Coconut Chicken Curry in the Crockpot
This delicious Coconut Chicken Curry has a creamy coconut milk base, tender chicken, and savory veggies, all cooked right in your crockpot for a super easy dinner!
Coconut Chicken Curry
We love curry at our house. There is something about the sweet flavor with a little spice, yummy veggies over warm brown rice that says comfort food to me. All of my kids love it too! It has a rich flavor with familiar ingredients which is appealing even to picky eaters!
This recipe is perfect for those days when you don’t have a lot of time, but want to come home to a really great meal. I put my ingredients in the crockpot at 2:00pm, didn’t get home until 5:40pm and we were eating by 6:00pm!! I used my rice cooker to cook up brown rice, and it turned out perfect in just 20 minutes. We paired this with fresh pineapple and steamed pea pods for a super yummy, healthy and balanced meal.
How to Make Coconut Chicken Curry in the Crockpot
This recipe is easy and doesn’t take long using your crockpot. If you are in a real hurry, I also have Instant Pot instructions for you 🙂
- Peel and chop veggies and chicken. Chop onion, carrots and chicken into small uniform pieces. Mince garlic, and chop bell peppers into cubes or strips. Add everything to your slow curry with the veggies on bottom and chicken next.
- Make the sauce. In a medium bowl, whisk together tomato paste, coconut milk, salt, pepper, curry powder, and garam masala. Pour sauce over chicken and veggies, place lid on slow cooker.
- Cook. Cook on high for 3 -4 hours (or on low for 5-6 hours) until veggies are tender and chicken is no longer pink.
- About 1/2 hour before serving, cook rice according to the package directions.
- Serve curry over brown or white rice.
Instant Pot Instructions for Coconut Chicken Curry
- Peel and chop veggies and chicken. Chop onion, carrots and chicken into small uniform pieces. Mince garlic, and chop bell peppers into cubes or strips. Turn your Instant Pot to saute mode and add a couple of teaspoons of oil. Add your veggies to the pot and saute for a few minutes until the veggies begin to soften.
- Add the chicken, stir to combine and saute for 2 more minutes.
- Make the sauce. In a medium bowl, whisk together tomato paste, coconut milk, salt, pepper, curry powder, and garam masala. Pour sauce over chicken and veggies, place the lid on your Instant Pot.
- Cook. Set to manual, high pressure for 4 minutes. Once the Instant Pot has completed the 4 minutes, let it natural pressure release for 10 minutes. Let remaining pressure out and carefully open the lid.
- Give the curry a stir, and then serve or warm rice.
Tips and Variations for making Delicious Coconut Chicken Curry
- To save time, you can buy pre-trimmed chicken stew meat from your butcher. It is already cut into bite-size pieces and so no prep required!
- Don’t open the crockpot while it is cooking. Every time you open the lid, it loses a lot of heat and will increase cooking time.
- Put the veggies on the bottom. Layer in this order: Carrots, sweet potatoes, onions, peppers. This helps the veggies that take longer cook all the way through.
- If you want to add more spice you can do a couple of things: 1) Add more curry powder 2) Chop a few jalapenos with the seeds and add to the veggie mix.
- You can find Garam Masala by the spices at most grocery stores. If you can’t find it, you can make your own by mixing cumin + allspice. 1 part cumin to 1/4 part allspice. Garam Masala is warm with hints of cinnamon, cloves and peppercorns.
- Vegetarian Option – instead of chicken, add chickpeas with the vegetable mix. Also, cauliflower is a great option for a heartier bite.
What Other Veggies Can I Add To Coconut Curry?
Curry goes well with lots of veggies! This recipe calls for carrots, onions, and bell peppers. Other veggies that would be good are:
- Green peas
- Pumpkin, butternut squash, or sweet potato cubes
- Bamboo shoots
We love introducing our kids to new flavors and help them develop the ability to try new foods. This Coconut Chicken Curry recipe is a great way to introduce them to different flavors, while still having familiar elements.
We hope you enjoy!
More Favorite Curry Dinners
- Chicken and Sweet Potato Curry – a delicious and easy milk curry recipe that makes a great family meal!
- Kids Curry with Chicken and Lentils – this is a delicious healthy curry packed with protein and veggies.
