Thai Prawn Soup (Tom Yum Goong)

    1 hour 20 min

    This Thai fish soup is delicious and packed full of flavour. Prawns are simmered with mushrooms, lemon grass, kaffir lime leaves, galangal, chillies in a seasoned prawn stock.

    96 people made this

    Makes: 4 - 6 servings

    • 225g medium prawns, peeled, shells reserved and deveined
    • 12 mushrooms, halved
    • 1/2 (285g) tin chopped mushrooms, drained
    • 950ml water
    • 2 stalks lemon grass, trimmed and cut into matchstick strands
    • 4 kaffir lime leaves
    • 4 slices galangal
    • 4 Thai chillies
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce
    • 1 1/2 limes, juiced
    • 1 teaspoon caster sugar
    • 1 teaspoon hot chilli paste
    • 1 tablespoon tom yum soup paste
    • coriander leaves to garnish

    Prep:20min  ›  Cook:1hr  ›  Ready in:1hr20min 

    1. To make stock: Add the prawn heads and shells to water, then cook for 20 minutes. Turn off the heat. Soak the shells for a further 20 minutes before discarding.
    2. Add stock, lemon grass, kaffir lime leaves, galangal, chillies, fish sauce, lime juice, sugar and chilli paste to a pot and bring to the boil. After boiling for 5 minutes, add prawns and mushrooms. Cook for further 10 minutes. Garnish with coriander leaves.


    Tom yum soup paste, hot chilli paste, lemon grass, Thai chillies, kaffir lime leaves and galangal can be purchased in Chinese/Oriental speciality shops.

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    Reviews in English (79)


    Recipe looked nice and easy to follow & was, quantity made was just right for two. This meal tasted and smelled as good as any Thai Tom Yum Goong that I have enjoyed in the UK. Formerly my favourite Thai restaurant was the Buntip at the Bull & Butcher Burnley (Sadly no longer open) Small amount of fresh root ginger added as a mini tweak Regards Mike  -  05 Aug 2013


    Absolutely wonderful- complex and fragrant, and quite easy to make! I made only a few modifications, and with or without my suggestions, this recipe will result in a really interesting mix of hot, sour, and citrus flavors that is guaranteed to bring you compliments. I highly recommend that you take the time to look for the ingredients and not make substitutions. But, if you can't find galangal, add 2-3 teaspoons of minced ginger, and if you can't find kaffir lime leaves use an equal amount of lime zest. If you have to make substitutions, it's a very good idea to include the tom yum soup paste, which this recipe suggests is optional. That paste contains galangal, tamarind, dried shrimp, fennel, and peanut. It's usually sold in small jars and can be found near soy and Szechuan sauces. Now for my modifications: First, I used 4 cups of vegetable stock instead of 4 cups of water. Second, I modified the chilis to lessen the heat and the bite-- I did this by halving the amount of chili paste and by delaying the addition of the whole chilis until the very end, along with the shrimp and the mushrooms. Third, although the recipe does not indicate whast kind of mushrooms to use, I recommend either straw mushrooms or oyster mushrooms. Fourth, I take out the kaffir lime leaves and the lemon grass before serving because they aren't pleasant to eat. Fifth, I add a fresh kaffir leaf to each bowl for garnish.  -  31 Dec 2003  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    I made this hours ago, and my lips are still tingling! I am SO happy to have found this recipe. I made a 30 mile round trip to get all the ingredients from the grocers which is attached to our fave Thai restaurant, and all I can say is that is was totally worth the time and effort. I would not recommend making this with substitutions - dried lemon grass, ginger, lime zest, etc are simply nowhere near as good as the real thing. Also, the lemon grass I buy is very thick and woody, so I just strip off the outer layers and cut it in half so that I can easily pick it out when it is done cooking (I cannot imagine actually eating it). Similarly, make sure you pick out the galangal and lime leaves after it's done cooking (sorry if I am stating the obvious, but some people might not know). Oh, and I used canned straw mushrooms because that's what the restaurant uses. Apart from adding a little more fish sauce, and also a shrimp bouillon cube, I made this as written. I can hardly believe it's homemade! Thank you SO much, Michelle!  -  26 Feb 2006  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)