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Yellow Thai Coconut Chicken Curry

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Thai Coconut Chicken Curry is a one-pot meal that boasts wonderful flavor! Tender chunks of chicken, a rich and creamy coconut curry sauce, and a blend of Thai-inspired aromatics give this dish the same taste and texture of takeout from your favorite Thai restaurant (but better and better for you, too!).

Coconut cream adds a rich, creaminess that is hard to beat. It is a standout ingredient in this yellow Thai curry and adds a lightly sweet coconut flavor that pairs perfectly with the ginger, lime, and Thai basil leaves.

overhead view of a serving of Thai coconut chicken Curry on rice

When it comes to Thai food, I immediately think of curry. Thai curry is unlike other curries because of its sweetness, reliance on coconut milk, and overall brighter flavor.

Thai curries tend to be more soup-like and are often served with an abundance of fresh ingredients– think cilantro, basil, lime, and vegetables cooked into the sauce. Meanwhile, other curries (like Indian curry) are usually more thick and heavily spiced. Both are delicious and extra satisfying served over rice.

If you enjoy curry, we know you’ll love this chicken curry with coconut milk! And we have other curry recipes for you, too! Check out our Tiger Prawn Yellow Curry , our Salmon with Thai Yellow Curry, and our Pineapple-Chicken Salad with Curry Dressing!

Our Thai Coconut Chicken Curry is:

  • a quick and easy, one-pot meal!
  • healthy and delicious
  • a low-carb and high-protein option, especially if you swap rice for cauliflower rice
  • full of flavor!

The Ingredient List:

The main ingredient that gives this Thai coconut chicken curry its incredible curry flavor is our Thai yellow curry paste. It is a from-scratch curry paste that can be made in about 20 minutes and one jar will give you enough servings for at least 10 different curry recipes!

If you don’t want to make your own curry paste you can purchase it in most grocery stores or online.

Here is the full list of ingredients:

  • Coconut or vegetable oil
  • Boneless and skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • Salt and pepper
  • Yellow onions, diced
  • Grated or minced garlic cloves
  • Fresh grated ginger
  • Thai yellow curry paste
  • Red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
  • Coconut cream, full-fat and unsweetened
  • Fish sauce
  • Lime juice and lime wedges
  • Toasted sesame oil (optional)
  • Thai basil leaves, torn
  • Chopped roasted peanuts (for garnish)
  • Thai basil sprigs (for garnish)
Thai Yellow curry paste in a jar
Homemade Thai Yellow curry paste

Coconut Chicken Curry, Step by Step:

The full Thai coconut chicken curry recipe can be found at the bottom of the page, but here’s a quick breakdown of the steps involved:

  1. Brown the chicken: Sauté the chicken pieces for 4-5 minutes until lightly browned and transfer it to a plate.
  2. Make the curry sauce: Reduce the heat and add the remaining oil and onions. Cook, stirring frequently until the onions are translucent. Add the garlic, ginger, and curry paste, cooking for 1 minute. Stir in the reserved chicken and the bell pepper. Cook for another couple of minutes. Pour in the coconut cream, chicken broth and fish sauce. Simmer the curry for 15 minutes on low- this will help the chicken become tender.
  3. Garnish and serve: Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the fresh lime juice, toasted sesame oil (if using) and the torn Thai basil. Spoon the yellow Thai curry over hot Jasmine rice and garnish with chopped peanuts and lime wedges.

Tips and FAQs for the Best Results:

  • This Thai coconut curry is also delicious served over Thai rice noodles or other varieties of rice like black rice, sprouted brown rice, and our Instant Pot Basil Lime Rice.
  • Veggies like snow peas, baby corn, and carrot slices are all great vegetable choices for this dish.
  • How long will curry leftovers keep? Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. You can freeze the yellow Thai curry for up to 6 months.
  • Does coconut curry taste like coconut? The coconut milk adds a very subtle, lightly sweetened coconut flavor but it is not overpowering.
Close up view of Thai coconut chicken curry with a fork

Our Thai coconut chicken curry recipe is cozy, comforting and ready in under 30 minutes! The bold Thai flavor is something we crave year-round, and we love that this coconut curry is easy to prep right at home. Enjoy!

