If you’re looking for a comforting vegetarian dinner, this Sweet Potato Curry is for you. It’s made with quick-cooking red lentils and creamy coconut milk, for a satisfying meal!
This recipe is allergy-friendly, since it’s naturally gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan.
It comes from my friend Gena from The Full Helping, and her first cookbook, Choosing Raw. Serve it with white rice (try Instant Pot white rice), or cooked quinoa, for a comforting meal that is ready in just 30 minutes.
Love curry recipes? You may also love Coconut Curry, Pumpkin Curry, or Salmon Curry.
Ingredients You’ll Need
What’s in Sweet Potato Curry?
- Sweet potato
- Coconut milk
- Curry powder
You can add any other vegetables you like to this dish, such as bell pepper, spinach, or diced tomatoes. Adding a big handful of fresh cilantro at the end takes the flavor to the next level, and you can add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice or lime juice, to brighten it up, if you’d like.
It’s very easy to customize!
How to Make Sweet Potato Curry
1. Saute the aromatics. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat, and add in the onion. Saute until it’s softened, about 5 minutes.
Add in the turmeric, curry powder, garlic, and ginger, and saute briefly, just until they are fragrant, about 1 minute.
2. Simmer. Add in the water (or use vegetable broth), lentils, and sweet potatoes, along with salt and pepper. Bring the liquid to a boil, then lower the heat and cover.
Cook until the lentils and sweet potatoes are both tender, about 15 minutes.
3. Finish. When everything is tender, add in the coconut milk and cilantro. Stir well, then adjust any seasoning to taste.
Serve warm, with cooked rice or quinoa, and extra cilantro on top, if you like. You can also serve it with lime wedges, so everyone can add an extra squeeze of lime juice, if they’d like to.
This sweet potato curry will be soup-like when it’s warm, and will thicken as it cools, so don’t be surprised if it thickens up significantly when the leftovers are stored in the fridge.
It will keep well in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. When you reheat it, the sauce will thin-out again, but you can always add a little extra water or broth, to thin it out even more.
Frequently Asked Questions & Substitutions
Do I have to use lentils? No, but you’ll need to adjust the liquid if you leave them out. If you’d like to use canned chickpeas, or another protein instead, I would remove 2 cups of liquid.
Can I use green lentils? Yes, but the cooking time will increase, which will also make the sweet potatoes softer. Green and brown lentils tend to cook in 25 to 30 minutes.
Can I use curry paste? Sure! You can replace the curry powder with 2 tablespoons of red curry paste, for a similar flavor.
Prefer to skip the coconut milk? Use almond milk, oat milk, or even heavy cream, if you don’t need a dairy-free recipe.
Thai Sweet Potato Curry: Add a squeeze of lime juice and a tablespoon of maple syrup, for an added sweet and sour flavor, similar to my Thai Chickpea Curry. You can also add fresh basil!
Peanut Butter Curry: Add 2 to 4 tablespoons of peanut butter to the sauce, and top the dish with crushed peanuts. Peanut butter curry also goes well with crushed tomatoes or tomato paste, if you’d like to add that in.
Indian Sweet Potato Curry: Try adding in a can of diced tomatoes and a teaspoon of ground cumin, for a different variation. Indian curry tends to be a little heartier and warmer, so you can also add a pinch of cinnamon or cloves, if you like.
Sweet Potato Curry
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 yellow onion , diced
- 1 cup dried red lentils
- 1 medium sweet potato , cut into 1-inch cubes
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 tablespoon curry powder
- 2 garlic cloves , minced
- 1 inch fresh ginger , minced
- fine sea salt
- ground black pepper
- 3 1/2 cups vegetable broth or water
- 1/2 cup coconut milk
- 1/4 cup freshly chopped cilantro
- Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat, and saute the onion until softened, about 5 minutes. Add in the turmeric, curry powder, garlic, and ginger, and stir for 1 more minute, just until fragrant.
