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10 Surprisingly Easy (and Healthy!) Chicken Curry Recipes

When you’re dieting, you probably like to keep things simple.

Whether you’re tracking macros or following a meal plan, you know how much easier it is to hit your numbers when you stick mainly to “clean” whole foods like chicken breast, rice, broccoli, and so on.

There’s a price you have to pay for this convenience, though: it can get pretty boring.

And simple dishes like these curry recipes are the perfect antidote.

Traditionally, a curry is a combination of spices, herbs, and chilis mixed with vegetables and meat, but as most are made with large amounts of butter, oil, and coconut milk, they’re simply too high calorie for cutting.

If you replace those high-fat ingredients with “lighter” alternatives, though, you can get something just as delicious with a fraction of the calories.

For example, the Crockpot Indian Butter Chicken Curry has just 9 grams of fat per serving, the Pukka Yellow Chicken Curry is ideal when you want something sweet and savory, and the Coconut Curry Chicken Meatballs are perfect for when you want a heartier, more “Westernized” version of this classic Indian dish.

Enjoy!

Coconut Curry Chicken

Serves 6

This chicken curry pairs tomato and creamy coconut together to deliver a rich combo of both sweet and spicy to tease your tastebuds toward that next delicious mouthful. It’s a dish that doesn’t skimp on sauce so when you serve over fluffy rice it will be coated through and through.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

459

Calories

21.8 g

Protein

47.7 g

Carbs

20.3 g

Fat

Ingredients

2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2 inch chunks

Salt and pepper, to taste

1 1/2 Tbsp. vegetable oil

2 Tbsp. curry powder

1/2 onion, thinly sliced

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1 14 oz. can coconut milk

1 14.5 oz. can diced tomato

1 8 oz. can tomato sauce

3 Tbsp. sugar

Get the Recipe

5 Ingredient Chicken Tikka Masala

Serves 6-8

Yes you read that right – this creamy, luscious, medium-spicy, must-have-it Chicken Tikka Masala, is a meal based on just 5 ingredients. You can purchase a store-bought masala paste but the true magic of this dish happens when you make a homemade paste – you’ll get a more fragrant, punchy, deep flavored curry that you’ll thoroughly adore.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

356

Calories

38 g

Protein

9 g

Carbs

20 g

Fat

Ingredients

The curry:

2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1/4 cup masala paste (store bought or homemade, see below)

1/2 cup plain yogurt

1 1/2 cups tomato puree

1 14 oz. can regular coconut milk

Rice and cilantro, for serving

 

Homemade masala paste:

2 onions

5 cloves garlic

2-inch piece of fresh ginger

3 Tbsp. garam masala

1 Tbsp. chili powder

1 Tbsp. turmeric

1 Tbsp. cumin

1.5 tsp. ground cloves

2 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper

A small pile of of cilantro stems

A fistful of almonds

Juice of one lemon

Get the Recipe

Crockpot Indian Butter Chicken Curry

Serves 4

Some people wouldn’t consider butter chicken a curry, but it is. It’s just a very mild version suited to those who can’t stand the hotter spice that often accompanies curries. This Indian Butter Chicken can be made in a slow cooker or on the stove top. You can adapt the level of spice and smokiness for a slightly different result each time you make it – and you will make it again because it’s scrumptious.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

397

Calories

66 g

Protein

10 g

Carbs

8 g

Fat

Ingredients

2.5 to 3 lbs. boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs, cut into 2 inch pieces

1 onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, chopped

2 tsp. curry

2 tsp. garam masala

1 tsp. cumin

1/2 tsp. cayenne powder

1/2 tsp. ground ginger

1 14 oz. can light coconut milk

1 6 oz. can tomato paste

3-4 drops liquid smoke

Salt, to taste

1/2 cup low-fat plain yogurt, optional

1 head cauliflower, cut into florets for cauliflower “rice” (optional) or serve over

Or, jasmine, white or brown rice, to serve

Cilantro, chopped for garnish, optional

Lime, optional

Get the Recipe

Jamaican Chicken Curry

Serves 4

Hot, hot, hot – definitely a dish to hit the spot for those who love strong, assertive flavors. A nice dollop of Greek yogurt always does the trick to add a cool sensation to a spicy dish. And of course, if you don’t like it so fiery, simply ease off on the curry powder. For another dimension of sweetness and flavor, try adding some pieces of pineapple.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

360

Calories

28 g

Protein

20 g

Carbs

17.4 g

Fat

Ingredients

2 Tbsp. canola oil

2 sprigs thyme

1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast, sliced bite size

1 potato, sliced bite size

1 medium onion, sliced bite size

1 green bell pepper, sliced bite size

1 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped

6 Tbsp. curry powder

1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt

2 tsp. garlic powder

1 cup low sodium chicken stock

1 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper

2 1/2 Tbsp. white vinegar

Dash good balsamic vinegar, optional

Get the Recipe

Crock Pot Thai Chicken Curry

Serves 4

Using a slow cooker is the lazy man’s (or woman’s) way to a tasty meal. Fast 10 minute prep and your slow cooker does the rest of the work for you. This meal is not one to disappoint. It’s jam packed with flavor, and produces moist, tender chicken that makes this meal crazy delicious.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

362

Calories

29 g

Protein

37 g

Carbs

8 g

Fat

Ingredients

1 14 oz. can coconut milk, plus 1 can of water

2-4 Tbsp. Thai red curry paste

1 Tbsp. soy sauce

1 Tbsp. palm or coconut sugar (or sub maple syrup or brown sugar)

1 Tbsp. minced ginger

2 tsp. fish sauce

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 2-3 pieces

1 large kabocha, cut into 1 inch cubes (or 1 small butternut squash)

