Thai Pumpkin Chicken Curry (Instant Pot and Stovetop)


This Thai pumpkin chicken curry perfectly captures my favorite season and a favorite cuisine in a bowl.

Thai Pumpkin Chicken Curry

Cool-weather calls for comfort food and this spicy, warming, and comforting curry is what’s missing from your menu. Make this in an instant pot or on the stovetop in under thirty minutes, with most of it being hands-off time.

Thai Pumpkin Chicken Curry

Chicken Curry made with Pantry Ingredients:

I have always loved Thai food. I think because it’s similar to Indian food in some ways. Both cuisines use a decent amount of garlic, ginger, and chilies.

  • Canned Coconut Milk: My husband is from the coastal state of Kerala in south India where coconuts are aplenty and so, many Keralite curries call for coconut milk. Some Keralite coconut curries feel very similar to some Thai curries. Because I cook a lot of Keralite food and Thai food, I keep canned coconut milk in my pantry at all times.
  • Thai Curry Paste: I also keep several small jars of Thai curry paste on hand. You can easily find these jars in most grocery stores. They’re tiny but pack a lot of flavors and also help to keep the ingredient list short in my Thai recipes.
  • Pumpkin Puree: This curry also calls for canned pumpkin puree, which is a seasonal item in my pantry, though every fall I wonder why I don’t eat pumpkin year-round. I guess it’s because then it wouldn’t feel as special in the fall? Anyway, the pumpkin puree helps to both thicken the curry and is also a sneaky way to add a vegetable (okay, technically a fruit) to the sauce.
Thai Pumpkin Chicken Curry

All Thai curries need jasmine rice – highly suggest serving the two together.

And after you make this curry, I have several more Thai recipes you may want to check out: red vegetable curry, beef and broccoli curry, chicken red curry, and several other recipes that are all delicious and worth making. Give them a try 🙂

I can’t wait to hear what you think!

Thai Pumpkin Chicken Curry

Thai Pumpkin Chicken Curry

Thai Pumpkin Chicken Curry

Thai Pumpkin Chicken Curry

5 from 2 reviews
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  • 1 ½ pounds skinless boneless chicken thighs halved or quartered
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 onion diced
  • 1-2 serrano or Thai bird’s eye chilies minced, to taste
  • 3 teaspoons garlic paste or 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ginger paste or 1-inch knob ginger, minced
  • 1 13.5 ounce can unsweetened, full-fat coconut milk
  • 1 15 ounce can organic pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons red curry paste to taste
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

Add Later

  • 1-2 bell peppers cut into chunks
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice ½ lime
  • 1 handful Thai basil


Instant Pot:

  • Press sauté, add oil and once it’s hot, add onion, chilies, and stir-fry for 10 minutes or until the onion turns golden brown.
  • Add ginger and garlic and stir-fry for a minute, then add the remaining ingredients (except for those listed under “add later”) and mix well.
  • Secure the lid, close the pressure valve, and cook for 5 minutes at high pressure.
  • Naturally release pressure for 10 minutes, then open the valve to release any remaining pressure.
  • Add the bell pepper(s), lime juice, and Thai basil (reserve some for garnish) to the pot and mix well.
  • Garnish with more Thai basil and serve with lime wedges and jasmine rice.


  • If cooking this curry on the stovetop, cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces. 
  • Heat oil in a dutch oven over medium heat then add the onion and chilies.
  • Once the onions begin to turn golden brown, add the ginger and garlic and stir-fry for 2 minutes.
  • Add the chicken, cumin, coriander, turmeric, salt, pepper, red curry paste, and mix well.
  • Add the coconut milk, broth, pumpkin puree, fish sauce, and bell pepper to the pot. 
  • Reduce the heat to low, cover the pot with a lid and cook for 15 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
  • Add the lime juice and Thai basil and serve with jasmine rice.
Did you make this recipe?Tag @myheartbeets on Instagram and hashtag it #myheartbeets!

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Thai Pumpkin Chicken Curry

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Find out more about my cookbooks Indian Food Under Pressure and South Asian Persuasion.

About Ashley

Hi, I’m Ashley. Thanks for being here! I truly believe that food brings us closer together. Gather around a table with good food and good people, and you’ll have the ingredients you need to create some happy memories. My hope is that you find recipes here that you can’t wait to share with family and friends.


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  1. Patricia says

    5 stars
    Winner Winner! My hubby was skeptical, but everything came together beautifully. I omitted the garlic due to his allergy & it was still terrific. Love how easy the steps were & how quickly it is ready. Thanks so much Ashley!

  2. Carrie says

    This is the recipe that tricked my husband’s co workers into thinking I am actual a good cook 😉 when he brought leftovers in the next day he felt his colleagues try some and they were blown away and apparently I received many kudos. Little did they know I was just following your amazing recipe and instructions! Thai food, pumpkin, spicy, etc – what’s not to love! Thanks for making me look like a skilled chef!

  3. Kristen says

    I made this the other night and it is INCREDIBLE. Unfortunately, I didn’t have any chilies to add spice, but the flavor was enough for me. Anyone who wanted heat could throw hot sauce in it! Wonderful recipe and I will definitely make it again!

  4. Caroline says

    Ashley, please send Rishi back with one of your delicious creations next time he goes home. Everyone in the office loves your blog!


  1. […] While I like sweet pumpkin dishes, I think I like savory pumpkin recipes more. Pumpkin is good for you and when you eat it as a meal, you know you’re putting something good into your body. For some reason I just don’t feel that way when eating pumpkin pie (gentle sarcasm) – even if it is paleo. This creamy pumpkin chicken casserole is both filling and flavorful. If you like it, try another savory pumpkin recipe: Thai Pumpkin Chicken Curry […]

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