Looks like fall is now upon us! With summer coming to a close (seriously, how?!), fall is fast approaching. And although I’d love it to be summer longer, I do really love fall. The change in temperature also brings a change to the foods we eat as well. And this Thai red curry chicken is hearty, satisfying, spicy and oh so easy to make! It’s perfect for fall and winter with all those warming spices.
Why Red Curry?
Maybe the question should be- why not red curry? Thai curry is a lot different than Indian curry and it’s by far my favourite type of curry. Ever since first trying Thai food when I was in my early 20’s, I’ve been hooked! It’s one of my top favourite cuisines and one I always turn to when I want take out. But, I also love making Thai food at home when I can too.
You can check out my Thai chicken wings recipe here!
And one of my favourite dishes (and most popular) is this healthier but still authentic pad thai!
And this Thai basil shrimp stir fry is another quick and easy weeknight meal that’s packed with flavour!
Red curry is a delicious mix of different spices such as red chili pepper, lemongrass, garlic, lime leaf, shallot and coriander and sometimes shrimp paste. The process of making your own red curry paste isn’t super easy and will definitely require a trip to an Asian grocer. If you have the time and want to make your own, definitely check out this DIY post from Recipe Tin Eats, she explains everything in so much detail!
I’ve personally chosen to purchase red curry paste in a jar to make this Thai red curry chicken easy and quick for a weeknight meal. This red curry paste from Thai Kitchen is the one I use and like.
As I explained above, Thai red curry paste is essential for this recipe. Whether you use a homemade version or a store bought version, you’ll need this paste to provide all the flavour!
This is the brand I use and enjoy. Plus, it’s available nearly everywhere too!
I recommend getting a high quality one, such as this one from Red Boat. It’s a great brand, made with only anchovies and salt and doesn’t have any added sugar.
Prior to me getting a good fish sauce, I kept getting a mediocre sauce. I didn’t understand how important the fish sauce was. Now, I use this fish sauce from Red Boat, and it makes a BIG difference! This brand only uses anchovies and sea salt, with no added sugar, unlike most brands. It’s the best tasting one I’ve tried, and 100% worth the higher price tag.
Lime juice helps add a bit more acidity and tang and I like garnishing my bowl with extra lime wedges for squeezing.
A little bit of coconut sugar helps to balance the flavours of this dish. I like using coconut sugar because it’s less refined and has a great taste. You can swap this for brown sugar if you need.
For protein, I use chicken breast. For a veggie version, try this with tofu cubes and leave out the fish sauce. Another option could be seafood, such as cod or salmon.
I also like adding in whole lime leaves into the liquid. When it’s done cooking, you can remove them. If you can’t find these, you can omit, and squeeze in a little extra lime juice instead. Lime leaf is also referred to as makrut lime leaves.
I really like serving this Thai red curry chicken with some jasmine rice. The rice helps to soak up some of the liquid and adds more bulk to the recipe. You can sub this with cauliflower rice if you need a grain-free version. Or try this with another grain, like noodles.
To add some extra veggies and greens, I LOVE using broccoli. Don’t add it in too early, otherwise it will get too soft, and I like it a little crunchy. You can add in other veggies if you want. Mushrooms, carrots, cauliflower or another green leafy vegetable would all be great too.
To add more greens to the dish, I like adding in Thai basil. This is more than a garnish in my opinion. Regular basil won’t work the same, but you can sub with cilantro.
Thai Chili Peppers
I love spice! Adding in some sliced Thai chili peppers are going to add some heat to this dish. If you prefer less spice, omit the chili peppers.
You’ll need some full fat coconut milk for this Thai red curry chicken recipe because that is what will make it nice and creamy. I use full fat coconut milk because it’s creamier.
I use this brand of coconut milk.
Healthy Thai Chicken Curry in a Hurry
Because I love quick meals and one pot meals so much, I knew I wanted to make this Thai chicken curry simple in terms of cook time and make it all in one pot.
This recipe is great because it comes together in about 30 minutes and you’ll only need to clean up one pot after! Plus, it has so much flavour and is perfect for the fall and winter.
If you love one-pot meals as much as I do, be sure to check out my FREE eBook all about one-pot meals. In it, you’ll find 10 delicious one-pot main dishes that are easy and packed with flavour!
