Let Her Cook: Pan-fried chicken in cashew sauce

Becca Parsons is a wife, mother of two, part-time homemaker, part-time wedding coordinator, and writer. She lives with her husband and daughters in Devon, England. Becca shared this recipe in one of the excellent weekly roundups she posts on her Substack, “A Mother’s Progress. I thought Align readers might enjoy it as much as I did.

— Helen Roy

Pan-fried chicken in a cashew nut sauce

Serves 4 comfortably


  • 500g skinless and boneless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces

Marinade for chicken:

  • 1 tbsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp ground turmeric


  • 4 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 large cinnamon stick or 2 small
  • 1 large white onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp ginger, finely chopped1
  • 400g passata or chopped tinned tomatoes
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon powder
  • 1 tsp hot red chili powder
  • 1 tsp white sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 100g ground cashew nuts
  • 100g frozen peas
  • 1 red or yellow bell pepper/capsicum, cut into 1cm squares
  • 200ml hot water
  • 2 tbsp fresh chopped coriander to garnish


  1. Combine your spices for the marinade in a glass bowl. Add the chicken and mix well so the chicken is evenly coated. Set aside at room temperature for an hour or in the fridge overnight.
  1. Heat 3 tablespoons of coconut oil in a pan on a medium heat and gently shallow fry the chicken until it is lightly brown; you’re just trying to seal it and give it some colour. Set aside.
  1. Add the remaining tablespoon of coconut oil and then add the cinnamon sticks and onion. Cook the onion down on a low heat for 5-10 minutes, until soft, then add the garlic and ginger. Cook for 3 minutes and then add the tomatoes. Stir well, and cook for around 10 minutes on a low heat to cook out the acidity and allow the water from the tomatoes to evaporate. Whilst the tomatoes are cooking, gather the paprika, cumin, turmeric, cinnamon powder, chili powder, sugar, and salt in a cup.
  1. Add the cup of spices and the ground cashew nuts. Stir well and keep cooking for about 5 minutes on a low heat to ensure that the spices don’t burn.
  1. Return the chicken to the pan and add the frozen peas and chopped pepper/capsicum. Stir in so they are well coated in the sauce.
  1. Add 200ml hot water (or your preference to achieve your desired thickness). Cook on a low heat for another 10-15 minutes to ensure the chicken is cooked through.
  1. Turn off the heat. Garnish with fresh coriander.
  1. Serve with rice or naan bread.

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