Best way to make quick Coconut Chicken Curry

Tracy Hilton here from Food and Meal, excited to share with you one of my favorite weeknight meals – a fragrant, flavorful Coconut Chicken Curry!

As a busy working mom, I’m always on the lookout for tasty recipes that come together quickly on busy nights. When I discovered this easy curry made with convenient canned coconut milk, I knew it would become a regular rotation. The exotic yet comforting flavors make this coconut curry chicken a dish my whole family enjoys.

I first tried a version of coconut curry chicken at my friend’s house years ago and absolutely loved the creamy, gently spicy sauce coating the tender chicken and veggies. When I got home, I couldn’t wait to develop my own version using ingredients I usually have on hand, like onion, carrots, chicken breasts and of course, full-fat coconut milk.

Now, this coconut curry chicken has become one of our favorite weeknight meals. The recipe comes together in just 30 minutes active time so it’s perfect for busy nights. As the sauce gently simmers, my kitchen fills with the most mouthwatering aroma of ginger, garlic and exotic spices. Brightened with lime juice and served over fluffy rice, it’s a meal that satisfies the whole family.

Coconut Chicken Curry Recipes

Coconut Chicken Curry.
Fresh ingredients, vibrant flavors – the heart of our coconut chicken curry.
Best Way To Make Quick Coconut Chicken Curry 1

Coconut Chicken Curry

The coconut chicken curry can be served over rice or cauliflower rice. The sauce can be thickened with a bit of water. The flavors of this curry will vary depending on the type of coconut used. Once the chicken is cooked, you can add a few more ingredients, such as scallions. Then, add the chicken and simmer the curry for about five minutes. You can add the rest of the ingredients if you want.
5 from 1 vote
Course: Main dishes
Cuisine: French, Indian
Diet: Low Calorie
Keyword: chicken curry, coconut, Curry
CookingStyle: Simmering
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 562kcal
Author: Tracy Hilton
Cost: 15
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  • 2 lbs chicken thigh boneless, skinless s (about 7), cut into 1″ cubes
  • 2 1/2 tsp mild curry powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper freshly
  • 2 tbsp virgin coconut or vegetable oil, plus 2 teaspoons; optional
  • 1/2 medium onion chopped
  • 1 coconut milk 14-ounce can (preferably full-fat)
  • 1 ginger 2 1/2″ piece , peeled
  • 4 garlic cloves peeled
  • 1/4 cup cashews raw,hopped (optional)
  • 5 oz baby spinach
  • Cilantro leaves with tender stems and cooked rice or naan,Indian flatbread; for serving


  • In a medium bowl, mix chicken with curry powder, salt, and pepper.
  • Heat 2 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, until softened, about 2 minutes.
  • In a blender, purée coconut milk, ginger, and garlic until very smooth.
  • Add chicken and coconut milk mixture to skillet and cook, mixing occasionally, until chicken is cooked through and sauce has thickened, 7-10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, if using, heat 2 tsp. oil in a small skillet over medium. Add cashews cook, stirring, until fragrant and lightly browned, 2–3 minutes. Immediately transfer mixture including the oil to a small bowl.
  • Fold spinach into chicken mixture and cook until wilted, about 1 minute. Divide among 4 bowls. Top with cilantro and cashew mixture, if using. Serve with rice or naan alongside.



If you're serving this dish to a large group, consider using a low-carb version of the curry. This recipe is great for vegetarians, since it uses low-carb ingredients such as cauliflower rice or broccoli rice. You can also serve coconut chicken curry over rice or cauliflower rice, although it's not advisable to refreeze it. If you'd like to serve it with fried chicken, try adding it to the curry sauce for one or two minutes to crisp up the pieces.
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Serving: 1serving | Calories: 562kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 40g | Fat: 41g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 9g | Monounsaturated Fat: 18g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 222mg | Sodium: 1077mg | Potassium: 759mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 3502IU | Vitamin C: 12mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 3mg
© Food And Meal

This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the Spoonacular Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.

Alternative Method: Slow Cooker Coconut Chicken Curry

Coconut Chicken Curry.
Searing the chicken for that perfect, savory flavor.

Heat a generous amount of vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sauté chopped onion until translucent, about 3-4 minutes. Add minced garlic and grated ginger, cooking for an additional 1-2 minutes until fragrant. Next, add chicken pieces to the skillet, cooking until lightly browned on all sides, approximately 5 minutes. Transfer the browned chicken, sautéed onion, garlic, and ginger into the slow cooker. Pour in diced tomatoes with their juices and the entire can of coconut milk. Sprinkle curry powder, ground cumin, ground coriander, turmeric, paprika, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper over the chicken and liquid in the slow cooker. Stir well to ensure all ingredients are evenly combined. Cover and cook on low for 4-5 hours until the chicken is tender. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Serve the Coconut Chicken Curry over cooked jasmine rice, garnishing with fresh cilantro leaves for a vibrant finish. Enjoy the comforting flavors of this slow cooker Coconut Chicken Curry!

