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easy curry recipe placed on rice with roti in the background
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4.83 from 52 votes

Easy Chicken Curry Recipe

I’ve found a hack to making the most delicious Indian Chicken Curry in just 30 minutes! I love this recipe because it has all those warm spicy Indian flavors, but there are only two spice blends called for (yellow curry and garam masala). The curry sauce has a great depth of flavor, and it’s so easy to make. Perfect for a weeknight!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Servings: 6
Calories: 340kcal
Author: Karen


  • 2 tablespoons yellow curry powder
  • 1 & 1/2 teaspoons garam masala
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper more or less to taste
  • 1 & 1/2 pounds chicken breast chopped
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 13-ounce can coconut milk
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 1 jalapeno seeded and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon garlic smashed and minced
  • 1 tablespoon ginger peeled and then minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice about half a lemon
  • 1 cup chicken broth*
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
  • 1/2 cup cilantro chopped


  • In a large saute 12-inch skillet, toast the spices in a dry pan. This 2 minute process wakes up their flavor so much! Add 2 tablespoons curry powder, 1 and 1/2 teaspoons garam masala, and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper to the dry pan and set over medium heat. Let toast for 1-2 minutes, keeping a careful eye on it. Don't walk away and let it burn. Continually stir the dry spices so they don't scorch. After about 90-120 seconds, remove from heat and scrape into a small bowl.
  • Chop 1 and 1/2 pounds chicken breast into bite size chunks, 1-2 inch pieces. Sprinkle with 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Add the raw chicken pieces to a medium bowl.
  • Sprinkle the chicken in the bowl with HALF of the toasted spices. Stir to mix it together and get all the chicken coated.
  • Open the can of coconut milk and dump it on the chicken. We're going to let it marinate for a hot minute while we chop our veggies.
  • Chop the onion and jalapeno. Make sure you get all the seeds and membranes out of the jalapeno unless you like it really spicy!
  • Smash, peel, and mince the garlic, you will need 3-4 cloves to get 1 tablespoon. (Or you can use the jarred garlic if you're in a rush) Peel the ginger with a spoon (it's the best way!) and mince up 1 tablespoon (save the rest of your ginger in the freezer for next time!)
  • Add 3 tablespoons olive oil to the same large skillet from before. Set over medium high heat.
  • When the oil is hot and shimmery, add the chopped onion and jalapeno. Add all the remaining toasted spices to the onions. Let saute for 4-6 minutes, until the onions are translucent. If the spices are starting to stick to the pan, add a little more oil.
  • Add the minced garlic and ginger and saute for 1 minute until fragrant. Do not let it brown, turn down the heat if necessary, or add a bit more oil.
  • Add 1 tablespoon lemon juice to the pan (about half a lemon).
  • Add the coconut milk and chicken to the pan. Add 1 cup chicken broth and stir. Turn the heat back up to medium high if you moved it down.
  • Let the mixture come to a gentle boil over medium high heat, then reduce the heat to a simmer over medium low heat. Make sure there is a slow bubble happening.
  • In a small bowl, add 2 tablespoons water and 1 tablespoon cornstarch. Stir it together until there are no lumps (add a bit more cold water if necessary). Add the cornstarch slurry to the chicken curry and stir.
  • Let the curry simmer on the lowest heat you can while still maintaining a slow bubble. The curry is done when the chicken is cooked through, it should take about 5-8 minutes depending on how large your chicken pieces are. Test the chicken by splitting a piece with your wooden spoon to see if it's cooked. Once the chicken is cooked, remove from heat immediately so that it doesn't get overcooked and tough.
  • Chop about 1/2 cup of cilantro and stir into the curry.
  • Serve hot with Jasmine rice or Basmati rice, Homemade Naan, or Buttery Roti!


*I used 1 cup water and 1 teaspoon Better Than Bouillon Chicken Base. I love that stuff. So easy to keep on hand in the fridge.


Calories: 340kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 73mg | Sodium: 674mg | Potassium: 669mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 170IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 37mg | Iron: 3mg