Pumpkin Curry Chicken (Paleo Recipe)

at a glance
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 -6 servings
5 — Votes 3 votes

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This Paleo Pumpkin Curry is the perfect warm, comforting fall dish. The mild pumpkin flavor marries perfectly with the curry powder and will leave you wanting more!

Paleo Pumpkin Curry

Why you will love this Pumpkin Curry Recipe

I have a confession. I’ve “tested” and “tweaked” this recipe about a bagillion times because …well, I wanted to keep eating it. My ever-supportive fiance, Austin, is happy to enjoy whatever I whip up; but he draws a line when I spiral down an obsessive food hole. Though I may enjoy Paleo Meatloaf for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and then breakfast, lunch, dinner, etc., he does not. He’s good for two, maybe three leftover meals and then it’s time for something new/something Domino’s.

Bored taste buds and repeat meals x infinity aside, you know what you can’t argue with? Recipe development for the blog. It’s for my readers!! Yes, I used you. I used you as an excuse to keep making Paleo pumpkin curry until my skin almost turned orange. Bored taste buds be damned! Mamma wants more curry and I’m going to pretend that I’m testing a different kind of tomato puree, and then a different curry powder …and then maybe a different cut of chicken.

Some good to come out of the umpteen different ways I made this dish? Well, we’ve sufficiently upped our turmeric intake AND I can officially answer all your questions in the comments about substitutions! Want to know if you can swap generic turmeric for the curry powder? Will it still be delicious if I leave out the tomatoes? Or maybe you’re curious about how to make this dish work in a slow cooker? Ask away, my friend. I’ve got a personally-tested answer waiting for you.

If you haven’t gathered from my rambling so far, let me tell you outright that this dish is dang tasty. DANG tasty. It’s not overly pumpkin-ey and has just the right amount of curry. I’ve written the recipe to feed 4-6 people – so, that makes either one awesome family dinner or 2-3 curry-filled days for happy you.

Pumpkin Chicken Curry Ingredients

What kind of pumpkin should I use for Pumpkin Coconut Curry?

Canned pumpkin puree works great here, as does homemade pumpkin puree (this Instant Pot pumpkin puree recipe is SO EASY!).

Paleo Pumpkin Curry over cauliflower rice in a grey bowl with a lime wedge on a wooden surface

How to make this Chicken Pumpkin Curry Recipe

It’s super easy – let’s get started!

  1. Start with the Butter + Ginger – first, melt the butter in a large pot or pan. Add the shaved fresh ginger to the hot butter and stir until fragrant – this will take about 2-3 minutes.
  2. Season the Chicken + Cook – dust the cubbed chicken with a ½ teaspoon of salt and ground pepper, then toss them in the hot ginger butter and cook until slightly browned on all sides and they’re all mostly cooked through.
  3. Add the Pumpkin, Tomato Puree, and Seasoning + Simmer – add the pumpkin puree, tomato puree, curry powder, and remaining teaspoon of sea salt. Stir to thoroughly incorporate, cover, and let simmer for 10 minutes.
  4. Add the Coconut Milk + Lime Juice – just before serving, add the coconut milk and lime juice. Let the curry come back up to temperature then remove from heat.
  5. Serve + Enjoy!

I loved this dish with boneless chicken thighs but you’re welcome to use the same cooking instructions below to prep whatever protein your heart desires. Beef? Check! Shrimp? Sounds yummy. Goat? Look at you being all exotic!

What to serve it with? I recommend either some basic cauliflower rice or jasmine rice (if you’re looking for more carbs).


Paleo Pumpkin Curry

Pumpkin Chicken Curry (Paleo)

By: Cassy
5 — Votes 3 votes
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 4 -6 servings
This Paleo Pumpkin Curry is the perfect warm, comforting fall dish. The mild pumpkin flavor marries perfectly with the curry powder and will leave you wanting more!


  • 2 tablespoons ghee grass-fed butter, or EVCO (extra virgin coconut oil)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger finely shaved
  • 2-3 pounds chicken thighs cut into 1" cubes
  • 1/2 teaspoon plus 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 30 ounces pumpkin puree about 3 cups
  • 24 ounces tomato puree or tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder
  • 13.5 ounces canned full-fat coconut milk
  • 2 limes juiced


  • Melt the butter in a large pot or pan. Add the shaved fresh ginger to the hot butter and stir until fragrant - this will take about 2-3 minutes.
  • Dust the cubbed chicken with 1/2 teaspoon salt and ground pepper. Toss them in the hot, ginger butter and cook until slightly browned on all sides and they're all mostly cooked through.
  • Add the pumpkin puree, tomato puree, curry powder, and remaining teaspoon of sea salt. Stirl to thoroughly incorporate, cover, and let simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Just before serving, add the coconut milk and lime juice. Let the curry come back up to temperature then remove from heat.
  • Serve over cauliflower rice or jasmine rice.

