This vegan coconut curry is creamy and rich yet tangy and fresh from the tomato. The coconut milk and lemongrass bring Thai flavors and the spices bring Indian flavors, and together they create something uniquely comforting and flavorful!
Curry is one of my favorite dishes! Growing up, we'd often have curry nights. My mom would make Thai green curry with chicken and eggplant for her and my dad, but because it was too spicy for my brother and me, she'd make a pot of sweet Japanese curry. To me, curry is something you eat at home so I rarely ever order it if I'm eating out!
During my first year of college, my then boyfriend took me to a curry restaurant near our campus. It was a hole in the wall, with only about 10 items on the menu. Their curries were a delicious fusion of Indian and Thai curry, and were delicious!
I haven't been to that restaurant in over 10 years, but I find myself craving that unique curry from time to time, and had to try recreating it myself! And what better dish to honor World Vegan Month?
How to make vegan coconut curry
Heat coconut oil in a pot and add coriander seeds, cumin seeds, cloves, and lemongrass. Once the spices become aromatic and start sizzling, add the onion and salt, and sautée for 10 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger, and sautée for an additional minute. Add the cayenne pepper, bay leaf, tomatoes and water to the pot. Bring it to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes. Take the bay leaf and lemongrass out, and purée the curry in a blender until smooth. Add a can of your favorite coconut milk (my favorite is Chef's Choice coconut milk, of course!) and simmer for an additional 5 minutes.
What vegetables should I add?
You can add any vegetables you like to this vegan curry, but I like to eat in season, so I've added kabocha squash, lotus root, and maitake mushrooms!
I would serve this with rice or quinoa and a salad on the side for a more balanced meal! If you want some greens but don't want to go through the hassle of making a side salad, add some spinach to the curry and cook it until it wilts.
If you're looking for a savory and flavorful dish to warm you up, this vegan coconut curry is it! Although I've combined Thai flavors with Indian spices, it's not quite Thai curry, not quite Indian curry; it's its own dish that's so delish!
Vegan Coconut Curry
- 1 tablespoon coconut oil
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
- 2 cloves
- 2 stalks lemongrass, outer skin peeled and chopped into quarters
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed
- 1 1-inch piece ginger, peeled and sliced
- ¼ to ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 can (14oz/400g) whole peeled tomatoes
- 1 cup (240ml) water
- 1 can (14oz/400g) Chef's Choice coconut milk
- 7oz (200g) lotus root, peeled and sliced
- ¼ medium kabocha squash, sliced
- 7oz (200g) maitake mushrooms, stems cut off
- Heat the coconut oil in a pot over medium heat, and add cumin seeds, coriander seeds, cloves, and lemongrass. Once the spices become aromatic and start to sizzle, add the onions and salt, and sautée for 10 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger, and cook for an additional minute.
- Add cayenne pepper, bay leaf, tomatoes, and water to the pot. Bring to a boil and reduce the heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes. Let it cool slightly
- While the curry is simmering, heat a pan with some extra coconut oil (or any other oil of choice) and cook the lotus root, kabocha squash, and maitake mushrooms. You may have to do this in a few batches, depending on the size of your pan. Cook the vegetables until they're golden on both sides. Take them out onto a plate until ready to serve.
- Take the bay leaf and lemongrass out. Using either a blender or immersion blender, purée the curry and pour it back into the pot. Add coconut milk and simmer for 5 minutes. Serve in a bowl and top with cooked vegetables.
Disclosure – Thank you to Nature’s Charm for sponsoring this post! It’s a delight to be working for people and a business I find inspiring. I love the values the company is built on, and I’m proud to be collaborating with them!