Click below to download your own free copy.
How to Make
Making this Thai red curry chicken is really quick and easy. So be sure to have your ingredients ready so that this meal comes together fast. I recommend looking through the ingredients and having things measured out ahead of time. So when it comes time to cooking, you’re all ready.
Here is how to make it:
Heat up some oil in a large dutch oven pot. Add in the chopped onion and cook for a few minutes, until soft and translucent Then add the minced garlic and cook for one minute longer. Add in the Thai curry paste and stir. Then add in the coconut milk, fish sauce, coconut sugar and lime leaves. Give that a stir and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for a few minutes.
Then go ahead and add in the chicken and cook for about 2 minutes, then add in the broccoli. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes, and simmer uncovered until the chicken is cooked through and the broccoli is softer, but still crunchy and crisp.
When you’re ready to serve, remove the lime leaves. Squeeze in the lime juice and stir to combine. Divide into bowls, top with Thai basil, sliced chilis and garnish with lime wedges. Top with rice if using.
I love providing as many substitutions as possible for you. My advice is always to use what you have on hand and what you can access easily.
No Chicken: use another protein such as cubed tofu, or seafood such as cod or salmon.
Lime Leaf: you can omit this ingredient and use a little extra lime juice instead.
Thai Chilis: I like adding extra heat to my recipes, so I slice up some Thai chili peppers. If you want less heat, omit these.
Fish Sauce: although the fish sauce adds nice flavour, if you don’t have it, you can add some extra salt to this dish.
How to Make This in the Instant Pot?
I do love my Instant Pot for quick and easy meals. Although this stove top version is pretty hands off (and quick), if you want you can also prepare this in your Instant Pot as well.
To make this in your Instant Pot, start the same way, by sautéing the onion and garlic first. Then add the Thai red curry paste. Turn the sauté mode off. Add the coconut milk, fish sauce, coconut sugar, chicken and broccoli. Place the lid on and be sure it’s set to ‘sealing’ and then press high pressure and cook for 6 minutes for chicken breast. If using thighs, this will take about 9 minutes total.
Do a manual release and then carefully remove the lid. If you want to reduce the sauce a little, you can turn the Instant Pot back onto sauté mode for a few minutes.
And if you’re using different veggies such as peas, carrots, sweet potato, asparagus or peppers, you’ll want to add these after pressure cooking and press sauté mode and cook for a few minutes. If any of the veggies are typically quick cooking, you’ll want to wait to add them afterwards. Otherwise, they’ll get too soft and mushy. Broccoli should be fine in the Instant Pot with the chicken.
More One Pot Meals!
If you love this recipe, you’re going to want to check out my eBook which has over 50 recipes that are all one pot, delicious and EASY!
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Thai Red Curry Chicken
This Thai red curry chicken is packed with so much flavor, plus it comes together in about 45 minutes total!
- 1 tsp avocado oil
- 1/2 yellow onion chopped
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 2 tbsp Thai red curry paste
- 1 3/4 cup coconut milk full fat, from the can
- 1 1/2 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 tbsp coconut sugar
- 4 lime leaves
- 1 lb chicken breast chopped into cubes
- 1 head broccoli cut into florets
- 2 tbsp lime juice
- 1/2 bunch Thai basil chiffonade, optional
- 2 Thai red chili sliced, optional
- 1 1/2 cup jasmine rice cooked
Heat up some oil in a large dutch oven pot over medium heat. Add in the chopped onion and cook for a few minutes, until soft and translucent Then add the minced garlic and cook for one minute longer. Add in the Thai curry paste and stir. Then add in the coconut milk, fish sauce, coconut sugar and lime leaves. Give that a stir and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for a few minutes.
Add in the chicken and cook for about 2 minutes, then add in the broccoli. Cook for 4 to 5 minutes, and simmer uncovered until the chicken is cooked through and the broccoli is softer, but still crunchy and crisp.
Remove the lime leaves using a small sieve or spoon. Squeeze in the lime juice and stir to combine. Divide into bowls, top with Thai basil, sliced chilis and garnish with lime wedges. Top with rice if using. Enjoy!