Nutrition Information

Nutrition Facts
Pumpkin Chicken Curry (Paleo)
Amount per Serving
% Daily Value*
Saturated Fat
Trans Fat
Polyunsaturated Fat
Monounsaturated Fat
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Meet the Author
Cassy Headshot

Cassy Joy Garcia

HOWDY! I’m Cassy Joy and I am just so happy you’re here. I’m the founder, Editor-in-Chief, and Nutrition Consultant here at Fed and Fit. What started as a food blog back in 2011 has evolved now into so much more.
Get to know Cassy

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    Recipe Rating

  1. Nicole @ Runs & WODs says

    Nicole @ Runs & WODs —  11/15/2014 At 12:05

    Yum!! This looks delicious! I’m always looking for ways to spice up chicken.

    • Cassy says

      Cassy —  11/16/2014 At 02:07

      You’ll love it!

  2. Tess says

    Tess —  11/16/2014 At 02:03

    Mmm pumpkin curry .. this looks so good!! I’m going to plan on making this next week. And beautiful photos as always, Cassy! I could eat my screen right now. It doesn’t help that I’m hungry 😉

    • Cassy says

      Cassy —  11/16/2014 At 02:07

      Thank you, my dear! I hope you love it.

  3. Carmen says

    Carmen —  11/16/2014 At 20:09

    Hi there,
    This recipe looks delicious and I love pumpkin : ) Did you use Madras curry or what kind? Thank you for all your wonderful recipes and for sharing them with all of us.

    • Cassy says

      Cassy —  11/24/2014 At 17:19

      Hi Carmen! Madras curry would work great!

  4. Dana says

    Dana —  11/17/2014 At 19:39

    Hi…ok..you said, “ask away” 🙂 Have you done this in a slow cooker? If so, tips. Also, what are using for pumpkin puree?? tomato puree? This sounds delish!

    • Cassy says

      Cassy —  11/24/2014 At 17:07

      Haha yes! I have! Use the same directions for the stove-top but only partially cook the chicken (just put a slight brown on them). Then, transfer the whole thing to the slow cooker for about 4 hours on low. For pumpkin puree, I’m just using a canned 100% organic pumpkin. For the tomato puree, I just grab a glass jar of it from the grocery store 🙂

  5. Kate says

    Kate —  12/02/2014 At 01:57

    Hi, trying to create this tonight, looks amazing! What type of curry powder did you use? And can you use turmeric aswell or instead? Unsure if turmeric could substitute actual curry powder… Also would crushed tomatoes work? Or tomato soup? I’ve cooked up pumpkin to use instead of canned purée.

    • Cassy says

      Cassy —  12/04/2014 At 20:12

      Hi Kate! I used a generic organic yellow curry powder. You’re welcome sub equal amounts with turmeric but the flavors may vary slightly. Crushed tomatoes will work but may alter the final consistency. The home-cooked pumpkin sounds fabulous!

  6. Beth says

    Beth —  12/03/2014 At 04:56

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything at the grocery store labeled tomato puree. Tomato sauce maybe? Diced tomatoes?

    • Cassy says

      Cassy —  12/04/2014 At 20:13

      Good question, Beth! It usually comes in a glass jar but can be substituted with tomato sauce, if that’s all you can find.

  7. Michelle says

    Michelle —  12/14/2014 At 16:31

    This looks so good! And how could you go wrong with pumpkin?! Can’t wait to try it tomorrow.

  8. Christina says

    Christina —  10/30/2015 At 14:33

    Hello! We cannot have coconut milk.. I am going to use soy milk. Also I’m going to use a non tomato tomato sauce since we cannot have tomatoes either. Any thoughts on these substitutions? I’ll definitely report back!

  9. Christina says

    Christina —  10/31/2015 At 02:01

    Ok.. I did what I posted in my previous comment. I used about 12 oz no tomato tomato sauce and soy milk instead of coconut milk. We also served it over quinoa instead of rice. The entire thing was delicious! I may leave the lime out next time.. it kind of adds a weird flavor. AND I will add onion! Sliced white onion cooked into the sauce… sounds lovely.

    • Kelly says

      Kelly —  11/02/2015 At 13:58

      So glad those substitutions worked for you Christina!! The addition of the onion sounds amazing as well. Thanks for trying the recipe 🙂

  10. lurks says

    lurks —  10/31/2015 At 18:32

    I have a hubbard squash, think I could use it instead of pumpkin? Its huge so there should be lots left over after I roast it for supper tonight. I’m thinking the curry would be a great way to use it up.

