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Gang Garee Curry Recipe (Thai Yellow Chicken Curry)

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Gang garee curry recipe is perfect to create a Thai restaurant-quality dinner right at home. This Thai yellow chicken curry is such a crowd-favorite, it’s not only easy to whip up for a weeknight dinner, but it’s an example of true comfort food. Packed with tender chicken, hearty potatoes, and your choice of vegetables, it’s a creamy dish full of authentic flavor.

Gang garee, Thai yellow curry chicken, served in a rustic coconut shell bowl.

For more easy chicken curry recipes, check out gaeng daeng recipe and Thai eggplant curry recipe or try something new with green curry chicken stir-fry and chicken pad ped recipe.

What is gang garee

Gang garee, also known as Thai yellow curry, is a rich and creamy curry made with potatoes, a fragrant blend of spices, and coconut milk. It’s a classic Thai dish that offers a perfect balance of sweet and savory flavors.

Thai yellow chicken curry

Thai yellow curry (แกงกะหรี่ไก่) is that kind of Thai food you turn to when you want something rich, creamy, and full of flavors but not overwhelmingly spicy.

Close-up of creamy gang garee chicken curry with a wooden spoon lifting a bite of chicken and potato in yellow curry sauce.

This Thai chicken curry pairs like a dream with fragrant jasmine rice, soaking up all that yellow saucy goodness.

The best part about Thai curries is that you can simply throw in your favorite vegetables like baby corn or cherry tomatoes, and they’ll come out amazing. They’re so versatile!

Thai cuisine has lots of spicy curries, and this one stands out for its mild flavor. It’s a refreshing change, but I usually prefer the fiery heat of an authentic Thai red curry.

Zoomed-in shot of gang garee curry, with potatoes, onions, and chicken swimming in yellow curry sauce.

This chicken pineapple fried rice is another mild dish made with yellow curry powder. Hor mok pla, a Thai steamed fish curry with red curry paste, is surprisingly mild and totally delish!

Gang garee curry is not often on my menu, but those few times it is it’s always a hit. My hubby always asks why I don’t make it more often!

Comforting, slightly sweet, and gently spiced but not too much.

Why try gaeng garee

  • Great with rice and bread: Just like massaman curry, gaeng garee is great with white rice or a simple side of toasted bread.
  • Great for make ahead: Make this ahead of time, it’s the perfect meal prep options as the flavors will be even better the next day.
  • It’s mild yet flavorful: If you prefer a gentle heat, this curry is ideal, offering a delicious balance of flavors without the intensity of spicier Thai curries.
  • Family-friendly: With a mild flavor profile, this easy chicken coconut curry is a hit with both adults and kids.
  • Health benefits: The use of coconut milk offers healthy fats, and the spices in yellow curry paste, like turmeric, bring many health benefits.
  • Quick and easy: This Thai yellow curry recipe is perfect for any home cook and comes with straightforward instructions and simple ingredients.
  • Versatile: Toss in your favorite greens or proteins like pork or beef.
A top-view of Thai gang curry gai, showcasing the dish's golden sauce and ingredients.

My personal favorite Thai curries are this Thai green curry pork and definitely chicken khao soi!

Gang garee vs massaman

Gang garee and massaman are both Southern Thai curries, but what are their differences?

Gang garee

  • Mild and sweet: Known for its mild heat and slightly sweet flavor.
  • Yellow curry paste: Made with yellow curry paste that gets its yellow color from turmeric, a key ingredient.
  • Creamy and rich: Coconut milk gives the curry a rich and creamy texture.
  • Simple spices: The spice blend is straightforward and not as complex as massaman curry.
  • Chicken and potatoes: Key ingredients are potatoes, and often chicken.
  • Quick cooking time: This curry comes together quickly, ideal for a faster meal.

Massaman curry

  • Rich and a bit spicier: Massaman curry is rich and typically a bit spicier.
  • Massaman curry paste: the spice mix is broader, with cardamom, cinnamon, cumin, and coriander seeds.
  • Darker color: Has a darker color cause of spices like cinnamon and star anise.
  • Meat variations: Massaman often includes beef or chicken.
  • Potatoes and nuts: Typically includes potatoes and roasted peanuts, adding a nutty flavor and texture.
  • Longer cooking: Massaman is one of those curries that requires a longer simmer to develop the flavors fully.

Ingredients

Ingredients can be sourced at Asian grocery stores and Asian markets.
The exact measurements are in the recipe card at the end of this post.


Top-view of ingredients for gang garee curry recipe: coconut milk, chicken, yellow curry paste, onion, fish sauce, carrot, potatoes, and palm sugar.
  • Chicken – Opt for chicken thighs in this chicken coconut curry to elevate the flavors with their juicy tenderness. Chicken thighs are the go-to in Thai cuisine, as they absorb flavors and stay juicy after cooking. Alternatively, you can use sliced chicken breast.
  • Potatoes – Potatoes soak up all of that delicious creamy yellow coconut sauce, they’re a key ingredient for an authentic gang garee gai curry.
  • Carrot, onion – My choice of vegetables, feel free to customize with what you have on hand.
  • Yellow curry paste – There are several good brands of store-bought yellow curry paste. Mae Ploy and Maesri are popular choices to replicate flavors of traditional Thai food.
  • Coconut milk – Use full-fat coconut milk for a creamy and rich sauce. Aroy-D is a great brand, we used it in our former Thai restaurant.
  • Fish sauce – Fish sauce adds umami and a salty note. Megachef is a good choice for adding umami without adding too much of a salty flavor.
  • Palm sugar – Palm is necessary to round out the flavors and enhance the dish with a bit of sweetness. To replicate the exact flavors, use palm sugar – not brown sugar or white sugar.

