Skip to Content

Chicken Curry With Coconut and Poppy Seeds

Sharing is caring!

This is truly a chicken curry with a difference!

Chicken curry by the Curry Guy

This is such a nice chicken curry without much heat so kids love it.

A friend of mine in India recently emailed me this simple and delicious chicken curry recipe. His mother used to make it for him and he wanted me to give it a try. I’m so glad I did.

Originally it was quite a dry curry but he mentioned that his mum used to cook it with more gravy which is what I’ve done here.

I have to admit I tried it the dry way first and definitely will do again. The dry version is nice for picnics as it’s easy to transport and can be eaten cold.

To make it, just stop before adding the water and either serve immediately or place in the fridge for later.

As I write this, it’s National Curry Week in the UK. What a great excuse to make and share a good curry. This chicken curry was perfect for the whole family as there is no chilli in it.

What it does have is plenty of warming spices such as cardamom, cumin, black pepper and cinnamon. My kids devoured it.

The Curry Guy Easy

Over 100 new recipes!

The Curry Guy Cookbook

Best Seller! Over 100 Curry House Recipes.

Waterstones logo

International & UK Orders

Book Depository logo


Yield: 4

Chicken Curry With Roasted Coconut and Poppy Seeds

Chicken Curry With Roasted Coconut and Poppy Seeds


  • 800g skinless chicken thighs cut into two inch pieces
  • 1 tabelspoon desiccated coconut
  • 1 tablespoon poppy seeds
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, ghee or rapeseed oil
  • 1 one inch cinnamon stick
  • 4 green cardamom pods
  • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
  • 2 onions - finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon garlic paste
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 2 medium tomatoes - finely chopped
  • 2 bay leaves.
  • 1 tablespoon coriander powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 tablespoon finely chopped fresh coriander


  1. In a dry frying pan, fry the poppy seeds until they are warm to the touch. Remove from heat.
  2. Now do the same with the desiccated coconut and the cumin seeds in separate batches.
  3. Using a spice grinder or pestle and mortar, grind the poppy seeds and coconut together into a fine powder. Set aside.
  4. Now pour the oil into the frying pan and heat over medium high heat.
  5. When hot but not yet smoking, toss in the cardamom pods cinnamon and move the spices around in the oil for about 30 seconds.
  6. Pour in the chopped onions and fry for about 5 minutes before adding the coconut and poppy seed mixture.
  7. After another minute, sprinkle in the cumin and coriander powder and add the ginger and garlic pastes. Stir to combine.
  8. Now add the chicken pieces and stir until the chicken is coated with all the onion and spices.
  9. Cook over medium heat until the chicken is cooked through if you are eating this as a dry curry. If not, add just enough water to cover the meat, add the bay leaves and simmer for about 20 minutes.
  10. When the sauce is to your liking, season with salt and pepper to taste, stir in the chopped coriander and serve with rice or naans.

Did you like this recipe?

Please join me on Facebook where I share all my latest recipes and videos. Just click that Facebook icon on the left and let's get to know each other!

I would like to thank Candiasoil Olive Oil for supplying  the olive oil I used in this recipe. It worked perfectly and I highly recommend it.

Andrew Mellor

Wednesday 1st of August 2018

It was very good but you don't say when to add the tomatoes

Dan Toombs

Monday 27th of August 2018

Hi Andrew

Thank you for pointing that out. I haven't had much time lately to work on the blog as I am busy writing books. You can really add the tomatoes anytime after the onions are cooked down. Hope this helps.



Wednesday 9th of October 2013

Would this work as well with a chunk of non-oily fish? Tofu? Vegetables?

Skip to Recipe

Sharing is Caring

Help spread the word. You're awesome for doing it!