I’ve been on a vegetable-packed coconut curry kick lately—they’re just the perfect transition food for this time of year. This vegetarian Thai green curry recipe features fresh asparagus, carrots and spinach in a delicious green coconut sauce. It’s full of flavor and simple enough for weeknight dinners.
I used store-bought Thai curry paste instead of raw ingredients, because some (like galangal) are difficult to find and time-consuming to prepare. I’ve watched a chef prepare curry paste in Thailand, and he really worked up a sweat! So while this recipe is not perfectly authentic, it’s a lot easier to make.
This curry is based on my old Thai green curry recipe. I loved the base recipe for that dish (I learned how to make it at a fun cooking class), but I was never quite satisfied by my choice of mix-ins.
So here we are, three years later, with an improved and extra-green version. This time, I opted for asparagus (snow peas would also work), carrots and wilted spinach. I love it, and I think you will, too!
How to Serve Thai Green Curry
I skipped the tofu altogether and found the dish to be plenty hearty without it. If you want to add tofu, though, I’d suggest baking it first and adding it with the coconut milk.
I served my curry over rice (again), but I bet quinoa would be an interesting alternative.
Please let me know how you like this recipe in the comments! If you want to change it up, don’t miss my Thai red curry recipe.
Watch How to Make Thai Green Curry
Thai Green Curry with Spring Vegetables
- Prep Time: 15 mins
- Cook Time: 30 mins
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: 2 to 4 servings 1x
- Category: Entree
- Method: Stovetop
- Cuisine: Thai
This healthy, vegetarian Thai green curry features fresh asparagus, carrots and spinach! It’s full of flavor and simple enough for weeknight dinners. Feel free to substitute sliced snow peas for the asparagus if it’s not in season where you live. Recipe yields two large servings (as shown) or four small servings.
- 1 cup brown basmati rice, rinsed
- 2 teaspoons coconut oil or olive oil
- 1 small white onion, diced
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh ginger (about a 1-inch nub of ginger, peeled and chopped)
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- Pinch of salt
- ½ bunch asparagus, tough ends removed and sliced into 2-inch long pieces (to yield about 2 cups prepared asparagus)
- 3 carrots, peeled and sliced on the diagonal into ¼-inch wide rounds (to yield about 1 cup sliced carrots)
- 2 tablespoons Thai green curry paste*
- 1 can (14 ounces) coconut milk (I used full-fat coconut milk for a richer curry)
- ½ cup water
- 1 ½ teaspoons coconut sugar or turbinado (raw) sugar or brown sugar
- 2 cups packed baby spinach, roughly chopped
- 1 ½ teaspoons rice vinegar or fresh lime juice
- 1 ½ teaspoons soy sauce** (I used reduced-sodium tamari)
- Garnishes: handful of chopped fresh cilantro and red pepper flakes, to taste
- To cook the rice, bring a large pot of water to boil. Add the rinsed rice and continue boiling for 30 minutes, reducing heat as necessary to prevent overflow. Remove from heat, drain the rice and return the rice to pot. Cover and let the rice rest for 10 minutes or longer, until you’re ready to serve.
- Warm a large skillet with deep sides over medium heat. Once it’s hot, add a couple teaspoons of oil. Cook the onion, ginger and garlic with a sprinkle of salt for about 5 minutes, stirring often. Add the asparagus and carrots and cook for 3 more minutes, stirring occasionally. Then add the curry paste and cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes.
- Pour the coconut milk into the pan, along with ½ cup water and 1 ½ teaspoons sugar. Bring the mixture to a simmer. Reduce heat as necessary to maintain a gentle simmer and cook until the carrots and asparagus are tender and cooked through, about 5 to 10 minutes.
- Once the vegetables are done cooking, stir the spinach into the mixture and cook until the spinach has wilted, about 30 seconds. Remove the curry from heat and season with rice vinegar and soy sauce. Add salt and red pepper flakes (optional), to taste. Divide rice and curry into bowls and garnish with chopped cilantro and a sprinkle of red pepper flakes, if you’d like.
Recipe adapted from my other Thai green curry recipe.
