Home Healthy meals Your Cheapest and Fastest Ticket to Thailand: Coconut Curry

Your Cheapest and Fastest Ticket to Thailand: Coconut Curry

by Contributing Author

This creamy, slightly sweet and spicy coconut curry The recipe is inspired by a curry I had on a trip to Thailand a few years ago. Made with easily available ingredients, this version is packed with rich Thai flavor, has a creamy texture and is even vegan.

The best coconut curry recipe to make in a bowl

Why You’ll Love This Easy Curry Recipe

  • warm and bold taste. Thai cuisine is complex and fragrant, with sweet, spicy and zesty flavors wafting from ingredients such as chilies, citrus, garlic, fish sauce and soy sauce. From Shrimp Pad Thai to Panang Curry, we love it!
  • high speed + one pot. This is a 30-minute meal, and if you discount the rice, it’s also a hot pot for one person. That means less time washing the dishes and more time eating the best coconut curry ever.
  • pantry ingredients. The ingredients for this recipe are reasonable and easy to find wherever you live. With Thai red curry paste (widely available in grocery stores across the US), canned chickpeas, canned coconut milk, and a bag of frozen veggies on hand, you’ll always have this recipe (or massaman curry!) on hand. You can make .
  • Saucy. Sauce is one of the real pleasures of curry. Creamy coconut milk softens the spiciness, and the curry sauce makes it even better when drizzled over brown rice or dipped in bread.
  • health. This vegetarian coconut curry is packed with vegetables, plant protein, and is dairy-free (which means it’s vegan!).
  • adaptive. Don’t have chickpeas on hand? Take note of my tofu curry and replace it with diced sautéed or air-fried tofu. Replace the vegetables here with the ones in the drawer in the vegetable compartment.
Easy coconut curry using red curry paste

5 star review

“I’ve made this many times and now have it regularly. It’s really easy, delicious, healthy and fast.”

— Jen —

how to make coconut curry

In Thailand, most of the coconut curries we’ve tried were made with chicken (such as this Thai chicken curry), but to make this recipe even super fast, chickpeas are used instead to make Thai chicken. I changed to vegetable curry.


  • Chickpea. The mild flavor of the chickpeas pairs well with the bold spices of the mild curry sauce, creating a nice contrast between the creaminess of the sauce and the pleasant texture.
  • red curry paste. This healthy vegetarian curry with chickpeas is the star of the show, packing flavor and punch in every bite. Interested in variety? Grab some green curry paste and use it in your green curry!


note that every day Curry pastes vary slightly in flavor and spiciness (some are spicy, others are mild). Take your time exploring and find what you like. favorite red curry paste.

  • coconut milk and coconut sugar. We infuse this dish with coconut goodness for a rich, creamy and slightly sweet dish.
  • soy sauce. For those who want to taste the traditional taste.
  • rice vinegar. It balances the dish and gives it a lively acidity.
  • vegetable. I used peppers, onions, carrots and peas. These are all found in coconut curry bowls in Thailand.
  • ginger + garlic. It’s a key combination of dynamic spices that give this recipe extra vigor.
  • rice or quinoa. for serving. Brown rice (I love making brown rice in my Instant Pot) or cooked quinoa is my favorite to add bulky plant-based fiber to this recipe to make it more filling. You can also use it with white rice.
Thai coconut curry recipe with red curry paste in a pot


Stir-fried Onions for Coconut Curry
  1. Sauté. I like to use coconut oil, but canola or avocado oil will work as well.
Red curry paste for coconut curry
  1. add aromatics. Garlic, ginger, and curry paste enhance their flavor when heated.
Cooking vegetables for coconut curry
  1. add vegetables. Please play with your favorite vegetables.
Healthy coconut curry with chickpeas
  1. Add coconut milk and chickpeas. Stir everything together.
  2. simmer. The curry will thicken in about 10-15 minutes.
Healthy and Easy Coconut Curry Recipe Cooked in a Pot
  1. add finishing ingredients. Add soy sauce and rice vinegar, and optionally frozen peas (you can defrost them quickly).
Seasoning added to coconut curry
  1. serve. Serve with fresh coriander over rice or quinoa, or borrow an Indian curry to dip into homemade naan. fun!

storage tips

  • to the store. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
  • to reheat. Heat in a frying pan over medium heat until steam comes out. You can also put it in a microwave-safe container with a lid and microwave it until completely cooked.
  • To freeze. I don’t have much experience freezing coconut milk-based sauces, so I wouldn’t recommend freezing them.
Coconut curry in a bowl is ready in 30 minutes
  • dutch oven. (This one Excellent. this This is also a better and more economical option. )
  • instant pot.cook brown rice at home instant pot, perfect every time. (Of course, you can also cook rice in a regular pot!)

