Creamy Coconut Mushroom Curry

This coconut mushroom curry is a delicious weeknight meal which is easy to make and ready in just 30 minutes. Meaty chunks of mushroom are cooked in a creamy and smooth spiced coconut gravy until tender, to make a vegan dish that everybody will love.

Overhead photo of a bowl of coconut mushroom curry and rice with lime, coriander and chili flakes

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What is coconut mushroom curry?

I love to cook with mushrooms; not only are they super delicious and versatile, they’re also nutritional powerhouses filled with fiber and protein, as well as plenty of vitamin D, zinc and potassium. 

They’re super versatile and come in so many different varieties, including button, chestnut (cremini), oyster, shiitake and portobello. Prepared and paired with different ingredients, there’s a countless number of dishes that can be made with them. Try them in goulash or risotto, stuffed into pierogi, or grilled and served in a burger bun.

If you’re a mushroom lover like me, then you’re in luck with today’s recipe. This coconut mushroom curry is made by cooking meaty mushrooms and green beans in a creamy sauce, flavoured with some of my favourite Indian spices.

This recipe is easy to make and comes out well every time, making it suitable for even the homemade curry novice. The ingredients cook up quickly, so you can have dinner on the table in no time. And leftovers taste even better the next day!

Why I love vegan mushroom curry

  • It’s quick and easy to whip together on a weeknight, coming together in just 30 minutes
  • A healthy comfort food dish, it’s completely vegan and gluten free.
  • The creamy mushroom curry gravy is suitable for even the fussiest of eaters, and the spice level can be adjusted to taste.
  • Mushrooms are a nutritional powerhouse, and a great plant-based protein source.
  • This coconut mushroom curry is full of flavour, but doesn’t require any complicated whole spices or homemade pastes. The recipe uses very basic ingredients.
  • Leftovers freeze really well for up to 3 months, making it great for filling up the freezer.
Three quarter photograph of a bowl of coconut mushroom curry, with a bowl of rice in the background

What ingredients are needed for this recipe?

Aromatics– This easy mushroom curry uses onion, garlic, ginger, and chili. I love using fresh aromatics in my curries, but sometimes like the convenience of using a paste. Look in your local Asian supermarket for the best garlic, ginger and chili pastes if you want to save a little time on chopping.

Spices– Garam masala, cumin, turmeric and black mustard seeds (optional) are the only spices needed for this Indian curry recipe. Garam masala is a great option for curries as it is a blend of different spices, giving a more complex flavour profile for just one jar in your kitchen! For the best flavour, buy your spices from an Asian supermarket, or the world foods aisle of your local supermarket.

Mushrooms– For this coconut mushroom curry, I’ve used chestnut (cremini) mushrooms, but button mushrooms or white mushrooms would work well too. Wipe them clean with a dry cloth or use a mushroom brush, but don’t use water to clean them, as it can damage them for cooking.

Green beans– I’ve added some green beans for an additional flavour and texture. I’ve chopped them up to a similar size to the mushrooms to make them more enjoyable to eat, but you can leave them whole if you’d rather. Remember to trim your green beans if they haven’t already been done.

Tomato paste– This adds a little bit of depth of colour, as well as acidity to balance out the creamy coconut milk.

Coconut milk– Opt for full fat coconut milk for the creamiest Indian mushroom curry. Light coconut milk is a good option if you find full-fat too heavy. Make sure you are using canned coconut milk rather than drinking coconut milk from a carton.

Ingredients for coconut mushroom curry

Equipment needed for making coconut mushroom curry

All you need to make this curry is a large enough pan for 4 portions. You can use a large frying pan, a dutch oven or a wok.

How to make creamy mushroom curry

Making this vegan mushroom curry is simple. In your pan, heat a tablespoon of coconut oil over a medium heat, then add the onion. Fry the onion for 3-4 minutes until it’s just starting to soften, then add the garlic, ginger and chili to the pan. Continue to fry for a minute longer, until they’re fragrant.

