A slow-cooker coconut beef curry: maximum flavour with minimum fuss

What’s for Dinner?: This family-friendly curry will save you time and money

Caitríona Redmond is a food writer and blogger sharing family recipes on a budget on her website wholesomeireland.com

The last thing I want to do is to spend a busy day working in the kitchen to cook up something healthy and tasty for the kids. That’s why I make the most of my slow cooker at least twice a week.

A slow cooker is such a handy gadget to have in your kitchen, and they use up the same energy as a light bulb. It’s the ultimate money-saving, time-saving way to make a dinner that the whole family will love. Double up the quantities to make enough curry to store in the freezer for a stress-free dinner on another day. This dish will keep in the freezer for up to three months.

It’s also worth noting I designed this recipe with minimal salt as I cook this for children and family of all ages. If you find it a little bland you could add a crumbled stock cube to the mixture at the start or stir in two tablespoons of fish sauce before serving.


To make without a slow cooker I recommend using a heavy casserole dish with a lid and either baking in a low oven at approximately 130 degrees/low end of an aga stove. Alternatively, you can cook on a very low heat on the back of your stove but do monitor to make sure it doesn’t boil.

What you’ll need

Serves six
2 tbsp tomato purée
1 butternut squash, peeled and chopped into bite-sized chunks
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
3 large carrots, peeled and chopped
3 cloves of garlic, crushed/minced
1 large piece of ginger, peeled and chopped
2 tbsp mild curry powder
350g stewing beef, cut into chunks
1 tin coconut milk
100g frozen peas

How to cook it

1 Put the tomato purée, butternut squash, onion, carrots, garlic, ginger, curry powder, and beef into the slow cooker.

2 Stir well so that the curry powder and aromatic ingredients (onion, garlic, and ginger) are mixed throughout the dish. Add about two tablespoons of water at this stage, but not too much. It may seem very dry but it will cook fine.

3 Put the lid on the slow cooker and turn to high for four hours. After four hours, open the slow cooker and pour in the coconut milk and frozen peas. Stir well, then cover again for a further 30 minutes.

4 Serve with basmati rice or naan bread.