Authentic Sri Lankan Chicken Curry Recipe – A Taste of Traditional Spices

About Sri lankan Chicken Curry

Sri Lanka's culinary heritage is a mosaic of flavors, and its chicken curry is a testament to the island's love affair with spices. This authentic Sri Lankan chicken curry recipe is a staple in any Sri Lankan kitchen and a must-try for anyone who appreciates a hearty, spicy chicken recipe. Follow our step-by-step guide to create a delectable dish that promises to transport you to the streets of Colombo with every bite.


  • 1 kg chicken, cut into pieces
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large onion, finely sliced
  • 2 green chilies, slit
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 2 inches pandan leaf (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons garlic-ginger paste
  • 2 medium-sized tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons Sri Lankan roasted curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3 cardamom pods, slightly crushed
  • 3 cloves
  • 1 cup thick coconut milk
  • Salt to taste
  • Water as needed
  • Fresh coriander for garnishing

How to Make

  1. Preparation: Begin by cleaning the chicken pieces and pat them dry. Marinate the chicken with salt, turmeric, and chili powders, ensuring each piece is evenly coated. Set aside for 15-30 minutes to allow the flavors to penetrate the meat.

  2. Cooking the Base: Heat the vegetable oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onions, green chilies, curry leaves, and pandan leaf, sautéing until the onions turn golden brown. Introduce the garlic-ginger paste and stir for a couple of minutes until the raw smell disappears.

  3. Building the Flavor: Incorporate the marinated chicken into the pot, increase the heat to high, and brown the chicken pieces on all sides. This step is crucial for locking in the flavors.

  4. Spice Infusion: Lower the heat and add the Sri Lankan roasted curry powder, fenugreek seeds, cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves. Mix well, ensuring the chicken is thoroughly coated with the spices.

  5. Simmering the Curry: Add the chopped tomatoes and enough water to just cover the chicken. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low. Cover the pot and let the curry simmer for 20 minutes, or until the chicken is tender.

  6. The Final Touch: Pour in the thick coconut milk and simmer for an additional 10 minutes. The coconut milk will add a rich creaminess and temper the heat of the spices, balancing the flavors of your authentic Sri Lankan chicken curry.

  7. Garnishing: Taste for seasoning, adding more salt if necessary. Garnish with fresh coriander leaves before serving.

  8. Serving Suggestions: Serve your spicy chicken curry hot with steamed rice, roti, or your favorite Sri Lankan bread. Enjoy a culinary journey through the vibrant tastes of Sri Lankan cuisine right at your dinner table.


This authentic Sri Lankan chicken curry recipe is more than just a dish; it’s a celebration of the island’s rich array of spices and flavors. Perfect for a family dinner or a festive occasion, this spicy chicken recipe is sure to become a new favorite. Visit our blog for more traditional Sri Lankan recipes and take your taste buds on an unforgettable adventure.

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