5-Ingredient Shrimp Curry

published Sep 6, 2023
Shrimp Curry Recipe

This cozy shrimp dinner leans on curry paste for making flavorful broth in less than 20 minutes.

Serves4 to 6

Makesabout 6 cups

Prep5 minutes

Cook15 minutes

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pot of shrimp curry on a white marble surface
Credit: Photo: Alex Lepe; Food Styling: James Park

My secret weapon to making tasty, delicious weeknight meals in under 30 minutes: curry paste. It’s one of my favorite pantry staples since it’s packed with flavorful aromatics, relatively cheap, and shelf-stable for a long time. 

The easiest way to enjoy curry paste is to mix it with a flavorful liquid like broth and full-fat coconut milk. Here, creamy coconut milk lets the flavors of curry paste shine in the most delightful way. I love adding shrimp for protein, but you can always use other proteins, such as chicken and fish, or even a variety of mushrooms to keep it vegetarian.

Which Curry Paste Should You Use in 5-Ingredient Shrimp Curry?

My favorite curry paste brand is Maesri, which comes in a can. There are different flavors — green curry paste and panang curry sauce, to list a few — but my go-to pick is their red curry paste. Chile peppers bring a bit of heat, while aromatics like lemongrass and makrut lime add wonderful zesty flavors. The curry paste also has a blend of spices like coriander seeds, cumin, and cardamom, so you don’t need to add more seasonings.

Credit: Photo: Alex Lepe; Food Styling: James Park

How to Serve 5-Ingredient Shrimp Curry

Because all the elements can be pretty rich, I like to add a little bit of acid to cut through the fat, so freshly squeezed lime juice makes a big difference. Even though the recipe uses lime juice while building the flavors of the dish, finishing with a squeeze right before serving adds freshness.

You can enjoy the soup as it is, but I highly recommend serving it with either steamed rice or cooked rice noodles, both of which absorb the broth well. If you like, you can even sip the broth straight from a mug!

Shrimp Curry Recipe

This cozy shrimp dinner leans on curry paste for making flavorful broth in less than 20 minutes.

Prep time 5 minutes

Cook time 15 minutes

Makes about 6 cups

Serves 4 to 6


  • 4

    medium scallions

  • 2

    medium limes

  • 1 tablespoon

    canola oil

  • 1 (4-ounce) can

    Thai red curry paste (about 1/2 cup), such as Maesri

  • 2 (about 13-ounce) cans

    full-fat coconut milk

  • 1 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 1 pound

    large raw peeled and deveined shrimp (16 to 20 per pound)

  • Cooked rice noodles or steamed rice, for serving (optional)


  1. Trim 4 medium scallions. Cut 3 of scallions crosswise into thirds. Finely chop the remaining scallion and reserve for garnish. Halve 1 of the medium limes, then cut the second lime into 8 wedges.

  2. Heat 1 tablespoon canola oil in a large saucepan, medium Dutch oven, or wok over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add 1 (4-ounce) can red curry paste and cook, stirring often, until the paste absorbs the oil and starts to bubble up, about 1 1/2 minutes. Add the scallion pieces and cook until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes.

  3. Add 2 (about 13-ounce) cans full-fat coconut milk and 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Juice the lime halves into the pot. Stir to combine and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Add 1 pound raw shrimp and cook, stirring occasionally, until just cooked through, 5 to 8 minutes.

  4. Serve as-is as a soup, or with cooked rice noodles or steamed rice. Garnish with the reserved scallion and serve with the lime wedges for squeezing.

Recipe Notes

Storage: Leftovers can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 2 days.