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Thai Beef Panang Curry

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This beef panang curry ticks all the boxes!

If you’ve never tried a Thai panang curry, it’s really time you did. This panang curry recipe is from my new cookbook ‘The Curry Guy Thai’ and I love it.

The most important thing in making the perfect beef panang curry is making your own homemade panang curry paste.

Yes, there are some good commercial brands of paste out there but you really will get the best results if you use my homemade  curry paste here.

Panang curry

So easy and delicious too!

What is panang curry?

Panang curries are similar to red curries and can be on the spicy side.

The main differences are that Panang curries include peanuts and are often thicker and sweeter than red curries, which is why no stock is added to this recipe.


However, there is no reason why you couldn’t make this curry just like the red curry so that it is thinner and more soupy.

If making this recipe as it’s written, the thick sauce is delicious served over hot jasmine rice.

Which vegetables should I use?

Although authentic Panang curries are not cooked with vegetables, I have added baby sweetcorn, courgettes (zucchini) and mushrooms to mine, so leave them out if you want a more traditional flavour and presentation.

Really, if it sounds good, add it.

Working ahead…

There really isn’t much to a panang curry but no one who tries it would know that.

If working ahead, be sure to make the curry paste and the rest is a breeze.

All of the preparation such as cutting the meat and vegetables can be done a day or two in advance too.

Then all you need to do is cook it all up which only takes minutes.

Here are a few step by step cooking photos of beef panang curry…

Ingredients for beef panang curry

It’s always a good idea to get al your ingredients ready before starting.

Adding meat to wok.

Add the beef to hot oil in a wok over medium high heat.

Browning beef in pan

Brown the meat for a few minutes.

Adding curry paste to pan

Once the meat has browned, stir in the panang paste. If using a commercial brand you will need a lot less as they can be spicy and salty.

Stirring paste into the meat

Stir well to combine.

Adding coconut milk to pan.

Now add the coconut milk and bring to a simmer.

Adding vegetables to the pan

Stir in the vegetables if using.

If you like beef panang recipe, you might like to try some of these too…

How To Make Thai Red Curry
Green Thai Curry
Beef Massaman Curry
Thai Drunken Noodles
Tom Kha Gai Soup
Tom Yum Gai Soup

Finished panang curry

All finished!

Panang curry

Dig in!

Yield: 4

Thai Beef Panang Curry

Beef Panang Curry
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • 2 tbsp rapeseed (canola) oil 600g (1lb 5oz) beef rib-eye, cut thinly against the grain
  • 1 batch of Panang curry paste
  • 1–2 tbsp palm sugar
  • 600ml (2 1⁄2 cups) thick coconut
  • milk
  • About 225g (8oz) vegetables,
  • such as chopped baby sweetcorn, courgette (zucchini), mushrooms
  • 3 lime leaves, stalks removed and leaves finely julienned
  • 2 tbsp Thai fish sauce (more or less to taste)


  1. Get that meat cooking first so that it becomes nice and tender. Heat the oil in a wok or large frying pan. When visibly hot, add the meat and fry for a couple of minutes to brown it.
  2. Add the curry paste and sugar, starting with just one tablespoon of the sugar. You can always add more for a sweeter flavour.
  3. Add the coconut milk and simmer for about 5 minutes to thicken. Stir in your vegetables of choice and simmer for another few minutes until cooked through but still fresh and not at all mushy.
  4. Stir in the lime leaves and fish sauce. Taste the sauce, adding more sugar for sweetness or more fish sauce for a saltier flavour.

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