- Add in the broth or water, lentils, sweet potatoes, 1 teaspoon of salt, and a 1/4 teaspoon of ground black pepper. Bring the liquid to a boil, then lower the heat and cover the pot. Cook until the lentils and sweet potatoes are both tender, about 15 minutes.
- Stir in the coconut milk and cilantro, and adjust any seasoning to taste. I usually add more salt, about a 1/2 teaspoon at a time, but this will vary based on if you used broth or water. (I add an extra full teaspoon of salt when using water.) Season to taste, with a squeeze of lemon or lime juice, if you'd like to brighten the flavor, then serve warm over cooked rice or quinoa.
- Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. It will thicken when chilled, but the sauce will thin out again when you heat it up.
If you try this Sweet Potato Curry recipe, please leave a comment and star rating below. I’d love to hear what you think!
Questions and Reviews
I’m wheat and dairy intolerant so I love the recipes that feature alternatives. Also love vegan and vegetarian recipes. Thanks so much for your website!
Excited to try this recipe. My daughter has been going RAW for several months now and not only does she look amazing she reports feeling so much better. I would love to see more recipes containing winter veggies. Yum!
Hey there! I’m a college student and I have trouble finding time to make healthy meals during the week when the semester gets busy, so I’d love to see recipes that I could make in large batches on a Sunday that would last in the fridge for 4-5 days. I’m big into Asian flavors and stir fries (but unfortunately those taste much better straight out of the pan!). I’m dairy-free and gluten-free but looking for recipes that are not too high maintenance!
Dinners packed with protein, please!
Easy, hearty vegan dinner meals just like this one!
I’m new to cooking in a more healthy manner. I recently did a 21day detox with the Simple Green smoothie group and absolutely LOVE this way of eating. Even more exciting is that my 3 grandkids, whom i raise, also love the food! It’s wonderful to know that i can teach them healthy eating habits and create life long changes in their life. This recipe looks like another to add to the growing list of favorite healthy meals!
I would love to see more vegan dinner ideas using minimal ingredients (like 7-5)! Keep ’em coming. I love all your posts.
I would mostly love to see more recipes that are grab and go/ good for travel. Love the healthy desserts too.
This recipe sounds awesome!! Gonna try it! I’d like to have more quick healthy lunch ideas I can make before I run out the door to work!
Recipes for glowing skin!
Trying to eat clean for the last 15 months and really missed soups/stews last winter. Looking forward to trying this recipe and would love to win this book! More soup recipes please!
Always looking for easy and healthy recipes – thanks for sharing this one!
I’d love to see more dinner ideas as apposed to sweets though I always love your recipes for sweets!
I would love to see more raw recipes! When I think of eating raw, for some reason it always brings carrots and celery sticks to mind, but I know eating raw can be so much more than that! And the health benefits are SO astounding! I love the raw recipes you already have and would gladly welcome more!
I like to see the nutritional breakdown of a recipe. This way it’s easier to know if it’s for a special occasion or something to put into regular rotation.
This lentil curry looks delicious!
I would love to see more raw recipes. I really love raw desserts as well and have made several from your website.
More vegetable only recipes! Thank you for the chance to win! 🙂
I would like to see more candida cleansing recipes. I did a candida cleanse a couple of months ago, but need a little inspiration as of late to continue to stay closer to a sugar-free diet.
Love the dairy free desserts!! More of those plus veggie dishes would be great.
I like to see some hearty main courses like this one, to feed my giant of a husband who is slowly learning there are better things out there than meat and potatoes.
Loved this dish, and so easy to make. Can def make a batch and split up for multiple measl… which is how I like to cook!
I would love to see more recipes that are good to put in the freezer and store for a quick meal later.
Love the recipe! I have RA, so anti-inflammatory recipes would be great 🙂
Easy, healthy dinner options with lots of vegetables that please even veggie haters
Hello!! quick vegan recipes and/or breakfast is always a struggle for me for some reason
I love your recipes and would love more vegetarian or vegan recipes. I am trying very hard to cut out wheat, sugar, and oil. I find Coconut butter works just as well as coconut oil in some of your candy recipes.
