There’s nothing more comforting on a chilly fall night than a bowl of Thai Pumpkin Curry! Tender chicken, chunky veggies and pumpkin are in a flavorful coconut red curry sauce, and it’s plenty satisfying on its own or served over rice or quinoa. It’s so easy to make and it’s great for meal prep!

Thai pumpkin curry in a bowl with spoon buried inside

Fall is my favorite season for so many reasons, and curling up on a cold night with a bowl of comfort food is definitely one of them.

Comfort food comes in many forms for me, such as white bean turkey chili or butternut squash soup, but I make this Thai Pumpkin Curry recipe the most often during the fall and winter months.

The inspiration for this recipe came from a Thai restaurant that I visited in Layton, Utah while I attended a blogging conference with some friends. 

My friend and I ordered the pumpkin curry with chicken the first night that we were there, and we loved it so much that we went back and had it again two nights later.

I’d never experienced it before then, so it was a real treat. Typically I make coconut curry chicken or chickpea curry with whatever veggies I have on hand, but now I can’t imagine not adding pumpkin. It adds so much flavor and texture!

Pumpkin curry in a bowl over quinoa

Why you’ll love this recipe:

  • This easy pumpkin curry recipe is packed with tender chunks of chicken, pumpkin and veggies in a flavorful Thai coconut curry broth. 
  • It’s creamy and hearty, and is perfect served as is or with coconut rice, quinoa or naan.
  • This recipe is easily customized with your favorite veggies, and the chicken may be swapped out with chickpeas to make this recipe vegan.
  • It’s gluten-free, dairy-free and great for meal prep.

Recipe ingredients

Thai pumpkin curry recipe ingredients

Ingredient notes

  • Pumpkin. Kabocha squash is my favorite variety of pumpkin for this recipe — it’s flavor and texture truly makes it the star. You can certainly substitute it with butternut squash or your favorite winter squash, but I don’t recommend using pumpkin puree as the curry will be far too thick.
  • Chicken. Chicken is completely optional in this recipe, and it can be omitted to make this recipe vegan. Add a can of rinsed and drained chickpeas for added protein.
  • Veggies. Onions and garlic are aromatics that are essential to great flavor. The carrots, bell pepper and green beans add great color and texture, but they can be substituted with your favorite veggies.
  • Coconut milk. Use full fat coconut milk for richness. I’ve tried using lite coconut milk and it’s just not the same.
  • Water. The water can be substituted with chicken or vegetable broth for added flavor.
  • Turmeric. The turmeric adds a golden hue as well as warm flavor.
  • Ginger. Freshly grated ginger adds a pop of flavor to this pumpkin curry. I store mine in a zip top bag in the freezer and grate it peel and all with my Microplane zester. It keeps this way for months!
  • Red curry paste. This ingredient is made predominantly of red chili peppers and adds spice and depth of flavor. Some brands are spicier than others…I prefer the Thai Kitchen brand.
  • Cilantro and lime. A bit of fresh lime juice makes the flavors come alive, and freshly chopped cilantro adds freshness and color.

How to make this recipe

This Thai pumpkin curry recipe requires about 10 minutes of time to prep the vegetables, but it’s very easy to make.

Pro tip: Prep all of the ingredients for this pumpkin curry recipe before you begin cooking as it goes very quickly. The veggies may be prepped up to a day or two in advance.

See the recipe card for full instructions.

how to make pumpkin curry collage
  1. Cook the chicken in a large pot or Dutch oven until cooked through.  Remove from heat and cover loosely with foil.
  2. In the same pot, cook the onion and carrots for 5 minutes or until softened. 
  3. Add the garlic, ginger and turmeric and cook 30 seconds.
  4. Add the pumpkin, bell pepper and green beans, and sauté 1 minute.
  5. Add the chicken back to the pot, along with the red curry paste, coconut milk and water, and stir well to combine.
  6. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium low and cook 10-15 minutes, or until the pumpkin is tender and the sauce has thickened. Remove from heat and add the lime juice, cilantro, and season with additional salt and pepper as needed.
Pumpkin curry in a Dutch oven

FAQs

What kind of pumpkin should I use for pumpkin curry?

I prefer to use kabocha squash, which is a Japanese pumpkin, for my pumpkin curry.  It’s dark green in color, and it’s a bit sweeter and starchier than ordinary pumpkin. 

