Instant Pot Thai Red Beef Curry



Instant Pot Thai Red Beef Curry

Course Main Course
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour


  • 1 tablespoon egetable oil
  • 1 medium onion, peeled, and sliced into 1/2 inch wedges
  • 1 ed bell pepper, cored, stemmed, and sliced into 1/2 inch strips
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 inch piece of ginger, peeled and crushed
  • Cream from the top of a (13.5 ounce) can coconut milk
  • 4 tablespoons red curry paste (a whole 4 oz can)
  • 8-ounce an bamboo shoots, drained
  • 2 pounds flat iron steak (or chuck blade steak), cut into 2 inch by 1/2 inch strips
  • 1 teaspoon Diamond Crystal kosher salt or 2 teaspoons fine sea salt
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock or water
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce (plus more to taste)
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce (plus more to taste)
  • Juice from 1 lime

Garnish and Sides

  • Minced cilantro
  • Minced basil (preferably Thai basil)
  • Lime wedges
  • Jasmine rice


  1. Sauté the aromatics: Heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat in the pressure cooker pot until shimmering. (Use Sauté mode in an electric pressure cooker.) Stir in the onion, red bell pepper, garlic, and ginger, and sauté until the onion starts to soften, about 3 minutes.

  2. Fry the curry paste: Scoop the cream from the top of the can of coconut milk and add it to the pot, then stir in the curry paste. Cook, stirring often, until the curry paste darkens, about 5 minutes.

  3. Pressure cook the curry: Sprinkle the beef with the kosher salt. Add the beef to the pot, and stir to coat with curry paste. Stir in the rest of the can of coconut milk, bamboo shoots, chicken stock, fish sauce, and soy sauce. Lock the lid and pressure cook on high pressure for 12 minutes in an electric PC or 10 minutes in a stovetop PC. Let the pressure come down naturally, about 20 minutes.

  4. Finish the curry: Remove the lid from the pressure cooker. Stir in the lime juice, then taste the curry for seasoning, adding more fish sauce or brown sugar as needed. Ladle the curry into bowls, sprinkle with minced cilantro and basil, and serve with Jasmine rice.

Recipe Notes

  • Don’t shake the can of coconut milk – you want the solid layer of cream on the top to stay separate from the liquid underneath. That lets you fry the coconut cream with the curry paste, then add the liquid later. (If you forget, or your coconut milk is mixed, skip the cream in the “fry the curry paste” step and stir the whole can into the pot in the “pressure cook the curry” step.)
  • I like my curry hot, so I use 4 tablespoons of curry paste – in other words, the entire 4 ounce can. If you want to cut back on the heat, only use 2 tablespoons of curry paste.
  • If you look carefully in the picture, you can see two different brands of curry paste. I prefer Maesri, but I have to make a special trip to my local asian grocer to find it. Thai Kitchen is available in every grocery store in my area, and is good enough when I don’t feel like an extra shopping stop.

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