Vegan Thai Peanut Curry
Vegan Thai Peanut Curry- made in just one pot, this flavorful peanut curry is a super comforting vegan and gluten-free meal that everyone will love!
Peanut curry was my first introduction to Thai food. I had just started working at the hospital in Orlando after graduating from school. A few of my coworkers suggested we go out to a nearby restaurant for lunch and immediately after that I was hooked. The savory, tangy, slightly sweet flavors of Thai cooking lured me in for good.
Soon after that we started eating a vegetarian diet and realized that there aren’t a ton of Thai restaurants with vegan or even vegetarian friendly curries since most of them include fish sauce as a main ingredient. Thankfully I discovered that making your own curry at home is surprisingly easy thanks to store-bought curry paste and tamari (or soy sauce) which is a great substitute for fish sauce. You can make in one pot too so there isn’t a ton of dishes to clean up afterwards. Let’s take a look at how it’s done!
How to Make Vegan Thai Peanut Curry
To start, these are the ingredients you’ll need:
- Onion, Ginger, and Garlic– these are key for adding flavor.
- Curry Paste– red curry paste works best for peanut curry. This is my favorite brand.
- Creamy Peanut Butter– if you use peanut butter without added sugar then you may want to add a tablespoon of sugar (I like coconut sugar) to the curry.
- Coconut Milk– I prefer full fat coconut milk but light coconut milk will work if you want to reduce the overall fat in the recipe.
- Tamari– as I mentioned above, tamari (which is essentially gluten-free soy sauce) replaces the umami flavor that fish sauce adds to the curry.
- Preferred Vegetables– carrots, broccoli and red bell pepper are a few of my favorites but feel free to mix it up with whatever you prefer.
- Lime Juice or Rice Wine Vinegar– either of these provide acidity for that signature sour flavor.
- Protein– this is completely optional but you can add chopped tofu or edamame for a boost of plant-based protein.
- Rice, Cilantro and Chopped Peanuts for Serving– full disclosure, I use microwavable rice to save time. Sticky rice is so good with this curry but brown rice works too.
First we’ll sauté the onion, ginger in garlic until soft and fragrant. Then we stir in our peanut butter and red curry paste.
Next we pour in the coconut milk and add the vegetables. Bring to a low boil and cook just until the veggies are tender.
Lastly, add tamari, lime juice and coconut sugar (if needed) to taste. This is also when you can add tofu if desired and cook until it’s heated through. Then you just serve warm with rice and garnishes and that’s it. Dinner is served!
My husband usually hates peanut butter in savory dishes but he LOVES this curry so that should tell you something. It’s my go-to whenever the craving strikes and it’s always hits the spot. I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!
Looking for more Thai-inspired recipes? Check these out:
- Vegan Tom Kaa Gai (Coconut Milk Soup)
- Red Curry Chickpea ‘Meatballs’
- Bananas in Coconut Milk (Kluay Bod Chii)
- Baked Thai Tofu Lettuce Wraps
- One-Pot Vegetable Thai Red Curry
- Dana’s Thai Quinoa ‘Meatballs‘
Vegan Thai Peanut Curry
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 small onion, or 2 medium shallots, minced
- 2 inches fresh ginger, peeled and minced
- 3-4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 large carrots, peeled and sliced
- 2 tablespoons red curry paste
- ¼ cup creamy peanut butter, see notes
- 1 13.5 ounce can coconut milk
- ½ cup broth or water
- 2 cups chopped broccoli florets
- 1 red bell pepper, cored and sliced
- 2 tablespoons tamari, or soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon lime juice, or rice wine vinegar
- 8 ounces extra firm tofu, cut into 1-inch cubes (optional)
- fresh cilantro, rice and chopped peanuts for serving
- In a large pot, warm the oil over medium heat. Add the onion or shallot, sprinkle with salt and sauté for 3-5 minutes, or until translucent. Next add the ginger, garlic, and carrots. Stir and continue to cook for about 5 minutes more.
- To the pot, stir in the curry paste, peanut butter and coconut milk then simmer for 5 minutes. Next, add the broccoli, red pepper and water or broth. Bring to a low boil and cook just until broccoli is soft, for about 5-7 minutes.
- Lastly, stir in the tamari, lime juice (and coconut sugar, if needed). Taste test to see if you prefer more of each. Add tofu at this point if using. Cook until heated through.
- Serve warm with cooked rice, cilantro, lime wedges and/or chopped peanuts as a garnish. Leftovers will keep for up to 3-4 days when sealed in the refrigerator.