m. c. de marco: The New Kitchen Cookbook

Coconut Curry Chicken for a Crowd

I wanted to try something different for the big Seder crowd, so I went looking for coconut milk curry chicken recipes. Most of them were for boneless breasts, but I had skin-on thighs and legs, so I went with Curry Coconut Milk Roast Chicken Thighs. Like my coconut milk tapioca recipe, it needed some scaling up to can increments. Another inspiration was Easy Coconut Curry Chicken Thighs, especially spicewise.

I also tossed in some sweet onions because I had them and they seemed to go, and since similar recipes called for green or red onion. I would have added bell pepper if I’d had time and space, but as it was I couldn’t even fit the chicken broth in the dutch oven I used.


  • 7–10 lbs. small chicken pieces (legs, thighs, etc.)
  • 800ml (2 cans) coconut milk
  • 3 ⅓ c. chicken broth (optional)
  • 3 T. olive or coconut oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 sweet onions, chopped
  • 10 cloves garlic, minced
  • fresh ginger (optional)
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 3 T. plus 1 tsp. curry powder
  • 1 T. cumin
  • ½ T. cayenne pepper (or to taste)
  • 2 tsp. coriander (optional)
  • 2 tsp. turmeric (optional)
  • 1 tsp. smoked paprika (optional)
  • 2 tsp. sugar or honey (optional)
  • zest and juice of 1–2 limes
  • a lot of fresh cilantro or many cubes frozen cilantro
  • red or yellow bell pepper (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 400°.
  2. Salt and pepper chicken pieces to taste.
  3. Brown chicken in oil in a large skillet (possibly in batches).
  4. Transfer chicken to baking dish.
  5. Fry onions, garlic, and ginger (in a reasonable order) in skillet. Add spices.
  6. Add coconut milk and broth to skillet. Simmer until the lumps dissolve.
  7. Pour over chicken.
  8. Add peppers and bake 30–45 minutes until fully cooked.
  9. Optionally top with fresh cilantro.


If you don’t have the time or facilities to brown that much chicken on the stovetop, you can try broiling it in the oven instead.

If you can fit all the chicken in the skillet, you can simmer 20 minutes on the stove instead of baking.