Slow Cooker Chicken Curry
Ask me to describe the month I spent in India, and you’ll witness a (frequently) intelligent adult collapse into a pile of contradictions. India is the most beautiful place I’ve ever seen—and it is the ugliest. Everything in India feels stronger and louder—the colors, the sounds, the smells—yet it left me at peace. I think of and miss my experience in India often, and one of the best ways I’ve found to relive it is to make Indian-inspired dishes like today’s recipe for Slow Cooker Chicken Curry.
Ironically, my first taste of coconut chicken curry wasn’t actually in India—it was at an Indian lunch buffet in northern Indiana. I stepped inside the tiny restaurant and was immediately overwhelmed by the exotic perfume of rich spices that permeated the air…and my clothes for three days after. The extra load of laundry was worth that marvelous meal.
From my first bite of coconut chicken curry, Indian food became one of my favorite cuisines.
While in India, I took a cooking class. One of the most eye-opening aspects of it was the large number of spices and intense preparation that goes into authentic Indian dishes.
I won’t pretend this easy recipe for slow cooker coconut chicken curry is authentic. It is, however, absolutely scrumptious and includes many of the Indian flavors and ingredients that stole my heart.
Though Americans often use the term to refer to a specific spice, “curry” is a general term for a range of saucy dishes that are served over rice or with naan bread. Today’s simplified coconut chicken curry recipe uses easy-to-find ingredients: coconut milk, ground curry spice (which is a blend of a few spices and can be found in the spice aisle of about any standard grocery store), cumin, and fresh lime juice. To make the meal hearty and healthy, I used potatoes, a common vegetable in Indian cooking, red bell peppers, and Just BARE Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs.
Regular readers of my blog know that I frequently use and recommend Just BARE Chicken, so much so that I’m in my second year of creating recipes with Just BARE chicken products. The chickens are raised without antibiotics and fed an all vegetable and grain diet. You can trace the chicken you purchase to an exact family farm! Even Ben made an unprompted comment that the curry chicken seemed “better and more real” than other chicken he’d tried. It was telling.
Although I typically prefer the taste of white meat to dark meat, crock pot recipes, like this Slow Cooker Chicken Curry, are an important exception. Chicken thighs are still very lean, but unlike chicken breasts, they can stand up to longer stints in the slow cooker without drying out. Plus, once you have the chicken slathered in this delectable coconut curry sauce, all you will taste is juicy meat and a sweet, citrusy, creamy curry sauce.
I hope to return to India one day. Until I do, I’m happy to have this Slow Cooker Chicken Curry to remind me of my trip. With a prep time of fewer than 10 minutes and ingredients you can find in any grocery store, this crock pot meal is a fast, healthy way to satisfy my coconut chicken curry craving, no plane ticket or jetlag required!
Tools I used to make this recipe:
Slow Cooker Chicken Curry
Slow Cooker Chicken Curry – Juicy chicken cooked in a creamy coconut milk curry sauce with bell peppers and potatoes. Easy, healthy, and full of flavor!
Yield: Serves 4
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 5 hours (on low) or 3 hours (on high)
- 4 small red potatoes, peeled and diced into 1/2-inch pieces
- 2 red bell peppers, cored and thinly sliced
- 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
- 2 tablespoons curry powder
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 1/4 pounds Just BARE Chicken Boneless Skinless Thighs
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 (14-ounce) can light coconut milk
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch, mixed with 3 tablespoons water to create a slurry
- For serving: prepared brown rice or quinoa; fresh cilantro; lime wedges
- Place the potatoes and bell peppers in the bottom of a 5-quart or larger slow cooker. Pour the chicken broth and lime juice over the top.
- In a small bowl, combine the curry, paprika, cumin, garlic powder, and salt. Place the chicken thighs on a large plate or cutting board, and rub the spice mix on both sides to coat.
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium high. Once the oil is hot and shiny, add the chicken thighs and briefly pan sear on each side, just until brown— about 2 minutes for the first side and 1 minute for the second side. Place the seared chicken in the slow cooker, on top of the vegetables. Cover and cook on low for 4-5 hours or high for 2-3 hours, until the chicken is cooked through.
- About 15 minutes before serving, use a slotted spoon to remove the chicken thighs and vegetables from the slow cooker and transfer them to a plate. Pour the coconut milk and cornstarch slurry into the slow cooker, and whisk to combine. Turn the slow cooker heat to high, return the chicken and vegetables to the slow cooker, then recover and cook until the sauce thickens, about 15 minutes. Serve warm over rice or quinoa, top with fresh cilantro and lime wedges as desired.
- I do not recommend chicken breasts for this recipe, as they have a tendency to dry out in the slow cooker. If you decide to use chicken breasts, watch the cooking time very carefully, as the chicken will cook more quickly and can easily become too dry.
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. DO NOT FREEZE. Coconut milk will separate and become “grainy” in the freezer.
Serving Size: 1 (of 4) with 1/2 cup prepared brown rice
- Amount Per Serving:
- Calories: 495
- Total Fat: 24g
- Saturated Fat: 8g
- Cholesterol: 114mg
- Sodium: 290mg
- Carbohydrates: 45g
- Fiber: 7g
- Sugar: 6g
- Protein: 30g
I am sharing this post in partnership with Just BARE Chicken. As always, all opinions are my own, and thanks for supporting the brands and companies that make it possible for me to continue providing quality content to you!