Some Other Recipes We Are Sure You Will Love:

  • Oven Roasted Chicken Thighs: A glaze of olive oil, honey and seasoning adds a crispness to these baked chicken thighs. These oven roasted chicken thighs have a delicious, succulent flavor that is simply hard to beat!
  • Pan Seared Lamb Chops: An easy, special occasion treat! Tender lamb chops soaked in a flavorful garlic marinade, then seared in a hot skillet to a perfect medium-rare with pan juices spooned on top.
  • Sausage Stuffed Acorn Squash: This stuffed squash dinner is a full meal in it’s own little squash-bowl! Easy, quick and powerfully delicious! Perfect for a busy week-night dinner.

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overhead view of a serving of Thai coconut chicken Curry on rice

Thai Coconut Chicken Curry

Yield: 6 Servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

Coconut cream adds a rich, wonderful flavor to our yellow Thai coconut chicken curry dinner. This flavorful curry dish is made in just one pot in a quick 30 minutes and is as good as your favorite Asian restaurant!


  • 3 tablespoons coconut or vegetable oil, divided
  • 2-1/2 pounds boneless, skinless-boneless chicken thighs cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon white or black pepper
  • 2 large yellow onions, diced
  • 4-5 garlic cloves, grated or minced
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 3-4 tablespoons Thai yellow curry paste
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
  • 1 can (14.5 oz.) coconut cream, full fat, unsweetened
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons torn Thai basil leaves
  • Lime wedges
  • Chopped roasted peanuts for garnish
  • Thai basil sprigs for garnish


  1. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high.  Add half of the chicken, sprinkle with salt/pepper and sauté for 4-5 minutes until lightly browned.  Transfer to a plate and repeat with the remaining chicken.
  2. Reduce the heat to medium-low, add the remaining oil and onions.  Cook for 4-5 minutes, stirring frequently, until they are translucent; add the garlic, ginger, Thai yellow curry paste.  Cook for 1 minute.  Stir in the reserved chicken and the red bell pepper, cook for 1-2 minutes. stirring to coat the chicken.
  3. Pour in the coconut cream, the chicken broth and fish sauce, stirring to combine.  
  4. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes until the chicken is tender.  
  5. Remove from the heat and stir in the lime juice, toasted sesame oil and the torn bits of Thai basil.
  6. Serve:  Serve over hot Jasmine rice and garnished with chopped peanuts and lime wedges.


  • Rice can be substituted with Thai rice noodles
  • A variety of vegetables such as snow peas, baby corn, or carrot slices are good choices for this dish.
  • Leftovers will keep stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Servings Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 386Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 14gCholesterol: 190mgSodium: 1574mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 2gSugar: 5gProtein: 39g

Nutrition information is a guideline only, is calculated automatically by third-party software, and absolute accuracy is not guaranteed.

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Wednesday 7th of July 2021

I love Thai cuisine. That coconut gravy is to die for and I would ask for more of your perfectly fluffy rice!

Pat Nyswonger

Wednesday 7th of July 2021

Thanks, Angie....this is so easy to put together and tastes so good! I think I will plan it for dinner again this week, lol

John / Kitchen Riffs

Wednesday 7th of July 2021

Love curry! And although I make mainly Indian-style curries, I do enjoy Thai curries. They tend to be loaded with flavor, and yours certainly is not an exception. Lovely dish - thanks.

Pat Nyswonger

Wednesday 7th of July 2021

Hi, John....I guess I am the opposite as I do more Thai curries than Indian curries but both have their individual flavors and I enjoy both styles. Thanks for the comments..:)

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