Thai Yellow Curry is easy to make at home in only 20 minutes! This recipe is made with chicken, but extra veggies can be swapped in for a vegetarian curry. The sauce is so delicious, you’ll feel like you’re eating at your favorite Thai restaurant!

Overhead shot of yellow curry in bowl with chopsticks on the side

Are you constantly dreaming that Thai food takeout will magically appear in your kitchen for dinner? No, just me? Either way, this recipe for Thai Yellow Curry will give you that delicious, straight-from-your-favorite-Thai-restaurant taste without ever leaving your kitchen! The best news is, it’s made in just 20 minutes!

For a few years now, I’ve been working on perfecting my favorite Thai recipes at home. I successfully created amazing versions of my favorite noodle dishes, Spicy Vegetable Pad Thai and Drunken Noodles. Now it was time to recreate my favorite curry dish!

Yellow curry in bowl, topped with fresh cilantro sprigs, with bowl of rice on the side

What Yellow Curry Paste To Use

Yellow Thai Curry is slightly sweet and mild in flavor, but can be kicked up to your desired spice level with the addition of Thai chilies. I use Mae Ploy Yellow Curry Paste, which can be found at some grocery stores, Asian markets or online. I purchase a large container of it, as it will keep in the fridge sealed and covered for up to 2 years.

Out of all the pre-made curry pastes I’ve tried, this one definitely has the best flavor and the most similar taste to what you’d get at a Thai restaurant. It’s also vegan and gluten free, so it’s great for making vegan and vegetarian curries! Using a pre-made curry paste makes this recipe so simple and easy to toss together any night of the week!

How to make Thai Yellow Curry

  1. Add coconut oil to a large pot on the stove over medium high heat. If coconut oil is not available, olive oil can be used instead.
  2. Add large diced onions and saute for 2-3 minutes. Add yellow curry paste and cook for 2 minutes. Pour two cans of coconut milk into the pot.
    • Quick Tip: Coconut cream can be used in place of coconut milk to make a thicker sauce.
  3. Bring the coconut milk or cream to a simmer, then add diced bell peppers and carrots. Simmer for 3-4 minutes. Add sliced chicken breast to the sauce and simmer for an additional 6-8 minutes.
  4. For a vegetarian curry, add more veggies with the bell peppers and carrots. Eggplant, zucchini, red potatoes and broccoli are all great additions to this dish.
  5. Stir brown sugar, fish sauce and lime juice into the curry. If making this recipe vegetarian, omit the fish sauce and instead add one teaspoon of soy sauce.

I like to serve the Thai Yellow Curry over cooked jasmine rice with pan fried roti bread for dipping. You could also serve it with quinoa, brown rice or rice noodles. For a healthy low carb option, serve the curry over cauliflower rice instead.

Frequently Asked Questions

How spicy is yellow curry?

Yellow curry is not spicy, it’s mild and slightly sweet. If you like a little heat in your curry, add 1-2 diced Thai chilies with the onions. This will take the curry to about a 5 on the 1-10 Thai restaurant spice level.

If you like a lot of heat in your curry, add 3-4 diced Thai chilies. This will take the curry to about an 8 on the 1-10 spice level.

What is the difference between red curry and yellow curry?

Red curry is spicier than yellow curry. Red curry gets its color from the ground red chilies used in the sauce. Yellow curry gets it’s golden color from the spice turmeric, which is found in the yellow curry paste.

Is yellow curry good for you?

Yellow curry is high in vitamins A and C and iron. But it is also high in fat from the coconut milk. To reduce the fat and calories by two-thirds, use lite coconut milk. It won’t have quite the creaminess of full-fat coconut milk, but is a great way to cut calories and fat.

Overhead shot of Thai yellow curry in bowl with chopsticks on the side

Looking for more fun and easy curry recipes? Check out these 5 favorites!

  1. Thai Green Avocado Curry
  2. Red Curry Shrimp
  3. Indian Curry Chicken Tacos
  4. Green Curry Chicken Fried Rice
  5. Asian Lamb Meatballs in Green Curry Sauce

And don’t miss these other easy chicken recipes!

  1. Chicken and Penne Pasta Recipes
  2. Buffalo Chicken Wrap – easy to make in 10 minutes!
  3. Chinese Honey Chicken – when it comes to gluten free chicken recipes, this is the best!
  4. Buffalo Chicken Stuffed Peppers – a wonderful whole30 recipe!
  5. Stuffed Chicken with Spinach & Mushroom 
  6. Buffalo Chicken Egg Rolls
Yellow curry in bowl, topped with cilantro sprigs and diced green onions
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Thai Yellow Curry

Thai Yellow Curry is easy to make at home in only 20 minutes! This recipe is made with chicken, but extra veggies can be swapped in for a vegetarian curry!


  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 cup onion, large dice
  • cup yellow curry paste
  • 30 oz coconut milk, two 15 oz cans
  • 1 cup red bell pepper, large dice
  • 1 cup carrots, large dice
  • 1 lb chicken, thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tsp fish sauce
  • 1 tsp lime juice


  • Add the coconut oil to a large pot over medium high heat.
  • Add the onion and saute 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the yellow curry paste and cook for 2 minutes.
  • Add the coconut milk and bring to a simmer.
  • Add the bell pepper and carrots, simmer for 3-4 minutes.
  • Add the chicken and continue simmering for 6-8 minutes.
  • Stir in the brown sugar, fish sauce and lime juice.
  • Remove from the heat and serve.


Nutrition Facts

Calories 767kcal (38%)Carbohydrates 19g (6%)Protein 26g (52%)Fat 67g (103%)Saturated Fat 48g (240%)Cholesterol 85mg (28%)Sodium 251mg (10%)Potassium 921mg (26%)Fiber 3g (12%)Sugar 9g (10%)Vitamin A 9775mg (196%)Vitamin C 58.4mg (71%)Calcium 101mg (10%)Iron 8.9mg (49%)
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