Has it ever happened to you, that you frequently cook a dish you like so much, until somebody forcefully asks you to stop making it? It happens with me at times. If I like something, I keep on making it until I reach my diminishing margin of utility (the only thing I remember after studying economics for 3-4 years :) ) or until my husband refuses to eat it again ;)

Lemon Drizzle Cake & Lemon Bars are two main items that belong to this category and after trying this dish I fear this will also have the same effect. Again this recipe is from my mom in law :)

Chicken Mappas is a typical kerala dish, with thick and creamy coconut milk. One of the other main ingredients is coriander powder and what makes it distinct from the usual chicken curry is the fact that there is no chili powder in this. It tastes great with appam. I strongly recommend this curry if you like coconut milk based curries.

Here is the recipe…

Chicken mappas
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Chicken Mappas

A traditional Kerala style Chicken curry cooked with coconut milk and spices. Pairs well with Appam, Idiyappam.
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Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Indian, Kerala, South Indian
Servings: 4 -5
Author: Maria Jose Martin


  • 1/2 kg Chicken (cut into medium size pieces)
  • 3 medium Onion (sliced very thinly)
  • 1 – 1.5 tbsp each chopped Ginger & garlic
  • 3-4 Green chili
  • 1/2 – 1 tbsp Coriander powder
  • 1/2 – 1 tsp Garam masala
  • 1 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 1/2 – 1 tsp Chicken masala (optional)
  • 1 medium Tomato
  • 1.5 – 2 cups Medium thick coconut milk
  • 1.25 cups Thick coconut milk
  • 1 tsp Mustard seeds
  • 4 Small / Pearl onion
  • Salt
  • Curry leaves
  • Coconut oil


  • Marinate the chicken pieces with half the qty of onion, ginger & garlic (half the qty), green chili (1/2 of the total qty used), coriander powder (1/2 of the total qty used), garam masala (half of the total qty), turmeric powder, chicken masala, curry leaves & salt. Keep it aside for 10 minutes. Cook the marinated chicken in medium thick coconut milk, till the chicken becomes tender.
  • Heat oil in a pan & splutter mustard seeds. Add small onion, remaining portions of the sliced big onion, ginger & garlic, green chili and curry leaves. Saute it till the onion becomes soft. Add remaining coriander powder & garam masala. Fry it till the oil starts appearing. Add the sliced tomatoes. When tomato becomes soft add cooked chicken along with the gravy. Combine well. Add thick coconut milk and cook for 5-7 minutes.
  • Serve with Palappam, Kallappam or Idiyappam.
Tried this recipe? Let others know by…mentioning @mariasmenu or tagging #mariasmenu
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82 thoughts on “Chicken Mappas”

  1. Hi Maria,
    Your recipes are ………or ……. i dnt have words to say.you have become a real part of our family.you have helped me a lot in my cooking.As u know, a girl getting married at 18,will hav lot of difficulties especially cooking and being a NRI(noone at home to guide or help) I struggled a lot in cooking(still struggling…hhah)lol.Thanks once again…

    • Hi Minu,

      Thanks a ton for your lovely comment :) Really touched to know that MM has become a part of your family.

      Hope you get to try more recipes from here and like them too.

      Happy cooking and all the best!!


  2. Hi Maria,

    I love following ur recipes, thank you so much, its always been a success!!

    I live here in Australia and its kinda hard to extract coconut milk from coconuts as we get it frozen here. However, i have seen rich coconut milk being sold in tins. Do u have any idea if using these will get the same output or will the taste differ?? Lookin forward to ur reply..

    God bless u Maria.. :)

  3. Hi Maria,
    I keep trying your recipes and as always the chicken mappas turned out awesome. You are a savior for new cooks like me :) Thanks a lot for your awesome work.

  4. Maria,
    I made this for Easter brunch. Thank you so much for this recipe. My husband who is not a big fan of my cooking gave me an 8/10 for this curry. My 6 year old daughter who does not like our “nadan” food. (she’s an ABCD :- ) loved it also. Happy Easter.

