Thai pumpkin soup with chicken is a fusion between the French favourite, and a Thai classic.
Coconut milk, red curry paste and kaffir lime leaves give this Thai pumpkin soup with chicken its unique flavour, the addition of chicken takes it from wonderful, to extraordinary.
Perfect for a quick tasty midweek meal with dinner on the table in 35 minutes. Who doesn’t like that!
At A Glance This Is What You Need To Make Thai Pumpkin Soup With Chicken
thai red curry paste
kaffir lime leaves
What Type of Pumpkin Should I Use?
We’ve used a Kent, or Jap pumpkin for our recipe. In Australia the Kent, or Jap and Butternut pumpkins are the most widely available. Both have a sweet-tasting flesh and are very easily peeled.
In North America, the UK and Japan a Kent pumpkin is called Kabocha Squash and in New Zealand they’re called Japanese Kabocha pumpkins.
Fry Off The Paste And Cook That Pumpkin
Store Bought Curry Paste
There are days when we’re happy to make our own curry pastes, and then there are days that we reach for a jar of reputable store bought curry paste. No pounding of aromatics, simply spoon it straight from the jar into the oil and coconut milk to fry and release the aromatics.
We’re fond of the Ayam brand curry pastes and used their Thai Red Curry Paste for this delicious soup. There’s no nasties in the paste, just a heady mix of lemongrass, red chillies, palm sugar, oil, shallots, cumin, coriander seeds, coriander roots and kaffir lime leaves.
Just like any self respecting Thai cook would make, but a heck of a lot quicker. For another super fast and tasty Thai soup using curry paste, check out our Thai Salmon and Coconut Noodle Soup.
Why Fry Off The Curry Paste?
Frying the curry paste with a little oil and coconut milk is called ‘blooming’, or ‘toasting’ and it allows the complex flavours and aromas of the paste to be released.
A watchpoint when frying the paste is to look for the oil to separate which means that any water has evaporated and the paste is ready to proceed with the recipe.
Let’s Finish The Soup!
Can You Freeze Thai Pumpkin Soup
Thai pumpkin soup freezes like a dream. You can either make the soup with the chicken cooked in it and freeze it or leave the chicken out and freeze the pumpkin soup. Simply thaw and add your raw chicken whilst heating up the soup.
Before freezing the soup you need to allow it to cool down completely before freezing.
Fill suitable containers leaving a little headroom as liquids expand when frozen and you’ll risk the soup container bursting and the next time you reach for a frozen dinner you’ll be faced with a burst container, and freezer burnt soup. We definitely don’t want that!
Watch How To Make Thai Pumpkin Soup With Chicken
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Can I Substitute the Chicken?
This pumpkin soup base is not only extremely tasty, but incredibly versatile. Instead of adding the chicken you can replace it with green prawns for that classic Thai soup found in a zillion Thai restaurants.
Raw scallops are also sublime in this fragrant pumpkin soup base as is fresh raw salmon thinly sliced and just popped into the heated soup base for a few minutes only to ensure they don’t overcook.
You can go right ahead and add some soft and silky tofu cubes if you don’t want meat or seafood and you’ll still have an incredible flavour bomb of soup in a bowl.
- 1 1/2 tablespoons oil
- 400 ml can coconut cream 13.5 fl oz / approximately 1 1/2 cups
- 400 ml can coconut milk 13.5 fl oz / approximately 1 1/2 cups - ( reserve 1 tablespoon to drizzle over soup when serving )
- 1 1/2 tablespoons red curry paste
- 750 ml cups chicken stock 3 cups / 25.5 fl oz
- 1 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce
- 1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 375 gm boneless chicken thighs ( no skin ) approximately 3 thighs / 13.5 oz cut into slices or cubes
- 800 gm peeled pumpkin cut into smallish pieces 28 oz / 6 cups - we used a sweet creamy Kent pumpkin - see pumpkin types in the post
- 3 double kaffir lime leaves plus 1 finely sliced to garnish
- to a large pot over low heat add the vegetable oil, curry paste and 1/4 cup of the coconut milk stir frequently for 5 minutes - this step cooks off the spices in the curry paste
- add the stock and pumpkin and cook over a medium heat until the pumpkin is soft - 15 minutes approximately
- blend until smooth - we used a stick blender if you're using a traditional blender with a lid allow the pumpkin to cool to prevent steam burns.
- add the brown sugar, fish sauce and kaffir lime leaves - taste and adjust seasoning if required
- add chicken and the remaining coconut milk and cream
- gently simmer for 5 minutes or until the chicken is cooked
- optional - we served our soup with finely sliced kaffir lime leaf, extra pumpkin cubes, chilli, shallot and a drizzle of coconut milk