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Indian Chicken Coconut Curry

This curry can be made mild or spicy, according to the taste of your family or guests. The kind of curry powder you use will largely influence how strong tasting it is: ones from the regular spice section tend to be milder, while an imported curry powder from the international aisle will have a bit more of a kick.
Cuisine Indian
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4 servings


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 large yellow onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 pounds chicken thighs, cubed
  • 1 small can tomato paste
  • 1 15-oz can coconut milk, full fat
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 2 teaspoons tandoori masala (see recipe link below)
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala (I prefer Frontier brand)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional, dependent on heat level of curry powder)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper


  • Heat oil and butter in a large skillet or medium Dutch oven, preferably enameled cast-iron. Saute onions until they begin to become translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the chicken pieces and saute until golden brown.
  • Meanwhile, blend spices, tomato paste, and coconut milk in a food processor. Add to the chicken in the pan and turn down the heat to low. Simmer for 45 minutes, partially covered, until the chicken is tender and cooked through and the sauce has reduced slightly.
  • Serve over cooked basmati rice or cauliflower rice.


For an excellent homemade tandoori masala, try this blog post. I usually omit the fenugreek leaves but it turns out just as well.