    • Hi Merlyn,

      Thank you so much for sharing your feedback here. It’s a pleasure to know that your family enjoyed this dish :)


  5. Hi Maria….I tried ur recipe and it was so yummy. My hubby n my little one jst luvd it. Thank u so much……

  6. Hello Maria, I am so excited to find your site.  I was wondering if you could let me know what Mappas verses Madras recipes are?  I am from the states, and have only heard of Madras, but I love the coconut chicken recipe, which sounds like Mappas.  Thank you!  Ann

    • Hi Ann,

      Thanks for dropping by! I’m not sure what Madras recipes are, hhmm :( Is it any particular brand curry paste/powder?

      Mappas is something similar to stew, which is a typical Kerala preparation. It’s mildly spicy with a thick and creamy coconut milk gravy. Hope this helps..


  7. hey,thanx for this recipe..it turned out really well..actually i discovered i ran out of ginger at the last moment and so omitted it..but it still turned out delicious!

  8. Hi Dhanya,

    By 4 small onions, I was referring to shallots/peral onions. Sorry if I’ve confused you. This recipe requires the mentioned qty of onion to get the right consistency. However you can adjust the qty to suit your requirements.


  9. I wanted to make this dish, but had a question.  Does this recipe really use 3 medium onions and 4 small onions.  My kids are not fans of onions so is it necessary to use this many onions? 

  10. Hi Maria,

    I can never make tender juicy chicken curries. I am not sure of what heat to cook it in or for how long. How long should I cook it for? I know people say that you should cook it till its tender…but how long is that?

    • Hi Glory,

      The cooking time of chicken varies on the type of chicken you buy. However I usually cook chicken on low flame. It will take around 15-20 mins for the chicken to cook. Please keep in mind that the time can vary… Hope this helps…


  11.  Hi, Maira i made this curry. it came out well. everyone liked the curry , I have a doubt. Can i make this curry with mutton? Please answer me soon as i am planning to prepare this for this thursday dinner

    • Hi Simran,

      Thank you :) Yes, you can make it with mutton too, but you may need to pressure cook the mutton. Otherwise, you can use the same recipe. Hope you’ll like it with mutton too..


  12. hi maria…
    i’m a recent visitor of this wonderful place and i intended to write a comment, but lack of time played havoc, but 2day i thot,dis is it, i shud appreciate the wonderful nd the most amazing person behind this and thot 2day being the Women’s Day, der is no other appropriate day 4 it, nd voila, here i’m…..so let me start with wishing yu a Happy Women;s day and the second thing is all your recipes are A-MAZ-ING!!!! All mouthwatering dishes, seeing it, itself makes me feel to jump into the monitor nd hog the entire dish..
    i Juz love the way you have presented all the recipes..Everytym i read yur blog i feel so refreshing and so energtic…You are amazing…
    i love cooking, but i’ve never been into cooking much since i was busy in my studies nd al…but during my holidays i experiment my own recipes(some dishes has worked and some has not..wateve i never gave up or will never give up)..
    but now i thnk itz tym to brush up my culinary skills, since i’m gtng married this year( a journey of love of 7 yrs has come to the finale of our celebration of Love & togetherness “The institution of Marriage “ ) nd my fiance loves food especially “nadan food” . Thou he dosent eat too much(fitness freak…well i’m way too opposite of him :P ) he wants it too be very tasty…nd you hav cme to my life as a saviour and i cant wait to cook all your yummy dishes for him.. :)
    Thank you so much and hats off to you….You are one of the most amazing person i’ve come across…and i’ve read the me- me tag…dat was really an impressive one…nd even i hate the concept of full tym job hehe…but poor me, my fiancee wants me to work :( :( hehee…
    anywayz….it is my pleasure to know a person lyk yu and be a fan of this blog :)
    Pretty Lengthy..huh !!
    God Bless :)

    • Dear Tanuja,

      Thank you so much for this wonderful comment. Appreciate it very much :) Thanks for the wishes. Wish you too a happy women’s day, belated!

      I’m so happy to know that you find this place helpful. But before that all the very best for your married life. may God Bless you both abundantly!

      Its nice to know that you like cooking and you continue to do in spite of the failures, I also do the same, that’s the spirit right :)?

      I’m sure your fiancee is a lucky person to have you in his life.

      Thanks a lot again dear for taking time to write to me, it means a lot.

      Wish you the very best in life!

      Take care…


  13. Hi Maria
    I am new to ur blog. Must say that it’s awesome! I like ur all recipes..it’s very easy and simple…thanks for adding diz recipes…diz chicken mappas become awesme……i luv it yummy!!!!!!