*Green curry paste: Look for it in the Asian section of the grocery store. I like Thai Kitchen brand. Not all Thai curry pastes are vegetarian, but this one is.
**Make it gluten free: Be sure to use gluten-free tamari instead of regular soy sauce.
If you love this recipe: Be sure to check out my other Thai-inspired recipes here!
Hello. Could I make this with red thai curry paste?
Hi Carol, I recommend my Thai Red Curry with Vegetables.
Pure deliciousness! It’s a keeper.
what protein would you add to dish?
How to Make Crispy Baked Tofu would be a good addition!
So many good recipes.
How do I access saved recipes?
Can’t find the link.
Hi Madeline, Have you made an account with Relish yet? That’s how you save recipes. New Recipe Saving & Grocery Shopping Features
Found the saved link at the top.
Had to save both you red & green currry recipes.
Love Thai food.
Delicious! Doubled the broth ingredients and the spinach, added baby corn, pea pods and pink Australian shrimp. No rice. After tasting, also added a giant dollop of sambal oelek. This was creamy, nuanced and so satisfying. Thank you SO MUCH for posting this great recipe!
Thank you for sharing your combination of vegetables, Catherine! I appreciate your review.
Delicious! Doubled the broth ingredients and the spinach, added baby corn, pea pods and pink Australian shrimp to go with the asparagus, onions and carrots. No rice. After tasting, also added a giant dollop of sambal oelek. This was creamy, nuanced and so satisfying. Thank you SO MUCH for posting this great recipe!
Lovely recipe! Made it, plus baked salmon to serve together and it was a great combination.
Thank you for your review, Elisha!
This was so tasty, and so easy! Instead of rice, I made it over rice noodles, and it was a delightful firs-day-of-spring meal :) Thank you!
You’re welcome, Cara! I’m happy to hear you enjoyed it.
This was my first time making a Thai curry and it was delicious and easy. It tasted like a restaurant! My curry paste was rather spicy to begin with so I may have to try Thai Kitchen brand next time. I added mushrooms and tofu and extra water (I used 1 cup but would do 3/4 cup next time).
Hooray! I’m glad you loved it, Craig.
Outstanding and easy recipe. I subbed snow peas for the asparagus since we just had asparagus the night before. We love our food spicy, so instead of red pepper flakes for garnish, I added 3 sliced Thai chiles (from your “old”recipe) in with the curry paste. Our mouths were tingling happily!
Thank you for sharing, Diane! I appreciate your review.
AH-MA-ZING! Made as directed, along with the crispy baked tofu and served over brown rice. It took serious restraint not to eat the whole thing.
I needed a break from beans and soups. I never made brown rice like this. It’s great! The veggie mix is so perfect , I was not thrilled with the green curry I used. I usually use some really great curry in little cans from the Asian market. Here I grabbed Thai kitchen and I much prefer the other it has more presence .. and we had success on the “i hate asparagus “ boyfriend. This is keeper on spring dishes rotation. Love it.
Wonderful to hear, Victoria! Thank you for sharing.
Sorry Kate, in Thai cuisine you need to use Jasmine rice! You not add rice to boiling water! You wash the rice and put in a pot, add cold water, water must be the under lid of your finger higher than the rice. You bring to boil. Depending what heating you use, if electric turn of the heat when the rice boils about 3 minutes and leave it in the pot for another 15 minutes, stir the rice and leave it another 5 minutes. If using gas, turn down to keep warm point and do the same as electric. Anyway, it’s handy to use a rice cooker.
Thank you for sharing, Marc! I try to keep the recipe as authentic as I can, while adding my own interpretation.
This was the best curry recipe I’ve ever made (second to your red curry recipe)! I did add red pepper flakes when I added the asparagus and carrots as we like a fair amount of eat. Thanks for another outstanding veggie-based recipe.
I’m happy to hear that, Casey! Thank you for your review.
At what point do you add chicken and eggplants / other veggies? Trying to incorporate more protein and vegetables!
Absolutely delicious! I added zucchini in for a little extra green. I will definitely make it again.