Next, add the spices to the pan and stir them continuously for a minute, before adding the tomato paste and stirring to combine.

Throw in the chopped mushrooms and green beans, and fry for 5 minutes, until the mushrooms are softened slightly and starting to release some liquid.

Finally, pour in the coconut milk. Stir well, then bring to a simmer. Leave the creamy mushroom curry to simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes. The mushrooms and green beans should be tender and the curry creamy yellow-brown in colour.

Add a squeeze of lime juice and serve your coconut mushroom curry whilst hot.

Serving suggestions

This is the perfect creamy mushroom curry for rice. I like to serve it with steamed basmati rice (on weekdays we choose wholegrain basmati as a healthier option). Some chopped coriander is delicious with this curry, and I pop some lime wedges on the side for squeezing over. Add a dollop of mango chutney for sweetness.

If you prefer bread with your curry, vegan naan, roti, paratha and dosa are all great options. You can buy vegan options at the store, just check the ingredients as milk is a common ingredient.

For an extra burst of flavour, you can also serve this coconut mushroom curry on the side of biryani, a dry, spiced rice dish.

Or, for real comfort food, spoon the curry over a fresh baked potato!

My top tips for the best Indian mushroom curry

When picking out your mushrooms, look for those which are firm, dry and free from any mold. I like to use button or chestnut/cremini mushrooms in my curry, but oyster mushrooms would also be a delicious alternative. 

It’s important that you never wash mushrooms with water when preparing them, as it can cause them to become slimy and waterlogged. Instead, use a dry piece of kitchen paper or a mushroom brush to remove any dirt before chopping.

Leave some smaller mushrooms whole and cut the others into big chunks. This gives them a great meaty texture and makes the coconut mushroom curry super satisfying and substantial.

A bowl of mushrooms chopped into different sizes

You can easily adjust the heat of this curry with fresh chili. If you like a very mild curry, remove the red chili from the beginning of the curry mushroom recipe. Alternatively if you like a very spicy curry, try two, or even three chillies.

I like the consistency of the gravy just the way it is in this quick mushroom curry recipe, with just the right amount of sauce to enjoy with rice or bread. If you prefer a thicker gravy, reduce the amount of coconut milk to your liking. 

For a thinner sauce, cover the curry whilst cooking, or add broth or water 60ml / ¼ cup at a time until it reaches your desired consistency.

An overhead photo of two bowls of creamy mushroom curry with brown rice and lime

Ingredient substitutes and additions

  • Aromatics– As mentioned above, you can replace the aromatics with garlic, ginger and chilli pastes. I would recommend using 2-3 teaspoons of both garlic and ginger paste, and a teaspoon of chili paste, increasing or decreasing depending on personal taste.
  • Spices– I’ve tried to keep the spices required quite simple in this coconut mushroom curry recipe, making it perfect for curry beginners. At a push, you could even just use the garam masala alone for a pleasant taste, or swap this out for curry powder. If you have more spices in your cupboard, I would recommend adding any of the below for a punch of extra flavour:
    • Ground fenugreek (½ tsp)
    • Fennel seeds (½ tsp)
    • Cardamom pods (2 whole)
    • Cloves (2 whole)

    Remember to remove any whole spices before serving!

  • Veggies– You can replace the mushrooms and green beans with any veggies you might like, for a creamy vegetable curry. Try to avoid any hard vegetables for a quicker cook time. I like to use eggplant, zucchini, peppers, broccoli, spinach and even frozen peas in my curries. You can even add cooked potatoes for a potato and mushroom curry.
  • Protein– For extra protein, add in some chickpeas or cubes of firm tofu. You can fry off the tofu cubes before adding them to the easy mushroom curry for extra flavour and texture.
  • Coconut milk– If you don’t like the taste of coconut, you can replace this with cashew cream, which is also quite popular in Indian recipes. Soak 100g / ¾ cup cashew nuts in water for half an hour, before draining them and blending until smooth with 180ml / ¾ cup water and a good pinch of salt.
A serving bowl of coconut mushroom curry with a small bowl of chilli flakes on the side

FAQ’s

Can I make this recipe in advance?

