Go Back

Spicy Coconut Fish Curry – Instant Pot Fish

This delicious, easy, tender, Spicy Coconut Fish Curry – Instant Pot Fish infused with coconut takes under 15 minutes and a handful of ingredients. Pair with rice and vegetables for a healthy weeknight dinner.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Course Main Course
Servings 3


  • Instant Pot


  • 1 pound tilapia fillet (or any firm white fish)
  • 1 tsp  ground turmeric   (divided)
  • 1 tsp salt (divided)
  • 3 tbsp oil of choice
  • 1 onion, small (1 cup chopped)
  • 2 serrano pepper, small  (hari mirch) (slit by still intact)
  • 10 curry leaves (kadi patta)
  • 1 tbsp red chili powder     (cayenne pepper) (reduce if you can't handle heat)
  • 2 tbsp  ground coriander    (dhaniya powder)
  • 1 cup water
  • 3/4 cup coconut milk (canned, I used AROY-D)
  • 1/2 tsp tamarind concentrate



  • First, chop the fish fillet into 4″ x 3″ in length and width. Second, drizzle ½ tsp ground turmeric and 1/2 tsp salt. Further, mix gently and let the salt and turmeric sit on the fish sit for 5 to 10 mins.
  • Finely chop the onions. Slit the serrano peppers but they need to be intact.


  • Select sauté on the  instant pot and adjust to normal. Secondly, add oil to the pot. 
  • When the oil is hot add in chopped onions, serrano peppers and curry leaves. Let the onions turn golden, it should take about 3 minutes. Keep stirring.
  • Once the onions are golden, add in red chili powder, ground coriander, 1/2 tsp ground turmeric and ½ tsp salt. Give it a good stir and let it sauté for a minute.
  • Next, add in 1 cup water. Give it a good stir. Further, gently add the fish and make sure the fish is soaked in the liquid. Furthermore, press cancel.
  • Close the lid and select manual/high pressure for 3 minutes. When done quick release the pressure and open the lid right away.
  • Select sauté and add in the coconut milk and tamarind concentrate.
  • Let the curry come to a boil and sauté for a minute or two or until desired consistency is reached. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve over steamed rice.


On a scale of 1 to 5, I would place this dish at 4 in terms of spice levels. Feel free to reduce the red chili powder if you can handle heat.
I recommend using white firm fish. It typically doesn't break when cooked.
Keyword Instant Pot Coconut Fish Curry, Instant Pot Fish, Instant Pot Indian Fish Curry, Instant Pot Mangalorean Fish, Instant Pot Spicy Fish Curry, Instant Pot Tamarind Fish, Mangalorean Fish, Mangalorean Fish Curry