    • Hi Teena,

      Welcome to MariasMenu dear! Thank you so much for your sweet comment :)

      Hope to see you here often…

      Happy cooking :)


  14. Hi Maria,

    Chicken Mappas came out soo delicious…..you are a life saver to all the newly wed girls who dont know how to cook…..i did not even know the a,b,c of cooking but all ur recipies are just so simple and easy to make and off course no to forget the authentic taste in every dish…..hats of to you Maria!!! every day i try out dishes form your site and My Husband is super Happy :-) a lot of my friends and family take recipies form your site…..Simply awesome!!!

    • Hi Deepthi

      Thank you so much for the lovely comment :) I’m so happy to know that you & your friends find this space helpful & try the recipes daily. Thanks again for such encouraging feedback :)

      Please continue to try the recipes and share your feedback. Also please convey my special thanks to your friends & family too for trying the recipes posted here.

      Happy cooking :)


  15. Hey Maria
    i made this curry !!!
    its so tastely.. ate it with chappathi…
    and i think u hav a huge collection of dishes ..
    I wil try my best 2 try them all..

    • Hi Athira,

      Thanks for the comment. I’m so glad that it came out well for you :) Hope you’ll like other recipes too. Please do share your feedback here.

      Happy cooking :)


  16. Hello dear…one of my friend made this dish for a small get together and …….the verdict………….we all loved itttttt!everyone kept asking for more n more.Thanks for sharing the recipe.Btw i have also send you a pic to your jpmartin id.:-)

    • Emi dear,

      thanks a lot for the comment :) I saw your mail, will reply soon. Btw, please convey my special thanks to your friend for selecting this recipe for the party. I’ll update the pic soon and let you know.


  17. Hi Maria,

    you are a lifesaver.. :)

    The only thing i dreaded after my wedding was the cooking part.. Not that i hated cookin just that i havent cooked much before..And it was then that i stumbled on your site… Its simply great.. Have already tried a couple of your dishes and i should say my husband
    is pretty impressed with my cooking skills.. thanks to you.. :) and the chicken mappas was a hit with our first guests too.. just had to blindly follow your recipe..

    thanks a ton maria… keep posting..
    all the best for your book.. will surely get a copy…

    • Dear Soumya,

      Your experience sounds just like mine. I was also like you after wedding, I was clueless about cooking :)

      I’m so happy that you find this space useful, thanks for the lovely comment & best wishes.

      I guess you are recently married…Wish you both a wonderful & blessed married life!

      God Bless!


  18. Hi Maria,
    I tried this chicken mappas recipe and it turned out really good. Loved it with chappathi and appam..I’ve put a picture in my blog..

  19. Hi Maria,
    I am new to your website (my mother recommended it very highly). Anyway, I tried the Chicken Mappas with appam. It was simply delicious. My husband and I loved it. Better still, my usually fussy two-year-old had two appams (surprise surprise) with your chicken mappas.
    Now i’m going to try something else.
    Thank you so much:)

    • Hi Roopa,

      Thanks for trying the mappas. It’s nice to know that your family also enjoyed it. Please convey my special thanks to your mother for the recommendation :)

      Hope you’ll like other recipes also..

      Happy cooking :)


  20. Hi Maria

    Thanks for your feedback!

    I am trying your dishes on a daily basis now. Yesterday I made the chicken curry and the nutty chicken strips. Just changed the name to Naughty Chicken for getting my 5 year old to try it! Th next on my to-do list is Chicken biriyani (which has never turned out well for me) and also Grape Wine.

    I loved cooking, but being a working mother and with two small kids, my interest had taken a backseat. Thanks for rekindling the interest in me.

    Keep up the good work!


    • Hi Prima,

      I’m so excited to hear that you’re trying so many recipes from here, thank you so much dear :)

      I liked the name Naughty chicken strips ;)

      Hope you’ll like the biriyani and wine also…

      All the best and happy cooking :)


  21. Hi Maria

    I am new to ur blog. Must say that it’s awesome!

    Tried the chicken mappas. Turned out tasty, but the gravy curled a bit. Dunno where I went wrong. Anyways that’s not going to stop me!
    Keep up the good work.

    • Hi Prima,

      Welcome to Mariasmenu!

      Thanks for trying this recipe. About the gravy, these can be the reasons…

      Once I added a bit of coconut oil during the first stage of cooking this curry, that time the gravy curdled.

