Thinking about laksa, I am transported back to my 20-something self, studying, finishing a late shift as a waitress and eating takeout at 11 pm. My present self eats at around 4.30 – oh how times have changed … Laksa used to be a dish I ruled out for busy weeknights until I discovered this fabulous recipe. You can whip up this Cheat’s Chicken Laksa up in less than 15 minutes when you are in the mood for something flavoursome, warm and comforting.

Cheat’s chicken laksa
Chicken laksa is a satisfying, family-friendly dish, and it’s easy to dial the spice levels up or down to suit your family’s palate.

With a rich, coconut milk-based broth and a spicy curry kick, this recipe will quickly become a dinner favourite. Use more or less curry paste to adjust the spice level to suit your family’s palate and, if you like, you can add some fresh chilli at the end for extra heat. This dish is also wonderful with extra vegetables – see below for suggestions. Like most of my recipes, the laksa is made with simple, low-cost ingredients and is cooked in one pan so you don’t have to dread the washing up. You can find this recipe in my cookbook, The Simple Dinner Edit, which is a collection of 80 easy, delicious dinner ideas and time-saving tips. Click here to order.

Can I add extra vegetables to the laksa?

Yes. Add some frozen broccoli, broccolini (tender-stem broccoli) green beans or snow peas (mangetout) at the same time as the coconut milk and chicken stock.

Can I dial the spice intensity down or up?

Sure. Start with half the amount of Thai red curry paste or laksa paste and gradually add more to taste. You can also find laksa pastes labelled “mild” at some supermarkets. For extra spice, adults can add extra chopped fresh chilli to their portion.

What are some other Asian-style chicken dishes I can make in 20 minutes or less?

If you enjoyed this Cheat’s Chicken Laksa, you are sure to like:
Crispy Sweet Chilli Chicken
Honey Soy Chicken Banh Mi
Peanut Chicken Satay
Pad Thai
Poached Chicken Asian Soup

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Cheat’s chicken laksa

Cheat’s Chicken Laksa

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5 from 2 reviews

This Cheat’s Chicken Laksa has all the flavour of your favourite takeout version, but can be prepped and cooked in only 15 minutes, using just one pan.

  • Total Time: 15 mins
  • Yield: 2 1x


  • 250 g (9 oz) ramen noodles, egg noodles or rice vermicelli noodles
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 500 g (1 lb 2 oz) boneless, skinless chicken thighs (or breast if you prefer), cut into bite-sized pieces 
  • 2 tbsp Marion’s Thai Red Curry Paste or laksa paste (see note 1)
  • 400 ml (13½ fl oz) coconut milk
  • 8 cups (2 litres) chicken stock
  • 200 g (7 oz) fried tofu puffs
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • 2 cups (180 g) fresh bean sprouts

To serve

  • Lime wedges
  • Store-bought crispy fried shallots 
  • Spring onion (scallion), finely sliced
  • Coriander (cilantro) (optional)
  • Sliced fresh long red chilli (optional) 


  1. Cook the noodles as per the packet instructions less 1 minute. Rinse in cold water and set aside.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over high heat.
  3. Add the chicken and cook for 1–2 minutes until it begins to brown slightly.
  4. Add the curry or laksa paste and cook for 30 seconds.
  5. Add the coconut milk and chicken stock and cook for 2 minutes.
  6. Cut the fried tofu puffs in half using kitchen scissors. Add them to the pot with the fish sauce and lime juice. Cook for 2 minutes. 
  7. Add half the bean sprouts and turn the heat off. 
  8. Serve the laksa in individual bowls, topped with the remaining bean sprouts, the lime wedges, crispy fried shallots, spring onion, coriander and fresh chilli (if using).


Note 1 – I have tried all of the supermarket laksa pastes and have found they are either too sweet or too strong in shrimp paste flavour (which is a characteristic flavour of any good curry laksa). I found Marion’s Thai Red Curry Paste during my search (available in Australia and New Zealand). Many of the ingredients in it are similar to a good-quality laksa paste, but this one has the addition of shrimp paste, which is perfect for this laksa recipe! It is subtle and gives the dish just the depth of flavour it needs without being overpowering. The spice level is medium-high – you can use half the amount of paste if you would prefer less spice. If you can’t find this brand in your country, use your favourite brand of laksa paste – or see if you can find a Thai red curry paste with added shrimp paste!


This speedy laksa is best made fresh.


Leftovers can be refrigerated for up to 2 days, although the soup will absorb into the ingredients. Add 1 cup (250 ml) of chicken stock to thin it out and create a soup consistency if required.

  • Author: Nicole
  • Prep Time: 5 mins
  • Cook Time: 10 mins
  • Category: ,orites , holiday favourites , batch cooking , meal planning , budget-friendly , quick and easy , one pan , freezer friendly , chicken , beef , pork , lamb
  • Method: Barbequing-grilling , roasting , baking , frying , sauteing , boiling , simmering , steaming , slow cooking , grilling-broiling , braising , pan
  • Cuisine: Malay