Spice up dinner time with Malaysian chicken curry. This gluten-free and low-carb curry chicken recipe will fill your kitchen with the most amazing aromas!
Why you'll love it
This recipe is an authentic Malaysian curry that is naturally low in carbs. The large chicken pieces simmer in creamy coconut milk and a spice paste that will wake up your taste buds.
It may surprise you that Malaysian food is really easy to make. Even if you haven't made curry before, don't be intimidated. This Malaysian curry chicken recipe is incredibly simple, even for the beginning cook.
Delicious curry is a really easy way to change up your dinner time routine and cook with all new flavors. Luckily, I used ingredients that were easy to find in the grocery store.
You are going to love this recipe for chicken curry!
Malaysian chicken curry is made with flavorful ingredients to propel your cooking to new heights. Here is a bit more information about the ingredients I used in this great recipe.
For the curry paste, you will need large green onions, garlic, lemongrass, fresh ginger, and chili flakes.
It's always better to use whole, fresh ingredients to make homemade curry powder or paste. Dried spices just don't have the same bold flavor.
Chicken curry stew ingredients
The first ingredient in the stew is jarred Malaysian curry powder. When you buy premixed meat curry powder, it will have the perfect balance of flavors and spices.
You will also need a cinnamon stick and a star anise.
Finally, you'll also use coconut milk and medium turnips.
I used bone-in drumsticks and thigh chicken pieces to make this Malaysian chicken curry. They cook better when you use entire thighs and drumstick pieces in one.
In place of potatoes, I decided to go with some chopped turnips instead. They have a similar bite texture and bite without all of the carbs and starches!
Please note: Check out the recipe card at the bottom for a full list of ingredients used to make this low-carb recipe.
- Use coconut cream from the can. Carton coconut milk won't be nearly as thick or creamy.
- Use whole spices for the best curry powder. Dried spices have a muted flavor and lower aroma.
- Cook chicken completely. Check the internal temperature with an instant-read food thermometer. Chicken should be cooked until it reaches 165°F.
All the exact instructions for how to make Malaysian chicken curry are in the printable recipe card at the bottom of this post.
First, here are some photos and additional tips that will help you as you make this for the first time!
Make the curry powder paste
Use a food processor to make authentic curry paste. Blend the green onions, garlic cloves, lemongrass, ginger, and chili flakes until they form a smooth paste.
If you don't have a food processor, you can grind everything by hand with a mortar or pestle.
Simmer the curry paste
Next, heat a large pot over medium heat. Add the oil and the blended curry paste. Stir it frequently while you cook it.
Add the curry powder and salt and keep cooking until the paste starts to split and you see the oily film separate from it.
Place chicken in the pot
Add the chicken pieces, cinnamon stick, and star anise to the pot and coat the chicken with the curry powder. Add enough water to the pan to completely cover the chicken.
Do not overcrowd the pot, leave room for the heat to move around each piece of chicken.
Cook the Malaysian chicken curry
Cover the pot with a lid and simmer for about 10 minutes. This is just long enough for the spices and liquid to soak into the chicken completely.
Next, add the turnips to the pot with the chicken and cover them completely with the curry sauce.
Simmer everything together until the vegetables and chicken are completely cooked through.
Add the coconut milk
After the chicken and turnips are completely cooked, add the coconut milk and stir it quickly. Heat until it starts to boil.
As soon as it starts to boil, remove it from the heat and serve it with a bowl of cauliflower rice.
️ Serving suggestions
Malaysian chicken curry is such a flavorful recipe that you will want to add mild dishes on the side. The best thing to serve with curry chicken is a cauliflower rice bowl!
Similar to cauliflower rice, add some mushroom cauliflower risotto on the side. It is earthy and salty and pairs well with chicken curry.
Don't forget to make some keto naan bread! It tastes incredible when it is served with Malaysian food like this recipe.
Or, make some coconut flour turmeric muffins. Turmeric is a popular spice found in many different curries, so it is perfect with this chicken dish.
There are a few different changes you can make to Malaysian chicken curry. If you make any variations to the recipe, please let me know in the comments.
Many people like to add a splash of fish sauce to the curry paste. It's a fragrant ingredient that mixes well with the other flavors.
You can even make Malaysian chicken in the slow cooker! Just make the curry paste and then add all the ingredients (except the coconut milk) to the slow cooker. Cook it on low for 6-8 hours. About 30 minutes before serving, add the coconut milk.
Before we get to the recipe for tender Malaysian chicken curry, here are some questions people often ask about how to make it. If you don't see your question in this list, please let me know in the comments.
Yes, curry paste is naturally keto-friendly because it doesn't have any sugar in it. It only has spices.
This depends on how you make it. For example, if you make coconut rice from cauliflower rice, then it is keto-friendly. If you make it from white or brown rice, it will not fit into a keto diet.
Roti canai is an Indian flatbread made with sweetened condensed milk and bread flour. Those two ingredients are not keto-friendly. So, I suggest making keto-friendly flatbread from coconut flour instead.
If you enjoyed this Malaysian chicken curry recipe, then I have some more keto recipes you will enjoy next! All of these recipes have Asian or Indian spices, so I'm sure you'll love them too.
- Palak Soup is an Indian spinach soup that is completely dairy-free and has a rich green color.
- Cabbage Rice is spiced with traditional Indian spices and has a vibrant yellow color; it pairs perfectly with chicken curry.
- Keto Butter Chicken is a traditional Indian entree with an incredibly tasty sauce.
- Chicken Cabbage Soup can be made in the Instant Pot and has a mild flavor that even kids love.
- Pork Curry is really easy to prepare in the slow cooker and fits in perfectly with both keto and paleo diets.
Malaysian Chicken Curry
For the curry
- 3 large green onions
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1 stalk lemongrass
- 1 inch fresh ginger peeled, chopped
- ½ teaspoon chilli flakes add more for a spicier curry
For the stew
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 2 tablespoons Malaysian curry powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 medium cinnamon stick
- 1 star anise
- 1 pound drumsticks and thighs bone-in chicken
- 2 cups hot water more or less, just enough to cover the stew
- 2 medium turnips peeled and quartered
- ¾ cups coconut milk
- Start making the curry paste, in a food processor, blend the green onions, garlic cloves, lemongrass, ginger, chilli flakes until they form a smooth paste. You can also make the curry paste in a mortar or pestle.
- Bring a large pot over medium to low heat, add the oil and the blended paste. Cook, stirring frequently for 6 to 8 minutes until fragrant.
- Add the curry powder and salt and continue cooking for 3 to 5 minutes until the paste starts to split and you can see an oily film separate from the paste. If needed, add one teaspoon of water to avoid burning.
- At this point add the cinnamon, star anise and chicken pieces. Stir with a spoon to coat the chicken in the curry for 3 minutes. Pour the water until just cover the chicken. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Add turnips and simmer for another 20 to 25 minutes or until the parsnips and chicken are cooked through.
- Once 25 minutes have passed, taste the curry for salt and spiciness and add coconut milk, stir quickly and let it simmer just until starts boiling.
- To prepare the cauliflower rice cut the core and stems and pulse in a food processor to make small grains like rice. Place into a microwave save bowl, cover with a film, pierce with a fork and microwave for 7 minutes on high, season with salt and pepper and reserve.
- Serve the curry hot with cauliflower rice.
Notes on Nutritional Information
Nutritional information for the recipe is provided as a courtesy and is approximate only. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of the nutritional information given for any recipe on this site. Erythritol carbs are not included in carb counts as it has been shown not to impact blood sugar. Net carbs are the total carbs minus fiber.
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