Kerala Style Fish Curry Recipe: Learn How To Cook One Of The World's Most Popular Curries

Rahi Rajkumar

November 18, 2022

Fish curry is one of the most mouth-watering dishes in Kerala. The spice combination used in this dish is just divine and the smell that fills your kitchen will make you crave for it.

The traditional Kerala fish curries are made with the use of different flavours, additives and pure  coconut oil. They vary in terms of consistency and taste. The most famous ones are Pepper Fish Curry and Fish Korma, which can be found in a majority of gourmet restaurants and street food stalls in Kerala.

Whether you’re a fish lover or not, you have to admit that fish curries are undoubtedly some of the most popular and well-loved Indian dishes. In fact, there are so many variations of fish curries from different regions and cultures throughout India that it’s almost impossible to keep track of them all. Moreover, each state has its own way of making it. 

Kerala Style Fish Curry Recipe step by step

The traditional Kerala fish curries have evolved over time, responding to different eating habits across the world. You can find new variants that have been a result of intermingling cultures during trade visits with other countries, like the Japanese-style curry which is prepared with ginger and sesame seeds for an Eastern twist or the Mangalorean style curry that uses dried red chillies for a spicy kick instead of black pepper. These new entrants will undoubtedly be more popular than ever before because they provide an exciting culinary experience for people who travel to this part of India from all over the world.

There are basically two broad schools of thought when it comes to making this curry: the coastal style and the Malayali style. Today we will tell you how to make a perfect Kerala Fish Curry in your home kitchen.

It's simple to make this dish if you have all the ingredients with you at home, but making sure that all flavours are evenly distributed will be a daunting task if you don't follow these steps carefully.

This is a traditional Kerala style fish curry recipe. It is a spicy dish that can be served with rice or roti.

Total Cook Time

30 mins

Prep Time

15 mins

Cook Time

15 mins

Recipe Servings


Difficulty Level


Diet Type


What You'll Need

Fish (Spanish Mackerel/Neymeen) - 1kg

Raw Mango - 2 

Coconut Oil - 4 tbsp

Onions - 1 

Tomato - 1

Capsicum - 1

Garlic - 1 bunch

Ginger - 1 piece (big)

Fenugreek - 2-3 piece

Green Chilly - 5

Kashmiri Chilli Powder - 4 tbsp

Coriander Powder - 1 ½ tbsp

Turmeric Powder - ¼ tbsp

Salt - to taste

Coconut - 1

Coriander Leaves - as needed

Curry Leaves - as needed

The Cooking Process

  1. Chop up the onion, tomato, capsicum, garlic and ginger. 
  2. Extract coconut milk from the grinded coconut. 
  3. Heat the claypot in medium heat.
  4. Heat the coconut oil and add in some fenugreek.
  5. Add all the chopped ingredients to the pot.
  6. Saute till the onion is light brown in colour.
  7. Add in the chilli powder, coriander powder, turmeric powder and salt and saute it further.
  8. Add in the coconut milk and then the chopped raw mangoes.
  9. Add in the fish pieces and let the curry come to a boil.
  10.  Once the mix has come to a boil, add in a bit more coconut milk.
  11. Shake the claypot well so as to not break the fish pieces. 
  12. Turn off the heat and add in curry leaves and coriander leaves.

Tips & Tricks

  1. Use fresh fish. The fresher, the better!
  2. Next, you need to wash it properly. Make sure that all of the dirt and scales are removed before cooking.
  3. After washing, cut the fish into small pieces so that it will cook faster and give you more flavour in your dish along with less oil!
  4. After cutting up the fish, place them in a bowl and add salt and turmeric powder(optional). Cover with plastic wrap and let it sit for 30 minutes so that they can soak up all of the water from inside of the fish while they marinate in spices! This will help prevent overcooking when cooking on stovetop or pan fryer later on!
  5. Use coconut milk instead of water. It adds a lot more flavour and gives your curry a creamy texture.
  6. Add spices in small amounts at first, then add more as you cook. This helps prevent burning, which can lead to unevenness in the taste of your curry.


Q. What is the Perfecting Technique To Make A Good Kerala Fish Curry?

A. The first step to cooking a delicious fish curry is to get the right ingredients. Fish is a very popular ingredient in Indian cuisine and there are many varieties of fish available depending on what type of fish you want to use. You can use any type of fish that you like, but it's best if you can get some fresh fish because it will taste better than frozen or canned options. You should always clean your fish before cooking it so that there are no bacteria. It's also important not to overcook the fish because then it will be rubbery and tough.

We hope that you enjoyed reading our Kerala Style Fish Curry Recipe article and found the information useful. We always welcome your comments and feedback, especially if you have any additional insights about Kerala Style Fish Curry Recipe, or would like to share your own recipes for cooking Kerala Style Fish Curry.


Enjoy eating!
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About The Chef

Rahi Rajkumar