The simplest curry – new recipe

The simplest curry, your way

Chicken curry? Beef curry? Fish curry? Vegetable curry? Thai green, yellow or Massaman? This is the easiest curry you will ever make, with just a few ingredients you no doubt have in your house. In your mind to in your tummy within 30 minutes flat. Perfect for a mid-week meal during lockdown.

Simplest curry on a plate

Jump to Recipe

Time rich, motivation poor?

Working remotely means I do actually have quite a lot of time on my hands to prepare elaborate meals. Roast dinner on a Tuesday? No problem … I can stick the chicken in the oven to roast in between afternoon zoom calls. Lasagne? Bolognaise in the morning, bechamel at lunchtime, layering and baking in between … afternoon zoom calls. Soufflé? Hahaha yeah right.

But just because I can prepare mid-week meals during lockdown which I wouldn’t normally have the time to do, doesn’t mean that I want to … or indeed can be bothered to. A full time job and a full time Ioan means the inclination to cook is not always there. BUT, the greed always is. I still want nice meals even if I can’t be bothered to spend a lot of time making them, and this is where my deliciously easy curry comes in.

A lightbulb moment

I was making this during the week and thought, do you know what? This is so simple and easy, why don’t I just take some photos of the ingredients, and the method, and share it with my friends on It’s not easy being greedy? And so that’s what I am doing. So apologies that the photos are even more crappy than usual, but I promise you this curry isn’t.

Simplest curry ingredients

How do you make this easy curry?

Okay, so basically you bung all the ingredients into the saucepan at the same time, bring to the boil, simmer for 20 minutes while you cook your rice, add optional ingredients, and serve. That’s it! This is a very easy curry, relying on a few store-cupboard ingredients and a couple of fresh things. I have proposed the basics first of all, and then the optional extras (which are not always fussy-child friendly), and you can basically build your own curry.

Simplest curry uncooked ingredients in saucepan

My curry essentials

Curry paste: I always have jars of this Barts curry paste in my cupboard. It’s not too spicy, it tastes authentic, one pot makes two curries, it lasts in the fridge for a couple of weeks when open, and there are various flavours to try. But you can buy other curry pastes which are cheaper and just as good from Asian supermarkets, so whichever paste you can get hold of is totally fine. You will probably want around 50g / one large tablespoon of curry paste in total … but some are spicier than others!

Coconut milk: I like reduced fat coconut milk because I find the full fat one a bit too overly creamy, but you can use whichever version you prefer. Or you can use coconut milk powder to make your own (I always have this coconut milk powder in my cupboard, having been introduced to it by my Sri Lankan friend Niasha).

The main component: so in this instance I had chicken thighs in my fridge, and Massaman paste, so made my curry with that … even though usually I’d use dark meat to make a Massaman curry. But it works.

Carb: I used rice (white basmati, but Jasmine rice is also a great one). But you could serve this with flatbreads or naan breads or veggies … whatever you have access to.

Simplest curry combos

These are my favourites, but go with what you fancy – no combination of meat or veg is bad in my book (except mushrooms, which are the devil’s food):

  • Yellow curry paste: fish or shellfish; sweet potato and chickpea
  • Green curry paste: chicken thighs; butternut squash and green beans
  • Massaman curry paste: diced beef with potato; aubergine and tomato

Optional extras

I chucked an onion and some new potatoes into my curry this time around because I had them – as mentioned above, you can use any combination of meat or veg that you happen to like.

Simplest curry optional extras

Once the basic curry is cooked, I take out a portion for Ioan and then stir in fresh spinach and coriander to mine and Andrew’s (Ioan is suspicious of most green veggies, except broccoli!), and once served top with crispy onions which I usually buy from an Asian supermarket and they are super cheap, but have to rely on Ocado right now and they are not super cheap. Ioan, who hates onion, loves these crispy onions. But not on top of his curry (made that mistake once) … on the side.

Simplest curry and rice on hob

Is this a toddler friendly curry?

Yes, with my quantities, this is a mild enough curry for Ioan to enjoy. But if you find the curry is too spicy, just add some natural yoghurt to your child’s portion to tame it.

Is this curry vegetarian / vegan friendly?

Check the label – as many Thai curry pastes have fish sauce included in the ingredients.

Simplest curry on a plate

The simplest curry

Tracy Knatt
Here's a recipe for my simplest curry, but the best thing about it is that you can swap in your favourite ingredients to tailor it to what you have in your fridge and cupboards, and what you fancy.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Thai
Servings 4 people


Essential ingredients

  • 1/2 jar Barts curry paste Massoman in this case, but choose your favourite
  • 1 can reduced fat coconut milk Use full fat if preferred
  • 200 g rice Basmati, or Jasmine

Other ingredients

  • 500 g chicken thighs
  • 10 new potatoes
  • 1 onion

Optional extras

  • 250 g Fresh spinach
  • 1 handful chopped coriander
  • Sprinkle crunchy onions


  • Put the curry paste, coconut milk, diced chicken (I use scissors to snip pieces of chicken directly into the saucepan), chopped onion and potatoes into the saucepan
  • Bring to the boil, and then simmer for 20 minutes
  • While the curry is simmering, cook your rice according to the instructions on the packet, or your preferred method.
  • At the end of the cooking time, stir the spinach and coriander into your curry (removing any portions for fussy children first)
  • Serve spoonfuls of chicken curry over your cooked rice, and sprinkle with crunchy onions if you so wish
Keyword curry, easy recipe, quick, simple, thai

Other curries to try

If you do have time on your hands, a made from scratch curry is a wonderful thing, and also they don’t have to be complicated. Here are a few of my favourites:

What’s your favourite curry? Please do share in the comments below.

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