Simple shouldn’t mean bland – and this Chicken Curry recipe knocks it out of the park! The 5 ingredient, made from scratch coconut curry sauce is so good for something so simple, you will be amazed.
If you want to go all out, serve this with Soft No-Yeast Flatbreads to slop up the sauce (it’s basically naan, but much easier to make!)
An Easy Chicken Curry
Curries are notorious for lengthy ingredient lists to achieve the richly spiced sauces and punchy flavours. And while we’d all love to be able to whip up a from-scratch Tikka Masala and Butter Chicken whenever the craving hits us, it’s simply not viable.
So today, I’m sharing the best SIMPLE chicken curry that I know. This recipe is a Western style curry – it’s not a traditional Indian curry, Thai curry, nor any other cuisine. And here’s why you’re going to love it as much as I do:
- (Very) short list of ingredients
- Curry powder is the only spice you need
- Creamy curry sauce with mild coconut flavour
- 30 minute recipe – from scratch!
This chicken curry is the perfect way to get your curry fix without being in the kitchen all day!
What you need for Everyday Chicken Curry
Here’s what goes in this Everyday Chicken Curry.
- Curry powder – the only spice you need! Any brand is fine here.
- Garlic, ginger and onion – fresh aromatics add a flavour boost that makes all the difference with quick curries! It’s the same when making quick Thai Green Curry or Red Curry using store bought paste.
- Chicken broth/stock AND coconut milk – for creaminess and flavour. We’re just using 1 cup of coconut milk here – this isn’t intended to be an overly rich, heavy coconut sauce.
- Chicken – thighs is best because this curry needs to be simmered for 12 minutes for the flavours to develop. But yes, it can be made with breast – but the steps need tweaking otherwise you’ll complain that the chicken is dry!!
- Peas – optional! Try other diced veg!
- Coriander/cilantro – lovely freshness and flavour boost. Coriander haters – use chives or green onions instead.
Don’t let the short list of ingredients fool you. The curry sauce tastes SO GOOD!
These are the curry powders I currently have in my pantry – but I’ve used plenty of other brands in the past. Curry powder is used in all sorts of recipes, not just Indian curries, including:
- Thai Satay Chicken
- Satay Chicken Curry – basically it’s chicken satay skewers in curry form, with loads of peanut sauce!
- Chickpea Potato Curry – very popular with readers!
- Curried Rice
- Vegetable Curry and Cauliflower Curry
- Singapore Noodles
- Easy Thai Coconut Soup
How to make it
There’s nothing groundbreaking about how this chicken curry is made. The one key step is to fry off the curry powder. This brightens up the flavour of the spices + creates more golden bits on the base of the pan, and both of these things add more flavour into the curry sauce!
So don’t skip this step.
Make it your own!
This recipe is all about the curry sauce, so it’s really versatile in terms of what you can put in it, as well as extra add ins. Here are some options:
- Other proteins or vegetarian – make this with beef, lamb, pork, turkey, shrimp/prawns, fish or vegetarian. See directions in the recipe notes;
- Make it SPICY! This is not a spicy curry. So to add heat, either use HOT curry powder, or add cayenne pepper or ground chilli powder;
- Make it richer – use coconut cream instead of milk. Or use more coconut milk and simmer to reduce for longer; and
- Add tomato paste to thicken the sauce a touch and make the sauce a darker colour. Use about 1.5 tbsp.
Serve it over rice, or even mashed potato or noodles. Basically anything that can be doused with that coconut curry sauce! ~ Nagi x
The Curry collection
- Chicken Tikka Masala and Butter Chicken
- Thai Red Curry or Green Curry – quick 30 minutes, or from scratch
- Massaman Curry and Beef Rendang – two of the most iconic curries in the world
- Biryani – the BEST chicken and rice in the world
- Dal – Indian lentil curry
- Indian Coconut Curry sauce – A stronger, more heavily spiced coconut curry sauce than this recipe
- View all Curry recipes
Watch how to make it
Easy Chicken Curry
Recipe video above. This is a Western style curry, and it’s the easiest chicken curry I know how to make with the least ingredients possible without sacrificing tastiness! Very mild, not spicy at all (assuming curry powder is mild).
- 1.5 tbsp oil ((vegetable, canola))
- 2 garlic cloves (, minced)
- 2 tsp ginger (, grated)
- 1/2 onion (, finely chopped)
- 500g / 1lb chicken thighs, boneless skinless, sliced ((Note 1))
- 2 tbsp curry powder ((Note 2))
- 270 ml / 1.25 cups coconut milk (, full fat (9 oz) (Note 3))
- 1.5 cups (375 ml) chicken stock low sodium
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 3/4 cup frozen peas
- 1/4 cup coriander / cilantro leaves (, chopped)
Heat oil in a skillet over medium high heat. Cook garlic, ginger and onion for 3 minutes until onion is translucent.
- Add chicken and cook until it it changes from pink to white.
- Add curry powder and cook for 2 minutes.
- Add coconut milk and chicken stock. Stir, lower heat to medium and cook, simmering rapidly, for 10 minutes until sauce reduces and thickens.
Add peas and salt. Cook for a further 2 minutes, then taste to see if it needs more salt. Garnish with coriander.
Serve over rice, noodles or mashed potato!
1. Chicken – thigh is best because it stays juicy even after the required simmering time.
- Chicken breast – sprinkle with 2 tsp extra curry powder plus pinch of salt and pepper. Sear first in a bit of oil then remove (no need to cook through). Follow recipe – fry off curry with just the onion. Add breast back in towards end of sauce simmering, just to finish cooking.
- Shrimp/prawns or fish pieces – as above with breast.
- Other proteins (beef, turkey, lamb, pork) – use a quick cooking cut that’s tender and juicy, slice or dice. Follow chicken breast steps.
- Vegetables – add into sauce based on cooking time.
2. Curry powder – any brand is fine, I use Clives and Keens. Use Mild for not spicy, Hot for spicy! Note: different brands have different saltiness, so taste sauce at end to see if it needs more salt.
3. Coconut milk – Full fat has better coconut flavour and is creamier. Light is ok but add 2 tsp cornflour mixed with splash of water (to thicken sauce slightly).
4. Nutrition per serving, excluding rice.
Life of Dozer
I forgot to share this when I published Gozleme! (Turkish stuffed flatbreads) I took them down to Jeff, a local who lives down at the dog park and he gave them a big thumbs up.
And there’s Dozer. Being shameless!!!