Sri Lankan runner bean curry

Sri Lankan runner bean curry

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(23 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 20 mins


Serves 4

This vegan spice pot is cooled down with coconut milk- ginger, cinnamon, cloves, mustard seeds and garam masala are all key flavours

Nutrition and extra info

  • Vegetarian
  • Vegan

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal267
  • fat25g
  • saturates16g
  • carbs9g
  • sugars4g
  • fibre4g
  • protein4g
  • salt0.2g


  • 1 small onion, roughly chopped



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • ¼ tsp turmeric



    Turmeric is a fragrant, bright golden-yellow root that is most commonly seen and used dried and…

  • large piece ginger, peeled and roughly chopped



    Mainly grown in Jamaica, Africa, India, China and Australia, ginger is the root of the plant. It…

  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tsp black mustard seed
  • 5 fresh curry leaves
  • 1 tbsp mild curry powder
  • 400g can coconut milk
    Coconut milk in a glass, with half a coconut

    Coconut milk

    ko-ko-nut mill-k

    Coconut milk is not the slightly opaque liquid that flows from a freshly opened coconut –…

  • 4 cloves



    A clove is the dry, unopened flower bud of the tropical myrtle tree family used to flavour a…

  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 whole dried red chilli
  • 300g runner bean, stringed and sliced
    Runner bean

    Runner bean

    Run-ner beens

    Runner beans have been growing in South America for over 2000 years, and are a popular garden…

  • juice 1 lime



    The same shape, but smaller than…

  • 1 tsp garam masala
    Garam masala

    Garam masala

    gar-am mah-sarl-ah

    Meaning 'warming spice mix', garam masala is the main spice blend used in North Indian…

  • handful fresh coriander
  • rice and rotis, to serve (optional)


  1. In a blender, combine the onion, turmeric, ginger, garlic and 1 tbsp of the oil together with a large pinch of salt. Heat the remaining oil in a shallow pan. Add the mustard seeds and curry leaves, and cook until they crackle, then add the onion paste and cook until sticky.

  2. Stir through the curry powder, then pour in the coconut milk. Add the cloves, cinnamon and the chilli, and bring to a simmer. Tip in the beans and simmer for 15 mins or until the beans are tender. Squeeze in the lime juice, add the garam masala, take the pan off the heat and stir through the coriander. Serve with rice and rotis, if you like.

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Comments, questions and tips

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Charlotte Downham's picture
Charlotte Downham
31st Mar, 2020
An easy, enjoyable and affordable dish (£0.75 per serving, based on a Lidl shop) especially good if you have greens to use up. I served this with naan, raita and basmati rice. I didn't have lime or coriander so I added some toasted almond flakes on top to add more flavour. I'd say this recipe makes 3 x portions rather than 4.
Gill Duffy's picture
Gill Duffy
10th Aug, 2019
I used medium curry powder, left out cloves. Also used a mixed of runner beans, french beans and broad beans plus courgettes and red pepper. It was a hit with my family.
Jerry the Robot's picture
Jerry the Robot
13th Mar, 2019
It tastes nearly as good as Roblox
23rd Aug, 2017
I simmered for at least double he amount of time stated, to ensure the beans were soft as when 'taste testing' they didn't taste right crunchy. I would recommend prepping and putting your beans on to boil seperately before the rest of the recipe and then adding when softened to save from having to add water to sauce due to extended simmering time for hard crunchy beans to soften. (I slice the beans short and small too and felt this worked well as I added more beans, due to a 'glut')
23rd Aug, 2017
This was delicious, very flavoursome. I made a few adaptions- I missed out the cloves and lime as I didn't have them and replaced the garam massala with some rogan josh powder I had. I also added one large medium heat fresh chilli. I cut my runner bean small. It took over double the time to get the beans nice a soft rather than crunchy, so I had about 250ml of water. The sauce was delcious, and even my daughter who doesn't green beans, curry or my cookng in general said 'if I was dying and had to eat it, I wouldn't mind' which is good for her! I served it with rice and stir fried chicken for the meat eaters.
11th Aug, 2016
The photo doesn't seem to match the recipe... It looks more like potato and parsnip...?
13th Jan, 2015
This was delicious! No idea why people are saying it wasn't spicy or flavourful - it's great!
8th Sep, 2013
Needs a lot more spice, but actually surprisingly nice once it's been jazzed up a bit. Good for using up a glut, but probably not worth buying runner beans for.
4th Sep, 2013
Just don't bother with this, it is quite a disappointing dish unless you have a bumper crop of beans and you are quite fed up with them already. Don't buy beans to waste on this spice blend.
4th Sep, 2013
In this recipe, there is a key ingredient called '' Garam Masala''. But, i would like to say Garam Masala is not coming under Sri Lankan spices. It's belongs to Indian spices. so this recipe should named as NOT Sri Lankan runner bean curry just; '' Runner Bean Curry ''.


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