Authentic Tom Yum Soup Recipe | Thai Recipes by Mark Wiens (มาร์ค วีนส์)

Authentic Tom Yum Soup Recipe | Thai Recipes by Mark Wiens (มาร์ค วีนส์)
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Thai tom yum goong (ต้มยำกุ้ง) is one of the most widely available and loved dishes in Thailand. Check out my full Thai tom yum soup recipe here:

At nearly every Thai restaurant you go to, both in Thailand and outside of Thailand, there will be some form of tom yum on the menu. Tom yum is really like a mix of different ingredients, all boiled together into a soup, and flavored with a trio of Thai herbs: lemongrass, galangal, and kaffir lime leaves. Without this trio of herbs, tom yum (ต้มยำ) would not have that earthy undertone of herb flavor to it. Sure the other ingredients, like chilies, shrimp, onions, garlic, fish sauce, and lime juice are also essential in this recipe, but without the trio of herbs, you wouldn’t have an authentic version of this soup.

So anyway, it’s actually quite easy to make this Thai tom yum soup recipe as long as you have all the ingredients available. I was in the United States a few months ago, and I was able to find all the ingredients at the local Asian supermarkets – so hopefully you should have any trouble finding them either.

If you’ve eaten Thai tom yum soup before, you might already know that there are two different versions of the dish – there’s a creamy version, which in Thai is known as tom yum goong nam khon (ต้มยำกุ้งน้ำข้น) and there a clear version which is known as Tom yum goong nam sai (ต้มยำกุ้งน้ำใส). Both types of soup are equally common in Thailand, and they are both loved throughout the country. The creamy version of the soup, doesn’t use coconut milk to make it creamy, but rather evaporated milk is what gives it that creaminess. You can try both versions of this recipe to see which one you prefer. Overall, I personally prefer the clear version, partly because it’s less rich, and I also like that the sourness and spiciness of the clear soup is usually stronger. Milk tends to mellow out the flavors and calm them down. However, I like both versions of tom yum, and you should try them both. I’m using shrimp in this recipe, making tom yum goong (ต้มยำกุ้ง), but you can substitute shrimp for something else, like chicken or fish. I also really love tom yum made with fish as it gives the soup a beautiful oily fish flavor to it.

One of the things I love about making Thai tom yum soup is that it doesn’t take very long to prepare. If you have all your ingredients available, all you have to do is slice everything up, put on your pot of boiling water, let the ingredients cook, and once your shrimp and other ingredients are done, the soup is done.

Probably the most important time I can give you for this Thai tom yum soup recipe is to turn off the heat of the soup before you add your lime juice. Lime juice gets bitter and loses its sourness on too high of a heat, so you have to turn off your heat and then add your lime juice for your final step.

Ingredients used in this recipe:
2 liters of water
4 stalks of lemongrass
1 inch chunk of galangal
10 kaffir lime leaves
10 Thai chilies
5 cloves of garlic
½ kilo shrimp
300 grams of oyster mushrooms
2 roma tomatoes
2 white onions (medium sized)
2 teaspoons of sugar
8 – 12 tablespoons of fish sauce (depending on your taste)
8 – 12 tablespoons of lime juice (10 – 15 limes)
Handful of cilantro

Creamy tom yum version
3 tablespoons canned Thai roasted chili sauce (nam prik pao น้ำพริกเผา)
10 tablespoons evaporated milk
Taste test, you may need to add more lime juice or fish sauce as the milk and roasted chili sauce throws off the sourness and saltiness.

Full recipe here:

Music in this video courtesy of Audio Network

Produced by Mark and Ying Wiens
Mark is the eater at: &
Are you interested in more Thai food? Check out my “Eating Thai Food Guide” for the serious Thai food lovers:
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About the Author: Mark Wiens


  1. When I order tom yum at restaurants (not sure if authentic) it's red/orange although not really creamy.

    Is there another version which leaves off the milk?

  2. Thanks for the great explanation and demo. I’ve watched others who speak too slowly and bores me to tears.

    Yours is clear, to the point & energetic.

    I have one question which is why do we leave the prawn heads and tails on when we cook?

  3. Mark, here in Brazil we don't really have all those ingredients (specially the city I live in). I did manage to find the fish sauce, but the chilli sauce was impossible , and the evaporated milk was also to be unfound! Would you have any similar options for those two ingredients?? Thanks!

  4. Two things are missing during the review:
    1. The phrase 'ridiculously good' ?
    2. The tilted head with 'ohhhh' ?
    BTW, why don't you invite us for a lunch or dinner in Bangkok? We'll make up this lack. ? Ha ha ha…

    Love you buddy! ?

  5. I get so mad when i see a tomyum kung recipe calling for coconut milk!! It’s evaporated milk!!! Coconut milk is for a different soup!! This recipe is perfect!

  6. Good morning Mark recipe you made for Tom yum I loved it I'm going to the store and I'm going to go try it I'll let you know how it came out I love Thai food I love the things you eat you make me so hungry keep on doing what you're doing and I saw one of your programs where I make the Hot Chili Peppers the hot the hot sauce I think that's what it's called but anyway keep up the good work love you mark I am from New Orleans have you ever been to New Orleans?

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