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Vegan Jamaican Curry

Vegan Jamaican Curry

When we thought we were running out of curry recipes we came across this beauty. We stepped outside Asia and went chasing curry recipes on the opposite side of the world. And now, I'm in love with this Jamaican curry recipe! 

I immediately think of Asia when I think of curry so when I first stumbled upon this version I was beyond excited. And I was really curious to find out what was in it. It looked and it smelled amazing, and I couldn't wait to stuff my face with it. 

This vegan curry is loaded with a bunch of colourful veggies. I am using broccoli, red bell pepper, tomato, and zucchini slices. These are some of the veggies I had at home and that I use on a regular basis. But you can mix it up if you feel like it. 

Vegan Jamaican Curry ingredients

Like any other curry recipe, what makes it so different from the others is the combination of spices and the amounts you use. I couldn't really figure out what was in my bowl so I had to do a bit of research. It was so delicious I couldn't just let it go. 

Curry made its way to Jamaica when the British invaded the island. They send over ships filled with Asian workers who brought with them all different sorts of curry dishes. They had to make it work with the ingredients they had access to so the end result was a beautiful combination of an Asian curry with Caribbean tones. 

For this reason, Jamaican curry is so unique, it's such a perfect combination.  We need bay leaves, scotch bonnet chilies, dried thyme, ginger, and garlic. And one, if not the most important ingredient here, Jamaican curry powder. 

I would never ever recommend switching the Jamaican curry powder for anything else. This is where most of the Caribbean or Jamaican tones will come from.  The powder is made with coriander seeds, cumin seeds, mustard seeds, anise seeds, fenugreek seeds, and allspice berries. All these different spices together are just pure magic. 

chopped zucchini

I usually heat up a pan to medium heat and let the seasoning roast for a few minutes.  I used to add them later in the process while everything was simmering. But I learned that by heating with a little roast, all the flavours and aromas become so potent. 

Once the spices are roasted, we will start adding all the different veggies and cook them almost like a stir fry. I like to leave the veggies slightly crunchy because remember they'll cook a bit more while they simmer in the curry. 

At this stage, I add 2 cups of cooked black beans. I love beans! It's a widely used legume in Caribbean cuisine. And, this is a really easy way to load this vegan curry with a good amount of protein.

Now that everything is in the pot, let it simmer for a good 5 minutes. We want the curry to thicken a little bit. Serve it alongside a portion of quinoa with lemon zest for an absolutely delicious meal 

Vegan Jamaican Curry top down

Prep time
10 minutes
Total time
Category: Lunch, Dinner
Serves: 4
Allergens: Coconut, Quinoa, Tomatoes


For the jamaican curry

  • 1 leaves bay leaf
  • 4 tsps dried thyme
  • 2 tsps extra virgin coconut oil
  • ¼ inch fresh ginger (minced)
  • 4 cloves garlic (thinly sliced)
  • 2 tsps jamaican curry powder
  • 1 medium onion (thinly sliced)
  • 1 scotch bonnet chili (thinly sliced)
  • 2 tsps sea salt

For the veggies

  • 1 bunch broccoli (florets)
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 2 cups cooked black beans
  • 1 medium red bell pepper (chopped)
  • 2 tbsps tomato paste
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 medium zucchini (sliced)

For the topping

  • ¼ cup coconut flakes (toasted) (optional)

For the lemon quinoa

  • 1 tbsp lemon zest
  • 1½ cups quinoa
  • 3 cups water


  1. Cook the quinoa in water until soft for about 15-20 minutes.
  2. Mix the cooked quinoa with the lemon zest.
  3. For the curry heat up the oil in a big frying pan and add chili, onion, ginger, curry powder, thyme and salt, stir fry for 5-8 minutes.
  4. Add the bell pepper and stir fry for 2-3 minutes.
  5. Add zucchini and broccoli florets, stir occasionally and fry for 2 more minutes.
  6. Add the tomato paste, coconut milk, water and black beans and simmer for 5 more minutes until the curry slightly thickens.
  7. Adjust taste and serve with some quinoa on the side, sprinkle with toasted coconut flakes if you like, enjoy!


Did you make this recipe? Please take a photo, share it on Instagram and tag it with #veganio. We love to see your photos.

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