Thai Chicken Curry

Last Updated on

This delicious coconut Thai chicken curry is bursting with flavor from cumin, coriander, mustard seeds, ginger, curry, turmeric powder and lots of vegetables. Red bell pepper, pineapple and lime juice add freshness and chopped peanuts make for a crunchy finish. Scroll down for step-by-step photos on how to make this Thai chicken curry.

thai chicken curry

This post was originally published on May 19, 2015. I have updated it with more information and photos to make it better and to share it with you again today.

How to make Thai chicken curry:

You start by boiling a roughly chopped yellow onion in a mix of water and chicken broth. Once the onion is cooked, you process it into a puree in the food processor. The onion puree not only adds flavor to this dish, it also acts as the thickener for this curry and creates a really smooth texture.

Next, you set the onion puree aside and get out your Dutch oven or cast iron pan. (Either one will work but the Dutch oven will do a better job at keeping in any splatter).

You heat vegetable oil and then fry the seeds. Once the seeds start to sizzle, you carefully add the onion puree and fry it for about 15 minutes.

Next you add garlic, ginger, turmeric and curry powder.

how to make Thai chicken curry step by step

Once you’ve mixed everything together and it’s well combined you add in the remaining ingredients: chicken, tomato paste, coconut milk, soy sauce, bell pepper and pineapple. Bring the mix to a boil and simmer for 10 minutes.

how to make Thai chicken curry step by step

To finish the dish, sprinkle on a bit of lime juice and top with chopped peanuts, green onion and cilantro.

Use high quality curry powder:

What’s really important for this recipe is that you use high-quality curry powder from a dedicated spice shop. High quality spices make a huge difference in any dish but I find that that is especially true for curries and for curry powder.

The difference in quality between curry powders from different sources can literally be night and day and regular grocery stores are simply not up to the task, in my experience.

Is this Thai chicken curry spicy?

The level of spiciness in this Thai chicken curry is determined by the yellow curry powder. I recommend you get mild curry powder for a mild curry and medium for a curry that has a bit of a kick to it.

How should I serve this curry?

Garnish the curry with fresh cilantro, chopped green onion and chopped peanuts and serve over rice with a fresh slice of lime on the side.

More delicious curry recipes:

thai chicken curry
Print Recipe
5 from 5 votes

Thai Chicken Curry

This delicious coconut Thai chicken curry is bursting with flavor from cumin, coriander, mustard seeds, ginger, curry, turmeric powder and lots of vegetables. Red bell pepper, pineapple and lime juice add freshness and chopped peanuts make for a crunchy finish.
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Total Time55 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Thai
Keyword: coconut curry, thai chicken curry
Servings: 2
Calories: 982kcal


  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon whole yellow mustard seeds
  • 1/8 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
  • 1/8 teaspoon whole coriander seeds
  • 1 garlic clove, pressed or minced
  • 1 teaspoon powdered ginger
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 tablespoon high-quality yellow curry powder
  • 2 medium-sized boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces and sprinkled with salt
  • 1.5 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 can coconut milk (13.5 ounces)
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 can pineapple chunks (8 ounces), drained
  • lime juice
  • chopped peanuts
  • chopped green onion
  • chopped cilantro


  • Peel the onion and chop into 2-inch chunks.
  • Put the chopped onion into a pot along with chicken broth and 1/2 cup of water. Boil without a lid until almost all liquid has evaporated.
  • Puree the onion in a food processor. Set aside.
  • Heat the oil in a cast iron pan or a Dutch oven until shimmering.
  • Add mustard, cumin and coriander seeds to the oil and fry on medium-low heat for 2 – 3 minutes. (The seeds need to sizzle but be careful not to burn them.)
  • Carefully add the onion puree.
  • Fry the onion puree for 15 minutes on medium heat.
  • Add garlic, ginger, turmeric and curry and stir until you have a homogeneous mix.
  • Add the chicken pieces and fry for about 2 minutes.
  • Add tomato paste, coconut milk and soy sauce and mix well.
  • Add bell pepper and pineapple, bring to a boil, then simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Sprinkle with lime juice to taste and add peanuts, green onion and cilantro as garnish and serve with rice.


Calories: 982kcal

Made this recipe? It would be awesome if you could leave a rating. No need to type anything, just tap or click the stars in the recipe card and you’re done. Thanks!

Want to save this recipe idea for later? Pin it:

thai chicken curry


  1. Nancy Perine says:

    Hi Nicole ~~~ I had lots of fun wandering through your web site. Your Thai Chicken Curry caught my eye. For the longest time I wouldn’t even think of making anything with curry in it … that is, until I discoverd mild curry powder. I always have checken breasts & thighs in the freezer and would you believe I even had ALL the ingredients on hand .. even the peanuts! I used Maui onion and green onions and cilantro from our herb garden. Cooked all in my dutch oven. IT WAS YUMMY! Thanks so much for sharing!

  2. Shelley says:

    Just made it tonight. Easy to make and delicious. I used fresh ginger instead of powdered and served with stir fried bok choy. Thank you for a great recipe.

    • Nicole B. says:

      Thanks, Kevin! Glad you enjoyed the video too, I really did like the atmosphere they created in that. The curry is probably even better with fresh pineapple but it’s more or less impossible to get fresh and ripe tropical fruit up here in the mountains…

      • Kevin | keviniscooking says:

        We’ve often thought of moving to Portland and greener pastures, but find California has spoiled me in weather and food availability. There’s a give and take for everything right? Plus, we get to visit family in Portland yearly to get our love of the green and mountains in!

        • Nicole B. says:

          Isn’t that the truth indeed!:) But generally the CO mountains are as close to a perfect location for me as is gets and I can (mostly) overlook the lack of fresh juicy fruit in the winter (and the occasional 5 feet of snow in May…).

Leave a Reply

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