    • Kelly says

      Kelly —  11/02/2015 At 13:58

      I think that would work great!

  11. DebbyB says

    DebbyB —  11/01/2015 At 23:47

    Would you have any idea how many Weight Watchers points plus per serving??

    • Kelly says

      Kelly —  11/02/2015 At 14:00

      Hi Debby, I am not familiar with how WW points work, so I wouldn’t have any idea. Sorry about that.

  12. Lisa Solis says

    Lisa Solis —  11/04/2015 At 00:18

    Thank you!!!! I prepared this for my family and they all loved it and all had seconds….I did add 2 shallots and 2 cloves of garlic and sautéed with the ginger butter and on the side I sautéed mushrooms, carrots and snow peas and added them once I added the tomato and curry…I garnished with green onion and served some Sambal Oelek chile on the side and a small dab of sour cream…Ialso served with jasmine rice..I will make this again…Thank you for sharing!!!!!!!

    • Kelly says

      Kelly —  11/18/2015 At 22:05

      All those additions sound amazing Lisa!! So glad you liked it and thank YOU for trying it!!

  13. Marci says

    Marci —  11/05/2015 At 04:16

    I would love to try this, but my taste buds react negatively to flaked coconut and am wondering if the coconut milk has that same flavor. If it does, what might you suggest as a substitute? I did see that Christina used Soy Milk, but wondered if a 2% or evaporated milk would also be a viable sub. Thanks.

    • Kelly says

      Kelly —  11/21/2015 At 02:22

      Hi Marci, you could use try one of those, or cashew milk, almond milk, or even heavy cream. Those milks are not as thick as coconut milk from the can, so you might not need as much. Hope that helps!

  14. Susan Cliff says

    Susan Cliff —  11/09/2015 At 03:29

    I can’t have tomatoes. So does it taste great without the tomatoes? What else do I need to add if I leave the tomatoes out?

    • Kelly says

      Kelly —  11/21/2015 At 02:26

      Hi Susan, you could try roasted carrots or roasted beets. Hope that helps!

  15. Rachel says

    Rachel —  01/10/2016 At 19:23

    Loved this!!! A fast curry with pumpkin is the best!! Thanks!!!

    • Kelly says

      Kelly —  01/10/2016 At 22:40

      Thanks so much for trying it Rachel, and I am so glad you loved it!

  16. Kennedy says

    Kennedy —  01/09/2017 At 22:39

    Made this tonight with puréed butternut squash and it worked beautifully! SO so tasty, Cassy. Well done!

  17. Kate says

    Kate —  10/12/2017 At 10:18

    I just saw you post about this on Instagram and I would love to add this to our menu next week! I see you have slow cooker instructions, but are you on Team Instant Pot yet? If so, have you made this in your IP? How would you suggest adjusting cook time/instructions? Thanks!

    • Cassy says

      Cassy —  10/13/2017 At 19:26

      I have a whole Instant Pot ebook, actually! You can get it when you sign up for my weekly newsletter for free. As for this recipe, I haven’t tested it yet …but if we do, we’ll update! If others out there have made this in the Instant Pot, feel free to comment with how you pulled it off!

  18. Rashell Geisler says

    Rashell Geisler —  10/01/2018 At 16:18

    5 stars
    Oh my gosh this looks amazing! I’m going to whip it up right now. How does the recipe change if you omit the tomatoes? I’m trying to save my canned tomatoes for a spaghetti squash recipe later in the week! #tinypantryproblems

    Thank you Cassy!!



    • Jess Gaertner says

      Jess Gaertner —  10/09/2018 At 09:56

      it’ll change the flavor a bit, but should still be yummy–let us know how it turns out without the tomatoes!

  19. Madison says

    Madison —  10/09/2018 At 17:43

    I’ve never made curry before, but I’m so glad I used this recipe for my first time! Just made it and it is such a unique and interesting flavor. Great recipe and so quick and easy for weeknight dinners. Thanks Cassy!

  20. Caroline Tognoni says

    Caroline Tognoni —  10/19/2019 At 16:21

    5 stars
    Was a hit with all: grownups, toddler, and very picky preschooler!!

  21. Linda says

    Linda —  11/10/2019 At 10:10

    I’d like to throw some veggies into this. At what point should I add them?

  22. Patricia Stevens says

    Patricia Stevens —  11/19/2020 At 18:35

    5 stars
    This dish is AMAZING! We devoured it up. All 5 of my kids enjoyed it and it’s rare to please all 5 of them at one meal.

    • Brandi Schilhab says

      Brandi Schilhab —  11/20/2020 At 10:39

      Score!! So glad it was a hit, Patricia!