Peanut Butter -Coconut Milk Sauce Ronit Penso

Spicy, Sweet and Fragrant: Peanut Butter-Coconut Milk Sauce

peanut butter coconut milk sauce ronit penso

This tasty and versatile sauce combines two of my favorite ingredients – peanut butter and coconut milk.
Interestingly enough, both key ingredients are called “nuts”, even though neither one is! The peanut is actually a type of legume in which the pod matures underground, unlike most of the nuts we know, which grow on trees. The coconut does grow on a tree, but is actually a drupe and again, not a nut. Who knows, maybe that’s why they match so well together?
There are many versions for the sauce in the kitchens of Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia and others. The recipe here is one of my versions for it. In other versions I may use other types of chili peppers, cilantro instead of mint, or both, palm sugar instead of honey, lime instead of the vinegar…– you get the picture.
The sauce keeps well in the fridge, in an airtight container, so don’t hesitate to prepare a large amount. Just reheat it gently before using, as the flavors are at their best when warmed up a bit.
Serve with grilled or roasted meats, seafood, tofu, steamed or fresh vegetables, rice noodles… Perfect for 4th of July BBQ weekend. 🙂

Makes: 2 cups
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 10 minutes

3 Tbs chunky natural peanut butter (i.e. unsalted/unsweetened)
1 can (14oz, 400gr) coconut milk
2 Tbs rice wine vinegar
2 Tbs soy sauce
2 Tbs honey
1 tsp red curry paste
1 tsp green curry paste
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
1 clove garlic, finely grated
½ tsp salt
1 Tbs fresh red chili pepper
2 Tbs fresh mint, chopped
2 small scallions, chopped

1. In a medium pot, mix all the ingredients except for the chili, mint and scallions. Bring to the verge of boiling. Reduce the heat to low and cook for about 10 minutes, mixing occasionally, until the sauce thickens.
Peanut Butter -Coconut Milk Sauce Ronit PensoP1000636P1000639P1000642
3. Take off the heat and mix in the chili, mint and scallions. Serve warm.
Peanut Butter -Coconut Milk Sauce Ronit PensoPeanut Butter -Coconut Milk Sauce Ronit Penso Peanut Butter -Coconut Milk Sauce Ronit Penso
peanut butter coconut milk sauce ronit pensoPeanut Butter -Coconut Milk Sauce Ronit Penso Peanut Butter -Coconut Milk Sauce Ronit Penso

17 thoughts on “Spicy, Sweet and Fragrant: Peanut Butter-Coconut Milk Sauce

    • Ronit Penso says:

      Glad you liked it. It is very versatile indeed. Having a jar of it in the fridge makes it easy to add flavors to many items. I hope you’ll enjoy it. 🙂


      • judilyn says:

        I guess that about covers how I cook! “A jar of it in the refrigerator” – whatever “it” is! Pyrex glass containers fill my refrigerator so that it is easy to see what treasures await. Our meals are like a Chinese restaurant – one from Column A, one from Column B, etc.. I almost never cook all of the things served at any given meal all at once, although I did last night. But the Crock-Pot took care of the London Broil for me with minimal attention.


          • judilyn says:

            Not only condiments . . . entire meals. Last night I could offer four different starches, four different vegetables, two legumes, and three hearty meats for DH to pick and choose from. I usually reheat in an array of eight-inch shallow pans rather than use the microwave. Makes for tastier results.

            Reheating method is somewhat unorthodox, though. I heat up the pan with a smidge of water in it until it is good and hot, put in the food, and spray the top of the food with a water mister. Turn the heat way down (or OFF, if the food is delicate, or the amount is small) cover and let the food come to eating temperature. Takes only a few minutes. If the food to be heated is VERY vulnerable to sticking, I might add a spray of coconut oil first, but usually that isn’t necessary.


  1. When in New Places says:

    It’s like you’ve read my taste buds mind. I’ve been craving this EXACT flavor for the last 2 weeks. Amazingly, I think I can get all of the ingredients here at one of the foreign marts. My mouth is watering…
    Thanks for this 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.