This delicious chicken noodle soup with lemongrass and a hint of fragrant Thai spices is so quick and easy to make and delivers authentic flavours!
If you enjoy warming Thai flavours in soups, take a look at our Roasted Butternut Squash and Sweet Potato Soup or Slow Cooker Thai Chicken and Wild Rice Soup.
The soup season is undeniably here and, as much as I am a salad enthusiast, lately I find myself craving a warm bowl of soup instead.
My entire family is on a ramen bender at the moment. Our pantry is filled with packets of instant ramen of various flavours.
And although this soup is not exactly that, it draws on a similar concept. Egg noodles in a flavourful broth. I thought it would be a good idea to make a homemade version for my kids.
What is even better…this noodle soup uses all natural ingredients, and is super quick to make. 20 minutes and the dinner is served!
Chicken Noodle Soup with a Twist
This Thai noodle soup is basically a chicken noodle soup with a Thai twist. All the comfort of a classic chicken noodle soup plus sweet, sour, spicy and salty flavours of the Thai cuisine. It’s a perfect match.
This noodle soup is also very easy. It takes less than half an hour to prepare, and it gets all its flavour from spices. Not MSG. If you are an Asian food lover, chances are you have all the ingredients in your fridge already.
The base of this soup is pretty standard. We start with onions, garlic and celery. Then we hit it with minced lemongrass, the only unusual ingredient in this soup.
Lemongrass is something I strongly urge you to find. It imparts a beautiful lemon flavour and a unique fragrance to the soup, which is hugely responsible for that authentic taste!
You can buy a prepared lemongrass paste, which usually comes in a tube. Or you can buy fresh stalks and finely mince them with a knife. You can see the lemongrass stalks resting on top of diced onion and celery in the photo below.
- chicken breasts
- egg noodles
- crushed tomatoes
- spinach or bok choy
- cilantro leaves
The spices I used are chilli powder and chilli flakes, sesame oil, fresh lime juice and fish sauce. I have to warn you chilli powder and dried chilli flakes make this soup spicy, so adjust the quantity according to your taste and tolerance.
If you think chicken noodle soup is boring and reserved for sick days only, you will change your mind after trying this updated recipe.
My Thai Noodle Soup is a vibrant dish, that tastes even better than your favourite restaurant can deliver. And the best news is you know all the wholesome ingredients that went into it.
How to Serve It
I highly recommend serving this Thai noodle soup topped with sliced green onions, sesame seeds and thin carrot strips.
Although not necessary, the above toppings bring in freshness and a variety in texture. Plus they are absolutely a joy to look at!
More Cold Weather Soup Favourites:
This recipe was originally published in 09/2013 and was updated with new photos, video and text and republished in 10/2020.
Thai Noodle Soup
- 1 tbsp Oil
- 1 tbsp Sesame Oil
- 1 Onion diced, medium
- 2 ribs Celery diced
- 4 cloves Garlic minced
- 1 tbsp Lemongrass or 1 lemongrass stalk, minced I used a pre-made paste from a tube
- 1 tbsp Chilli powder
- ⅛-1/4 tsp Dried Chilli flakes to taste
- 1.5 litre/6 cups Low-sodium Chicken Broth pre-made or your own
- 250ml/1 cup Canned Crushed Tomatoes
- 2 Chicken Breast diced into bite size pieces
- 3 tbsp Fish Sauce Nam Pla or Nuoc Mam
- 20g/1 cup Cilantro/Coriander leaves
- 125g/4oz Chow Mein Noodles or any other Asian noodles or even spaghettini
- 150g/2/3 cup Spinach
- 1 lime, juice only
- 1 tbsp sesame seeds optional
- 2 green onions sliced, optional
- ½ carrot cut into thin strips, optional
- In a large pot heat the vegetable oil and half the sesame oil, then add diced onions, celery, minced garlic, lemongrass paste, chilli powder and red chilli flakes and cook until soft over medium heat for 5 minutes. If you are using fresh lemongrass, remove the tough outer leaves from the stalk, lay it flat on a cutting board and bruise it with the flat side of a knife, then mince it finely.
- Add the broth, tomatoes, chicken, fish sauce, cilantro leaves and bring to a boil, simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add the noodles to the pot and cook according to package directions, mine took 5 minutes.
- Once the noodles are done, stir in spinach leaves and lime juice and take off the heat. Flavour with the remaining sesame oil. Serve topped with sliced green onions, julienned carrots and sesame seeds.
Nice recipe ,lemon grass, easy to container grow ,seed is available online , but you can also buy powder lemongrass on amazon ” Good Eating ” As mi old associate Jimmy , James Beard ,would say …!!!
Julia Frey (Vikalinka) says
I had no idea it’s so easy to grow lemongrass! Thanks for the great info, Joseph.
Do you use toasted (brown) sesame oil or the regular clear sesame oil?
Julia Frey (Vikalinka) says
I use the toasted one. Love the smell! 😃
What is a red Chilli exactly there are many at the market does it have a name?
Julia Frey (Vikalinka) says
Hi Brenda, this recipe uses dry chilli powder and it’s exactly what it’s called in supermarkets.
MaryAnn Coy says
Fish Sauce 380 mg per teaspoon. Not exactly Low Sodium. 9 teaspoons divided by 4 servings. Yields 2.5 tsp per serving or 760 mg per serving. I would have to juggle things to include in my sodium restriction. Plus some brands of Chili powder have salt in them. You would need Low or no sodium canned tomatoes as well. As an occasional, planned for treat this is OK. I miss Asian food too, so make my own.
This is the best noodle dish with the most authentic flavor!! Lemongrass is the freezer section at the store was perfect!! Thank you for this wonderful recipe!!
