything Together

You can either choose to make your own green curry paste the traditional way, with a mortar and pestle, or an easier way, in a food processor or blender.

Add all of the ingredients to the bowl of a small food processor or high-speed blender.

Pulse 5-10 times to incorporate the ingredients. 

Process for 1-2 minutes, or until a thick, smooth paste forms. Make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl every 15-20 seconds. Add additional water if needed.

Depending on the type of appliance you are using, you may need more or less water than what is called for in the recipe. You want the finishing curry paste to resemble a basil pesto consistency – with small chunks of ingredients that are a uniform size.

This recipe will make roughly 1/3 cup of green curry paste. This is enough for one batch of a typical Thai green curry recipe.

Serve it Up

After you have the main ingredients processed together and made your own curry paste, you can add it to so many things! Mix it with coconut milk to make a creamy sauce for so many authentic Thai recipes. Everyone at your dinner table will love this dish.

The most obvious use is to pour it over brown rice or jasmine rice.

Or, add some to your favorite Asian noodle soup

to determine the spice level for this Thai green curry paste.

Meal Prep and Storage

  • How to store: Homemade curry paste can be prepared and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1-2 weeks. Over time, the ingredients will lose their potency and become darker, so it’s best to use it within a few days after making it.
  • How to freeze: You can make a double or triple batch and freeze some later. To do this, place 1-2 tablespoons into ice cube trays, freeze, and then transfer to a freezer-safe Ziploc bag or container for up to 1-2 years.

How do you make a Thai curry paste?

Thai green curry paste is a flavorful blend of herbs, spices, and chilis. To make it, you simply need to combine the ingredients in either a mortar and pestle (the traditional way) or in a food processor.

Is Thai Green Curry Paste gluten-free and vegan?

Typically Thai curries and pastes are both vegan and gluten-free. When purchasing store-bought brands, make sure to double-check the label for added stabilizers or preservatives.

Is Thai Green Curry Paste healthy?

The bulk of the ingredients in a Thai curry paste are made from fresh, wholesome ingredients such as chilis, herbs, and spices. Because of this, it is a relatively healthy addition to add a lot of flavor to dishes.

Homemade, gluten-free Thai green curry paste is measured to be used in Green curry chicken.

Expert Tips and Tricks

  • Make it your own. You can increase or decrease the amount of the chilis or spices, depending on your preference.
  • Go fresh. If possible, squeeze your own lime rather than using the bottled kind.
  • Save time. While it is more traditional to use a mortar and pestle, it is so quick and easy to use a food processor for this recipe.
  • Take up the heat. Depending on how hot you like things, you can choose to use a jalapeno, Serrano, or Thai pepper.
  • Make extra. This recipe freezes so well, so be sure to have a big batch and save some for later.

More Curry Recipes

Curry is such an underrated dish, and you can enjoy it in so many ways.

Curry Chicken Salad is a unique twist on a classic flavor.

If you’re looking for more traditional options, try this Salmon Curry with Coconut Milk, Chicken Korma Curry with Coconut Milk, or this Thai Yellow Chicken Curry.

You can’t go wrong with Vegan Chickpea Curry or this Thai Green Chicken Curry.

Tap stars to rate!

4.88 from 8 votes

Thai Green Curry Paste Recipe

It is so simple to make your own Thai Green Curry Paste at home with a few fresh ingredients. It's so quick and easy to throw cilantro, lemongrass, chili peppers, ginger, garlic, and a few other things into your food processor.
Yield 5 servings
Prep 10 minutes
Total 10 minutes

Ingredients 

  • ½ cup cilantro packed
  • 2-3 lemongrass 15 inches total
  • 2-5 chili peppers Thai, Serrano, or jalapeño
  • 1 Tbsp. ginger paste
  • 4 cloves garlic crushed
  • 1 tsp. turmeric ground
  • ½ tsp. coriander ground
  • 1 tsp. lime juice freshly squeezed
  • ½ tsp. salt to taste
  • ¼ tsp. black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp. oil olive or avocado
  • 1-3 Tbsp. water
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar optional

Instructions 

  • Coarsely chop the cilantro and lemongrass. Seed and finely chop the peppers.
  • Add all of the ingredients to the bowl of a small food processor or high speed blender.
  • Pulse 5-10 times to incorporate the ingredients. Process for 1-2 minutes, or until a thick paste forms. Make sure to scrape down the sides of the bowl every 15-20 seconds. Add additional water if needed.

Tap stars to rate!

4.88 from 8 votes

Notes

  • This recipe will make roughly 1/3 cup of green curry paste.  This is enough for one batch of a typical Thai green curry recipe.
  • Nutritional information is calculated for 1 tablespoon of curry paste and without added sugar.

Meal Prep and Storage

  • How to store: Homemade curry paste can be prepared and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1-2 weeks. Over time, the ingredients will lose their potency and become darker, so it’s best to use it within a few days after making it.
  • How to freeze: You can make a double or triple batch and freeze some later. To do this, place 1-2 tablespoons into ice cube trays, freeze, and then transfer to a freezer-safe Ziploc bag or container for up to 1-2 years.
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Nutrition

Calories: 40kcal, Carbohydrates: 3g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 3g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 195mg, Potassium: 79mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 190IU, Vitamin C: 5mg, Calcium: 10mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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Comments

    1. Hi Trish! As a general rule of thumb I like to use 1/4 teaspoon of ginger powder for every 1 teaspoon of fresh ginger.

  1. I live in a small, rural town where neither green curry paste or lemongrass are available. I would really love to make this recipe! Will you please suggest a substitute for lemongrass? Thank you so much for all the delicious recipes, I can’t wait to try some of them.