Sri Lankan spicy pork curry is gourmet of everyday cooking

image of Sri Lankan spicy pork curry
Sri Lankan Spicy Pork Curry

Sri Lankan spicy pork curry is an extremely popular day to day recipe and one close to my heart from my own flavortown colombo. My mom never cooked pork at home. When I got married and realized how much my husband loved eating spicy pork curry and how good my mother-in-law was at cooking it. Bright red, steamy, saucy, and such gourmet in an everyday curry. Absolutely delicious. So, no pressure!

Little by little I mastered the technique of making a great flavored spicy pork curry and I am happy to share my recipe with you today. The curry seasoning for my spicy pork curry can be made ahead of time and go in the freezer and use it whenever you need. To cut down cooking time, we can make the pork in a pressure cooker as well. My spicy pork curry recipe works in stove top, Instant pot or in oven equally well.

Choosing the cut for a flavorful spicy pork curry

To get the intense flavor of my version of pork curry, we need to use some bone and fat along with meat. This red curry inspired Sri Lankan spicy pork curry is a one single dish, you do not have to think too much about buying a specific cut of pork. It is an easy cookout of dinner without a lot of planning ahead. This recipe works well for bone in pork chops, picnic shoulder, Pork ribs or pork butt.

One thing we do have to be careful about is how much fat we need to trim off from the meat. Little fat makes it flavorful, but a lot of it will make the curry overly greasy and not appetizing. For a good curry and a good balance of flavor in the sauce we need marbled fat in between muscle intact. Trim off the skin and any thick layer of fat under the skin if you have any.

To prepare the meat for curry, Rinse the meat under cold water and cut it into bite sized cubes.

Making the curry powder base for the pork curry

One of the reasons why this spicy pork curry is my personal favorite is because it gets better as time goes on. Whenever I can, I cook a big batch and save some in freezer for next time I am craving some delicious red spicy pork curry.

Snapshot of the cooking process

image of Sri Lankan spicy pork curry

Sri Lankan Spicy Pork Curry

This Sri Lankan spicy pork curry is bright red, steamy hot, saucy, and such a gourmet in an everyday curry. Absolutely delicious.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 1 hr 15 mins
Course Dinner
Cuisine Sri Lankan
Servings 6


  • 2 tbsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp coconut vinegar
  • ¼ tsp of fenugreek seeds
  • ¼ tsp fennel seeds
  • ¼ black cumin seeds
  • 2 tbsp Spanish paprika
  • 2 tbsp coriander seeds
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tbsp black curry powder
  • 2 tbsp red Curry Powder
  • 1 Tbsp tamarind paste
  • 2 Malabar Tamarind /Brindle berry
  • 1 inch stick of cinnamon
  • ½ tsp Nutmeg
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder optional
  • 2 whole Kashmiri red chilies optional (bright red color)
  • 1 tbsp crushed ginger and garlic
  • 2 medium red onions
  • 2 inch stalk of lemongrass
  • 2 pcs Pandan leaves
  • 5 Curry leaves
  • 2 inch Stick of cinnamon
  • 3 lb Pork cut of meat your choice


  • Trim off the outer layer of fat and cut the meat as evenly as possible. Leave a little bit of fat and bone intact. Rinse, drain and set aside.
  • Toast coriander seeds, cumin seeds, together. Grind all the spices except fenugreek, cinnamon in a motor and a pestle. Add fenugreek seeds, cinnamon whole. Set aside.
  • Slice onions thin. Crush ginger and garlic and bruise lemongrass. Set it aside.
  • Heat a saucepan and brown the pork in batches. In the same pan caramelize onions until golden brown. Add crushed ginger, garlic, curry leaves, pandan leaves, lemongrass, cinnamon along with the curry powder. Add enough water and stir everything.
  • Cover and cook on medium low until pork become tender and falls apart from the bone.
  • If the sauce is too runny for your liking reduce further to your liking.
  • Enjoy over rice or pasta.


Notes on cooking spicy pork curry in pressure cooker / Instant pot
Make the curry powder blend according to instruction and massage into the meat. 
Heat the pressure cooker and add sliced onion, sauté until golden brown.  add ginger garlic, curry leaves, lemongrass sauté until soft. Add meat and sauté for 5 to 10 minutes. Add cup of water and cinnamon with pandan leaves and curry leaves.
Seal the pressure cooker/ instant pot and bring it up to temperature. Set the timer for 20 minutes and turn the heat down to medium low to low. Cook for 20 minutes. Turn the heat down and let the pressure cooker cool and no steam is being released.
Keyword spicy pork curry, spicy pork curry sri lankan, sri lankan pork curry recipe

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