This easy Thai Yellow Curry is made with chicken and vegetables and served over steamed rice. This recipe can easily be made vegan or vegetarian! 

Did you know there are over a dozen Thai inspired recipes on TBFS?  This one honestly ranks in my top five next to Thai Chicken Lettuce Wraps and perfect Pad Thai.

Thai yellow curry in a bowl with white rice.

I feel like I have a duty to make sure people know how EASY some of their favorite International foods are to make from home! We’re talking fridge to table in about 30 minutes! If you love “better than take-out” recipes as much as I do then you should definitely take a peak at my favorite ThaiChinese, and Korean recipes.

Ingredients in Yellow Curry:

Yellow Curry paste. Most local grocery stores only carry red and green curry paste (why is that?!), so I buy mine from Amazon or a local International foods market. I like the Mae Ploy Brand best, or you can make yellow curry from scratch if you’d like. A good yellow curry paste is the most important ingredient as it will give the sauce most of the flavor!

Chicken. Sometimes if I’m in a time crunch I use rotisserie chicken meat and add it at the very end.

Vegetables. I add onion, carrots and potatoes, but you could add whatever veggies you like!

Coconut milk. Use canned coconut milk, and not the refrigerated kind. You could substitute another kind of milk, like almond milk, but it you’ll want to add more cornstarch in the recipe to thicken the curry sauce.

Ginger and garlic. Fresh of both of these is definitely preferred so you get the best flavor, but dry can be substituted if you’re in a pinch. Use ⅛ teaspoon ground ginger and  ½ teaspoon garlic powder.

Cornstarch. Mixed with some coconut to thicken the curry sauce.

Fish sauce, lime juice and brown sugar. These ingredients all enhance the flavors in the sauce.

Hot cooked rice, for serving. We also like to serve yellow curry over  zoodles or spaghetti squash!

A marble board with the ingredients for yellow curry including curry paste, coconut milk, chicken, potatoes. onion, carrot, lime, ginger, garlic, fish sauce and brown sugar.

How to make Thai Yellow Curry (step-by-step):

  • Cook onions.  Heat the oil in a large pot over medium low heat. Add the onion and saute for a few minutes until softened.
  • Add vegetables.  Add the carrots, potatoes, ginger, garlic and stir well.
  • Add curry paste. Saute for 3 minutes.

Chicken pieces, potato and carrot sautéing in a pan and the yellow curry paste added.

  • Add coconut milk. Add 1 ½ cans of coconut milk to the pot. Stir cornstarch into remaining ½ can of coconut milk and add to the pot.
  • Boil then simmer. Once boiling, reduce heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes or until the chicken and potatoes are cooked through. Adjust the thickness of the curry by adding more water to thin, if needed.

Yellow curry with chicken in a saucepan with a wooden spoon.

  • Add flavor.  Stir in the fish sauce, brown sugar and lime juice. Simmer 5 more minutes.
  • Serve over rice, zoodles, or even. spaghetti squash!

Possible Variations:

Vegetarian yellow curry:  Omit the chicken then either add extra vegetables, or substitute pan fried tofu.

Vegan yellow curry: Make homemade yellow curry paste, substitute vegetables or tofu for chicken, and leave out the fish sauce.

Additional vegetable options: red bell peppers, zucchini, bamboo shoots, baby corn, cauliflower.

Red or Green Curry Paste: Yellow curry paste is the most mild of the three and each type has a different flavor and is made with different spices.  Feel free to substitute red or green paste for this recipe if that’s what you have on hand.

A spoon in a bowl full of yellow curry served with white rice.

Serving, Reheating, and Storing:

For best results, store yellow curry separately from the rice.  Store both in air-tight containers in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.  Reheat in the microwave.

This yellow curry recipe also freezes well for 2-3 months.  Allow it to thaw overnight in the refrigerator and reheat on the stove or in the microwave.  Cook rice fresh for serving.

