Spicy Paleo Tom Kha Gai Soup

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The last month or so has seen the entire country either windy and rainy or freezing and snowy so this would be a perfect time for this paleo tom kha recipe. Bound to keep you warm just like our Five Meat Chili. The inclusion of bone broth, coconut milk and cooking a whole chicken into the soup makes it more hearty and flavorful than most Thai soups you can purchase at a restaurant.

This paleo tom kha gai soup is easy to prepare the paleo way with some fresh veggies and chicken. You know how else this soup is “paleo”? Well, because we boil an entire chicken down IN bone broth. That’s right. We’re making bone broth inside of bone broth. If that isn’t paleo, I don’t know what is. Anyway, back to the recipe…

This is super simple and should have you rocking and getting warm in no time. If you make this, make sure to tag me on Twitter and Instagram at @dranthonygustin and #cooklikeag so I can check it out!

Here’s how to make it:

Preparation: 20m
Cook Time: 2h
Serves: 4


  • 4 quarts chicken bone broth
  • 2 lime wedges
  • 1 handful bean sprouts
  • 10 grape tomatos
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons thai basil, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons coriander seeds
  • 1 -2 teaspoons fish sauce
  • 1 -2 can coconut milk
  • 1 -2 tablespoons chili paste, to taste
  • 15 mushrooms, halved
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • 1 handful assorted thai chiles, diced
  • 8 kaffir lime leaves
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 galanga root, chopped
  • 8 stalks lemon grass, chopped
  • 1 whole chicken
  • 1 scallion, diced


  1. Slice the lemon grass into small pieces and cut the galanga root into tiny chunks. The galanga root is crucial and completely makes the taste of this dish. It can be a chore cutting up lemon grass and roots, but it is much easier if you just do this with all of the ingredients at once. As always, most of the work in recipes is the prep! Take care of now and the rest will be a breeze.
  2. Boil the broth and chicken. This is where you’re going to get all of your flavor. Combine the bone broth, half of the Thai chilies, lemongrass, galanga root, coriander seeds, kaffir lime leaves, chili paste, a few splashes of fish sauce and chicken and boil for roughly two hours or until the chicken is done.
  3. Take the chicken out and let it cool slightly. Once the chicken is cooled, separate the meat from the skin and bones and chop/shred per preference. Set aside.
  4. Most of the things that were boiled in step two aren’t really that edible (i.e. the woody texture of lemongrass) and you’re going to want to separate them before continuing. Drain into a separate pot using a colander. Add chicken back to the broth, the other half of the Thai chillies and some finely chopped onion. Add 1-2 cans of coconut milk depending on how creamy you would like it to be. I use Natural Valley as we are fans of their exclusion of BPA in their cans. Let boil for another hour. About five minutes before you want to eat, halve the mushrooms and toss them in the soup.
  5. Add the Thai basil, cilantro, tomatoes, beansprouts, scallions, lime wedges and anything else you’d like to throw on top. This version came out spicy enough with how many Thai chillies were added but blending fresh chillies up with a little oil and garlic makes for an amazing topping as well!