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Coconut Curry Rice Noodle Soup with Shrimp

Scott Phillips

Servings: 4

This soup—somewhere between a curry and a pho—gets its inspiration from Malaysian laksa. Fish sauce takes the place of the traditional shrimp paste, and jalapeños impart heat. There are many shapes and sizes of rice noodles, though the flat pad Thai variety does best in this broth.


  • 8 oz. dry wide rice noodles
  • 2 Tbs. peanut oil or canola oil
  • 1 medium stalk lemongrass (about 21/2 oz.), trimmed, bruised, and cut into 2-inch segments
  • 2 medium shallots, thinly sliced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 2 jalapeños, stemmed, seeded, and finely diced (about 1/4 cup)
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. ground turmeric
  • 5 cups low-salt chicken broth
  • 1 cup canned coconut milk, well shaken
  • 2 limes, 1 juiced (about 2 Tbs.), 1 cut into wedges for serving
  • 2 tsp. fish sauce
  • 2 Tbs. light brown sugar
  • 1 lb. jumbo shrimp (21 to 26 per lb.), preferably wild caught, peeled and deveined
  • 3 oz. (about 1-1/2 cups) bean sprouts
  • 1/2 cup cilantro leaves

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 610
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 210
  • Fat (g): 23
  • Saturated Fat (g): 13
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 3.5
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 5
  • Cholesterol (mg): 170
  • Sodium (mg): 750
  • Carbohydrates (g): 68
  • Fiber (g): 3
  • Protein (g): 35


  • Put the noodles in a large heatproof bowl and cover with 3 quarts of boiling water. Stir well to prevent the noodles from sticking together, then let sit until the noodles become soft and pliable, about 15 minutes. Rinse with cold water, drain well, and set aside.
  • Heat the oil and lemongrass in a heavyduty 6-quart pot over medium-high heat until the lemongrass starts to sizzle, about 2 minutes. Add the shallots, the jalapeños, and 1/2 tsp. salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the shallots begin to soften and brown in spots, about 4 minutes. Remove the lemongrass and add the coriander, cumin, and turmeric, and stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  • Add the chicken broth and coconut milk. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer until the shallots are completely tender and the broth is fragrant, about 15 minutes. Stir in the lime juice, fish sauce, and brown sugar. Raise the heat to high, then add the shrimp and noodles. Stir occasionally until the shrimp are cooked through and opaque, 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Ladle the broth and noodles into bowls,  garnish with the bean sprouts and cilantro, and serve with lime wedges.


Rate or Review

Reviews (3 reviews)

  • Harissa | 05/09/2019

    Very tasty, easy to make and filling soup. I assume the nutritional information is per serving. If so, it seems high in calories for the contents used.
    CJMason- it would be more helpful if you were specific about why you didn’t like the soup vs. “this recipe is garbage”.

  • CJMason | 03/13/2018

    I love fine cooking. It's a staple in my house. This recipe is garbage. Never make it.

  • Sarhill1 | 09/19/2017

    This was really an easy fast and nice soup. I am so happy to see Fine Cooking adding more Indian recipes.

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