Green Coconut Curry Chicken, Crock Pot Style
As I recently mentioned, I got me a crock pot! I’ve been trying to embrace my new slow cooker lifestyle by ummm, Pinterest-ing a lot of recipes to get an idea of good technique (such as the meat-searing tip in my recipe below!). I’ve also been trying not to be such a hot mess in the kitchen – usually I’m holding my phone to look at recipes, photos, etc. while simultaneously chopping and sautéing and almost dropping it into the sink. Horrible. So I have to give a shout out to the silly-named Monkey Kit, which holds up the iPad so I can cook hands-free like a normal person. They sent me a sample model and it has truly been a game changer, two thumbs up. Between this and the crock pot I really am becoming a human adult, I guess.
SO! This is the next meal I’ve perfected with my new slow cooker. For this recipe you could totally use red or yellow curry paste if you prefer it over green. Red curry paste is actually my favorite, but green is what I had on hand and it worked well with the vegetables I used and my pumpkin seed garnish. As with most dishes, you can feel free to swap out the vegetables with whatever your favorites are… just keep in mind cooking time. Softer vegetables you can just add in at the end of the day, about a half hour before you plan on serving. Harder vegetables with a longer cook time can be added in the beginning at the same time as the chicken. Got it? Great.
Homemade Green Coconut Curry Chicken (in the crockpot!)
2 boneless/skinless chicken breasts
2 tbsp coconut oil
3 tbsp green curry paste
2 tbsp curry powder
2 tbsp minced garlic
2 tbsp powdered peanut butter
1 tbsp chili powder or red pepper flakes
1/2 tbsp powdered ginger (or freshly grated ginger!)
1 can light coconut milk
1 cup chicken broth
4 cups vegetables – I used carrots, onions, snap peas, and broccoli
Garnishes: pumpkin seeds, sriracha, cilantro sprigs
There’s a tiny bit of prep to do before you can throw everything in the slow cooker. But it only takes a few minutes, I promise. First, heat up a big sauté pan on medium-high and add the coconut oil. Once the oil melts, sear the chicken breasts for a couple minutes on each side (searing on the outside before placing in the crock pot will help add flavor and texture to the meat). Then place the chicken and the raw vegetables in the crock pot.
In the same pan you seared the chicken in, add the garlic and all the spices/pastes/powders. Whisk together and let the flavors cook together for a minute or so, then add the coconut milk and whisk-whisk-whisk all together. Pour the mixture over the chicken and vegetables in the crock pot, then add the chicken broth.
SIDENOTE: If you like your vegetables softer and thoroughly cooked, add in at the beginning. If you like them more… al dente, add them about an hour before you’re ready to eat. I first made the mistake of adding my broccoli in with the chicken and the other vegetables, but it got a little mushy. Best to add at the end, unless you prefer slightly mushy.
Cook everything together on low for 6-8 hours or high for 4-5 hours. If the sauce isn’t as thick as you’d like by the time you’re ready to serve, you can thicken it up manually – I combined a couple tablespoons of arrowroot powder with equal parts water then whisked it into the crockpot. (You could also make this recipe with full fat coconut milk which would help add thickness, I’m just trying to be moderately healthy here!)
Serve on top of brown rice or quinoa, and top with cilantro, sriracha, and pumpkin seeds (a full, fall-y alternative to your more typical peanuts or cashews – I used Superseedz curried pumpkin seeds and they were perfect!).