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Sri Lankan Green Bean Curry

Sri Lankan Green Bean Curry, Vegan, Vegetarian, Beans, Indian Flavors
Going Vegan or Vegetarian can be an adventure for your taste buds with dishes like this on your plate.

This green bean curry in coconut milk went down well with all members of the fam. It was spicy, the green beans were cooked just right - not crunchy but not soft - and curry was just the right thickness and not watery.

Now the original recipe called for curry leaf oil and I did not make or use it in this recipe. I definitely can't wait to try that version and make the updates. That being said, it was delicious nonetheless.

I wanted to have this curry as a soup so I added some crispy fried onion that was not in the original version and that turned out great. Adding the crispy fried onions transformed this "curry" into a soup very successfully. The downside was that it the dish was no longer gluten free because the onions were coated with flour. So make it your own of course.

Now, do not be surprised if after you cook

this, you feel like it's very similar to Thai curry. Or, if you happen to be from South India and you find it reminiscent of food you grew up eating because if you look at the map of Thailand, India and Sri Lanka on a map, it will be clear why. These

countries are in the same belt which supports similar weather and crops. That leads to food that feels reminiscent to each other.

I just absolutely love the simplicity of this dish. If you are so inspired, feel free to try it with mushrooms or tofu. I don't think it will disappoint :)


  • 1 onion thinly sliced

  • 1 teaspoon of fresh garlic

  • 1-2 chopped Thai Chili

  • 3-4 cms Cinnamon stick

  • Curry leaf strips; fresh or dried

  • 3 cups green beans, cut into 1 inch trips.

  • 1 cup chopped tomato

  • 1 teaspoon turmeric

  • 1 teaspoon cumin

  • 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder

  • 1/2 - 1 tsp salt

  • 1 28 oz can coconut milk or 1 cup coconut cream and 3/4 cup water

TEMPERING (optional but traditional)

  • Have about 1/2 teaspoon of chili powder ready and handy

  • In a small sauce pan (see example here, but just and FYI this is not a sponsored site) heat on high about 1 tablespoon of vegetable or canola oil.

  • Once the oil is hot, remove pan from heat and add the chilli powder. Immediately pour this oil and chilli mixture on the green bean curry. It will sizzle and give it some color.


  1. Add about a tablespoon of oil in a wok. Heat on high.

  2. Lower heat to medium - add the garlic and stir for 30 secs. Then add the onion, Thai chili, cinnamon stick and curry leaves. Reduce heat to low. Fry till onions turn reddish brown.

  3. Turn heat on high. Add chopped tomatoes, stir. Reduce heat to medium low. Cook and use spatula to break tomatoes. Continue to cook till tomatoes get mushy.

  4. Turn heat to high. Add the green beans and cook for 7-8 minutes.

  5. Add coconut milk, bring to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer.

  6. Cover; cook for 15 more minutes.

  7. Remove from heat and let sit for 15-30 minutes (or more) for flavors to set in before serving.

  8. Get your tempering oil ready, if you chose that option and add it to the dish while it is sitting.

  9. Serve with Basmati Rice or Cumin and Pea Rice.

Please email me at if anything is unclear or if you have any questions. If you try this recipe and it works for you or made modifications, please leave a comment to let the community know.


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