10 May

If you've never cooked with Thai ginger before, you're missing out on an incredibly versatile and flavorful ingredient that can be used in a variety of dishes. Thai ginger, also known as galangal, has a subtle, citrusy flavor that pairs perfectly with the bold flavors of Thai cuisine.

In this article, we'll explore nine must-try recipes that showcase the unique flavor of Thai ginger - from classic curries and stir-fries to refreshing salads and beverages. Whether you're a seasoned home cook or new to Thai cuisine, these recipes will inspire you to experiment with this delicious ingredient and take your cooking to the next level.

Introduction to Thai Ginger

Thai ginger, also known as galangal, is a root that is commonly used in Southeast Asian cuisine to add a unique and fragrant flavor to dishes. It has a slightly citrusy and spicy taste, making it a popular ingredient in curries, stir-fries, and salads. Thai ginger is also believed to have numerous health benefits, such as reducing inflammation and aiding digestion. If you're looking to spice up your cooking, here are nine must-try recipes for cooking with Thai ginger.

Thai Ginger and Curry Recipes

Thai curries are a staple in Southeast Asian cuisine and are made with a variety of herbs and spices, including Thai ginger. Here are three delicious and easy-to-make curry recipes that you can try at home:

1. Thai Green Curry with Chicken

This classic Thai dish combines tender chicken with creamy coconut milk and a flavorful blend of green curry paste, Thai ginger, and other herbs and spices. Serve over rice for a satisfying and aromatic meal.

2. Thai Red Curry with Vegetables

This vegetarian-friendly curry features a mix of colorful vegetables, such as eggplant, bell peppers, and broccoli, in a rich and spicy red curry sauce made with Thai ginger and other aromatic spices. It's the perfect comfort food for any season.

3. Massaman Curry with Beef

This hearty and flavorful curry features tender chunks of beef simmered in a rich and creamy Massaman curry sauce, made with Thai ginger, lemongrass, and other fragrant spices. This dish is perfect for cold winter nights or whenever you're craving some comfort food.

Thai Ginger and Stir-Fry Recipes

Stir-frying is a popular cooking technique in Southeast Asian cuisine that involves cooking ingredients quickly over high heat. Here are three recipes that feature Thai ginger in a stir-fry:

1. Thai Basil Chicken Stir-Fry

This flavorful and spicy stir-fry features tender chicken, fresh Thai basil, and Thai ginger, sautéed together in a wok for a quick and easy meal. Serve over rice or noodles for a filling and satisfying dish.

2. Ginger Pork Stir-Fry

This savory stir-fry features tender pork slices and a mix of colorful vegetables, such as bell peppers and onions, in a fragrant sauce made with Thai ginger, garlic, and soy sauce. It's a perfect weeknight dinner that's quick and easy to make.

3. Vegetable Stir-Fry with Thai Ginger Sauce

This healthy and flavorful stir-fry features a colorful mix of vegetables, such as broccoli, carrots, and mushrooms, in a sweet and tangy sauce made with Thai ginger, honey, and soy sauce. Serve over rice or noodles for a delicious and balanced meal.

Thai Ginger Salad Recipes

Salads are a great way to incorporate more fresh ingredients into your diet, and Thai ginger can add a unique flavor profile to your salads. Here are three Thai ginger salad recipes to try:

1. Green Papaya Salad

This refreshing and tangy salad features shredded green papaya, fresh herbs, and a spicy dressing made with Thai ginger, lime juice, and fish sauce. It's a perfect side dish for grilled meats or seafood.

2. Spicy Cucumber Salad

This refreshing and spicy salad features crunchy cucumbers and a tangy dressing made with Thai ginger, lime juice, and chili flakes. It's a perfect side dish for any meal or a light and refreshing snack on a hot day.

3. Thai Ginger Chicken Salad

This hearty and flavorful salad features tender grilled chicken, crispy lettuce, and a tangy dressing made with Thai ginger, lime juice, and coconut sugar. It's a perfect meal for lunch or dinner, and can be easily customized to your liking.

