Chicken Tikka Masala

*Photos and Content Updated July 2012*

Inspiration: I’ve been wanting to try cooking more curry dishes at home for a while, now, and I stumbled across this recipe last week while I was looking for just that. Perfect!

What we Loved: This is the best meal that I’ve made in a while. Brandon and I loved absolutely everything about this dish, and I wouldn’t change a thing. The chicken was incredibly moist, and the sauce was so spicy and creamy. It had all of the complex flavors of cinnamon, paprika, tomato, cumin, and garlic, and it had that perfect amount of heat that I expect Indian food to have. I also really loved the fresh herbal flavor that came from a nice garnish of cilantro. Brandon said that this tasted just like what you would get in a restaurant. What a great comfort meal.

Helpful Hints: I reduced the cayenne pepper in the original recipe by quite a bit (from two teaspoons to 1/2 teaspoon) and was perfectly happy with the amount of spice. With a jalapeno in the sauce, too, I really don’t think that the dish needed any more heat. But certainly add more if you’d like.

Chicken Tikka Masala
Source: Adapted from 

1 lb chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces
1/8 cup fresh cilantro, minced

For the marinade
6 oz yogurt (I used Fage 0%)
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
Good pinch Kosher salt and black pepper

For the sauce
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeño pepper, minced
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoon paprika
Good pinch of Kosher salt
8 oz tomato sauce
3/4 cup half and half (or cream)

1. In a large bowl, mix the yogurt, cumin, cinnamon, cayenne, ginger, salt, and pepper. Add the chicken pieces, and mix well. Cover and refrigerate for one hour.

2. In a large saute pan, melt a pat of butter over medium heat. Add the garlic and jalapeno, and saute for one minute. Add the cumin, paprika, and salt, and stir to combine. Mix in the tomato sauce and cream. Bring to a boil, and then reduce to a very light simmer. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes.

3. While the sauce is simmering, heat a second saute pan over medium heat. Add the chicken and the marinade, and saute until the chicken is cooked through, approximately ten minutes.

4. Add the chicken to the sauce, stirring to coat the chicken. Serve garnished with cilantro.


11 thoughts on “Chicken Tikka Masala

  1. Pingback: Weekly Menu: November 15-21 « Per l'Amore del Cibo

  2. Pingback: Chicken Tikka Masala « Per l'Amore del Cibo

  3. This is super delicious!! I have made it for a few people and everyone has really enjoyed it, even non indian food lovers. Your website is fantastic!!

    • Thanks so much! I hope you enjoy it if you try it at home. I really need to experiment more with curries at home….they’re so fun to make!

    • Thanks! I am the same way with Indian recipes….I have a few that I make that I just adore, but I definitely need to add more! I am trying out a new lamb kofta recipe this week – hopefully it turns out.

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