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Slow Cooker Chicken Curry (Paleo Friendly!)

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Slow Cooker Chicken Curry – This yellow chicken curry is such a tasty crock pot dinner! You’ll LOVE the sauce! (Gluten Free, Paleo & Whole30 Approved!)

Slow Cooker Chicken Curry from One Lovely Life

My kitchen best friend right now = my slow cooker.

The cooler weather always makes me crave cozy, comforting foods, and while in my pre-kids life (and still, sometimes in my weekend life) I loved to stand and stir a pot of slow-simmering sauce, or let the house slowly fill up with the smell of a roast or stew in the oven for a few hours, I don’t have that kind of time during the week.

So, these days, my slow cooker takes care of it for me! I get cozy, delicious meals without any extra fuss.

This Slow Cooker Chicken Curry is my latest fave. It’s got tender, delicious chicken in a creamy curry sauce that’ll make you want to lick your bowl clean.

Slow Cooker Chicken Curry from One Lovely Life


CHICKEN BREAST OR CHICKEN THIGHS. You can use either for this slow cooker chicken curry! I most often do chicken breast because that’s what my kids prefer, but either works! You can also use bone-in for more flavor, but I recommend removing the skins before cooking and adding about 1/4-1/2 lb. to compensate for the weight of the bones.

ONION. You can use whatever onion you like, but I love a red/purple onion for slow cooker chicken curry because it adds a tiny pop of color and looks really pretty.

A LITTLE JALAPEÑO OR RED PEPPER FLAKES (OPTIONAL). To add a bit of smokiness and a bit of heat, I put in 1-2 Tbsp. finely minced jalapeño with the seeds and ribs removed. (The seeds/ribs hold most of the heat). I always recommend starting small, as you can add more later or put some on the table as a garnish for people that want more heat. (With the jalapeño this chicken curry is more of a medium heat. Without it, it’s definitely mild.)Alternatively, you can add a pinch of red pepper flakes.

GINGER & GARLIC. These aromatics lend plenty of bright flavor and tie into the lovely notes from the curry powder. (I’ve been using frozen ginger and garlic lately–it tastes like fresh and never goes bad!)

YELLOW CURRY POWDER. My yellow curry powder is mild, so while you get loads of flavor, you won’t get a lot of heat or spiciness. If you like more kick, you can add more jalapeño or use a spicier curry powder.

COCONUT MILK. Canned coconut milk lends some creamy richness that makes for a really delicious sauce. It softens the heat and helps all the flavors meld together as it cooks. SO GOOD!

FRESH HERBS. To finish the slow cooker chicken curry, I add a hefty dose of fresh herbs for some color and to brighten up the flavor. My two faves are cilantro and basil. (If you’re not a cilantro fan, you can double up on the basil, or just skip the cilantro and add the regular amount of basil.)

Slow Cooker Chicken Curry from One Lovely Life


Here’s the fun part! Turn your slow cooker chicken into a full meal by adding a few tasty side dishes to round things out. Some of our favorites include…

RICE. (Obviously, not if you’re strictly paleo or following Whole30) This is my kids’ favorite choice because they’d eat almost anything on earth if there was rice involved.

CAULIFLOWER RICE. Hey-o, paleo & whole30 friends! This is for you. A little cauliflower rice makes a great bed for soaking up all that yummy curry sauce. Make it plain, or try a cilantro lime for a yummy twist.

SOME GOOD GREEN VEGGIES. Peas, broccoli, or green beans are all fantastic next to a good curry.

FRESH FRUIT. Some fresh fruit will help cool off your mouth after some warm, cozy chicken curry!

Slow Cooker Chicken Curry from One Lovely Life


LET’S TALK SLOW COOKERS! I’m a huge fan of slow cookers (especially in the cooler months) because of how easy they make dinner on a busy night. I own two–this one is a little bit fancier and more highly programmable. It comes with a thermometer and can switch to WARM as soon as your meat reaches a certain temp, and automatically switches to the warm setting after cooking. So great! I also have this less expensive (and super cute!) one that’s got fewer bells and whistles, but works really well.

