Thai Red Curry with Shrimp and Vegetables is served with infused rice for the most flavorful and easiest curry ever! It’s filled with vegetables, the most aromatic and delicious red curry-coconut milk broth, and the rice is infused with star anise and cardamom for even more flavor! The curry comes together in minutes, and you won’t be able to stop using this method for making the best rice ever!
Quite possibly my favorite recipe of this entire Healthyish January series is this thai red curry. It’s INSANELY flavorful (I know I say that about everything, but I really mean it!), creamy as all get out (hello full-fat coconut milk), and the infused rice just puts the cherry on top of this amazing meal.
Curry is one of those things that always sounds good.
Kind of like Mexican food. I can always go for some tacos + chips and guac, and I can always go for some Thai red curry. You know? Tell me that one of you gets me!
The flavors in curry are tough to beat, and the creamy, aromatic coconut milk broth just makes me quite honestly want to drink it with a straw. Too much? I don’t think so.
Although I love green curry, I’d have to say that red curry has a slight advantage in my book. I love how it’s slightly spicy, especially with the natural sweetness of the coconut milk. There are so many flavors that just punch you in the face in this bowl of goodness. From the Thai red curry paste, to the lime juice and lime zest, to the fresh cilantro and Thai basil, there’s literally nothing better.
Before I get into how much I’m in love with this curry, I have to talk to you about the infused rice.
Yes, INFUSED RICE. And if you’ve never done it, you’re in for a real treat.
I’m all for regular ‘ol basmati or jasmine rice. Basmati especially is so aromatic and flavorful on its own, but when you add things like star anise and cardamom pods into the pot, you will be AMAZED at the flavor. Not only that, but it so beautifully complements the curry. Seriously a match made in heaven.
Sometimes I’ll add bay leaves or toasted coconut to my rice, but this star anise and cardamom rice is hands down, my absolute favorite way to make rice. And the best part is, it’s so easy! You make rice like you normally would, and just throw in a couple star anise and a few cardamom pods. It’s as easy as that.
And you’ll seem like a culinary genius to whoever you’re serving this to. Win, win.
A few of my tips for the most flavorful curry ever:
- I typically use red curry paste from the store when I don’t have time to make my own. That being said, there are ways to enhance store-bought curry paste. The easiest way to do this, is to “bloom” your curry paste (just a fancy way to say enhance the flavor of), by sautéing it with extra aromatics – like garlic, ginger, scallions, and shallots. And that’s exactly what I did here! The heat and the extra ginger and garlic especially will bring out the beautiful flavors of that red curry paste!
- Use full-fat coconut milk. None of that “lite” stuff. It’s basically just coconut cream watered down with more water, so it’s less creamy. The full-fat stuff is really what you need for the most luxuriously flavorful and creamy Thai red curry.
- Use lots of lime and fresh herbs. I’m talking lime juice, lime zest, cilantro, Thai basil, scallions, and whatever else your heart desires! Always extra lime wedges for serving, too. Make sure you add your lime juice at the very end, because heat makes citrus flavor dissipate. You want it to be as bold and bright as possible!
Super simple tips I know, but I assure you they make all the difference when making curry at home!
One of the reasons why this curry is so quick, is that shrimp is so quick cooking, and so are the vegetables I used. The shrimp quickly poaches in the coconut milk curry broth along with the veggies in just a few minutes, and then it’s ready to be served on a pile of that star anise and cardamom infused rice goodness.
As for quick cooking veggies, I like to use thinly sliced bell pepper, broccoli cut into small florets, and carrots shaved into ribbons with a vegetable peeler so that they cook in no time. A few other ideas if you wanted to switch it up would be to add snap peas, zucchini noodles, or small cauliflower florets.
If you don’t like shrimp, you could totally use scallops, salmon cut into small pieces, or any quick cooking fish instead.
You can totally make it your own!
The final step for the curry is to hit it with lime zest, lime juice, a handful of cilantro, and a little bit of soy sauce for a hint of that umami flavor.
How badly do you want to dive into that skillet?!
And the best part, is how amazing all of that coconut milk red curry tastes with the infused rice. It’s a flavor punch to the face in the best way possible. It’s kind of the only thing I wanna make for dinner for the foreseeable future!
If you love curry as much as I do, you will love these recipes too!
Don’t forget to share a photo on Instagram and tag me @spicesinmydna if you make this recipe! Nothing makes me happier than seeing what you create in the kitchen. Be sure to hashtag #healthyishjanuary too so I can see all the Healthyish January recipes you make this month!
Thai Red Curry with Shrimp, Vegetables, and Infused Rice
Thai Red Curry with Shrimp and Vegetables is served with infused rice for the most flavorful and easiest curry ever! It's filled with vegetables, the most aromatic and delicious red curry-coconut milk broth, and the rice is infused with star anise and cardamom for even more flavor! The curry comes together in minutes, and you won't be able to stop using this method for making the best rice ever!
For the infused rice
- 1 3/4 cups water
- 1 cup basmati rice
- 3 cardamom pods, crushed with the back of a knife*
- 2 star anise pods*
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
For the curry
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
- 2 scallions, thinly sliced
- 1 medium shallot, thinly sliced
- 1/4 cup Thai red curry paste*
- 2 (14.5 ounce) cans full-fat coconut milk*
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon pepper
- 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
- 1 yellow bell pepper, very thinly sliced
- 1 small-medium broccoli crown, cut into small florets
- 2 large carrots, shaved into ribbons with a vegetable peeler
- zest of 1 lime
- juice of 1 lime
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro, plus extra for serving
- thai basil for serving*
- thinly sliced scallions for serving
- lime wedges for serving
Begin by making the rice. Bring the water to a boil in a medium saucepan (that has a lid). Once boiling, add the rice, cardamom pods, star ansie pods, and salt. Stir to combine. Cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook for 15-20 minutes, or until all liquid is absorbed and rice is tender. Fluff with a fork and discard cardamom and star anise pods.
While the rice is cooking, make the curry. Heat a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat. Add the coconut oil. Once hot, add the garlic, ginger, and a pinch of salt and sauté for 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until fragrant. Add the scallions and shallot and sauté for another 2 minutes. Add the curry paste and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly to prevent it from burning.
Add the coconut milk, salt, and pepper. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Once boiling, add the shrimp, bell pepper, broccoli, and carrots. Reduce heat slightly and simmer for 2-3 minutes, or until shrimp are cooked through and vegetables are cooked to your liking.
Remove from heat, let cool for a minute or two, and stir in lime zest, lime juice, soy sauce, and chopped cilantro. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper if desired. Serve the curry over the infused rice, and garnish with extra cilantro, Thai basil, and scallions. Serve with lime wedges.
*Sometimes cardamom pods can be trickier to find, depending on your grocery store. These are what I use when I can't find them at the store. Whole Foods usually has them too!
*Same goes for star anise pods. I get them here when I can't get them at the grocery store.
*This is the Thai red curry paste I use and love when I can't make my own!
*Make sure you use full-fat coconut milk here. The "lite" stuff isn't nearly as good, especially for this type of curry.
*If you can't find Thai basil, you can omit or use regular basil. It has a super unique flavor, so try to find it if you can!
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