I may not be able to return to Chiang Mai to bathe with elephants anytime soon, but it was comforting to know that I could at least relive the experience with this easy recipe for vegan coconut curry.

Recipe Tips and Tricks

  • Use your favorite vegetables. Feel free to swap out different veggies, like cauliflower, broccoli, pea pods, bok choy, sweet potatoes, eggplant, etc., depending on your tastes and what you have in your fridge. all ok. Keep in mind that some vegetables will cook sooner or longer than you chose in the original recipe, so you may need to adjust the cooking time.
  • Invest in some Thai ingredients. It’s truly amazing how many more recipes you can make with fish sauce, a jar of red curry and a can of coconut milk. Take a look at these Asian-inspired recipes for more ideas and add them to your shopping cart.
  • taste, taste, taste. Adjust the sauce to your liking. Add more soy sauce (for more saltiness), coconut sugar (for more sweetness), or red pepper flakes (for more spiciness). This recipe is versatile enough to suit different palettes.
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil Or substitute with extra virgin olive oil or grapeseed oil
  • 1 Moderate yellow onion thinly sliced
  • Four cloves garlic chopped
  • 2 tablespoon Chopped fresh ginger Or, for a pinch, 2-3 teaspoons of grated ginger
  • 3 tablespoon thai curry paste plus 2 tsp
  • 1/4 tea spoon red pepper flakes
  • 6 small/medium carrot peeled and sliced ​​into 1/4-inch thick rings (about 2 cups)
  • 2 big red bell pepper cored and sliced
  • 2 can light coconut milk (14 oz can)
  • 2-4 teaspoon coconut sugar brown sugar or turbinado sugar
  • 1 can reduced salt chickpeas (15 oz), rinse and drain
  • 2 tablespoon soy sauce 2 more teaspoons, or Tamari To make recipes gluten-free
  • 2 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • chopped fresh coriander for service
  • Preparation brown rice again Quinoa for service

  • Heat a large saucepan, such as a Dutch oven, over medium heat. Once hot, add coconut oil and onions. Fry for 2-3 minutes until slightly softened.

  • Add the garlic and ginger and sauté for 30 seconds, then add the red curry paste and red pepper flakes. Stir and cook for 1 more minute. Add carrots and peppers and stir to incorporate spices and curry.

  • Add coconut milk, 2 teaspoons sugar and chickpeas, mix and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Then reduce heat and continue cooking (uncovered) for 10-15 minutes until slightly thickened and vegetables are crisp and tender.

  • Add soy sauce and rice vinegar and mix. Taste and add more soy sauce (for more saltiness), sugar (for more sweetness), or red pepper flakes (for more spiciness), if desired. Add the peas, stir, and cook for an additional 3 minutes. Garnish with fresh coriander and serve hot over rice or quinoa.

  • save: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
  • to reheat: Heat in a frying pan over medium heat until steamed. You can also put it in a microwave-safe container with a lid and microwave until heated through. finished.
  • To freeze: I’ve had trouble freezing coconut milk-based sauces, so I don’t recommend freezing them.

Provided by: 1(of 4) with 1/2 cup prepared brown ricecalorie: 519kcalcarbohydrates: 68gprotein: 13gobesity: twenty onegsaturated fat: 17gPolyunsaturated fat: 2gMonounsaturated fat: 1gpotassium: 785mgfiber: 13gsugar: 12gVitamin A: 15362IUVitamin C: 127mgcalcium: 114mgiron: Fourmg

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Can coconut curry be made gluten-free?

yes! For those with dietary restrictions, this vegan curry recipe can be easily made gluten-free. You should replace the soy sauce with gluten-free tamari. You should also check the labels of all other ingredients to choose gluten-free and made in a certified gluten-free facility.

Is Coconut Curry High in Sodium?

I haven’t calculated the exact salt content of recipes for a variety of reasons, but curry recipes are generally not the best for salt-conscious people. Both soy sauce and red curry paste tend to be high in salt. However, there are many* recipes for homemade curry paste that allow you to control the salt content as much as you like. Some brands also offer reduced-sodium versions of these ingredients.

Is coconut curry Thai or Indian?

Both Indian and Thai cuisines have curries containing coconut milk, but this coconut curry recipe is more reminiscent of what you’ll find in Thai restaurants in Thailand and around the world.

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