Creamy Coconut Turmeric Chicken for SIBO

This easy, one-skillet, SIBO-friendly dinner contains an abundance of fresh and dried turmeric, which I like to start using more frequently when the weather gets cooler.

Note: ever since I watched Samin Nosrat’s amazing 4 part series on Netflix, “Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat” (and subsequently ran right out to buy her cookbook), her very first chapter on salt has inspired me to incorporate salt more frequently during the cooking process. Just be sure you’re using Diamond brand Kosher Salt (the stuff in the red box) or your mileage may (significantly!) vary. 🙂

Ingredients (serves 2):

1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
2 TBL butter
1 medium fennel bulb, thinly sliced
2 TBL peeled and minced fresh turmeric root
2 TBL peeled and minced fresh ginger
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
Kosher salt (used at various steps)
4 large boneless, skinless chicken thighs, pounded flat (approx. 1/3 inch thickness)
1 medium eggplant, peeled and cubed
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/4 cup dry white vermouth
1 cup coconut milk
1 cup chicken broth
5-6 leaves of mustard greens, swiss chard, spinach or kale, chopped
Juice of 1/2 lime
Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish


  1. In a large skillet with a lid, toast the ground cumin and coriander, shaking the pan (and the spices) frequently to prevent burning, for about 1 minute.
  1. Add the butter, fennel, fresh turmeric, ginger, pepper, and a pinch of kosher salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the fennel slices are softened, about 10 minutes.
  1. Season the chicken lightly with kosher salt.
  1. Push the fennel to the outer edges of the pan and place the chicken, salt-side down, in a single layer in the middle of the pan. Sprinkle the dried turmeric over the chicken. Cook, undisturbed, until the chicken just begins to brown. Turn the chicken over and cook another 3 to 4 minutes (any longer and the turmeric will start to burn).
  1. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside. Add the cubed eggplant to the pan, sprinkle lightly with kosher salt, stir to combine with the fennel, and cook for 3-4 minutes.
  1. Sprinkle the vermouth over the eggplant and toss to combine, scraping up any browned bits with a wooden spoon.
  1. Pour in the coconut milk and broth, stirring gently to combine, and bring to a boil. Cook, uncovered, for 3-4 minutes, until the sauce begins to reduce and thicken a little bit.
  1. Return the chicken thighs to the pan, submerging them in the sauce, cover the pan, turn down to simmer, and cook for another 5-7 minutes.
  1. Stir in the leafy greens and lime juice, and cook for another 3-4 minutes, either uncovered if you’d like the sauce to reduce a bit more, or you can cover the pan if you’re happy with the sauce’s consistency and/or are using thicker leaves like kale that require a bit more steam to cook. Test the chicken to make sure it’s cooked through (at least 165°F on an instant-read thermometer).
  1. Serve, garnished with cilantro, and a spoon for slurping up the sauce. Since my hubby has been eating pretty strictly SIBO-friendly for about two years, and the night was cold with sideways rain blowing against our windows, we cheated and took a little bit of comfort in the form of jasmine rice. Please don’t follow our bad example if you are still in the early stages of healing. 😉 ❤

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