Coconut Curry with Chicken: Your How-To Guide

October 4, 2023

If you are looking for the ultimate dish for dinner, then look no further than coconut curry with chicken. While there are different types of curries, all of them do have a few things in common. The curries are creamy, delicious, and need few other accompaniments.

Now, there quite a few components that go into a chicken curry. Thus, you have to know your ins and outs of the ingredients and processes before getting started. This is the best way to ensure that you get the results that you are looking for.

So, without further ado, here is your guide to the best ever chicken curries!

The Top Tips to Making Chicken Curry

Before moving onto the recipes, there are a few things that you should know about making a chicken curry with coconut milk:

Choosing the Chicken

Your first step to getting your chicken curry right is to choose the right cut of chicken. Here, you will find that coconut curry with chicken thighs is your best bet. This is because these cuts hold up better for more thorough cooking techniques.

Furthermore, the natural flavors of the chicken thigh work well with the bolder flavors imparted by curries. Now, when shopping around, always look for cuts with the bone in. The bone will certainly help the meat taste better.

Keep the Skin On

These days, it has become automatic to buy skinless chicken or to remove the chicken before cooking. However, do yourself a favor and leave the skin on. The chicken skin imparts its own juices and flavors to the dish while cooking, adding a more complex flavor to the curry.

At the same time, the skin helps to prevent the chicken from drying out, particularly if you are prone to overcooking the meat. And, as a final benefit, the skin actually helps to trap all those delicious flavors of the curry into the chicken. If you would like a healthy coconut curry chicken recipe, then remove the skin before eating.

Uncooked Chicken On a White Plate

Choosing Your Curry Powder

On the surface, the term “curry powder” can seem simple enough. That is until you realize that the situation is more complicated than this. To begin with, curries are made all around the world and many of these cuisines may use a particular kind of curry powder.

For instance, there is Indian, Thai, Japanese, Jamaican, Sri Lanka, etc. curry powder. So, how can you choose between all these options? Well, you should first be aware of what kind of curry you are cooking. Then, pick the corresponding curry flavor.

Of course, it isn't always that easy. For instance, with Indian cuisine, you may end up having to choose between garam masala and madras curry powder. In this case, you should take a look at the ingredients. Then, determine which spices would taste best to you in a curry.

Curry Powder vs. Curry Paste

If things weren’t confusing enough, you will also find some recipes calling for curry paste. So, what are these and how are they different from curry powder?  

Well, you can think of curry paste as curry powder with oils and fresh ingredients like garlic, ginger, herbs, etc. Thus, the paste has a slightly more aromatic taste to it. Curry pastes are more commonly used in Thai curries, while curry powders will be traditionally added to Indian curries.

The Coconut Milk

Last, but certainly not least, is the coconut milk. Here, like when making coconut rice, you will be using coconut milk meant for cooking. When shopping for coconut milk, always check the labels and steer clear of the coconut milk beverage.

Related Reading
Your Guide to Selecting the Best Coconut Milk Brands
The Ultimate Search for the Best Canned Coconut Milk

Another thing to keep in mind is to always choose full-fat coconut milk. The lite versions will not do your curry justice and will simply dilute all the flavors. In a pinch, you can use coconut cream – just add a bit of water to thin it out. Adding less water will give you a creamy chicken curry.

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Flex Your Cooking Skills: A Guide to the Best Coconut Recipes

The Best Chicken Curry Recipes

Here are the recipes that you simply must try out:

Green Thai Chicken Curry

Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 1¾ cup of coconut milk, divided
  • 3 tbsp. of green curry paste
  • 1 cup of unsalted chicken stock
  • 1 lb. of chicken thigh, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 tsp. of brown sugar
  • 1½ tbsp. of fish sauce
  • 3 kaffir lime leaves, torn
  • 1½ cup of canned bamboo shoots
  • 1 cup of Thai basil
  • 1 spur chili


Step 1: Cook Coconut Milk

Add ¾ cup of coconut milk to a pan and cook over medium heat.

Cook until the coconut milk has reduced and thickened.

Step 2: Add Curry Paste

Add the curry paste to the pan and cook for about 2 minutes, stirring continuously.

The curry paste should be completely combined with the milk.

Step 3: Add Chicken

Add the chicken to the pan and mix well.

All the chicken pieces must be thoroughly coated with the curry mix.

Step 4: Add Other Ingredients

Add the kaffir lime leaves, chicken stock, the rest of the coconut milk, sugar, and fish sauce.

Bring all the ingredients and cook for about 10 to 15 minutes or until the chicken is tender.

Step 5: Add Bamboo Shoot and Chili

Mix in the bamboo shoot and the chili and bring to a boil.

Once the curry has reached a boil, remove from heat.

Step 6: Add Thai Basil

Stir in Thai basil and let the curry sit for a while before serving.

Milky Chicken Curry Served On Black Bowl

Indian Chicken Curry

Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 1 tbs. of vegetable oil
  • ½ tsp. of black mustard seeds
  • 3 medium onions, thinly sliced
  • Cilantro stems from 3 sprigs, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1-inch piece of ginger, minced
  • 2 to 3 tbs. of curry powder
  • 2 lbs. chicken thighs, cut
  • 2 cups of coconut milk, separated
  • 1½ tsp. of salt
  • 3 potatoes, cubed
  • ¼ cup loosely packed cilantro leaves


Step 1: Sautee the Aromatics

Add the vegetable oil to a large pan and follow up with the mustard seeds.

Let the mustard seeds cook for about a minute before adding the onions, cilantro stems, garlic, and ginger.

Cook for about 5 minutes.

Step 2: Add Curry Powder

Add the curry powder and stir well.

Continue to cook until the onions have softened completely.

This should take about 6 minutes.

Step 3: Add the Chicken

Add the chicken in a little at a time.

After each batch, stir well to make sure that all the pieces are coated evenly.

Continue until all the chicken pieces are thoroughly coated.

Step 4: Add Coconut Milk, Salt, and Potatoes

Pour in one cup of coconut milk along with the salt and the potatoes.

Reduce to medium low heat and cover.

Let it cook for until the chicken is tender.

Step 5: The Final Touches

Once the chicken is cooked through, remove the cover, and bring to a boil.

Let the ingredients boil for 2 to 3 minutes.

Add the rest of the coconut milk and the cilantro to the pan and stir well.

Let the curry simmer for a few minutes before removing from heat.

Related Reading
Your Guide to Whipping Up the Perfect Coconut Curry

So, there you have it! Your guide to making the best ever chicken coconut curry. Now, you can vow your taste buds and guests alike!

An Important Disclaimer
The information on this page should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice. Consult a doctor if you wish to consume any kind of tea regularly for the purpose of treating any condition or illness.
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