Kerala Chicken Stew

super easy

Kerala Chicken Stew

Mostly, my Christmas is filled with cakes, pies, and all sorts of western dishes. But recently, I got to know about this traditional Christmas breakfast from one of my Keralian friends, so for a change, I thought of making it this Christmas. I prepared Kerala’s traditional Christmas breakfast, Appam and Chicken Stew Kerala Style.

What is Kerala Chicken Stew?

Kerala Style Chicken Stew, also known as Nadan Kozhi Ishtu in Tamil, is a famous chicken stew from southern India. It’s a one-of-a-kind, moderately spicy, and very easy-to-make dish that gets ready in 30 minutes.

It’s warm and cozy, just how a stew should be, and goes well with Appam or Dosa. I can literally have this now daily. 

It’s creamy, rich, and delicately seasoned with my spice combination, and it’s loaded with juicy bone-in chicken chunks. This Kerala-style chicken stew is served as the main entrée at lunch and supper and is frequently served for breakfast, as I made for my Christmas breakfast.

Chicken stew is also a healthy dish since, in addition to the excellent fat found in coconut milk and coconut oil, you can be creative with the vegetables you use in the stew. Carrots, beans, and potatoes are the common ingredients. These are almost certainly in your pantry. This recipe is a great method to include more vegetables in your diet, especially for children.

You can add cauliflower or green peas to make it more adaptable. With such incredible flavors, these vegetables simply combine well, and no one would complain. Cashew paste is recommended in many recipes. I haven’t used them because they make the stew too creamy and heavy. My recipe is already heavy due to coconut milk and oil usage. But, if you like it to be more creamy, you can surely add cashew paste.

Notable Ingredients At A Glance 


Chicken – Use bone-in chicken chunks since they absorb the flavors well. For this curry, you can even use boneless chicken pieces.

Onion – Onion adds a nice caramelized and sweet flavor to the stew. 

Vegetables – I used potatoes and carrots, but you may use other vegetables such as beans, green peas, cauliflower, and so on. 

Ginger & Garlic – Use crushed ginger and garlic to enhance the aroma of the soup. You can use a mortar and pestle to crush the ginger and garlic or roughly chop them.

Green Chilies – You can use 2-3 green chilis for a slight spice. Remove the seeds if you don’t like them too spicy. 

Whole Spices – Because there are no spice powders in this curry, it is moderately spiced with whole spices such as cardamom, cloves, cinnamon, black peppercorns, star anise, and bay leaf.

Coconut Milk – The base of this curry is made of coconut milk. Both thick and thin coconut milk can be used, but I prefer thick coconut milk. You can make your own coconut milk at home or buy it ready-made.

Black pepper powder – Along with whole black peppercorns, I have added some black pepper powder as well because I adore its flavor. However, it is totally optional. 

Coconut Oil – This stew tastes best when made with coconut oil. You can also use other neutral oil of your choice. 

How To Prepare Kerala Chicken Stew?

Heat the coconut oil in a wok or pan. Combine bay leaves, star anise, cloves, peppercorns, and green chilies in a mixing bowl. Cook for 1 minute.

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

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

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

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

Enjoy hot chicken stew with dosa, rice, or bread!

Some Expert Tips For Preparing Kerala Chicken Stew

  • Mutton can be used in place of chicken, and vegetables can be used in place of chicken for vegetarians. Carrots, potatoes, tiny onions, peas, mushrooms, or simply potato and onion.
  • Make this curry with coconut oil for a more genuine flavor.
  • Making fresh coconut milk at home yields the greatest flavor. If this is not possible, canned coconut milk will suffice.
  • To produce thin coconut milk, thin it with water.
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Kerala Chicken Stew

  • 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.


  • 750 gm Chicken with bones
  • 1 Onion – big thinly sliced
  • 2 Potato – medium cubed
  • 1 Carrot – small, cut in pieces
  • 1 tablespoon Ginger-Garlic paste ( use equal amounts of garlic and ginger)
  • 2 Green Chilies – slit lengthwise (you can remove seeds if you don’t like spicy)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Whole Black Peppercorns
  • 5 Cloves
  • 1 inch Cinnamon
  • 4 Bay Leaves
  • 2 Star Anise
  • 3 cups Thick Coconut Milk (you can use canned or powder)
  • 1 teaspoon Black pepper powder (Optional)
  • 3 tablespoon Coconut Oil
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 cup Water


  1. In a wok or 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, ginger-garlic paste, sauté till the onion turns soft.
  4. Add chicken pieces, mix well now add carrots and potatoes and combine everything well.
  5. Add freshly ground pepper, mix everything again.
  6. Add water cover and cook for 7 to 8 minutes. .
  7. Now add coconut milk cover and cook 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!


  • Onions need not be browned for the stew.
  • Chicken may be substituted with mutton and vegetarians can replace with vegetables like carrots, potatoes, whole small onions, peas, mushrooms or just plain potato and onion.
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
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