Yellow Curry with Chickpeas and Roasted Vegetables
This easy vegan yellow curry recipe is loaded with chickpeas, coconut milk, and roasted vegetables. It makes a delicious, comforting, nourishing weeknight meal.
I’ve been making curry for years, as it’s old family tradition, but my Thai style coconut curries have always fallen short. I started out making them with curry powder, but they always lacked the flavor I wanted, no matter how much powder I added. So I started using pre-made sauce, like Trader Joe’s yellow curry sauce or another brand in the refrigerated section of the grocery store. While these had the flavor, they also had ingredients I didn’t love. Recently I got my hands on yellow curry paste and had that “aha moment.”
How to Make Easy Yellow Curry
Yellow curry basically comes down to yellow curry paste and coconut milk. When I finally realized that fact I felt beyond silly for ever buying pre-made curry sauce! It really takes about 5 minutes to mix up a homemade coconut curry sauce. From there you can add whatever your heart desires. Chickpeas and veggies are my favorite curry additions.
Yummy Hubby was cracking me up while eating this dinner and the leftovers the next day for lunch. His comments included, “This is the best dinner you’ve ever made.” And “I loved every minute of that.” This yellow curry is comforting, healthy, and mildly spicy.
I always look forward to lunch when it involves leftover chickpea coconut curry and rice! It packs beautifully in glass storage containers to be brought to work.
What the heck is yellow curry?
Okay, so we’ve already determined this is a Thai style curry rather than Indian. There are several types of Thai curry though, from red to green to yellow and beyond. Red curries get their fiery color and flavor from ground chili peppers, green curries are known as the spiciest and made from fresh Thai peppers. Yellow curry is in my opinion the most family-friendly, as the rich and creamy coconut milk tones down the curry spices. Curry paste is a super flavorful and aromatic concoction of ground herbs and spices. Yellow curry has loads of anti-inflammatory turmeric.
While I didn’t go 100% homemade and make my own curry paste, you totally can, and I aspire to one day… One day when I have an extra 45 minutes. Here’s a homemade curry paste recipe from Pinch of Yum that looks amazing. For now, prepared curry paste is a terrific shortcut. Yellow curry paste can be a little tricky to find. Try Asian grocery stores or do like I did and order on Amazon. The link below is the paste I use (Amazon affiliate link). The ingredients are simple, real ingredients I would use if making the paste at home: garlic, lemongrass, salt, shallot, galangal, dried red chili, coriander seed, Kaffir lime peel, curry powder, cumin, cinnamon, turmeric, cardamom, and nutmeg. A lot comes in this tub, so I’ll be able to make quite a few curries with it.
You can serve the roasted veggies Buddha bowl style, naked on top of the curry, or mix them in. My kids prefer the veggies separate, but I like mine mixed in. Speaking of kids, I choose yellow coconut curries over other types because they are typically milder. That’s not to say there isn’t any kick to it, however. Two tablespoons of curry paste to one can of coconut milk is my perfect amount in this recipe but if you’re serving sensitive little mouths, you may want to start with one tablespoon and go from there. You can always add more to the sauce, but you can’t take it out.
While I usually cook the veggies in the same pan with the curry, this time I decided to roast them in the oven. Roasting makes any vegetable so much more flavorful and made a big difference in this curry. Instead of mushy vegetables, we got potatoes that were crispy on the outside and tender on the inside, and perfectly caramelized carrots and broccoli. Feel free to mix up the veggies and use what you’ve got. Sweet potato and spinach come to mind as tasting fantastic here.
Yellow Curry with Chickpeas and Roasted Vegetables
- 3 carrots, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 10 fingerling potatoes, cut into bite-sized slices
- 1 small head broccoli, cut into florets
- 3 tablespoons coconut or olive oil, divided
- 1 yellow onion, peeled, halved and sliced
- 2 tablespoons yellow curry paste
- 1 (14 oz.) can coconut milk
- 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
- 2 teaspoons sugar (cane, coconut, brown, etc.)
- 1 (16 oz.) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup water
- 2 cups cooked rice for serving
- fresh cilantro, for garnish
- 1 fresh lime, cut into wedges, for serving
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Coat a baking sheet with parchment paper or cooking spray. Lay carrots, potatoes, and broccoli on the prepared sheet. Coat with 1-2 tablespoons oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast until tender. The broccoli will be done after 15-20 minutes. Remove it then and continue roasting the harder veggies, if needed, about another 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, heat one tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until tender. Add the curry paste (you may want to start with 1 tablespoon and add more to taste if you are serving children) and stir it in. Stir in the coconut milk, turmeric, and sugar until smooth. Add the chickpeas and simmer over low heat while the vegetables finish roasting. Thin with water as needed.
- Add the roasted vegetables to the chickpea mixture and serve over rice. Garnish with fresh cilantro and lime wedges.