Coconut Chicken Curry Soup
This Indian-inspired coconut chicken curry soup is bursting with creamy comfort! Rich coconut milk, savory curry powder, hearty carrots & peas—plus apples & prunes for a surprising burst of sweetness. Learn how to make a curry chicken soup with coconut milk in just 40 minutes.
Check out my Roasted Sweet Potato Soup or Quick Minestrone Soup for more comforting soup ideas!
What is curry soup made of?
A curry soup is essentially a broth-based soup infused with curry spices—typically including vegetables, sometimes meat, and often a creamy element like coconut milk. On its own, a “curry” is like a sauce or gravy, commonly served with rice in Indian and Thai cuisine. But this coconut chicken curry soup recipe transforms the flavors of curry into a warm, comforting curry soup, hearty enough to enjoy as its own meal.
The Difference Between Thai Curry & Indian Curry
Although it’s similar to the Thai curry soup Tom Kha, this Indian-inspired curry soup is made with curry powder instead of curry paste. Thai curries are brighter, citrusy, and use curry paste for flavor. Indian curries have a distinctly richer, savory flavor that comes from curry powder—a blend of spices like turmeric, cumin, ginger, caraway, nutmeg, mustard seeds, cinnamon, cloves, and more. Combine those hearty spices with a creamy coconut soup base, and this Indian curry chicken soup is irresistible!
Reasons to Love Coconut Curry Chicken Soup
- Flavorful. Warm, savory, spiced, with a hint of sweetness—this chicken curry soup tastes like a creamy bowl of fall with Indian-inspired flair! I love the comforting flavor and smell of onion sauteed in butter, so I start with that as my base, infused with the rich, aromatic flavors of curry powder and garam masala. For me, a healthy relationship with food is enjoying what I eat and eating what I enjoy, and this tasty soup hits both marks.
- Easy & Simple. This is a great easy dinner recipe for beginners—easy enough to make in just 40 minutes! The ingredients are simple and there’s no special equipment required, just pots and pans and basic cooking skills. Plus, the recipe is flexible: replace or omit an ingredient if you don’t have it, or you can add a veggie or seasoning that you love!
- Variety. Like flavor, variety can be an important aspect of our relationship with food. Are you enjoying the foods and flavors you’re eating regularly? Are your taste buds craving a change? If you don’t typically eat curry or curry soup, the unique flavors in this dish can reinvigorate your home-cooked meal routine.
- Nourishing. Besides nourishing my taste buds, this coconut chicken curry soup is also loaded with nourishing ingredients. Carrots and peas for a dose of colorful vegetables, satiating protein in the chicken, healthy fats from creamy coconut milk, plus fiber-rich apples and prunes.
Coconut Chicken Curry Soup Ingredients
- Onion & Carrot. I start developing the flavors in this chicken curry soup by first sauteing aromatic veggies like onion and carrot—feel free to add celery, or use just onion.
- Butter. Use whatever you prefer for sauteing the veggies: butter, ghee, or oil. I use butter because the flavor adds to my enjoyment and appreciation of the meal, which is key in my healthy relationship with food.
- Garlic. This Indian-inspired curry soup is tastiest with plenty of garlic, but you can reduce or omit it if you’re not a fan.
- Flour. I used all-purpose flour to help thicken my curry mixture, or you can use a gluten-free flour.
- Curry Powder & Garam Masala. This duo creates the rich, savory, spiced layers of flavor in this coconut curry chicken soup! I recommend using both for the best flavor, but you can use just curry powder if you don’t have garam masala.
- Chicken Broth. Really any broth can work—chicken, beef, vegetable, etc.—and use a low-sodium if needed.
- Chicken Breast. Feel free to use any cooked chicken: breast or thighs, chopped, shredded, or even ground. Or, make a vegetarian curry soup with no meat, or add chickpeas instead!
- Apple & Prunes. After simmering, the apple almost tastes like cooked potato, and the prunes become so juicy, plump, and tender! You can include just one—either apple or prunes—or omit both for a strictly savory soup.
- Coconut Milk. Making chicken curry soup with coconut milk turns a thinner broth-based soup into a rich, creamy experience. I prefer canned full-fat coconut milk, but light coconut milk can also work.
- Frozen Peas. Peas are a classic addition in this Indian-inspired dish, or you can substitute with a different vegetable if you’d like.
How to Make Curry Chicken Soup with Coconut Milk
- First, saute onion and carrots in butter or oil for 4-5 minutes.
- Then, add garlic, flour, curry powder, and garam masala and continue sauteing another 1-2 minutes.
- Pour in chicken broth and bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer for 15 minutes or so.
- In a separate pan, cook chopped chicken until browned on all sides (7-8 minutes), seasoning with salt.
- After the soup simmers, add cooked chicken, apple, prunes, thyme, salt, and pepper into the pot and simmer for another 15 more minutes.
- Finally, stir in coconut milk and frozen peas during the last few minutes of simmering. To prevent the coconut milk from curdling, stir frequently and keep the heat low so the soup does not boil.
- Serve coconut chicken curry soup warm topped with chopped cilantro, coconut flakes, or anything you like.
See how to make this coconut chicken curry soup in my Comforting Fall Soups video!
What vegetables go with curry soup?
If you’d like to add additional veggies or replace the frozen peas in this coconut curry chicken soup recipe, there are plenty of tasty vegetables that pair well with curry! You can either add frozen vegetables alongside or instead of the frozen peas, or use leftover cooked vegetables as a substitute for frozen veggies. These are some of my favorite options:
- Broccoli or Cauliflower
- Green Beans
- Potatoes or Sweet Potatoes
Coconut Curry Chicken Soup
- 2 Tbsp butter, (or ghee or oil)
- ¾ cup onion, chopped
- 2 carrots, shredded
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 Tbsp flour, (all-purpose or gluten-free)
- 1½ Tbsp curry powder
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 6 cups chicken broth
- 8 oz chicken breast, cubed (small)
- 1 apple, peeled & chopped
- ¾ cup bite-sized prunes, (or chopped prunes)
- ⅛ tsp dried thyme
- ½ tsp salt
- ⅛ tsp black pepper, to taste
- 1 cup coconut milk
- ¾ cup frozen peas
- chopped cilantro
- coconut flakes
- In a large pot over medium heat, saute onions and carrots in butter for 4-5 minutes. Add minced garlic, flour, curry powder, and garam masala and cook for another 1-2 minutes.
- Stir in the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer for about 15 minutes.
- While that simmers, heat oil in a separate pan and cook chopped chicken until browned on all sides (7-8 minutes), seasoning to taste with salt.
- Add cooked chicken into soup pot along with chopped apple, bite-sized prunes, thyme, salt, and pepper.
- Simmer for 15 more minutes. During the last few minutes, stir in the coconut milk and frozen peas.
- Yields ~8 cups coconut chicken curry soup.