Thai Chicken Coconut Curry – An EASY one-skillet curry that’s ready in 20 minutes and is layered with so many fabulous flavors!! Low-cal, low-carb, and HEALTHY but tastes like comfort food!!
A few months ago I made Sweet Potato and Chickpea Coconut Curry and since then have fallen in love with all things Thai curry.
This is an easy Thai chicken curry that’s made in one skillet, ready in 20 minutes, and is naturally gluten-free. According to the computer-generated nutrition stats, there is only 141 calories and 4 carbs per serving – no rice or naan included.
With cold weather upon us, nothing is better than diving into a bowl of this hearty yet healthy comfort food that’s layered with flavors. I could just drink the coconut milk-based sauce.
The curry is savory, salty, there’s natural sweetness from the sweet Vidalia onions, carrots, and coconut milk. There’s perfect acid balance from lime juice and a very gentle heat from the Thai red curry paste.
Thai red curry paste adds a richer and smoother flavor profile than curry powder (Indian) does, but if all you have is curry powder, go for it knowing that the flavor of Thai versus Indian curry products is vastly different and your dish won’t taste like mine.
As with all curry pastes and powders, they vary in intensity and everyone’s preferences for spice and heat vary, so adjust to taste. I used 2 rounded tablespoons and I wouldn’t call it spicy at all but very flavorful. My 10-year-old wasn’t at all phased by it but we like spicy food.
If you have extra veggies you want to incorporate such as cauliflower, bell peppers, tomatoes, or edamame, add them when you add the coconut milk and carrots.
2 to 3 tablespoons coconut oil (olive oil may be substituted)
1 medium/large sweet Vidalia or yellow onion, diced small
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast, diced into bite-sized pieces
3 cloves garlic, finely minced or pressed
2 to 3 teaspoons ground ginger or 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, finely chopped
2 teaspoons ground coriander
one 13-ounce can coconut milk (I used lite; full-fat will deliver a richer/thicker result)
1 to 1 1/2 cups shredded carrots
1 to 3 tablespoons Thai red curry paste, or to taste (curry powder may be substituted, to taste)
1 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
about 3 cups fresh spinach leaves
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 to 2 tablespoons brown sugar, optional and to taste
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped for garnishing (basil may be substituted)
rice, quinoa, or naan, optional for serving
To a large skillet, add the oil, onion, and sauté over medium-high heat until the onion begins to soften about 5 minutes; stir intermittently.
Add the chicken and cook for about 5 minutes, or until chicken is done; flip and stir often to ensure even cooking.
Add the garlic, ginger, coriander, and cook for about 1 minute, or until fragrant; stir frequently.
Add the coconut milk, carrots, Thai curry paste, salt, pepper, and stir to combine. Reduce the heat to medium, and allow mixture to gently boil for about 5 minutes, or until liquid volume has reduced as much as desired and thickens slightly.
Add the spinach, lime juice, and stir to combine. Cook until spinach has wilted and is tender, about 1 to 2 minutes. Taste and optionally add brown sugar, additional curry paste, salt, pepper, etc. to taste.
Evenly sprinkle with the cilantro and serve immediately. Curry is best warm and fresh but will keep airtight in the fridge for up to 1 week.