20-Minute Coconut Chickpea Curry

updated Jun 22, 2021
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20-Minute Coconut Chickpea Curry

Use your favorite curry paste as a base for this one-pot weeknight dinner.


Prep5 minutes

Cook15 minutes

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Credit: Amelia Rampe

A little jar of curry paste has a permanent place in my fridge. My personal favorite brand is Maesri — they have a variety of Thai curry paste flavors, including the more commonly known red and green as well as Massaman and Prik Khing. I encourage you to shop your favorite international markets (even online!) to try them all and find your favorite. Each variety has it own delicious personality, and adds a powerful punch of spicy, complex flavor. Here, you’ll use your whichever one you please to form the base of a choose-your-own-adventure curry.

At its core, this recipe is a mix of just three pantry staples — your favorite curry paste, a can of coconut milk, and two cans of chickpeas. From there, you can riff on it based on what you’ve got on hand. I often add aromatics such as shallots, garlic, ginger, and lemongrass, and finish it with cilantro or Thai basil.

No matter what you mix in or use as a garnish, you’ll want to start by cooking half the curry paste in a splash of oil to intensify all of its flavors. Then you’ll stir in the chickpeas, followed by the remaining curry paste, a bit of water, and the coconut milk, which adds a creamy richness and mellows the spiciness of the curry paste. Serve over cooked rice for a quick and cozy meal.

20-Minute Coconut Chickpea Curry

Use your favorite curry paste as a base for this one-pot weeknight dinner.

Prep time 5 minutes

Cook time 15 minutes

Serves 4

Nutritional Info


  • 2 (about 15-ounce) cans


  • 1 tablespoon

    vegetable oil

  • 3 tablespoons

    curry paste, divided

  • Kosher salt

  • 1 (about 13-ounce) can

    coconut milk

  • 1/4 cup


  • Cooked rice, for serving (optional)


  1. Drain and rinse 2 cans chickpeas. Heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat until shimmering. Add 1 tablespoon of the curry paste and a pinch of kosher salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until fragrant and deepened in color, about 2 minutes. Add the chickpeas and stir until well coated.

  2. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons curry paste, 1 can coconut milk, and 1/4 cup water. Stir to combine and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the flavors meld, 8 to 10 minutes. Serve over cooked rice if desired.