Kerala Style Chicken Stew Recipe

Fragrant Coconut Chicken Stew

This fragrant coconut chicken stew is a delightful blend of flavors that is sure to impress your taste buds.

The base of this curry is made of coconut milk, which adds a creamy richness to the dish that complements the aromatic blend of spices such as cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, star anise, and bay leaf.

What is Kerala Chicken Stew?

Kerala Chicken Stew

This coconut-infused chicken stew is made with bone-in chicken chunks or boneless chicken pieces cooked in a sweet and caramelized onion base that’s laced with a ginger and garlic aroma.

For a touch of heat, add 2-3 green chilies and optional black pepper powder will add a warm depth of flavor.

Add in some potatoes and carrots or a range of your preferred vegetables, and cook it to perfection with aromatic coconut oil.

Ingredients For Kerala Chicken Stew Recipe

Ingredients For  Kerala Chicken Stew Recipe

1. Chicken

Use bone-in chicken chunks or boneless chicken pieces for optimal flavor absorption.

2. Onion

Adds a nice caramelized and sweet flavor to the stew.

3. Vegetables

Choose from potatoes, carrots, beans, green peas, cauliflower, or other preferred vegetables.

4. Ginger & Garlic

Crushed ginger and garlic enhance the aroma of this stew.

5. Green Chilies

Adds a slight spice; adjust the quantity and remove seeds for a milder taste.

6. Spices

Includes cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, black peppercorns, star anise, and bay leaf..

7. Coconut Milk

Thick or light coconut milk can be used.

8. Black pepper powder

Optional, but adds an extra layer of flavor.

9. Coconut Oil

Authentic taste is achieved using coconut oil for cooking.

Note: Feel free to customize the vegetables and spices to your liking for a personalized twist on this delicious coconut chicken stew.

Step-by-step Guide to Prepare Kerala Chicken Stew

1. Heat the coconut oil in a wok or pan.

2. Add bay leaves, star anise, cloves, peppercorns, and green chilies. Cook for 1 minute.

3. Next, sauté the sliced onions, with salt, and ginger-garlic paste until the onions are tender. (Please note that the onions do not need to be fried for the stew.)

Sauting the sliced onions, with salt, and ginger-garlic paste

4. Mix in the chicken pieces, then the carrots and potatoes. Combine everything thoroughly. Mix everything again with freshly ground pepper.

5. Cook for 7 to 8 minutes with the lid on on medium heat. Cook until the chicken is thoroughly cooked, then add the coconut milk and cover.

 Kerala Chicken Stew making

6. The tasty chicken stew is ready to serve. Garnish with fresh coriander leaves if desired.

7. Enjoy hot chicken stew with rice, or flatbread!

Kerala Chicken Stew is Ready to Eat

Pro Tips For Preparing Kerala Chicken Stew

1. For a more intense flavor, marinate the chicken in a mixture of crushed ginger, garlic, and spices before cooking.

2. Adjust the spiciness level by adding more or fewer green chilies, or including some chili powder or red pepper flakes.

3. Remove the whole spices from the stew before serving. Crack the whole peppercorns in a mortar and pestle before adding.

4. Add a squeeze of lime or lemon juice at the end to brighten up the flavors.

5. Garnish the stew with fresh cilantro or chopped scallions for added freshness and a pop of color.

6. Make a double batch and freeze leftovers for a quick and flavorful meal on a busy day.

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Kerala Chicken Stew Recipe

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  • Author: Mish
  • Total Time: 35 mins
  • Yield: 4 1x


Kerala style Chicken Stew is a rich and creamy chicken stew. In this recipe the tender chicken is simmered in a fragrant blend of spices and coconut milk.


  • 2 pounds boned-in or boneless chicken pieces
  • 1 onion – big, thinly sliced
  • 2 potatoes – medium, cubed
  • 3 carrots –  cut in round pieces
  • 1 teaspoon ginger, minced
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced 
  • 2 green Chilies – slit lengthwise (you can remove seeds if you don’t like it spicy)
  • 1/2 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • 5 black cloves
  • 2-inch cinnamon stick
  • 2 bay leaves, fresh or dried (optional)
  • 2 pieces of star anise
  • 2 cans of coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper powder (Optional)
  • 3 tablespoons coconut Oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup water


  1. In a wok or a deep, wide pan, heat coconut oil. add bay leaves, star anise, cloves, peppercorns, and green chilies.
  2. Sauté for a minute.
  3. Add the sliced onions, salt, minced ginger, and garlic, and sauté till the onion turns soft.
  4. Add chicken pieces, mix well, and then add carrots and potatoes and combine everything well.
  5. Add freshly ground pepper, and mix everything again.
  6. Add water cover and cook for 7 to 8 minutes.
  7. Now add coconut milk cover and cook again till the chicken is fully cooked.
  8. Delicious chicken stew is ready to serve.
  9. Garnish with fresh coriander leaves.
  10. Serve hot chicken stew with dosa, rice or bread and enjoy!
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
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