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Recipe

Thai yellow curry in a bowl with white rice.
Prep 10 mins
Cook 40 mins
Total 50 mins
Add to Meal Plan

Video

Ingredients
  

  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1/2 large onion , chopped
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts , cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 2 medium gold potatoes (or about 10 baby gold) ½’’ cubed
  • 1 large carrot , thinly sliced
  • 3-4 Tablespoons yellow curry paste *or homemade curry paste
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 27 ounces coconut milk (2- 13.5 ounce cans)
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon fish sauce (optional)
  • 1 Tablespoon lime juice
  • 1.5 tablespoons brown sugar
  • Hot cooked rice , for serving (white, jasmine, brown)
  • Garnish with fresh cilantro and/or siracha and serve over rice

Instructions
 

  • Heat the oil in a large pot over medium low heat. Add the onion and saute for a few minutes until softened. Add the chicken, carrots, potatoes and cook for a minute or two. Add ginger, garlic and curry paste and saute for 3 minutes.
  • Add 1 ½ cans of coconut milk to the pot. Stir cornstarch into remaining ½ can of coconut milk and add to the pot.
  • Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes or until the chicken and potatoes are cooked through. Adjust the thickness of the curry by adding more water to thin, if needed.
  • Stir in the fish sauce, brown sugar and lime juice. Simmer 5 more minutes.
  • Serve with any type of rice (white, brown, and jasmine are my favorites) or over zoodles, spaghetti squash or quinoa.

Notes

Storing and Freeing Instructions: 
For best results, store the yellow curry sauce in a separate container from the rice.  Store both in air tight containers in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.  Reheat in the microwave.
Freeze curry in a freezer-safe container for 2-3 months.  Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and reheat on the stove or in the microwave.  Cook rice fresh for serving.
*For homemade curry paste, check out this recipe.

Nutrition

Calories: 640kcalCarbohydrates: 27gProtein: 31gFat: 48gSaturated Fat: 37gCholesterol: 73mgSodium: 298mgPotassium: 1277mgFiber: 3gSugar: 7gVitamin A: 4813IUVitamin C: 18mgCalcium: 98mgIron: 10mg

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About The Author

Lauren Allen

Welcome! I’m Lauren, a mom of four and lover of good food. Here you’ll find easy recipes and weeknight meal ideas made with real ingredients, with step-by-step photos and videos.

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Great recipe. The prep time took me much longer than 10 minutes, but that’s always the case for me. Thank you for sharing.

  2. 5 stars
    Ummmm. More please. The 5 star reviews from more than one or two people was the initial draw. My husband loves yellow curry and I wanted to find a recipe for him. HOME RUN. WINNER WINNER CHICKEN DINNER!!!!! This recipe will save us a fortune b/c we don’t have to eat out anymore. Thank you sooooooo much for this recipe!!

  3. Excellent recipe! I bought the same brand of curry paste but in red (they didn’t have yellow). Question: do you know how long the paste is good for once opened? I’d like to make it again, but it’s been a few months since I opened it. It’s been in the fridge the whole time. Thanks again for the great recipe!

  4. 5 stars
    This is a solid, tasty recipe. The sauce was a nice consistency. I’ve tended towards using chicken thigh meat as it’s a bit more forgiving w/regards to heat, and I find it richer in flavor than breast meat. I added some turmeric for color (I know there’s likely some in Mae Ploy curry paste and noted it was included in your “from scratch” curry paste recipe). The flavors were great, but I was wondering if you’d experimented with adding makrut lime leaves or lime zest in addition to the juice? Oh…I am a male chef, and hope my comment counterbalances the snarky comments of other commenters of my gender…sigh…

  5. 5 stars
    My family is super hyped for this recipe. We always get a yellow curry from the Silk Thai restaurant and we thought we wouldn’t find a replacement if we ever left the state. I whipped this up as an experiment and it’s very close to the restaurant flavor! The one thing I did make sure to add was a bit of lemongrass and Thai basil (essentials for any Thai recipe). Didn’t change anything else. My family insists I make this as a staple from now on.

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