Julie B. says
I love this soup! I haven’t been able to find the lemongrass paste, but sometimes I buy a prepackaged thai lemongrass flavored “ramen” noodles and use some of the flavor packet to add that flavor. I try to make this anytime I have cilantro. My family doesn’t love it like I do so I just make it for myself. Thanks for the great recipe!
That’s awesome! You are very welcome!
Regan Rothery says
I’m a HUGE fan of Thai food and Thai-inspired dishes and I must say that this soup is amazing, incredible, phenomenal, delicious, fantastic, etc.! The brightness provided by the lime is wonderful. Thank you for sharing. I discovered this recipe a few weeks ago and have made it four times now. I love it and will cook it forever. THANK YOU!!!
Thank you so much, Regan. It’s one of my favourite recipes as well. Whenever I feel like I want something not too heavy but still very comforting I go for Thai food.
Mary Frese says
Made this tonight, exactly as written. In a word, AWESOME! My kids kept coming in to the kitchen saying how good it smelled as it was simmering, and everyone had two helpings. This is a keeper!
Great news, thank you for letting me know, Mary!!
This recipe is perfect. I added some sambal ulek to heat it up a bit, but otherwise I followed the recipe. Will make again!!!
Also- I used fresh lemongrass and it came out great.
Came across your blog from Pinterest and it is so difficult to go !!
Love it. Love the pictures and love the way you write straight from your heart.
Very inspiring. Can’t wait to try this Thai Noodle Bowl over the weekend.
Thank you for a wonderful recipe.
Thank you so much for your comment, Gauri! What a great way to start my day. 🙂
Made this tonight – pretty delicious!
I used: 1.5 tbs soy sauce & 1.5 tbs of Worcestershire sauce in place of fish sauce which I don’t like very much.
I used angel hair pasta for the noodles.
Next time I would double up on lemongrass paste, I couldn’t taste it.
Made this last night for dinner – it was super easy and fabulous!! Thank you for the recipe!
You are welcome, Debra! Glad to hear you enjoyed it. 🙂
Anne Marie says
Do you use regular chili powder, the kind used in chili?
Yes, I do, Anne Marie.
Anne Marie says
Thanks for answering so quicky. This will be on our dinner table tomorrow and I can’t wait!
April phoenix says
This sounds great! Bought all but I can’t get lemongrass. Can I sub lemon zest?
Hi April, despite a similar name it has a different flavour, so I would just omit it.
Christine P says
Making this right now. I’m using leftover crockpot chicken and cellophane (mung bean) noodles.
Would this work with Pork Belly or another type meat?
I am sure it will work just as well, Marissa. 🙂
I found this recipe about two months ago, and it’s become a staple in our house. Thank you, thank you, thank you!
One question: Do you have the nutritional values detailed somewhere?
So happy to hear you love the recipe, Andrea! Unfortunately, I don’t have any nutritional info besides the fact it’s low sodium. I adapted it for my sister-in-law and sodium intake was her main dietary concern at the time.
Liz McGinnis says
My whole family (that includes 5 kids ages 4-12) LOVED this! I’m making it again tonight! Yum!
Ah I love it when kids give thumbs up! Thank you for sharing, Liz!
do you cook the chicken before placing it in the liquid? or is that how it cooks?
Chicken is cooked in the soup.
Tried today and it was great!!!
I love hearing that!
Do u think that rice noodles like pad thai noodles would work, and if so should I cook them first or just put them in the soup like your recipe.
Thanks so much
Kelly, rice noodles will definitely work. I wouldn’t cook them separately, just put them in the soup. There is plenty of liquid there and they will absorb more flavour this way.
I love rice noodles and that would ensure this recipe would be gluten free. What I do is take a small handful, pour boiling water over them in a boil, steep for 4 minutes (the time depends on the thickness so if it was pad thai size I would increase to 6 – 8 minutes). Drain. Then it will be ready when you are. Just wrap up in plastic if not using immediately (they are usually fine if left in the fridge up to 24 hours). I love recipes like these because they are so customizable. I do a low sodium diet, also, because I have inherited a kidney disease. I never thought of mentioning that in a blog. Congrats on putting that out there!
Sorry meant to say bowl not “boil”!
So many Julia’s around here!!
Anyways, I’m pretty sure “Paprika” is making this tonight!! Boston is COLD so it’s much needed but what she doesn’t realize is this soup will most likely raise my body temperature up so much that the need to finally take the AC out of the window will be less important. Especially after I heat the leftovers up for the rest of the week. I might have to turn the AC on. She is not gonna like that. We shared this on our weekly blog round up, “Whacchhoo Bloggin’ Bout” Thank you for Dinner!
Justin and Garnet
Julia | JuliasAlbum.com says
Looks wonderful! Will be very handy in the cold weather 🙂 Pinning.
Ideal for the cold weather which we are already experiencing in England, still hoping for the return of the summer or at least Indian summer!
I wonder if this would freeze well?
Funny you mentioned it! I actually froze half of what I made, I can’t imagine why it wouldn’t freeze well. 🙂
I made a vegetarian version on Sunday. Wow! It’s even better two days later! I froze some so it will be nice in the middle of winter. Thanks for the recipe!
Awesome! Thank you for sharing. 🙂
Did you use tofu to make your vegetarian meal or just no substitute? I’m going to make it tonight but can’t decide whether to use tofu or not.
I didn’t use tofu but I am sure it will work fine as well, Samantha.
This looks AMAZING!!!! I can’t wait I try this and eat till I am unable to eat anymore. As you said I have been craving this for a year an am so excited to have an option. Thank you so much for writing this for me!! I will def let you know how it turns out! Eeee!!! You’re the best.
No, you are the best!! You are going to have to write a follow-up post on how you liked it ;-).
This looks amazing!!! I want to try it this week.
Let me know what you think when you make it! I knew you’d love it!