Pro Tip: If the smell of a slow cooker meal bugs you, try plugging your slow cooker in, in the garage or on the back patio (make sure pets are safe). I do this ALL the time! 

CAN I MAKE THIS CHICKEN CURRY IN AN INSTANT POT? I think so! Similar recipes use manual/high pressure to cook for 5 minutes + 10 minutes natural release before shredding. (That’s where I’d start if I were going to try it.)

PALEO? READ THIS! This recipe is naturally paleo and Whole30 approved! You can serve it on its own, with some green veggies, or over a bed of cauliflower rice. Yum!

WHAT KIND OF COCONUT MILK DID YOU USE? I get this question a lot, and honestly, I use lots of different brands of canned organic coconut milk. Sprouts brand, Trader Joe’s, 365, Thrive Market, and Arroy-D are some of my favorites, but I also have great results with Thai Kitchen.

CAN I USE LITE COCONUT MILK? Technically yes, so long as it’s canned. Do know the texture won’t the the same, and the sauce will be much thinner. I don’t recommend using boxed or refrigerated coconut milk beverage (like So Delicious) because it’ll be much too thin and watery.

CAN I ADD VEGGIES? There’s *just* enough sauce for the chicken, so if you want to add veggies, you’ll probably want to make extra sauce (either 1.5x or 2x the amount of sauce). I sometimes toss in a handful or two of spinach right at the end for some color without needing to make more sauce.



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Slow Cooker Chicken Curry from One Lovely Life

Slow Cooker Chicken Curry (Paleo Friendly!)

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5 from 1 review

  • Author: One Lovely Life
  • Total Time: 3-4 Hours
  • Yield: About 3 cups (4-6 Servings) 1x


Slow Cooker Chicken Curry – This yellow chicken curry is such a tasty crock pot dinner! You’ll LOVE the sauce! (Gluten Free, Paleo, Whole30)

PS – It’s a bit rich, so we usually get 6 servings out of this (paired with sides). If you’ve got a bigger appetite, you may only get 4-5 servings.


  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast or chicken thighs
  • 1 onion, diced (I like red/purple onion)
  • 12 Tbsp, finely minced jalapeño (seeds and ribs removed)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced (about 1 Tbsp.)
  • 1 Tbsp. minced fresh ginger
  • 1 Tbsp. yellow curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt (or more, to taste)
  • 1 (13.5oz) can full fat coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, minced
  • 2 Tbsp. fresh basil, minced


  1. Place chicken, onion, jalapeño, garlic, ginger, curry powder, salt, and coconut milk in the crock of your slow cooker.
  2. Stir to combine the sauce a bit, then cover with the lid.
  3. Cook on HIGH 3-4 hours, or LOW 7-8 hours.
  4. Shred the chicken with two forks, and mix back into the sauce with fresh herbs.
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 3-4 Hours
  • Category: Main Dish, Chicken
  • Method: Slow Cooker, Crock Pot
  • Cuisine: Indian, American
Slow Cooker Chicken Curry from One Lovely Life Slow Cooker Chicken Curry from One Lovely Life


  1. Tried this yesterday and my kiddos LOVED it! Both of them (5 and 3) had thirds. My son literally licked his plate clean. Thanks for another tasty recipe.

    1. Jennifer – I’ve never frozen it cooked. I’d imagine it would do pretty well, though you may need to stir it a bit to bring it back together upon re-heating if the coconut milk separates at all. I’d love to know how it goes if you try it!

  2. I tried this and the coconut milk curdled, what’s the trick for it to not curdle? I cooked it in a slow cooker on low for 5 hours. Any tips are appreciated!

    1. Oh dear! Would you mind sharing what brand of coconut milk you used? If it doesn’t have a gum in the ingredients to hold it together it can sometimes separate. I’m sorry that happened!

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