This keto chicken curry is an incredibly creamy keto coconut curry with juicy chicken pieces, aromatic Indian spices, and only 5.4g net carbs per serve. This keto coconut curry recipe will turn your home into an Indian restaurant and all your family will enjoy it!
What is Masala sauce?
Masala sauce is an Indian curry sauce made of tomato puree, cream, and lots of Indian spices including turmeric and garam masala that turn the sauce orange. Other delicious spices in Masala sauce are garlic, cumin, cilantro and it’s the combination of all these spices that makes this Masala sauce flavorsome.
What’s a keto Chicken Curry?
A keto curry chicken Masala is a keto Indian meal made with juicy boneless chicken thighs cooked in fragrant Indian spices and tomato creamy Masala sauce.
Are Indian curries keto-friendly?
Not all Indian curry recipes are keto-friendly. Some fast-food Indian curry sauces include sugar and even in good quality Indian restaurants, the sauce is thickened with cashews. Unfortunately, cashews are higher in carbs than other nuts and often raise up carbs in keto Indian curry recipes.
How to make keto curry chicken Masala?
Keto curry with Masala spices is very easy to make and your whole family will enjoy it. The trick to make the best keto curry with chicken is to first marinate the meat with acidic food like lime or lemon juice and yogurt.
Marinate the meat
This is an important step to make a flavorsome keto curry with tender meat. The longer you soak the chicken pieces into the marinade the more flavorsome the curry will be. Plus, the tenderer and juicier the chicken will be too! So the best way to marinate chicken for a keto curry recipe is to combine your chicken pieces along with:
Dairy-free coconut yogurt – this has no lactose so no sugar and it is made of 100% coconut cream and probiotics which results in a very low-carb high-fat base for a keto meat marinade. Other options are heavy cream or full-fat unsweetened yogurt.
Since your keto curry will taste even better if it marinates longer, you can make this step the day before and leave the meat in the fridge overnight. It is perfect to meal prep your next day’s keto meal.
Bake the chicken
The next day, bake the chicken on a large baking dish on broil mode. Turn the chicken pieces very often to broil all sides. Another tasty way to cook chicken for a keto curry is to barbecue the meat! If you have a barbecue, I highly recommend that option. The chicken will taste like Indian tandoori chicken.
Prepare the Masala paste
While the chicken bakes, prepare your creamy keto curry Masala sauce. All you have to do is fry the tomato paste in coconut oil along with all the spices. The curry paste is what makes the curry sauce bursting in flavors so try to stick to all the spices listed below to achieve the best balance of flavors. All you need are:
Chilli flakes – only if you want your keto curry spicy!
Almond flour or almond meal – this is the keto-approved thickener in your keto curry recipe! No cashews or starch only low-carb almond flour.
When the paste is fragrant and unsticks from the sides of the pan, it is time to create the curry sauce by adding:
Water or chicken stock
Crushed canned tomatoes – make sure there is no sugar added in the ingredient list
Bring to a gentle boil for a few minutes until the chicken is baked and ready to go in the sauce.
Bring the meat back to the pan
It is time to combine the flavors by adding your grilled chicken pieces into the Masala sauce. This is a keto coconut chicken curry sauce so to make the sauce creamy, I used full-fat coconut milk from a can in this recipe. Always warm the coconut milk before adding it into the pan to ensure a super-creamy curry sauce. Another option is to use heavy cream or canned coconut cream. These two options provide an even creamier keto curry sauce.
Can I make a keto vegetarian curry recipe?
Yes, you can use this recipe to make a vegetarian keto curry. Simply swap the meat with tempeh or tofu. Now you are probably wondering if you can also use paneer, a popular Indian cheese used in curry recipes. Is paneer keto-friendly? No, it is not as it contains 6g net carb per 100g which can be approved on a low-carb diet plan but not on keto.
What to eat with keto curry recipes?
The best keto curry sides are fried cauliflower rice to replace the carb-loaded rice usually served at the restaurant. Another option is to make my keto naan bread recipe
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Marinate the chicken
In a small mixing bowl, place the diced chicken, yogurt, lime, garlic, and add all the marinade spices. Toss until all pieces are well coated with the yogurt marinade. Set aside in the fridge - the longer the better I like to keep it 1 hour in the fridge. Meanwhile, prepare the sauce.
Preheat oven to 390°F (200°C), broil mode.
Meanwhile, prepare the healthy Tikka Masala sauce
In a large frying pan, under medium heat melt the coconut oil. Add the onion and fry for 2-3 minutes until slightly brown and fragrant. Add garlic and cook for 1 more minute.
Stir in all the spices: ginger, garam masala, cumin, coriander, chili (if used), salt, and ground almond. Cook for 1 minute until it forms a paste. Remove from heat. Set aside.
Add the tomato paste, crushed tomatoes, and water and bring the sauce to a boil. Reduce to low heat, cover partially and simmer the sauce until slightly thickened, about 15 minutes.
Bake the marinated chicken
Place the marinated chicken on a baking tray. Slightly spray the tray with olive oil to prevent the chicken from sticking to the tray. Broil for 15-20 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through/charred. Make sure you stir the chicken pieces a few times while cooking to cook each side properly.
Prepare the Tikka Masala
When the chicken is baked transfer into the pan with the sauce. Return to medium heat and stir in the hot coconut milk.
Cover with a lid and simmer on medium heat for 5 more minutes or until the sauce is thick.
Stir in fresh coriander before serving if you like.
Serve hot with brown rice or cauliflower rice for a low carb dinner.
Store: can be stored in the fridge for up to 3 days in an airtight container.Freeze: can be frozen in an airtight container up to 1 month. Defrost the day before by leaving your curry in the fridge. Rewarm in a saucepan under medium heat or in a microwave for your work lunch. Can be defrosted and warmed up in the same container that you used to freeze the curry. Make sure it's a microwave-proof container.Low-carb side dishes: serve with cauliflower rice instead of rice.Vegan option: make this recipe vegan by simply replace chicken with firm organic tofu and use soy yogurt for the marinade. Ginger: fresh ginger can be replaced with ground ginger if you like. Use 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger.Milk: I used UHT unsweetened coconut milk for a low-calorie healthy recipe. You can use canned coconut milk but be careful it's higher in fat and calories. Warm the milk in the microwave for 1 minute on high heat or in a saucepan under medium heat until bubbles forms on the side of the saucepan - about 3 minutes. Herbs: it's optional but I love to stir in 1/4 cup fresh coriander at the end. Yogurt: Coconut yogurt is made of 2 ingredients: coconut cream and probiotics, it's keto, no added sugar. Replace with regular Greek yogurt if needed.