Beef khao soi has a delicious blend of sweet, spicy, savoury and sour flavours.
This Thai beef khao soi is one I really hope you try! In my cookbook ‘The Curry Guy Thai’, I featured a recipe for khao soi with chicken. It’s a good one but Thai beef khao soi is just as delicious. It does take a little longer to make though as that beef needs to be super tender before serving.
Beef khao soi can be served as a starter or main. Although it does take longer to cook than chicken, there is not much work involved.
How does this beef khao soi differ to the one in your Thai cookbook?
Other than that I used beef in this recipe instead of chicken, there is also a difference in the Thai curry paste used.
The khao soy recipe in my Thai cookbook called for a milder yellow curry paste. This beef version can stand up to stronger flavours so I used Thai red curry paste in this recipe.
About Thai curry pastes…
In this khao soi soup recipe, you prepare a red curry paste from scratch. It’s really easy to do and is so much better than shop bought versions.
That said, you could substitute a good quality red curry paste like Mae Ploy.
If doing this, you will want to use a lot less paste than is produced from my homemade recipe. Try using just a couple of tablespoons of shop bought paste. You can always add more at the end if needed.
What is the difference between homemade and brand name curry pastes?
There are so many delicious and aromatic ingredients in my homemade paste. Therefore you can add a lot more to the beef khao soi.
Commercial pastes tend to have fewer aromatic ingredients and can be heavy in salt and chilli. So always add these to taste.
Can khao soi be frozen?
Yes but hear me out first. I often double or even triple this recipe. You might as well to if you’re thinking about freezing it. If you’re going to sit and wait for that beef to get tender, you might as well have a couple more meals out of it.
Although you can freeze the finished beef khao soi, I recommend not adding the coconut milk at the end. Coconut milk can be frozen but it’s never quite as good.
You can always add coconut milk once you have defrosted and reheated.
Step by step photographs of Thai beef khao soi…
Are the noodle nests needed?
I think so and they are one of the things that make khao soi so good.
That said, you could leave them out. The noodle nests offer a nice crispy texture but the khao soi will still be amazing without them.
If you like this beef khao soi recipe, try some of these Thai favourites too…
- FOR THE PASTE
- 8 dried chillies - soaked in water for 20 minutes
- 3 fresh red bird’s eye chillies
- 4 shallots
- 8 clove garlic
- 1 thumb sized piece of galangal, Finely chopped
- 2 stalks lemon grass, white parts only, thinly sliced
- 1 tsp lime zest (OR WE COULD USE LIME LEAVES)
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- 2 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp shrimp paste
- 1 tbsp Madras curry powder (page 00) or good quality shop bought
- FOR THE NOODLES
- 250ml (1 cup) rapeseed (canola ) oil (optional)
- 225g (8 oz) flat egg noodles
- FOR THE SOUP
- 2 tbps rapeseed (canola) or coconut oil
- 700g (1 1/2 lbs) stewing steak*
- 750ml (3 cups) homemade unsalted Asian beef stock or water
- 400ml (1 1/2 cups) thick coconut milk
- 2 tbsp fish sauce
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 2 tsp sugar or grated palm sugar
- TO GARNISH
- Finely chopped shallots
- Lime wedges
- Chopped coriander ( cilantro )
- Red Chilli paste or pickled chillies
- Chilli flakes
- Place the egg noodles in a large bowl and pour boiling water from the kettle over them. They should be soft in about 10 minutes.
- While the noodles are soaking prepare the spice paste by blending all the paste ingredients with just enough water to make a thick paste. Set aside.
- When soft, strain the noodles and rinse with water. Set aside.
- To make the optional crispy noodle nests, heat enough oil for shallow frying in a wok. The oil is hot enough for frying when bubbles form instantly around a wooden chopstick or spatula when lowered into the oil.
- Take a small handful of noodles and pat them dry.
- Slowly lower the noodle nest into the oil and fry, turning from time to time until crispy. This should take about 3 minutes per nest. Transfer with a slotted spoon to a paper towel to soak up any excess oil. Discard all but about 2 tbsp of the oil.
- For the curry, Heat the remaining oil in the wok over medium high heat and brown the meat for about 5 minutes. Once the meat is looking cooked on the exterior, add the prepared paste and stir well to combine. Cover with the water or beef stock and simmer for about 20 minutes or longer. The meat needs to be good and tender and the longer simmering will also flavour the stock.
- When the meat is nice and tender, stir in the coconut milk until there are no lumps. Then add the fish sauce, soy sauce and sugar. Try the broth and adjust the flavours to taste.
- Divide the remaining soaked noodles between four bowls and cover with the meat and broth. Garnish with the crispy noodle nests, chopped shallots, chillies, chilli flakes, coriander (cilantro), lime wedges and/or pickled Thai chillies.
*I used stewing steak in this recipe. This takes longer than more expensive cuts to become tender but flavours the broth really nicely. If you are in a rush for you khao soi, you could use sirloin or ribeye but I recommend saving some cash and letting the stewing meat simmer.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 754Total Fat: 38gSaturated Fat: 22gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 68mgSodium: 2620mgCarbohydrates: 78gFiber: 7gSugar: 17gProtein: 32g
I hope you enjoy this Thai beef khao soi recipe. If you do try it, please leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you.