Slow-cooked spicy beef curry in a dish on a dark background

Healthier Slow Cooked Spicy Beef Curry

So tasty, this lighter slow-cooked spicy beef curry is amazing. Less than 500 calories including rice it's Slimming friendly too!
Course Dinner
Cuisine British, Indian
Keyword slimming eats, slimming world, syn free
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 4 hours 45 minutes
Total Time 5 hours
Servings 6 people
Author Nicky Corbishley


Beef and marinade:

  • 150 ml fat-free Greek yogurt
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 kg lean braising/casserole steak (cut into small chunks)
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp turmeric


  • 10 Sprays Frylight spray
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 tbsp ground coriander
  • 1.5 tbsp ground cumin
  • 6 cardamom pods (sew them onto a piece of thread to keep them together - makes it easier to fish them out later)
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 dried whole chillies
  • 1 fresh red or green chilli (finely chopped)
  • 3 garlic cloves (peeled and minced)
  • 1 thumb-sized piece of ginger (peeled and minced)
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 500 ml beef stock (water plus 2 stock cubes or 2 tsp bouillon for gluten free is fine)
  • 400 g tinned chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

Serve With

  • Boiled basmati rice (235g cooked/75g dry rice per person)
  • 1 small bunch Fresh coriander roughly chopped
  • 1/4 red onion peeled and finely diced


  • Place the beef and marinade ingredients into a medium sized bowl and mix together until everything is combined. I like to use my hands to massage the yogurt into the beef. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge to marinade for 1-2 hours (or overnight).
  • Place a large frying pan (or the inside of your slow-cooker if it can be used on the hob) over a high heat and spray with the frylight. Add in the beef and cook for 5-6 minutes until sealed. You'll probably notice watery liquid coming off the beef and marinade as you cook. Drain off most of it (otherwise you'll just be boiling the beef). It's fine to leave a little in there though.
  • Once the beef is sealed, add in the onion and turn the heat down to medium. Stir and cook for 4-5 minutes until the onion starts to soften.
  • Add in the coriander, cumin, cardamom, turmeric, garam masala, black pepper, whole and chopped chillies, garlic and ginger. Cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring a few times until the spices start to release their aroma.
  • Stir in the tomato paste, stock, chopped tomatoes and lemon juice. Bring to a simmer, then transfer to your slow cooked and cook on high for 3-4 hours or low for 5-6 hours.
  • Once cooked, test and add salt and pepper if required. Serve over rice with some freshly chopped coriander.


Make some healthy cucumber mint raita:

Grate 1/4 of a cucumber, squeeze out the excess juice and add to 3 tbsp fat-free Greek yogurt, a good pinch of salt and a small handful of chopped mint leaves. Stir and serve.

And how about some chopped tomato and onion salad:

Chop 10 cherry tomatoes into eighths. Chop 1/4 small white onion finely. Mix together with a small handful of chopped, fresh coriander (cilantro).

Can I make this curry ahead?

Yes! you can make this curry, then cool, cover and refrigerate for up to two days. Reheat in a pan until piping hot throughout.

Can I freeze this beef curry?

Yes, any leftovers of this curry can be cooled, covered and frozen. Then defrost overnight in the refrigerator and reheated in a pan (stirring often) or microwave until piping hot throughout.

What cut of meat is best for beef curry?

  • Chuck steak (braising steak) – comes from the forequarter- Consisting of parts of the neck, shoulder blade, and upper arm.
    • It’s a tough but very flavorful cut of meat. It has a lot of connective tissue, which needs long slow cooking to break down and become tender. Cut into bite-size chunks for this curry.
  • Silverside (bottom round) – comes from the hindquarter – just above the back leg
    • It’s a leaner, inexpensive cut of meat with little marbling. The lack of fat means it doesn’t have as much flavour as chuck steak, but you shouldn't notice that due to the amount of flavour in the curry sauce and the fact the the beef is marinated before cooking. This cut is good for slow cooking, but must be cooked with plenty of moisture/liquid so doesn’t dry out and become tough.

Can I make this curry gluten free?

Yes! Make sure you use gluten free stock cubes (I like Kallo Gluten free beef stock cubes) and gluten free tomato paste.
Nutritional info is approximate, based on 6 servings of the curry only - without rice (add 274 cals per serving for rice - based on 75g dry/235g cooked rice per person).

Nutritional Information

Calories: 224kcal | Carbohydrates: 18.5g | Protein: 29.7g | Fat: 3.7g | Saturated Fat: 1.2g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 427mg | Potassium: 234mg | Fiber: 2.2g | Sugar: 6.9g | Vitamin A: 300IU | Vitamin C: 20.6mg | Calcium: 170mg | Iron: 2.5mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @KitchenSanctuary or tag #kitchensanctuary on Instagram!