Anything gluten free. With fall approaching, warm breakfast and soup ideas. Great blog, Megan! Can’t wait to try this recipe.
Would love more veggie recipes and crockpot or one pot meals. I do think you do well in varying your recipes. They are all good – haven’t had one fail me yet. Thanks Megan for all you do!
This looks delicious! I love so many of your recipes! I would be interested to see more of anything, but if I had to pick perhaps savory breakfast ideas and/or easy dinner ideas. I also like your sauces that then I can put on anything for dinner. Thanks for everything you do! And I hope you’re enjoying your little one!!
More breakfast recipes, please!
Vegan desserts & one pot meals
more granola recipes and oats!
I would like to see more sugar free/low carb friendly recipes!
Love the unique assortment of Veggie Recipes shared!~
I love this recipe! I currently have leftovers in my fridge from earlier this week. I’ve been making Gena’s curry recipes my whole pregnancy because they are so simple and I can always find the ingredients while living in Japan 🙂 I would love to see more simple recipes using lentils and other beans. Curries are my favorite but am looking for a simple tomato based lentil soup. Thanks for sharing!
I would also love to see more soup and stew recipes. Thank you for all you do, Detoxinista!
Looks great! Would love to see more recipes using more and different kinds of beans . . . . thank you!
Sounds delish! My boyfriend is Celiacs and I am vegetarian (since age 6) so any dishes that combine the two!
I can’t wait to try this recipe, it looks like it will hit the spot. I would love to see more recipes like this for comfort food season (fall and winter).
I like the quick dessert recipes. Especially ones with fruit! 🙂
Thank you for sharing this recipe – actually have all I need to make it tonight 🙂
I appreciate all the recipe ideas you’ve been providing – am new to ‘healthy eating’, changing my eating habits and lifestyle in order to improve my health.
What I’d love to see more of; perhaps just some ‘alternatives’ (ie ‘x’ can be substituted for ‘y’)with the recipes.
I love trying new recipes but do get stuck on finding so many new ingredients.
This is a fantastic recipe… and super simple.
I would love more sugar free recipes 😀
I have just started dabbling in raw cooking, I like making raw desserts for my husband since he has a sweet tooth! I would love recipes I can use with my VitaMix, like raw salad dressings, but mostly I need some delicious raw breakfast ideas! I would LOVE to win the cookbook and get more knowledge/ideas on tasty raw meals!
Recipes that seriously push the detoxing……. Dishes that can be made and then re made or revisited with tweaks for different kinds of meals. Most of all? Most of all I want a raw peanut butter cheese cake. Really I want a raw peanut butter cheese cake with a chocolate fudge swirl but…….I can pull off the swirl and I have a wonderful crust but I can’t seem to get a peanut butter cheesecake made with cashews or macadamia nuts…. And what’s with these people who dump both the peanut butter and chocolate TOGETHER and blend it in and call it done? Just wrong. I want the peanut butter with a fudge swirl and leave the cocoa out of the peanut butter. LOL. Yeah, I’m like that! But I’ve been looking for one for a while……..to no avail. Thanks for all the great recipes.
We live in a warm climate, so I would love more salads and salad dressing recipes. Made your peanut-free salad dressing last night and it was awesome!!
Thanks for a great site!
Want to work on my lung cancer, so need to learn more how to cook healthy. My daughter suggested this site and I love learning new stuff.
This looks amazing! I’d like to see more recipes using Indian spices & all their health benefits!
Wow – this soup looks amazing!! I can’t wait to try it! While I love experimenting with all your dessert recipes, I would actually like to see more recipes like this – dinner ideas that I can feed to my whole family (including a 2 and 5 yr old)!
Yum! this looks amazing for fall!
I would love to see quick and easy meals that I can make in a pinch and feed everyone (5,4 and 2 year old!) and my husband who eats meat, but will eat a tasty meal like this and enjoy it.