- Indian Spinach Curry – this veggie fill curry is packed with spinach and makes a delicious and nutrient powerhouse sauce!
- Thai Chicken Curry with Quinoa – this delicious coconuty curry is served over quinoa instead of rice.
Coconut Chicken Curry
- 1 medium onion diced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 medium carrots chopped
- 1 medium sweet potato
- 1 medium green bell pepper chopped
- 1 medium red bell pepper chopped
- 1 pound chicken breast cubed
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 1 can coconut milk 13.5 ounce, can use lite
- 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper 3
- 3 teaspoons curry powder
- 3 teaspoons garam masala
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1-2 tablespoons lime juice added at the end of cooking
- Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a saute pan over medium high heat. Dice onion and add to your pan with the minced garlic. Saute until the onions have softened, 3-4 minutes. Chop carrots, sweet potato and bell peppers into small uniform pieces. Cut chicken into bite sized cubes. Add everything to your crockpot with the veggies on bottom and chicken next.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together tomato paste, coconut milk, salt, pepper, curry powder, garam masala and brown sugar. Pour the sauce over chicken and veggies and put the lid on your crockpot.
- Cook on high for 3 -4 hours (or on low for 5-6 hours) until veggies are tender and chicken is no longer pink.
- When curry is done cooking, add lime juice and stir everything together.
- Serve warm over brown or white rice.
Instant Pot Instructions
- Chop onions, carrots, sweet potatoes and bell peppers small uniform pieces. Cut chicken into bite sized cubes. Turn your Instant Pot to saute mode and add a couple of teaspoons of oil. Add your veggies and minced garlic to the pot and saute for a few minutes until the veggies begin to soften.
- Add the chicken, stir to combine and saute for 2 more minutes.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together tomato paste, coconut milk, salt, pepper, curry powder, garam masala and brown sugar. Pour sauce over chicken and veggies, place the lid on your Instant Pot.
- Set to manual, high pressure for 4 minutes. Once the Instant Pot has completed the 4 minutes, let it natural pressure release for 10 minutes. Let remaining pressure out and carefully open the lid.
- Add lime juice and then stir everything together. Serve over warm rice.
I'm a registered dietitian, mom of 4, avid lover of food and strong promoter of healthy habits. Here you will find lots of delicious recipes full of fruits and veggies, tips for getting your kids to eat better and become intuitive eaters and lots of resources for feeding your family.Learn More about Natalie
Mmm sounds good! Where do you get garam masala?
Becky- It’s by the spices. I also found a “recipe” if your store doesn’t carry it: http://allrecipes.com/recipe/garam-masala-spice-blend/
Oh my gosh, this looks great! And so easy!
I would also add ginger. This sounds delicous!!!!
I found the brand in the picture at walmart
I found the brand in the picture at walmart
What does garam taste like? Nervous about new flavors.
What does garam taste like? Nervous about different flavors
Thank you! I love making curry and this is a simple recipe I can prep the night before and have done when I get home! Nicole Ziemba, if you look at the link to make your own Garam Masada you can get an idea of the taste and use less of any flavors you don’t like!
Thanks for the recipe! Do you have any suggestions for a bell pepper substitute? I can’t eat them.
Tracy- You could just leave out the bell peppers.. You could add extra carrots though!
Nicole- it’s hard to say what it tastes like.. you should just try it!
Thank you for the recipe. We tried it and it wasn’t quite what we expected. The coconut milk all cooked out and so it was very tomatoey. Next time I think I might try just baking it in the over and adding the sauce as last minute as possible so it stays creamy. I tasted the sauce before I added it and it was fantastic! It would have been great had all the milk not cooked out.
Trying it tonight 🙂
Maybe some zucchini
Thank you for your sharing. I want to post quickly but I do not know the way. Your article helps me, thank you so much….
I love eggplants in curry sauce and sweet potatoes in small chunks would be wonderful in this too. A nice versatile recipe that could use different proteins to keep it from being boring. Very nice.
What a great easy weeknight dinner! This is on my list to try.
Good idea Lisa! That might make it more creamy for sure.
I loved this recipe..I have gone mad. I didn’t try this way, but next time I am going to make this recipe. The flavour of coconut is yummy.
I agree the coconut milk taste disappears and the sauce is amazing when fresh. I feel it is the peppers that take over. We didn’t care for it but I want to make it with no peppers.
Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wished to mention that I have truly enjoyed browsing your blog posts.
After all I will be subscribing on your rss feed and I’m hoping you write again soon!
My three year old devoured this. Thank you for this easy delicious healthy recipe.
Thank you for this easy recipe! It’s a nice basic from which to customize for my family. It’s in the crock now, minus peppers and onions, with what I had left in the jar of tomato sauce and homemade graham masala. Oh and chicken drumsticks! So a hodgepodge of substitutions but it smells lovely! We need the spice today since mom and dad have a mega head cold.
Can this recipe be frozen for later?
Finally tried this recipe! So easy and delicious. Made my own garam masala mix. Recipe was a little bland for my husband so just added some hot sauce.
Awesome Recipe I tried last night we all enjoyed the food Thanks 🙂
This was good, but needed a little something more at the end, so I added a spoonful of honey. It brightened it up a bit and everyone enjoyed it at my house. I also did not taste much coconut, though the sauce was a fine texture.
I can never find tomato paste, is tomato puree ok to use
I made this today since my husband loves Indian food so much and I have only had a handful of times. I took the advice of adding a jalapeno and double the curry powder…plus a little extra coconut milk. My husband loves it and thinks it tastes authentic. Thank you for the recipe! I will definitely make again.
I used a tin of chopped tomatoes and also a tablespoon of ground coriander. It tastes good
Is this fat content for real?! Wondering whether that is a typo or if there is that much per serving.
Hi Sarah! It’s fixed now! We just had the wrong kind of coconut milk listed. Thanks for bringing that to our attention!
I made it last night, not slow cooked but speed- cooked it. Kids loved it! I just chopped all up and added in the deep pan – 30 min later it was all ready to serve! We live in France so we don’t have all the ingredients, but I’m used to improvise!
Easy, tasty recipe. Wouldn’t change a thing although my husband commented that it was on the spicy side.
Lot of work without much flavor I’m afraid. Would recommend you use chicken thighs rather than breasts.
I didn’t add the garlic and it still turned out great
What is the serving size of curry (minus rice)? 1/2 cup?
This recipe is absolutely divine. Didnt change a thing other than a little more salt.
So excited to try this! What time would you recommend for an Instant Pot conversion? Thanks!
My guess would be around 9 minutes if your chicken is thawed.
Freezes very well. May have actually tasted better after being frozen
All my family absolutely loved it! Thank you ?
Yum! Great recipe idea. I varied it a little …. I added zucchini, and mushroom, hardly any capsicum, and a few cherry tomatoes that needed eating up! Also when I poured the sauce over the ingredients I thought “mmmm that doesn’t look ‘wet’ enough… I think it needs a tin of chopped tomatoes,”so I added one of those too! OMG…. it was Devine!! My 3 kids(4,7&8) had two bowls each!!! Thanks so much for the idea!! ????
So glad you enjoyed it, thanks for sharing Ruth!
What would you add to make it more spicy?
Hi Debra, you can add a pinch of cayenne pepper to the whole pot, or add some Sriracha sauce at the table if you like. 🙂
This is absolutely delicious! It is not an all day slow cooker recipe…followed the directions and cooked on low for 4 hours…soooo good!
So glad you liked it! Thanks for sharing! 🙂
Lovely recipe but I think I needed more heat: I added a hot pepper. I added an extra can of coconut milk and, what I also found was that the veggies were overcooked. For me, the next time I use your recipe [thank you for your recipe, by the way] I will put veggies in for the last twenty minutes to half hour so that they have some crunch. I added dry apricots. They too, should have been added at the very end.
All in all, I love it better on day two! Thank you,
I used the same seasonings + 1 tsp grated ginger, 3 cloves garlic, and added cayenne pepper. So bland and not thick enough for my liking. Cooked for 5-6 hrs slow and let it cool for 10-15 prior to eating to allow more thickening, but that didn’t do the trick.
We had this for supper tonight. Very easy and quick to prepare. Smelled and tasted amazing. We found the sauce a bit thin but still good. Do you have any tips to thicken it up a bit? Also, what could be used to make it vegetarian?
Try stirring in a cornstarch slurry at the end to thicken up the sauce. And we like to replace the chicken with chickpeas for a vegetarian option!