This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure and privacy policy.

This Curry Chicken Soup is ultra-comforting and loaded with veggies. I love how quick and easy it is to prepare, all in one pot!

curry chicken soup in white bowls

How to Make Curry Chicken Soup

To make this flavorful soup, you’ll start by sauteing some onion, carrots, and celery, along with garlic and ginger.

vegetables with curry powder in skillet

I like to use curry powder to get the classic curry flavor in this soup, without relying on several individual spice jars. Stir the powder into the sauteed veggies to bring out the flavor, then you’ll add in the veggie broth, lentils, and chicken, and let it all simmer until the chicken is cooked-through, about 30 minutes.

Adding Raw Chicken to Soup

I don’t know about you, but I don’t love working with raw chicken on my cutting board– so I place the chicken thighs into this soup whole.

raw chicken going into soup

After the soup has finished cooking, it’s easy to grab the cooked chicken with tongs, shred it with two forks on a cutting board, and then return it to the soup.

If you would rather cut the raw chicken into bite-sized pieces before cooking, you are welcome to do that, too.

shredded chicken in soup

How to Thicken Soup (Without Flour)

This soup gets its thick texture from red lentils, which are one of the quickest-cooking variety of lentils. What I love about this addition, is how the lentils practically dissolve as they cook in this soup, creating a thick and creamy texture.

Eating a 1/3 cup of lentils each day may help to lower cholesterol (source) and they are an excellent source of iron (source) so I love adding them whenever I can. Plus, the fiber they contain should help keep you full for hours.

curry chicken soup in ladle

curry chicken soup in white bowls

Curry Chicken Soup (Stove or Instant Pot)

4.91 from 60 votes
This Curried Chicken Soup is an easy one-pot meal, that is loaded with fiber-rich lentils and veggies. No dairy or flour required!
prep10 mins cook30 mins total40 mins
Servings:6 servings


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 3 carrots , chopped
  • 3 celery stalks , chopped
  • 1 clove garlic , minced
  • 1 tablespoon freshly minced ginger
  • 4 teaspoons curry powder
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 1 pound boneless & skinless chicken thighs
  • Fine sea salt (I use Real Salt brand)
  • 1/2 cup full-fat coconut milk
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Squeeze of fresh lemon juice


  • Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat, and saute the onion, carrot, and celery until they start to soften, about 5 minutes.
  • Add in the garlic, ginger, and curry powder, and stir unti fragrant, about one more minute.
  • Add in the broth and lentils, and give the pot a stir, then place the chicken thighs directly into the broth. Season with 1 teaspoon of salt, and bring the soup to a boil.
  • Once boiling, lower the heat to a simmer and cover the pot, letting the soup cook until the lentils are tender and the chicken is cooked-through, about 30 minutes. (You can use a thermometer to make sure the chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165ºF, or you can slice into it to check.)
  • Use tongs to remove the chicken thighs, transfer them to a cutting board, and use two forks to shred them into bite-sized pieces. Return the chicken to the pot, and stir in the coconut milk. Adjust seasoning to taste, adding more salt, if needed. (I usually add an extra 1/2 teaspoon, but it will vary depending on the sodium in the broth that you use.)
  • Serve with freshly ground black pepper and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, if desired. (The lemon helps brighten up the flavor!)
  • Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Try serving the leftovers over rice, too!



Instant Pot Directions:
No oil is needed for this method. Add the onion, carrots, celery, garlic, ginger, curry, broth, and lentils to the Instant Pot and give the mixture a stir. Place the chicken thighs on top and sprinkle them with 1 teaspoon of salt.
Secure the lid and move the steam release valve to Sealing. Select Manual/Pressure Cook to cook at high pressure for 10 minutes. Let the pressure naturally release for 10 minutes.
When the screen reads L0:10, move the steam release valve to Venting to release any remaining pressure. Use tongs to transfer the chicken to a cutting board, then use two forks to shred it.
Add the chicken back to the pot and stir in the coconut milk. Taste and adjust any seasonings. I usually add another 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of salt, depending on how much sodium is in the broth I use, several grinds of black pepper, and squeeze of fresh lemon juice to brighten the flavors. Serve warm.


Calories: 290kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 737mg | Potassium: 710mg | Fiber: 11g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 5562IU | Vitamin C: 6mg | Calcium: 56mg | Iron: 4mg
Course: Soup
Cuisine: gluten-free
Keyword: curry chicken soup
Curry Chicken Soup Nutrition above is for 1 of 6 bowls of soup. (Roughly 2 cups per serving)

Recipe Notes:

  • I haven’t tested this recipe using chicken breasts, because I originally developed it for the Instant Pot, and the Instant Pot doesn’t create the best texture for chicken breasts cooked directly in liquid. (Check out my Instant Pot Chicken Breasts post for tips.) I imagine you could cut the chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces, and cook them that way, if you prefer to use that instead of chicken thighs in this soup recipe.
  • For a vegetarian recipe, feel free to leave out the chicken all together. You could add in a cut sweet potato for some added heartiness, and in that case the soup would only need to cook for 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are as soft as you’d like them to be.
  • If you don’t have broth on hand, you can use water instead and season with extra salt to compensate for the flavor.

If you try this recipe, please leave a comment below letting me know how you like it. And if you make any modifications, I’d love to hear about those, too! We can all benefit from your experience

Reader Feedback: What’s your favorite soup? My Chicken Vegetable Soup is another fan favorite, and Curried Butternut Soup is another easy option for your Instant Pot!

Megan Gilmore leaning on her white countertop.

Megan Gilmore

Hi, I’m Megan. A former fast food junkie turned best-selling cookbook author. I create healthy recipes made with simple ingredients to make your life easier.

Read More

You May Also LIke

Leave a Review!

I love hearing from you! Submit your question or review below. Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked*.

Recipe Rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. I used chicken with bone, added potatoes, and substituted the full fat coconut milk with soy milk. I will definitely make this again, thank you for this delicious recipe!

  2. Subbed curry powder for 2 tsp garam masala and 2 tsp of chat masala and this was divine! A bit too salty, I’d recommend starting with 1/2 tsp and adding more if needed. Delicious!

  3. I love making soups but I usually have to doctor up the recipe to make it taste good. This recipe was amazing. I did it in the instant pot. Quick easy and so good. My husband’s favorite so far! Thank you

  4. Is it possible to add potatoes to this recipe, and if so, what do you recommend in terms of when to add them to the pot, how long to cook them, etc?

  5. This soup is amazing!! But I love lentils. It is so quick and easy to prepare. I use your recipes almost daily. Thank you so much for all your great recipes. Could you freeze this soup? I live alone and it makes a lot to finish in 3 days. Thank you Terry.