Chicken Coconut Curry


  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs (about 4 breasts or 7 thighs), cut into 1″ cubes
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons mild curry powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons virgin coconut or vegetable oil (plus 2 teaspoons; optional)
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 (14-ounce) can coconut milk (preferably full-fat)
  • 1 (2 1/2″) piece ginger, peeled
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1/4 cup raw cashews, chopped (optional)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons yellow and/or black mustard seeds (optional)
  • 5 ounces baby spinach
  • Cilantro leaves with tender stems and cooked rice or naan (Indian flatbread; for serving)


  • Toss chicken with curry powder, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl.
  • Heat 2 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet (at least 12″ in diameter) over medium-high. Add onion and cook, stirring, until softened, about 2 minutes.
  • Purée coconut milk, ginger, and garlic in a blender until very smooth.
  • Add chicken and coconut milk mixture to skillet and cook, tossing occasionally, until chicken is cooked through and sauce has thickened, 7-10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, if using, heat 2 tsp. oil in a small skillet over medium. Add cashews and mustard seeds and cook, stirring, until fragrant and lightly browned, 2–3 minutes. Immediately transfer mixture including the oil to a small bowl.
  • Fold spinach into chicken mixture and cook until wilted, about 1 minute. Divide among 4 bowls. Top with cilantro and cashew mixture, if using. Serve with rice or naan alongside.