Tom Kha Gai - a heathy paleo-friendly Thai Soup
Print Pin
0 from 0 votes

Thai Chicken Coconut Soup (Tom Kha Gai)

Thai home cooking used to be a mystery to me since I had a hard time finding a few commonly used ingredients, like lemongrass, galangal, and lime leaves. Lemongrass has been easier to find recently, and I’ve come to love its floral, lemony aroma. 
Course Soup
Cuisine Thai
Keyword tom kah gai soup
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 15 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 230kcal
Author Liz Della Croce


  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs
  • 1 1/2 quarts chicken stock
  • 12 ounces sliced cremini or baby bella mushrooms
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 Thai chile seeded and minced (a serrano pepper or small jalapeno would be ok)
  • 2 inch knob ginger finely grated
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 3-inch pieces lemongrass
  • 14 ounce can full-fat coconut milk
  • 1 cup snow peas
  • 1/3 cup chopped chilantro plus more to garnish
  • 3 green onions, sliced thinly


  • Place the chicken in a 4 quart slow cooker with the stock, mushrooms, garlic, zest and juice from 1 of the limes, chile, ginger, fish sauce, honey, sea salt, and black pepper.
  • Place the lemongrass on a cutting board. Lay a flat side of your knife over the stalks. Hit your fist firmly on the knife, bruising the lemongrass. Do this a few times until the stalk is smashed in several places. Transfer the lemongrass to the slow cooker.
  • Cover and cook on low for 6-7 hours (or 3-4 on high). 
  • Remove the chicken from the cooker, shred into small pieces and return them to the pot. Stir in the coconut milk, snow peas, and 1/3 cup of cilantro. Cover and cook for another 15 minutes. Cut the remaining lime into wedges.
  • Remove the lemongrass stalks. Taste and add more salt and lime, if necessary. Serve with a sprinkle of cilantro, green onions and lime wedges


If you can find galangal, use that in place of the fresh ginger. You can also use 2 teaspoons of lemongrass paste in place of the fresh lemongrass.


Calories: 230kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 4.5g | Saturated Fat: 0.8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3.7g | Cholesterol: 67mg | Sodium: 1547mg | Fiber: 2.4g | Sugar: 8.2g