So, this was the closest to restaurant-flavor thai red curry I’ve been able to achieve. Probably amped up the red curry and other spices, and still was missing that little something that tastes different in the restaurants (maybe thai basis, which I didn’t have), but this was great recipe. I used green beans, broccoli, and zucchini, but kept to all the other spice/flavor recommendations, including the full fat coconut milk. Overall, total success, and will definitely make this again! Thank you!
Hooray! Thank you for sharing, Barbara. I appreciate you taking the time to review and share how you made it.
Can you use frozen spinach instead?
I prefer fresh, but it may work. Thaw and squeeze out the moisture. Let me know what you think!
This recipe is beyond delicious (!) and appreciated. So easy to follow and a regular dish at our table. Thank you Kate for your expertise and your “fresh” take on a classic.
I’m glad you love it, Susan! Thank you for your review.
Pretty much made green curry sauce per recipe but used TJs miso broth to sauté onion and garlic. Just the right amount of spice for one who can’t take a lot. I added veggies on hand, a Korean white sweet potato, some leftover cannelloni beans and some firm tofu unpressed and cubed at the end for protein. It’s a winner! Easy and delicious.
Wonderful to hear, Susan!
I have found that I have been choosing & cooking a lot of your recipes for quite a while now and you are my first choice when I Google for a recipe, and that is because I have never been disappointed.
This recipe is another winner.
Thank you Cookie & Kate
I love to hear that, Julie! Thank you for your review.
I made this tonight and it was delicious! I will definitely make it again and maybe use different veggies. Thank you so much. I will have to check out your other Thai recipes as well!
Wonderful, Brie! Thank you for your review.
So delicious! I didn’t have asparagus, so I crossed my fingers and used what I had: sliced leeks, sliced baby portabellas, quartered zucchini slices, and red bell pepper slices in addition to julienned carrot and spinach. I added roasted cashews on top. It made me so happy!
Fabulous!!! I made this with vegetables that I had on hand: carrots, broccolini, French green beans, pepper, onion and spinach. So flavorful!!
I will definitely be adding this to our dinner rotation and want to keep trying all the wonderful recipes in your cookbook.
Great to hear, Lisa!
This tasted amazing UNTIL I added the vinegar! Was just too too vinegary. :(
I’m sorry to hear that! I appreciate your feedback.
This recipe sounds wonderful, Im looking forward to the aromas in my kitchen! please advise how to reduce the net carbs? Adapt it to keto…. thanks!
Sorry to disappoint, but I don’t provide specific diet changes. I hope you try it!
Could you sub the spinach for baby kale?
Sure, I believe others have tried it and didn’t mind the results. Let me know what you think!
Delicious and versatile. Love the combination of listed veggies and so easy to add whatever else you want to use up. I am not vegetarian so I use Mae Ploy curry PASTE which has shrimp paste in it. It is very spicy; start out with 1 T or so and gradually bump up. The paste freezes great, is economical and I loved it in this great and easy recipe. Never have to worry about leftover curry because we always stuff ourselves silly. As always, thanks for your beautiful recipes.
Thank you for sharing, Coleen!
Just wonderful!! I followed the recipe exactly.
I loved this nutritious dish so much…I love the mixture of vegetables and flavor combination. I squeezed a little lime on top, and a decent amount of cilantro. It was so delicious, comforting, and memorable. Thank you so much for this recipe!
(For anyone wondering, this is not a spicy dish until you put on the red pepper flakes at the end.)
Thank you for your review, Mary!
This was so delicious! I subbed the baby spinach for baby kale. Thanks, Kate! I’m going to try your Thai Red Curry with Vegetables next!
Great to hear, Jan! Thank you for sharing.
So good! Will be making many more times.
I made this delicious green curry dish for dinner. I wasn’t sure if we would like it, but my husband and I were delightfully surprised. Yum
Great to hear, Sally! I appreciate your review.
Hello, I LOVE your recipes!
I wanted you to know this dish packed an overwhelming heat kick stronger than my husband I I normally like. I am wondering if I did something wrong. I doubled the recipe. I used Mae Ploy Green Curry Paste instead of your recommended paste as my grocery store was out of stock of the Thai Kitchen brand. Everything else was as written. Could either of those two been the problem causing the “mouth fire”?