Quick and easy mild turmeric chicken curry for the whole family

chicken curry with rice

This mild turmeric chicken curry with ginger is easy to make with everyday ingredients and full of anti-inflammatory benefits. If you are looking for an easy chicken curry or mild Sri Lankan curry or creamy kid friendly chicken curry this recipe is for you.

mild turmeric chicken curry with rice

Turmeric, sliced ginger and coconut cream is what I would want on a chilly wintery afternoon for a quick pick me up if dinner! with lot less work! My version of mild turmeric chicken curry is light, creamy, and warming with all that Sri Lankan spices and coconut milk in the sauce.

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Challenges of cooking frozen chicken meat.

baked chicken breast and ketchup
Photo by alleksana on Pexels.com

Making a good curry sauce takes a while. Even for my mild turmeric chicken curry the sauce takes at least 15 minutes of simmering. Spices need to warm up, break down and release its flavors into the sauce to flavor the meat. Frozen meat, especially chicken meat, tends to dry out sooner than fresh meat, when you start cooking and add the meat in the beginning. It could lead to uneven cooking and meat drying out. My favorite cooking methods to prevent uneven cooking and tough texture, when cooking frozen chicken breast is

  1. Oven baking: Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Place the frozen chicken breasts on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and season them with salt, pepper, and sprinkle of red curry powder. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165°F (74°C).
  2. Stovetop poaching: Bring a pot of water with a little salt in it to a boil, and then add the frozen chicken breasts. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 20-25 minutes, or until the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C).
  3. Curry: Use sliced poached or grilled chicken breast to make a delicious mild turmeric chicken curry with coconut milk.

Helpful tips to follow when cooking my mild turmeric chicken curry recipe

  1. Use bone-in chicken: Chicken with bones retains moisture better than boneless chicken. So, consider using bone-in chicken pieces, such as bone in chicken breasts, thighs, or drumsticks, or a mix of chicken pieces with boneless chicken breast.
  2. Make a curry sauce with little added fat: Adding more liquid and oil to the curry can help keep the chicken moist. I add coconut milk with a couple of tablespoons of oil (while frying) to my mild turmeric chicken curry to keep it from drying out and rehydrate it with the sauce.
  3. Cook the chicken in stages: If you’re using boneless chicken breast, split it, or cut it into bite-sized pieces and cook it separately from the curry. Once the curry sauce is almost cooked, add the cooked chicken to the curry and let it simmer for a few more minutes.
  4. Don’t overcook the chicken: Overcooking chicken can make it dry and tough. Make sure to cook the chicken until it is just cooked through and tender, and then remove it from the heat. The chicken will continue to cook in the simmering mild turmeric chicken curry and absorb the flavors.
  5. Thaw out and marinate the chicken: Marinating the chicken in little yellow curry powder, lemon juice with salt and pepper before cooking can help keep it moist and tender.

A crucial step in prepping chicken breasts is to thaw out the chicken completely before grilling, before finishing the cooking in mild turmeric chicken curry. It helps to cook chicken pieces evenly and fast without losing too much moisture. However, they will continue to cook in turmeric chicken curry sauce.

What are serving suggestions to pair with ginger chicken curry

I love this Sri Lankan version of mild turmeric creamy curry sauce as much as I love a good butter chicken or chicken tikka masala. I interchange this recipe whenever I have a mood for a Sri Lankan curry instead of Rich Indian chicken curry.

This mild turmeric chicken curry is perfect just with rice or naan on the side. For a healthy nutritious complete meal for my kids, I pair it with steamed or sauteed broccoli or vegetables. I hope you enjoy my recipe and give it a try! Let me know if you do what you think of it and like and share to support my blog.

chicken curry with rice

Mild turmeric chicken curry

This mild turmeric chicken curry is a healthy nutritious complete meal for my kids paired with steamed rice and sautéed broccoli or vegetables.
Course Dinner
Cuisine Sri Lankan
Servings 4


  • 4 skinless boneless chicken breasts
  • ½ inch piece of ginger
  • 3 green chilies Use less or skip if you want the curry to be just creamy without any heat
  • 10 curry leaves
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • ½ tsp mustard seeds
  • ¼ tsp fenugreek seeds
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • ½ small onion
  • 2 cups thick coconut milk
  • 1 inch Stick of Cinnamon
  • 1 pod cardamom
  • 1 tsp freshly crushed black pepper
  • 2 tsp salt or to taste


  • Rinse and pat the chicken breast to dry with a paper towel. Season with salt on both sides. Score the chicken in a cross pattern.
  • Add one tablespoon or two of olive oil in a shallow sauté pan on high. Sear / fry chicken breasts for 2 minutes per side.
  • Thinly slice onion, ginger, green chili, and garlic. Add another tablespoon of oil in the same pan and fry onions, ginger, garlic, green chilies until soft.
  • Keeping the flame medium low, add cumin, turmeric, and black pepper.
  • Add coconut milk and a cup of water. Mix everything in and add fenugreek, cinnamon, curry leaves, cardamom, and crushed mustard seeds.
  • Slowly bring everything to a simmer stirring constantly. Cook for 5 minutes to combine flavors. Add chicken breasts and toss to coat. Cook for additional five to 10 minutes or until chicken breasts are just cooked through.


To make the curry completely mild without any heat: Skip green chilies, black pepper and add only a half a teaspoon of minced ginger.
Coconut milk Substitutes: Cream, White sauce, or couple of tablespoons of yogurt can be used instead of coconut milk
Keyword chicken curry, easy chicken curry, kid friendly chicken curry, mild chicken curry, Turmeric chicken curry