Pressure cooker, Weeknight dinner
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Pressure Cooker Thai Yellow Curry with Chicken

Pressure Cooker Thai Yellow Curry with Chicken |

Pressure Cooker Thai Yellow Curry with Chicken

Extra coconut cream. Mmmmm.

Continuing on my series of pressure cooker Thai Curries, it’s time for yellow curry. Yellow curry is sweeter than other Thai curries – it has extra coconut cream in the cooking. (And, If you’re suspicious that I’m just working my way along the Thai curry shelf at my local Asian market, you’re right. Yellow was next.)

As much as I love dark meat chicken, I went with chicken breast in this curry. Yellow curry usually has potatoes in it, and I didn’t want to overcook them. (And the kids were asking for chicken breast instead of thighs. I went wrong somewhere in my parenting.)

Other than that, this is a pretty standard Thai curry from my pressure cooker:

  • Soften the aromatics (onions, peppers, garlic, and ginger)
  • Fry the coconut cream and curry paste
  • Stir in the coconut milk and main ingredient (chicken, potatoes)
  • Pressure cook, then quick release
  • Stir in the tender vegetables (zucchini) and simmer until done

The kids were big fans of this curry – it’s not as hot as other Thai curries, which made it a big hit with the heat-sensitive kids in the family. (Though they did eat around the zucchini.) Looking for a mild curry to bring in the doubters in your family? Try a yellow curry.

Video: Pressure Cooker Thai Yellow Curry with Chicken (2:31)

Pressure Cooker Thai Yellow Curry with Chicken – Time Lapse

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Pressure Cooker Thai Yellow Curry with Chicken |

Pressure Cooker Thai Yellow Curry with Chicken

  • Author: Mike Vrobel
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 68 servings 1x


Pressure Cooker Thai Yellow Curry with Chicken. A quick weeknight curry, sweetened with a lot of coconut cream and spiced up with Thai yellow curry paste.


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and sliced thin
  • 2 medium red bell peppers, trimmed, seeded, and cut into thin strips
  • 3 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 inch piece of ginger, peeled and crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • Cream from the top of 2 (13.5 ounce) cans coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup yellow curry paste (a whole 4 oz can)
  • 3 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 1/2 pounds Petite Yukon Gold potatoes, quartered
  • The liquid from 2 cans coconut milk
  • 1 tablespoon fish sauce (plus more to taste)
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce (plus more to taste)
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar (plus more to taste)
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 2 medium zucchini, cut into 1/2 inch thick half moons

Garnish and Sides

  • Minced cilantro
  • Minced basil (preferably Thai basil)
  • Lime wedges
  • Jasmine rice


Sauté the aromatics: Heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat in the pressure cooker pot until shimmering. (Use Sauté mode adjusted to high in an Instant Pot electric pressure cooker.) Stir in the onion, red pepper, garlic, and ginger, sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and sauté until the onion starts to soften, about 3 minutes.

Fry the curry paste: Scoop the cream from the top of 2 cans of coconut milk and add it to the pot, then stir in the curry paste. (Stop when you hit the thin coconut liquid, and save it for later.) Cook, stirring often, until the curry paste darkens and the fat starts to separate, about 5 minutes.

Pressure cook the curry for 5 minutes, with a quick pressure release: Sprinkle the chicken with the kosher salt. Add the chicken to the pot, and stir to coat with curry paste. Stir in the potatoes, and then the reserved coconut milk liquid, fish sauce, soy sauce, and brown sugar. Lock the lid and pressure cook on high pressure for 5 minutes in an electric PC or 4 minutes in a stovetop PC. Quick release the pressure in the pot.

Finish the curry: Remove the lid from the pressure cooker, then set it over medium-high heat (Sauté mode adjusted to high in an electric pressure cooker.) Stir in the lime juice and the zucchini, and simmer until the zucchini is crisp-tender, about 8 minutes. Taste the curry for seasoning, adding more soy sauce (to add salt) or brown sugar (to add sweet) as needed. Ladle the curry into bowls, sprinkle with minced cilantro and basil, and serve with Jasmine rice.


Don’t shake the cans of coconut milk – you want the solid layer of cream on the top and the liquid underneath. That lets you fry the coconut cream with the curry paste, then add the liquid later. (If the coconut milk is shaken up, and there isn’t a thick layer of coconut cream on the top, scoop out the top 1/3rd of the can and add it to the pot.)

I use Maesri curry paste, because a single 4 ounce can is the perfect amount for a pressure cooker curry. If you buy your curry paste in a larger tub, use 4 tablespoons.

Want to substitute chicken thighs? (I know I do!) Increase the cooking time to 10 minutes at high pressure in an electric PC, 8 minutes in a stovetop PC.


  • Category: Weeknight Dinner
  • Method: Pressure Cooker
  • Cuisine: Thai

What do you think?

Questions? Other ideas? Leave them in the comments section below.

Related Posts

Pressure Cooker Thai Green Curry with Chicken
Pressure Cooker Massaman Curry
Pressure Cooker Thai Red Curry with Beef
My other Pressure Cooker Recipes
My other Pressure Cooker Time Lapse Videos

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Filed under: Pressure cooker, Weeknight dinner


Hi! I’m Mike Vrobel. I’m a dad and an enthusiastic home cook; an indie cookbook author and food blogger with a day job, a patient spouse, and three kids who would rather have hamburgers for dinner.


  1. Michelle says

    Delicious! We are going to make it again but realized we are all out of curry paste. Can yellow curry powder be used instead? Perhaps a bit more since powder is less intense than the paste?

  2. Susan says

    Made this once before and it was fantastic and easy.. We liked it so much I’m making it for my husband’s birthday. I used reduced fat coconut milk and it was great.

  3. Chrissy says

    I ordered those Maesri curry pastes and made this a year ago. It was fantastic! However, shortly after trying it, my husband and I switched to a keto diet and it was off limits. After staring at those cans of curry paste in my pantry forever, I decided to modify this and give it another go. This time we skipped the rice, potatoes and brown sugar. I switched out one of the red peppers for an extra zucchini and added a bag of frozen cauliflower florets, thawed. It was just as wonderful as I’d remembered! The technique is solid and the flavors are fantastic. Now I need to explore your other recipes to use up my red and green curry pastes! Thanks for a great dinner!

  4. katie says

    Whole family, even picky daughter, loved this!

  5. Michelle Gillespie says

    Restaurant worthy recipe. I used chicken breast but next time will try chicken thighs. Mae Ploy yellow curry. This is a keeper! Thank you so much.

  6. We really enjoyed this recipe. The potatoes are fantastic in this curry! Thanks for the recipe.

  7. Mike in Austin says

    Looks great, Mike! Both the new look of the site and the recipe. I’ve taken several Thai cooking classes and all of the teachers recommended Maesri curry! I pick up an assortment of styles when I buy it. Keep up the great work!

    • Thanks, Mike! You didn’t get a chance to take classes at Madame Mam’s, did you? When I went down to Austin for my day job, the guys took me there specifically for the Thai food. (And it was worth it – great curry.)

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