Super Green Saag Chicken


Saag Chicken-3

Super Green Saag Chicken

One of my first real jobs was waitressing at an Indian restaurant. While I was pretty crap at waiting tables, I did develop a deep love for Indian food. One of my all time favourite curries was an intensely green spinach sauce called ‘saag’. It’s amazing with lamb but also great for giving chicken a meaty ‘iron’ rich boost.

Although spinach is traditional, I prefer it with the more intense flavour of kale. But any greens are good. It’s one of those dishes where the complex curry flavours satisfy the taste buds and the greens satisfy your body. So good!

enough for: 2
takes: 20 minutes

450g (1lb) chicken thighs or breasts, chopped
2 tablespoons curry powder
2 bunches spinach or kale, washed & sliced into ribbons
4-6 tablespoons cream
natural yoghurt & chilli oil (optional), to serve

1. Heat a little oil in a large pot. Brown chicken, on a medium high heat stirring every few minutes until just cooked through. Remove and place in a clean bowl.

2. Add a little more oil to the pan and toast curry powder on a medium high heat for about 20 seconds. Add the chopped spinach / kale and a splash of water. Cover and cook for 5-10 minutes until the greens are wilted down. Check and stir every few minutes and if drying out or starting to burn add more water.

3. Remove from heat and add cream. Roughly puree the greens with a stick blender or leave chunky. Taste and season with lots of salt and pepper. If you’d prefer a stronger curry flavour add more curry powder.

4. Return chicken to the pan and heat again until warmed through. Divide between two bowls and top each with a generous dollop of yoghurt and a drizzle of chilli oil (if using).


different greens – Use whatever greens you like such as collards, silverbeet (chard), rainbow chard, beet tops,

more substantial (carb lovers) – serve with steamed rice, warm naan bread, or steamed potatoes. Or knock yourself out and go with all three!

more substantial (low carb) – serve with cashews or caulflower rice.

dairy-free – use coconut cream and coconut yoghurt.

vegetarian – It’s brilliant with the Indian cheese paneer (just crumble through at the end). I’ve tried it with home made paneer and it was amazeballs, if a little time consuming. Or pan fry some halloumi or add feta, tofu, tempeh or cashews. I imagine saag chickpeas or lentils would be amazing. My Irishman loves it with a handful of roasted cashews on top.

no chilli oil – use dried chilli flakes or powder or chopped fresh chilli for some visual interest and extra heat.

mild / little person-friendly – use garam masala instead of curry and skip the chilli oil.

Waste Avoidance Strategy

chicken thighs or breasts – freeze them.

curry powder – keep it in the pantry.

spinach or kale โ€“ will keep in the fridge in a plastic bag uncooked for at least 2 weeks. Once cooked like this it will keep for a month or so in the fridge. Can be frozen both cooked or raw.

cream โ€“ freeze it or use for another meal.

yoghurt โ€“ usually has a shelf life of a month or so. Otherwise, have it for another meal like breakfast! Donโ€™t freeze.

Problem Solving Guide

bland – more curry powder and salt. a squeeze of lemon or lime can also bring it all to life.

chicken dry – it’s been overcooked. For now add more yoghurt. Next time use a lower temp.

no stick blender – you can either puree the sauce in a blender or food processor or just leave it chunky.

too watery – just simmer the sauce for a few minutes uncovered to thicken. Or add in a few handfuls almond meal or finely chopped cashews or bread crumbs.

Prepare Ahead

Cook curry as per the recipe but keep the yoghurt and chilli oil separately. Will keep in the fridge for up to a week or can be frozen (don’t freeze the yoghurt). To serve bring back to a gentle simmer then top with yoghurt + chilli oil (if using).

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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Anna Cronin September 14, 2019

Hi Jules
How would you modify this to use frozen spinach or kale instead of fresh greens?



jules September 16, 2019

Just use 2 packs (250g / 8oz) each frozen greens. Defrost them and squeeze dry before using as per the recipe. They won’t need as long to cook – more like 1-2 minutes

Enjoy Anna!

i love frozen greens ๐Ÿ™‚


Anna Cronin September 17, 2019

Thanks Jules! Really appreciate your help. I love frozen greens too. They were fantastic in the Tuscan Greens Soup ๐Ÿ™‚


Marie Darcy October 29, 2017

Hiya, do you mean the yellow curry powder like Keenโ€™s or an Indian style one? Thanks!


jules October 30, 2017

Hi Marie!
Either will work fine. I’m quite a fan of Keens to be honest.


Denise Pastor October 26, 2017

Hi how wouldyou cook with lamb?
Thanks Denise


jules October 27, 2017

You could use tender cuts of lamb like backstrap, fillet or even chops and use them the same as the chicken Denise.

OR slow cook some lamb shoulder or lamb shanks then add the cooked meat at the end. Soo good!


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