The best part about it is that the peel is edible. That means no peeling is required, and it also adds a nice, slightly chewy texture that I love. You can certainly use your favorite variety of pumpkin or even butternut squash, but they will require peeling.

See my kabocha squash recipes post, which includes loads of handy information on this delicious variety including how to prep it, choose and store it, and find inspiring ways to use it!

halved kabocha squash

How long does pumpkin curry last in the fridge?

Pumpkin curry will keep in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, or you can freeze it for up to 3 months.

Recipe notes

  • Pro tip: Prep all of the ingredients for this pumpkin curry recipe before you begin cooking as it goes very quickly.  The veggies may be prepped up to a day or two in advance.
  • Store your fresh ginger root in the freezer in a zip top bag, and grate with a Microplane grater right into your curry peel and all!
  • Customize this pumpkin curry with your favorite pumpkin or winter squash and vegetables.
  • Omit the chicken to make this recipe vegan.  Add a can of rinsed and drained chickpeas for added protein.
  • Store in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
Pumpkin curry over quinoa in a bowl with lime

More savory pumpkin recipes you’ll love:

Did you try this recipe?  If so, be sure to leave a review below and tag me @flavorthemoments on Facebook and Instagram!

Thai pumpkin curry in a bowl with spoon buried inside

Thai Pumpkin Curry with Chicken

Thai Pumpkin Curry is packed with tender chunks of chicken, pumpkin and veggies in a creamy flavorful coconut red curry sauce!  It's an easy weeknight dinner that's great for meal prep and it's freezer friendly!
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Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast cut into 1" pieces
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 medium carrots
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon ground turmeric
  • 1 cup cubed kabocha squash
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 8 ounces green beans trimmed and cut into 2″ pieces
  • 2 tablespoons Thai red curry paste
  • 13.5 ounces full fat coconut milk
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • Cooked rice or quinoa optional

Instructions 

  • Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the chicken and season with salt and pepper to taste. Sauté until cooked through, about 5 minutes. Remove from pan and place on a plate, then cover loosely with foil.
    2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • Add the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil to the pot. Add the onion and carrots and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger and turmeric, and sauté 30 seconds.
    1 medium onion, 2 medium carrots, 3 cloves garlic, 2 tablespoons freshly grated ginger, 1 tablespoon ground turmeric
  • Add the bell pepper, pumpkin and green beans, and sauté 1 minute longer.
    1 cup cubed kabocha squash, 1 red bell pepper, 8 ounces green beans
  • Add the the chicken back to the pan along with the red curry paste, coconut milk and water, and stir well to combine. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium low and simmer until the pumpkin is tender and the sauce has thickened, about 10-15 minutes.
    2 tablespoons Thai red curry paste, 13.5 ounces full fat coconut milk, 1 cup water
  • Remove from heat and stir in the lime juice, cilantro and salt and pepper to taste.
    1 tablespoon lime juice, 1/4 cup chopped cilantro, Cooked rice or quinoa

Notes

  • Pro tip: Prep all of the ingredients for this pumpkin curry recipe before you begin cooking as it goes very quickly.  The veggies may be prepped up to a day or two in advance.
  • Store your fresh ginger root in the freezer in a zip top bag, and grate with a Microplane grater right into your curry peel and all!
  • Customize this pumpkin curry with your favorite pumpkin or winter squash and vegetables.
  • Omit the chicken to make this recipe vegan.  Add a can of rinsed and drained chickpeas for added protein.
  • Store in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months.

Nutrition

Calories: 264kcal, Carbohydrates: 15g, Protein: 7g, Fat: 21g, Saturated Fat: 14g, Cholesterol: 12mg, Sodium: 54mg, Potassium: 564mg, Fiber: 4g, Sugar: 7g, Vitamin A: 5375IU, Vitamin C: 39mg, Calcium: 52mg, Iron: 2mg

Nutrition is estimated using a food database and is only intended to be used as a guideline for informational purposes.

Did you try this recipe?Be sure to tag @flavorthemoments with the hashtag #flavorthemoments on Instagram so I can see what you made!

**This recipe was originally posted in September 2019. Step by step photos have been added and the text has been modified for better readability and recipe information.

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