Tips for making Coconut Chicken Curry

Coconut Chicken Curry.
Garnishes add color and freshness to your coconut chicken curry.

Cooking Tips

The key is loading up the sauce with lots of aromatics like minced ginger, garlic, onion and curry powder. I like to really pile it on so the sauce is packed with flavor in every bite! As it gently simmers, my kitchen fills with the most mouthwatering aroma.

When adding the coconut milk, go for full-fat. The richness helps balance out all those bold spices. And don’t forget the lime juice right at the end! The tart, bright pop of citrus makes all the flavors in this curry really sing. I also love stirring in some chopped cilantro for a pop of color and freshness.

Browning the chicken first gives such wonderful caramelized bits that lend even more depth. Then you can just nestle the chicken right into that fragrant sauce to soak up all those incredible flavors as it finishes cooking.

Served over fluffy jasmine rice with some toasted coconut flakes sprinkled on top for crunch, this coconut chicken curry is absolute perfection! The exotic yet comforting flavors make this dish an instant hit with my whole family.

Serving Suggestions

Coconut Chicken Curry
Coconut chicken curry: a family-friendly favorite.

Coconut Chicken Curry pairs wonderfully with a variety of dishes, enhancing their flavors and adding a touch of exoticism to the meal. One excellent option is to serve it alongside a fragrant and flavorful Yakimiso Ramen, where the rich broth and tender noodles complement the creamy coconut sauce of the curry. Alternatively, you could opt for a lighter accompaniment such as a Kohlrabi Salad, offering a refreshing contrast to the bold and aromatic flavors of the curry. For those craving a heartier meal, pairing Coconut Chicken Curry with Masbate Bulalo would create a satisfying fusion of Filipino and Southeast Asian cuisines, with the savory beef soup balancing the creaminess of the curry. Whichever pairing you choose, be sure to enjoy the delightful blend of spices and textures in this comforting this dish.

Frequently Asked Questions about Coconut Chicken Curry

Coconut Chicken Curry
Your faqs on coconut chicken curry – all answered here
  • Can I make this curry in advance? Absolutely! Coconut Chicken Curry often tastes even better the next day as the flavors continue to meld. Store it in the refrigerator and reheat gently.
  • How do I store leftovers? To store leftovers, transfer them to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3-4 days. Reheat on the stove or in the microwave until piping hot.
  • Can I freeze Coconut Chicken Curry? Yes, you can freeze it for longer storage. Place cooled curry in a freezer-safe container or resealable bag, and it can be stored for up to three months.
  • What can I do if my curry is too spicy? If your curry turns out too spicy, try adding more coconut milk or a dollop of yogurt to mellow the heat. You can also serve it with cooling side dishes like cucumber raita.
  • Can I use other meats or tofu instead of chicken? Absolutely! You can substitute chicken with shrimp, beef, lamb, or tofu to create your preferred variation of this curry. Adjust the cooking time accordingly based on your choice.
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I hope you’ve enjoyed this little foray into tropical-inspired weeknight meals as much as I have. There’s just something so satisfying about transforming humble ingredients into a restaurant-worthy curry bursting with flavor.

If you give this Coconut Chicken Curry a try, I’d love to hear how it turns out! Post a photo on Instagram and tag @foodandmeal so I can see your delicious creations. Did you add any veggies or make it spicier? I’m always looking for ways to put new spins on this tasty staple.

And be sure to keep checking the Food and Meal blog for more quick and easy dinner recipe inspiration. With just 30 minutes of active time, this curry is perfect for getting a nourishing meal on the table any night of the week. I’ll share more of my favorite ways to reinvent leftovers and pantry staples into exciting new dishes.

I'm Tracy F Hilton, a devoted culinary professional shaped by a mix of natural aptitude and refined skills from a top culinary school. In the dynamic kitchen environment, I'm a catalyst for seamless operations and timely, high-quality dish preparation. My culinary creations are a blend of art and skill, offering visually and gustatorily delightful experiences. A learner at heart, I'm continuously honing my craft, embracing new techniques, and culinary innovations. My positive, collaborative nature is amplified in fast-paced settings, showcasing my commitment to team efficiency and guest satisfaction. Each dish I present is a meticulous blend of tradition and innovation, promising an unforgettable dining experience that marries taste, aroma, and aesthetic appeal in perfect harmony. Join me on a gastronomic journey where each bite encapsulates a rich, evolving narrative of flavors and culinary artistry.
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