This chicken curry with coconut milk is a pleasantly spicy dish that takes minutes to make! Low in carbs but full of flavor, pair it with some keto naan for the ultimate keto dinner!
Quick and easy chicken dinners are my jam.
Since following a lower carb diet, chicken has been one of my go-to protein options. It’s quick to prepare and extremely affordable. Some of my go-to recipes include peanut butter chicken, a stir-fry, and this chicken curry with coconut milk.
Is curry keto?
Traditional curries are not always keto friendly, as the sauces, thickeners, and vegetables used (often potatoes and carrots) are high carb. However, curries made with coconut milk are lower in carbs, and with a few tweaks, can easily be made keto friendly!
Why this chicken coconut curry will be a low carb favorite-
- It uses a homemade curry powder. Using the perfect blend of spices is key to the best curry!
- Ready in 10 minutes. Unlike other curry recipes, this one doesn’t require hours upon hours of simmering…and it tastes just as good!
- Low carb and healthy. Per serving, there are just 3 grams of net carbs and uses just healthy and wholesome ingredients.
What I love about this dish is that you can customize it to your preferred spice levels. Curries have a stigma to be overly spicy, but this is far from the truth. It hits the taste buds perfectly with the right amount of spice.
What you’ll need to make this keto curry
For the curry powder.
- Ground coriander
- Garlic powder
- Mustard powder
For the curry.
- Olive oil– Any oil can be used.
- Garlic, onion, and ginger– Key ingredients in any good curry to add flavor to the base.
- Chicken broth– Choose a good quality broth with no filler ingredients in it.
- Canned tomatoes– Packed in their own juices with no added sugar or spices. The tomatoes will be blended down to a smooth consistency.
- Chicken breast– Skinless and boneless fillets. You can also use chicken thighs if you have those on hand.
- Xanthan gum OR cornstarch– Optional, but thickens the curry. Opt for xanthan gum to keep this dish keto friendly.
- Coconut milk– The key ingredient! Opt for full fat coconut milk from a can, NOT from a carton or bottle.
How to make chicken curry with coconut milk
Start by mixing your curry powder ingredients until combined. Next, add the canned tomatoes into a blender and blend until completely smooth.
Now, add the olive oil into a non-stick pan and place it over medium heat. Once hot, add the garlic, onion, and ginger, along with the curry powder mix, and cook for 1-2 minutes, until fragrant. Add the chicken broth and blended tomatoes and bring to a boil. Once it boils, reduce the heat and let it simmer for five minutes.
Once the curry has thickened, add the chicken and let everything simmer until the chicken is no longer pink. If you’d prefer a thicker curry, add the xanthan gum or cornstarch and mix in very well, to ensure there are no clumps.
Finally, stir through the coconut milk and remove the pan off the heat, before serving immediately.
Can I use coconut milk from a carton or bottle?
Coconut milk from a can is the preferred, as it is naturally thicker and has a higher fat content than coconut from a carton or bottle. It is the preferred option for curries and lends a much richer flavor.
Tips to make the best recipe
- Ensure the chicken is cut into similar sized pieces, so they cook evenly.
- This curry does not have many vegetables in it, as it lets the chicken stand out. If you want to add some extra nutrients, add some cauliflower, baby spinach, or some diced zucchini.
- Whisk together the coconut milk before adding it to the curry, in case there is some separation.
Storing, freezing, and reheating tips
- To store: Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator, covered, for up to one week.
- To freeze: Place the cooked and cooled curry in an airtight container and store it in the freezer for up to six months.
- Reheating: Microwave the curry for 30-40 seconds or in a non-stick saucepan.
What to serve with coconut chicken curry
While classic favorites like naan and rice aren’t keto friendly, there are plenty of other options you can pair the curry with which are just as good.
Some low carb options include cauliflower rice, keto naan and keto bread (we also love rolls, buns, or tortillas).
More chicken recipes to try
Frequently Asked Questions
Adding some xanthan gum or cornstarch will thicken the curry considerably. If you choose to use xanthan gum, only add a tiny amount as a little goes a very long way.
Yes, if you don’t have the right spices on hand, you can use a pre-made blend. Choose a high quality one that has no added sugar or thickeners in them.
Coconut milk should always be stirred through at the very end of the cooking process. Adding it in too early will see it separate and cause the curry to become quite sloppy.
Coconut milk is always the better option for curries as it is consistent amongst all brands. Coconut cream can sometimes be too watery or too thick and often requires refrigeration for optimal results.
Add 1/2 teaspoon (or more) of cayenne pepper to the curry powder mixture. Be wary that the heat intensifies as the curry simmers, so be conservative.
For the curry spice mix
- 2 teaspoons ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
For the curry
- 3/4 cup canned tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small onion diced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon ginger minced
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 1/2 lbs chicken breast chopped into half inch chunks
- 1 teaspoon xanthan gum Optional *See notes
- 1/3 cup coconut milk from a can
In a small bowl, mix together the curry powder ingredients. Add the canned diced tomatoes into a blender and blend until silky smooth.
In a large skillet, add the olive oil. Once hot, add the onion and cook for several minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, and curry spice blend and pan fry for 1-2 minutes.
Add the chicken broth and blended diced tomatoes and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce to low, cover and let everything simmer for 5 minutes. Add the chicken and simmer until cooked through.
If the curry isn’t thick enough, stir through the xanthan gum very well, ensuring it is fully mixed in. Stir through the coconut milk and remove the pan off the heat. Serve immediately.
TO STORE: Leftovers can be stored in the refrigerator, covered, for up to one week.
TO FREEZE: Place the cooked and cooled curry in an airtight container and store it in the freezer for up to six months.
TO REHEAT: Microwave the curry for 30-40 seconds or in a non-stick saucepan.
Serving: 1serving | Calories: 227kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 26g | Fat: 11g | Sodium: 529mg | Potassium: 599mg | Fiber: 3g | Vitamin A: 105IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 34mg | Iron: 2mg | NET CARBS: 3g