Thai Chicken Coconut Curry

Thai Chicken Coconut Curry – An EASY one-skillet curry that’s ready in 20 minutes and is layered with so many fabulous flavors!! Low-cal, low-carb, and HEALTHY but tastes like comfort food!!

Thai Chicken Coconut Curry – An EASY one-skillet curry that’s ready in 20 minutes and is layered with so many fabulous flavors!! Low-cal, low-carb, and HEALTHY but tastes like comfort food!!

A few months ago I made Sweet Potato and Chickpea Coconut Curry and since then have fallen in love with all things Thai curry.

This is an easy Thai chicken curry that’s made in one skillet, ready in 20 minutes, and is naturally gluten-free. According to the computer-generated nutrition stats, there’s only 141 calories and 4 carbs per serving – no rice or naan included.

Thai Chicken Coconut Curry – An EASY one-skillet curry that’s ready in 20 minutes and is layered with so many fabulous flavors!! Low-cal, low-carb, and HEALTHY but tastes like comfort food!!

With cold weather upon us, nothing is better than diving into a bowl of this hearty yet healthy comfort food that’s layered with flavors. I could just drink the coconut milk-based sauce.

The curry is savory, salty, there’s natural sweetness from the sweet Vidalia onions, carrots, and coconut milk. There’s perfect acid balance from lime juice and a very gentle heat from the Thai red curry paste.

Thai red curry paste adds a richer and smoother flavor profile than curry powder (Indian) does, but if all you have is curry powder, go for it knowing that the flavor of Thai versus Indian curry products is vastly different and your dish won’t taste like mine.

Thai Chicken Coconut Curry – An EASY one-skillet curry that’s ready in 20 minutes and is layered with so many fabulous flavors!! Low-cal, low-carb, and HEALTHY but tastes like comfort food!!

As with all curry pastes and powders, they vary in intensity and everyone’s preferences for spice and heat vary, so adjust to taste. I used 2 rounded tablespoons and I wouldn’t call it spicy at all but very flavorful. My 10-year-old wasn’t at all phased by it but we like spicy food.

If you have extra veggies you want to incorporate such as cauliflower, bell peppers, tomatoes, or edamame, add them when you add the coconut milk and carrots.

Thai Chicken Coconut Curry – An EASY one-skillet curry that’s ready in 20 minutes and is layered with so many fabulous flavors!! Low-cal, low-carb, and HEALTHY but tastes like comfort food!!


Thai Chicken Coconut Curry

Thai Chicken Coconut Curry – An EASY one-skillet curry that’s ready in 20 minutes and is layered with so many fabulous flavors!! Low-cal, low-carb, and HEALTHY but tastes like comfort food!!

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Ingredients:

  • 2 to 3 tablespoons coconut oil (olive oil may be substituted)
  • 1 medium/large sweet Vidalia or yellow onion, diced small
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast, diced into bite-sized pieces
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced or pressed
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons ground ginger or 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • one 13-ounce can coconut milk (I used lite; full-fat will deliver a richer/thicker result)
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups shredded carrots
  • 1 to 3 tablespoons Thai red curry paste, or to taste (curry powder may be substituted, to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
  • about 3 cups fresh spinach leaves
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons brown sugar, optional and to taste
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped for garnishing (basil may be substituted)
  • rice, quinoa, or naan, optional for serving

Directions:

  1. To a large skillet, add the oil, onion, and sauté over medium-high heat until the onion begins to soften about 5 minutes; stir intermittently.
  2. Add the chicken and cook for about 5 minutes, or until chicken is done; flip and stir often to ensure even cooking.
  3. Add the garlic, ginger, coriander, and cook for about 1 minute, or until fragrant; stir frequently.
  4. Add the coconut milk, carrots, Thai curry paste, salt, pepper, and stir to combine. Reduce the heat to medium, and allow mixture to gently boil for about 5 minutes, or until liquid volume has reduced as much as desired and thickens slightly.
  5. Add the spinach, lime juice, and stir to combine. Cook until spinach has wilted and is tender, about 1 to 2 minutes. Taste and optionally add brown sugar, additional curry paste, salt, pepper, etc. to taste.
  6. Evenly sprinkle with the cilantro and serve immediately. Curry is best warm and fresh but will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 1 week.

Adapted from Sweet Potato Chickpea Coconut Curry

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291 comments on “Thai Chicken Coconut Curry”

  1. I loved this recipe! The only change i made was to not use carrots, but instead I used 1 red bell pepper! Fantastic recipe!

    Rating: 5
  2. This was pretty good, but not 5 stars. Needs some more pizazz. Would give recipe one more shot to see how it comes out, then try different ones.

    Rating: 4
    • No one has ever mentioned that it lacked pizazz…I would say try another brand of Thai red curry paste, add more, add more salt, add more pepper, ginger…something wasn’t in balanace because when it is, I have to honestly say this is one of my favorite and a reader favorite recipe.

  3. thai red curry paste is it spicy

  4. The recipe was great, added spices were what made all the difference! However, I modified the cooking technique so the veggies are crisp-tender. This is my suggestion: toast garlic, ginger (I added lemongrass) and red curry paste in the oil. When you can smell that amazing smell, add the coconut milk (don’t buy the cheap brands) and dry seasonings. When it comes to a boil, add the thinly sliced chicken and bring to a boil.(Cooking meat in coconut milk makes it super tender.) Add your carrots, and after a minute or 2, then dump ALL the rest of the veggies in. Let it get good and hot but remove the pot from heat BEFORE you think the veggies are quite done; they will keep softening in the hot broth. Soggy veggies are not my thing and will take your fame downhill fast :) Last minute add: lime juice and less than half the brown sugar. The balance of flavors is really really good in this recipe! And, the jars of Thai chicken red curry paste have z.e.r.o chili heat but good flavor otherwise. Mae Ploy brand red curry paste purchased in any Asian grocery store has > x4 the heat, if you’re looking for a spicier version.