The flavours develop in this curry over time, so it’s perfect for making in advance. It will keep for 3-4 days in the fridge, if kept in an airtight container.

Can I freeze coconut mushroom curry?

It’s also perfectly freezer friendly, so you can freeze it for up to 3 months, similarly in an airtight container. If you want to batch cook for the freezer, this recipe for mushroom curry easily doubles. Defrost overnight in the fridge or for a few hours at room temperature.

How to reheat vegan mushroom curry

To reheat, add the curry to a large pan and heat until it’s just starting to simmer. The curry can thicken with time, so if needed, thin out the sauce with a splash of water. You can also reheat the curry in the microwave (in a microwave safe container) until piping hot through.

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Creamy Coconut Mushroom Curry

Chloe from Forkful of Plants
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 4
This coconut mushroom curry is a delicious weeknight meal which is easy to make and ready in just 30 minutes. Meaty chunks of mushroom are cooked in a creamy and smooth spiced coconut gravy until tender, to make a vegan dish that everybody will love.

Equipment

  • Large frying pan, wok, or dutch oven

Ingredients
 
 

  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 brown onion diced
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 inches ginger minced
  • 1 red chilli deseeded and chopped
  • 450 g chestnut/cremini mushrooms roughly chopped*
  • 100 g green beans chopped into thirds
  • 1 tbsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • ½ tsp black mustard seeds (optional)
  • 1 tbsp tomato paste
  • 400 g can coconut milk
  • ½ lime juiced

Instructions
 

  • In your pan, heat the coconut oil over a medium heat, then add the onion. Fry for 3-4 minutes until it’s just starting to soften, then add the garlic, ginger and chili to the pan. Fry for a minute longer, until fragrant.
  • Next, add the spices to the pan and stir them continuously for a minute, before adding the tomato paste and stirring to combine.
  • Throw in the chopped mushrooms and green beans, then fry for 5 minutes until the mushrooms are softened slightly and starting to release some liquid.
  • Finally, pour in the coconut milk. Stir well, then bring to a simmer.
  • Leave the creamy mushroom curry to simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes. The mushrooms and green beans should be tender and the curry creamy yellow-brown in colour.
  • Add a squeeze of lime juice and serve the curry whilst hot.

Notes

MUSHROOM ADVICE: When picking out your mushrooms, look for those which are firm, dry and free from any mold. I like to use button or chestnut/cremini mushrooms in my curry, but oyster mushrooms would also be a delicious alternative.
It’s important that you never wash mushrooms with water when preparing them, as it can cause them to become slimy and waterlogged. Instead, use a dry piece of kitchen paper or a mushroom brush to remove any dirt before chopping.
*Leave some smaller mushrooms whole and cut the others into big chunks. This gives them a great meaty texture and makes the curry super satisfying and substantial.
STORAGE: The curry will keep for 3-4 days in the fridge, or up to 3 months in the freezer, if kept in an airtight container. If you want to batch cook for the freezer, this recipe easily doubles. Defrost overnight in the fridge or for a few hours at room temperature.
To reheat, add the curry to a large pan and heat until it’s just starting to simmer. The curry can thicken with time, so if needed, thin out the sauce with a splash of water. You can also reheat the curry in the microwave (in a microwave safe container) until piping hot through.

Nutrition

Calories: 331kcalCarbohydrates: 20gProtein: 7gFat: 28gSaturated Fat: 24gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 59mgPotassium: 990mgFiber: 5gSugar: 9gVitamin A: 352IUVitamin C: 29mgCalcium: 70mgIron: 3mg
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