1 medium yellow onion, chopped

1-2 chili peppers, if you like extra heat

1 large bunch of kale, torn into small pieces, roughly 2 packed cups

Optional: cilantro, chili peppers, and lime to serve

Get the Recipe

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Coconut Curry Chicken Meatballs

Serves 4

You’ll love this dish that delivers a new twist on chicken curry that you’ve probably never tried. Based on an exquisite red curry sauce, the ground chicken is also infused with the fragrant herbs and spices of Asia and the Middle East. And in around 30 minutes you’ll be chowing down on these oh-so-tasty meatballs.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

280

Calories

16 g

Protein

6 g

Carbs

23 g

Fat

Ingredients

Meatballs:

1/2 cup roughly chopped carrots

1/4 red onion, chopped

2 Tbsp. freeze dried cilantro

Juice of 1 lime

2 Tbsp. basil

1 Tbsp. coconut aminos (or soy sauce)

1 tsp. ground ginger

1 clove garlic

1/2 tsp. ground cumin

1/4 tsp. red chili flakes

1/4 tsp. each sea salt and pepper

1 lb. ground chicken

Sauce:

1 can coconut milk

1 Tbsp. red curry paste

1 Tbsp. almond butter

2 Tbsp. lime juice

1 tsp. minced garlic

Get the Recipe

Authentic Thai Chicken Curry

Serves 4

If you love Thai food and have been wondering how to make a true, Thai-inspired dish at home, this authentic recipe will get you there. The recipe comes direct from a renowned chef in Phuket, Thailand and provides a few secrets to achieving those rich, sweet yet spicy Thai flavors you adore. It also works perfectly subbing out chicken for fish.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

647

Calories

52 g

Protein

16 g

Carbs

42 g

Fat

Ingredients

1.5 lbs. chicken tenders or chicken breast, cut into cubes

2 red peppers, sliced

1 Tbsp. olive oil

2 Tbsp. red curry paste

1 14 oz. can coconut milk

2 Tbsp. fish sauce

1 Tbsp. palm sugar, or coconut sugar

5-6 kaffir lime leaves, julienne

Get the Recipe

Pukka Yellow Chicken Curry

Serves 4

For a phenomenal taste and a budget-friendly meal you could serve to the crowd, this Chicken Yellow Curry delivers. With the sweetness of yellow peppers and savory overtones of chickpeas, it really hits the spot. It also lends itself well to the addition of different vegetables and spices. Try adding shallot and a cinnamon stick for an aromatic kick.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

572

Calories

34 g

Protein

75 g

Carbs

8 g

Fat

Ingredients

2 onions

4 cloves of garlic

2 inch piece of ginger

2 yellow peppers

1 organic chicken stock cube

1-2 fresh red chillies

1/2 a bunch of fresh coriander

1 tsp. runny honey

1 tsp. ground turmeric

2 tsp. curry powder

8 free-range chicken drumsticks

Olive oil

1 14 oz. can chickpeas

1 tsp. tomato purée

1 mug of basmati rice, about 5 oz.

1 lemon

Fat-free natural yogurt, optional

Get the Recipe

Indian Chicken Karahi Curry

Serves 6-8

This unique and authentic dish combines the ethnic backgrounds of both India and Pakistan in a curry called Karahi. Though it may sound new, it’s a basic Indian curry found in most restaurants. Made with a tomato and yogurt base and a collection of aromatic herbs and spices, you’ll love that this chicken curry is super easy to create.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

204

Calories

15 g

Protein

7 g

Carbs

13 g

Fat

Ingredients

1.1 lbs. boneless chicken breasts

2.2 lbs. chopped fresh tomatoes

1 medium red onion, finely chopped

1 tsp. minced garlic

1 tsp. minced ginger

1 1/2 tsp. red chili powder

1 tsp. garam masala

1 tsp. white cumin powder

1/2 tsp. turmeric powder

4 Tbsp. vegetable oil

1/2 cup water

Salt to taste

1 Tbsp. chopped coriander

2-3 green chilis, optional

Dash of lemon juice

Get the Recipe

Instant Pot Chicken Curry

Serves 6

Anyone who loves Indian curries will love this easy-to-make meal. It can be made with bone-in or boneless chicken and utilizes a wide array of Indian herbs and spices – cumin, cinnamon, ginger, paprika – the types of spices that add pleasant tones and a heavenly aroma that makes any meal incredibly appealing.

Nutrition Facts (Per Serving)

321

Calories

19 g

Protein

14 g

Carbs

22 g

Fat

Ingredients

3 Tbsp. butter or ghee

1 large bay leaf

2 inch piece of cinnamon

1/2 tsp. cumin seeds

2 cups onions, chopped fine

1 Tbsp. minced garlic

1 Tbsp. minced ginger

2 Tbsp. tomato paste

1 1/2 Tbsp. coriander powder

3/4 tsp. turmeric powder

3/4 tsp. ground black pepper

3/4 tsp. Indian chili powder or cayenne

1 1/2 tsp. salt

3 lbs. chicken thighs or drumsticks, bone-in

2 cups potato, cut into 1 1/2 inch cubes

1/2 cup water or chicken broth

1 1/2 tsp. garam masala

2 Tbsp. cashew paste

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

Get the Recipe

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