This tasty chicken korma is deliciously spiced and creamy but much healthier than a restaurant korma. Once you start making it at home you'll be hooked! It's a great family friendly recipe and ideal for those who like spicy but not really hot recipes!
I am a huge fan of curries and by that I mean any curries. I love homemade curries. I love a lazy takeaway curry. I love going out to an Indian restaurant for curry. I won't even turn my nose up at a supermarket ready meal curry!
There is a place for everything but I do especially love recreating takeaway curries at home. I don't always aim for an exact copy but for something very similar, usually just a bit healthier than a takeaway.
That is the case with this healthy chicken korma. It's a mild creamy chicken curry that is perfect for families including children. My kids love this curry and it's always a hit when I make it.
Korma is a brilliant curry for anyone who can't handle the heat of some of the hotter more fiery curries but that doesn't mean it's without flavour. This mild chicken curry recipe is still totally delicious and it's no surprise that korma is one of the most popular curries in the UK.
Ingredients for chicken korma
To make this easy chicken korma recipe you'll need:
- Coconut oil - You can replace this with vegetable or olive oil but I love to use it in korma as it adds to the coconut flavour.
- Whole spices: Cardamom pods, cloves, cinnamon stick - I fry these in the coconut oil at the start which adds lots of flavour.
- Onion - A large plain brown onion is fine.
- Garlic cloves - You can use a paste instead
- Fresh root ginger - Or a paste.
- Ground almonds - These help to thicken the curry
- Sugar - Kormas are often slightly sweet so I add just a little sugar. You can omit this if you don't want any extra sweetness in your curry.
- Chicken meat - You can use either breast or thigh depending on what your family like best.
- Ground spices - Turmeric, cumin, coriander, paprika, chilli powder, garam masala
- Coconut milk
- Flaked almonds - These are optional but do look nice as a garnish as well as adding a little texture.
- Fresh coriander (cilantro) - This is also optional but adds a lovely freshness if you like coriander
- Seasoning - Add a little salt and pepper depending on your tastes
How to make chicken korma
There is a full recipe card further down the post but basically you make a paste from onions, garlic and ginger. Cook the paste with the korma spices and then add chicken, ground almonds and coconut milk for a tasty creamy dish.
It may look like there are a lot of ingredients but trust me, this korma is not at all hard to make!
Adaptations and substitutions
If, like me, you like hot and spicy curries, feel free to increase the heat a little. Why not add a chilli pepper or two to the spice paste? Or if you're serving it to some people who like hotter curries and some who like milder curries, have some chutneys on the side or fresh slices of chilli to garnish the curry with.
As I said, chicken korma is a very mild curry so I do love lots of fresh herbs on top to liven it up.
I usually serve some kind of vegetable side dish with this korma as I always like to have vegetables with a meal. However, if you want to make life easier you can just add a few vegetables along with the chicken.
Can you make it vegetarian?
Yes, this korma works just as well as a vegetarian curry. I like to substitute the chicken with sweet potatoes, aubergines and broccoli. In fact, any vegetables you need to use up will go well in this!
Can you use leftover roast chicken?
Yes, if you want to use cooked chicken then it also works well in this easy korma recipe. Add it at the same time as the coconut milk. You can also reduce the cooking time a little.
Storing and reheating
Keep any leftovers in a covered container in the fridge for up to three days. You can reheat in the microwave or in a saucepan. If you reheat in a saucpan you may need to add a splash of water to stop the curry going too dry.
Can you freeze chicken korma?
Yes. It's best to freeze as soon as the korma has been cooked and cooled completely. I usually freeze it in individual portions so it's easier to defrost later.
You can keep it in the freezer for up to three months.
What to serve with chicken korma
I often serve it with brown basmati rice but any kind of basmati rice is great. It's lovely with Indian bread too. Sometimes I make a kachumber salad to serve on the side and sometimes a vegetarian curry too.
As this healthier chicken korma is quite mild I also really like some spicy pickles or fresh diced chillies to add some heat. And of course it's lovely topped with fresh coriander and toasted almond or coconut flakes.
Can you make it more indulgent?
Chicken korma can be quite a rich indulgent curry recipe but I like to keep my version relatively light.
However, if you want a richer creamier curry then stir in a little double cream at the end and use a little less coconut milk.
More homemade curry recipes
I love homemade curry recipes and have a whole recipe collection for easy homemade curry recipes. Why not also look at one of my other curries?
Easy Chicken Korma Recipe
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 2 cardamom pods crush them slightly so the flavour comes out more
- 3 cloves
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 large onion
- 3 garlic cloves
- 10 g fresh root ginger
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1½ tsp cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- 2 tsp coriander
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 2 tsp garam masala
- 500 g chicken (breast or thigh) diced
- 1½ tbsp ground almonds
- 1 tsp sugar
- 400 g coconut milk
- 1 tbsp flaked almonds optional for garnish
- 2 tbsp fresh coriander optional for garnish
- Put the onions, garlic and ginger in a food processor and blitz to a paste. If you want a hotter korma, add a chilli pepper or two as well!
- Heat the coconut oil in a large saucepan. When it has melted and is hot, add the caradmom pods, cinnamon stick and cloves. Cook for a minute until they becoem aromatic.
- Add the ginger garlic onion paste. Cook, stirring for a couple of minutes.
- Add the ground spices along with a tablespoon of water if the pan is too dry.
- Add the chicken and stir too brown and coat in the spices.
- Add the sugar, ground almonds and coconut milk. Stir. Bring to the boil then lower to a simmer for 20 minutes.
- While the curry is simmering, heat a dry pan and gently cook the flaked almonds until they are lightly toasted. Set aside for garnishing the curry with.
- Serve the curry topped with the flaked almonds and chopped coriander. Serve with rice and naan breads.
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