Cooking instructions

Reduced coconut milk in a wok.

1. Reduce milk: Reduce half of the coconut milk in a large wok or pot on medium heat until it thickens slightly, and the oil starts to separate.

Yellow curry paste fried in a wok.

2. Add curry paste: Fry the yellow curry paste in the coconut milk until fragrant, approx 1 minute.

Yellow curry coconut sauce with potatoes in a wok.

3. Milk and potatoes: Switch to low heat, add the remaining coconut milk, fish sauce, palm sugar, and bite-sized pieces of potato. Close the lid and let simmer for 5 minutes.

Gang garee chicken finished ready in a pan.

4. Add remaining ingredients: Add chicken, onion, and carrots. Close the lid once more and let the curry simmer until the vegetables are soft to your liking, or approx 3 minutes. Serve immediately with jasmine rice.

Kitchen tools

  • Mortar and pestle or food processor if you’re making yellow curry paste from scratch.
  • Cutting board and sharp knife for prepping the ingredients.
  • Measuring spoons and cups to measure ingredients.
  • Large skillet or wok for simmering the curry.

Try some of my other homemade curry paste recipes: Thai red curry pasteThai green curry pasteThai panang curry paste.

Tips for making Thai yellow curry

  • Reduce the coconut milk: Simmering the coconut milk is key. This technique unleashes the oils, boosting the flavor profile. In Thai restaurants, we’d quick-fry the curry paste, but I’ve found that while it’s faster, it skimps on taste. For home cooking, take your time and let the coconut milk simmer slowly for the best flavor.
  • Use quality curry paste: The flavor of your curry greatly depends on the curry paste. Use a good brand like Maesri or Mae Ploy.
  • Fresh ingredients: Use fresh ingredients for the best flavor.
  • Adjust the flavors: Before serving, taste test and make sure the flavors are suited to your taste. Thai cooking is all about creating that flavor balance. Taste as you go and balance the sweet, salty, and spicy elements.
  • Coconut milk: Use coconut milk, not coconut cream, which makes the curry too thick.

How to serve

The classic way to serve gang garee chicken is with steamed jasmine rice. The rice absorbs the flavors of the curry and is great with chicken. Feel free to add a splash of lime juice for a tangy note. Pair with:

  • Garnishes: Top with fresh herbs like cilantro or chopped green onions.
  • Flatbread: serve with Thai roti dessert, perfect for pairing with this yellow chicken curry.

How to store and reheat

Let your leftover curry cool to room temperature and transfer it into an airtight container. Keep it fresh in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Freezing instructions: Gang garee can be frozen in freezer-safe containers or bags for up to 3 months.

Reheating instructions: Gently reheat the curry over low-medium until warm. Add a little more coconut milk if it’s too thick. Note that this might alter the flavors.

Frequently asked questions

Is gang garee spicy?

The spiciness depends on the amount of curry paste used in the preparation. To make it spicier, increase the amount of curry paste, or add fresh chilies.

Is Thai yellow curry gluten-free?

Generally, yes, but always check the labels on the curry paste and fish sauce, as some brands may contain gluten. If it has soy sauce, it’s not gluten-free.

Can I make this vegetarian?

For a vegetarian version, use soy sauce or vegetarian fish sauce. Swap the chicken with tofu or more vegetables.

Is yellow curry healthy?

It can be part of a balanced diet. It contains healthy protein and vegetables, but coconut milk is high in fat.

Can I make this in an instant pot?

Yes, an instant pot is great for making curries, as it reduces the cooking time while still infusing deep flavors.

More authentic Thai curry recipes you’ll love

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Gang Garee Curry Recipe (Thai Yellow Chicken Curry)

Thai gang garee curry featuring tender chicken and potatoes in a coconut shell.
Serve this gang garee curry with a portion of jasmine rice to soak up all that delicious yellow curry sauce!
Praew
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Cuisine Thai
Course Main Course
Serving Size 2 people

Ingredients

  • 17 fluid ounces coconut milk full fat
  • 1.5 tablespoon yellow curry paste see notes
  • 6 ounces potatoes cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon palm sugar
  • 1.8 ounce carrot chopped
  • 3.5 ounces onion chopped
  • 10.5 ounces chicken see notes

Instructions

  • Reduce half of the coconut milk in a large wok or pot on medium heat until it thickens slightly, and the oil starts to separate.
  • Fry the yellow curry paste in a pan until fragrant, approx 1 minute.
  • Switch to low heat, add the remaining coconut milk, fish sauce, palm sugar, and bite-sized pieces of potato. Close the lid and let simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Add chicken, onion, and carrots. Close the lid once more and let the curry simmer until the vegetables are soft to your liking, or approx 3 minutes. Serve immediately with jasmine rice.

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