      Also while cooking, because of the fat coming out of the chicken the curry may look curdled but actually it’s just the fat combined with the gravy gives that look, it happens to me all the time.

      Anyways, please do try other recipes also from here when time permits, hope you’ll like it.

      Best wishes!

  22. hey maria i was searching for a new one…tired makin d same old chicken curry …
    anyways gonna try it out tmrw..luks gud
    thanks dear!!!

  23. Hi Maria, just tried chicken mappas n it

    turned out very well :) my family loved it :)

    Thanks a lot for the lovely receipes :)


    • Hi Nima,

      You are welcome dear & thank you so much for trying this recipe & also for the comment :)

      I’m so glad that your family enjoyed this dish.



  25. Hi Maria,

    It’s time for me to de-lurk & give credit where it’s due. I tried this recipe for Easter this year & it was such a hit!!! My guests were bowled over…as for me I was on cloud nine. Thanks & keep those recipes coming.


    • Hi Mini,

      Thanks a ton for trying the recipe and also for taking time to leave a comment here. Appreciate it a lot. :) Btw, its my MIL’s recipe, will pass on the compliments to her.


  26. tried this out..came out well…infact i made with 2.5 kg chicken…didnt put the exact proporationate amount since qty was more..but it came out well…had it with neer dosa..
    ur blog is really good..keep posting more and more…

  27. Hi Maria, The Chicken Mappas tasted really good. And indeed a very nice side dish for Appam. Thank you for posting! You got some great recipes here. Am just starting to explore :). Will keep you posted.

    • Hi Nimmi,

      Welcome to my blog :) . Happy to know that mappas came out well for you. Its one of the hit recipes of my MIL :)

      Hope you will try out other recipes also…


  28. Hai,Maria i tried out your recipe of chicken mappas,it was superb every body in my family liked it…i wish to learn more recipes of chicken sides.

    • Hi Swetha

      Thanks a lot for trying out the recipe. Very happy to know that your family liked the dish.

      Please check out the chicken recipe category for more chicken recipes and I hope to update it with new recipes soon :)


  29. Hey Maria tried ur mappas and masala chicken in quick succession and they were both superb.In fact mappas went well with appam my wife made for my b’day today.How are ur hols coming along?Heard it was raining in kochi?Cheers

    • Thanks shibu :)

      Belated b’day wishes to you, hope you had a great day.

      Hols are going good…it was raining here a few days ago.


    • Hi Fr.Joy

      Thanks a lot for trying out the recipe. Am very glad to know that it came out well for you.

      Hope you had a good learning experience :)


  30. I love to cook an bake ..one of my passions…I tried the recipe…turned out wonderful….i kind of made the gravy semi dry……this was my first kerala inspired dish….will soon be trying some more from your blog…


    • Hi Al

      Thanks for trying this recipe and am excited to hear that this was your first Kerala dish :). Hope you will try more Kerala recipes…

      Happy cooking & baking :)


  31. Hi Maria,

    I tried ur chicken mappas also.Its a very tasty preparation.I m a working women.i like cooking very much.Every saturday and sunday im doing all experiments in cooking…
    I like ur website….very good best wishes

  32. Hi Maria:
    I made chicken mappas yesterday… it came out well, everyone at home loved it..
    I feel this would taste better reducing some of the garlic. The garlic, I felt, didn’t really go with the coconut milk base of the curry..
    Thanks for the recipe.. Cheers.

    • Hi Bindu

      Thanks for your feedback. Happy to hear that your family liked it. Please do try other recipes also.


  33. Hi Soumya

    Thanks for trying it out dear, am very happy that it came out well for you. I will try to post a fruit cake recipe also :)

    Hi Suja

    Thanks for dropping in and for writing to me. Please do try out the recipes also when you’ve time.

  34. Hi Maria,
    super super recipe. great curry with appam, chappatti & parotttaaaaaaa. thanks maria . please post recipe of nadan fruit cake.

  35. Hi Elizabeth,

    Thanks for dropping in. I’ve a similar recipe (sadya style chicken roast) in my drafts, will post it soon. Hope it’s same as the one you are expecting.


  36. Hi Maria,
    We tried the mappas recipe ….the taste of the curry took me back to the memories of good olden days where amma used to make the same curry….every body at home liked the dish…and we are going to make it again ….good job…keep it up…Martin @ Bindu

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