    Rating: 5
  5. This is soup. I had to thicken it up dramatically with flour.

    • Not really in my experience but you could always reduce or halve the amount of coconut milk if you don’t like your curries as loose. Or add more carrots, spinach, chicken, etc.

      I have a recipe for Thai Chicken Coconut Curry Soup actually, which is different https://www.averiecooks.com/thai-chicken-coconut-curry-soup/

    • In my experience every stove is different and our method of low-medium-high heating is imprecise so you can’t go by time when recipes say “simmer to thicken”, you have to go by how thick it is and how thick you want it to be. I made this last night and made it super thick (mostly because I forgot to start the rice until that step LOL), all you have to do is simmer it a bit longer :)

  6. Can you freeze this?

  7. Would using green curry paste instead of red curry paste do well with this recipe?

  8. Delicious! I added a stick of butter and head of cauliflower. Used indian curry since I didn’t have Thai and it was top 5 recipe of my life.

    Rating: 5
  9. This recipe is delicious and my husband and I both enjoyed it, but there is NO WAY that it takes 5 minutes for preparation before cooking it. Washing, peeling, chopping or mincing all those ingredients took me 40 minutes alone. I’ll make this recipe again, but I advise anyone who plans to make it to allow plenty of time before dinner to prepare all of the veggies, etc. before planning to serve it. The recipe says that it takes 5 minutes for preparation of the ingredients and about 10-20 minutes for cooking it.

    Rating: 5
    • Thanks for the 5 star review and glad it’s delicious for you! Honestly for me, all I chop upfront is the onion and chicken. Everything else is pull out of a bag, jar, or can. And then at the end a quick chop of some cilantro and that’s why I say it takes 5 minutes of prep/chop time.

  10. Love this recipe but I substituted my own amounts of ginger because the amounts listed here look like they might be in error.Food.com, for example, suggests 1 tbsp of fresh ginger is equivalent to 1/8 tsp of dry. Since there’s 3 tsp in 1 tbsp, this is the same as saying 1 tsp of dry is equivalent to 24 tsp of fresh ginger, making the conversion of dry:fresh ginger a ratio of 1:24.This recipe calls for a basically interchangeable amount of ginger (2-3 tsp dry or 3 tsp fresh). If someone uses fresh, it’s a pretty reasonable amount of ginger. If someone uses dry, it’s a tremendous amount of ginger that’s going to deliver a very different flavor.

    Rating: 5
    • Really 2 to 3 teaspoons of dried ginger is not too much here. If you’re very sensitive to it, omit or reduce. No one has ever complained about the amount of ginger in this recipe and it’s extremely popular.

      Sometimes you have to just cook by how things taste, and even if ‘on paper’ or in someone’s chart you find online it looks like it could be too much, I assure you, it’s not here.

      For my tastebuds 1 tbsp of fresh ginger would be far far far more potent than 1/8 tsp of dry so that’s why you have to cook by taste, not by chart which is my opinion.

      Glad you loved the recipe!

  11. Greeting from a small town in Bulgaria. We don’t have Thai restaurants here and Thai curry paste is nowhere to find but I think me I my oldest son made a great job with this receipt. My family loved it and I think we are going to try you tasty cooking ideas every week now. Thank you.

    Rating: 5
  12. I was so excited when I saw this recipe because there is no soy or fish sauce added. My husband is on a low sodium diet so the only salt I needed to worry about was in the curry paste. I omitted the salt and added a dash of seasoned salt. It was soooo good. This is our go to curry now. My teenage daughter even makes it for her friends. Thank you!

    Rating: 5
    • Thanks for the 5 star review and glad this is your go to curry now! I am careful about using soy sauce (lots of sodium) and fish sauce (lots of sodium, people don’t like to buy products like these they feel they’ll never use again) in my recipes unless absolutely necessary and with this one, neither are necessary IMO. Glad you love this!

  13. Amazing recipe! I used wild cod as the base and added butter to the recipe. I did my own seasoning amounts based on taste. Paired with coconut rice. Absolutely delish!

    Rating: 5
  14. So delicious. Had it on a bed of cauliflower rice and my partner had it with naan. Definitely recommend the thai curry paste over curry powder. I have a potluck coming up and THIS recipe is definitely it

    Rating: 5
  15. This is a yummy recipe! I followed it exactly as you have it written. This is the first time I have tried making Thai food and what’s even better is it is gluten free! I’m going to make more of your recipes!

    Rating: 5
  16. First time I’ve had curry, or anything “Thai”. The recipe was easy follow and tasted just as good as it looked. I ended up halving it, as it was just for me, but it turned out delicious. I think I’m going to try your butter chicken recipe next.

    Rating: 5
  17. This was SO yummy. I made this back in November, froze the leftovers and had it yesterday for lunch. It was delicious. Definitely a keeper!

    Rating: 5
  18. Delicious! Rave reviews from the family. I didn’t have red curry paste, only green, but it came out just fine. Definitely adding this to my rotation.

    Rating: 5
  19. This is a lovely recipe. And it’s so pretty! There’s nothing much better than Thai flavors.

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