Thai Ginger Soup Recipes

If you're looking for a cozy and comforting meal, Thai ginger soups are the way to go. Here are three must-try recipes:

1. Tom Yum Soup with Shrimp

This spicy and sour soup is a classic Thai dish and can be made in under 30 minutes. The combination of Thai ginger, lemongrass, and lime juice makes for a flavorful and aromatic broth. Add shrimp, mushrooms, and cherry tomatoes for a complete meal.

2. Thai Ginger Chicken Soup

This soup is perfect for when you're feeling under the weather. The combination of chicken broth, Thai ginger, and garlic make for a comforting and healing soup. Add vegetables such as carrots, celery, and broccoli for added nutrition.

3. Coconut Ginger Carrot Soup

This vegan and gluten-free soup is perfect for a cold winter day. The combination of Thai ginger, coconut milk, and carrots make for a creamy and flavorful soup. Garnish with fresh cilantro and roasted pumpkin seeds for added texture and flavor.

Thai Ginger Marinade Recipes

Thai ginger also makes for a great marinade for meats and seafood. Here are three recipes to try:

1. Grilled Thai Ginger Chicken

Marinate chicken thighs in a mixture of Thai ginger, soy sauce, garlic, and sesame oil for a juicy and flavorful meal. Grill the chicken and serve with a side of rice and steamed vegetables.

2. Thai Ginger and Lemongrass Pork Chops

This marinade is a perfect balance of sweet, salty, and sour. Marinate pork chops in a mixture of Thai ginger, lemongrass, honey, and fish sauce for a mouthwatering result. Grill or pan-fry the pork chops and serve with a side of stir-fried vegetables.

3. Ginger and Lime Fish Marinade

Marinate your favorite white fish in a mixture of Thai ginger, lime juice, and garlic for a bright and zesty flavor. Bake or grill the fish and serve with a side of roasted sweet potatoes and green beans.

Thai Ginger Beverage Recipes

Thai ginger also makes for a great addition to drinks. Here are two simple recipes:

1. Thai Ginger Iced Tea

Brew your favorite black tea and add a few slices of Thai ginger and a splash of honey. Add ice and enjoy a refreshing and flavorful drink.

2. Ginger and Lemongrass Cooler

Blend Thai ginger and lemongrass with water, sugar, and lime juice. Strain the mixture and add ice and sparkling water for a refreshing and healthy beverage.

Tips for Cooking with Thai Ginger

- Look for fresh Thai ginger in Asian grocery stores or online.

- Use a microplane grater to grate the ginger for an easier and smoother consistency.

- Thai ginger can be quite spicy, so adjust the amount according to your heat preference.

- Thai ginger can be used in both sweet and savory dishes, so get creative and experiment with different recipes.

Thai ginger may not be an ingredient that you regularly keep in your kitchen, but after trying these nine recipes, it's sure to become a staple. From traditional curries and stir-fries to unique salads and beverages, the versatility of Thai ginger is undeniable. So next time you're looking to add a little something extra to your favorite dish, consider reaching for this flavorful ingredient and let your taste buds be pleasantly surprised.


What is Thai ginger?

Thai ginger, also known as galangal, is a rhizome that belongs to the ginger family. It has a reddish-brown skin and a firm, white interior that has a subtle, citrusy flavor and aroma. It is commonly used in Thai cuisine and can be found fresh or dried in most Asian grocery stores.

Can I substitute regular ginger for Thai ginger?

While regular ginger and Thai ginger are both members of the ginger family, they have distinct differences in flavor and texture. Thai ginger has a more subtle and complex flavor than regular ginger, with a slightly floral and citrusy taste. It also has a firmer texture, making it better suited for grating or slicing. If you can't find Thai ginger, you can substitute with regular ginger, but the flavor profile of your dish will be different.

Can I freeze Thai ginger?

Yes, Thai ginger can be frozen for later use. Before freezing, peel and slice the ginger into small pieces, then place them in an airtight container or freezer bag. Frozen ginger can be used directly in recipes, and it will keep for up to six months in the freezer.

Is Thai ginger spicy?

Thai ginger has a slightly spicy flavor compared to regular ginger, but it is not as intense as other Thai spices like chili peppers. The heat level can vary depending on the freshness and age of the ginger, but generally, it is milder than other spicy ingredients used in Thai cuisine. If you're sensitive to spice, you can adjust the amount of ginger used in a recipe to your liking.

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