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Chicken Tikka Masala

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How to Make Chicken Tikka Masala-3

Chicken Tikka Masala is one of my favorite things to order when I get food delivered, but it is also really easy to make at home. Preparing chicken tikka masala yourself is easy and inexpensive, plus when you make it at home you have complete control over the spice level. It’s really easy to make a big batch – this recipe makes about 2 1/2 pounds of chicken – plenty to serve 6 people.

How to Make Chicken Tikka Masala-6

The active preparation time for this recipe isn’t very long, but the chicken does need to marinate for at least 4 hours in a combination of yogurt and spices. I recommend marinating the chicken overnight or before you go to work. Once the chicken has marinated the meal comes together in about 30 minutes. First, you prepare the sauce, and then you quickly sear the chicken in a grill pan before letting it cook in the simmering sauce for another 15 minutes.

How to Make Chicken Tikka Masala

This recipe is based on a recipe that my sister sent me years ago. Add the spices bit by bit – especially when it comes to the paprika and cayenne pepper. I already significantly reduced the amount of spice in the recipe, but I would still describe it was being about a 7 out of 10. These are the type of spices that have a hot heat that builds with each bite, less is more.

You could cut this recipe in half, but I love to make enough for leftovers. The chicken is even better a day or two later; it soaks in the sauce getting more and more tender.

How to Make Chicken Tikka Masala-4

You can serve this chicken tikka masala with rice and/or naan. The frozen garlic naan from Trader Joes is wonderful, and I recommend keeping it in your freezer at all times (it’s delicious with scrambled eggs on top too).

How to Make Chicken Tikka Masala-8

I was heading out of town for a few days, so I packaged up some meals for Charles before I left.



76 cal


4 g


9 g


1 g
Click Here For Full Nutrition, Exchanges, and My Plate Info
Chicken Tikka Masala

Yields 6

4 hrPrep Time

45 minCook Time

4 hr, 45 Total Time

Save RecipeSave Recipe


  • 2 1/2 pounds of Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
  • For the Marinade:
  • 1 ½ cups Non-fat Greek yogurt
  • Juice of 1 Lemon
  • 2 teaspoons Cumin
  • 2 teaspoons Paprika
  • 2 teaspoons Cayenne
  • 1 teaspoons Black Pepper
  • 2 tablespoons Ginger, minced
  • 2 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Chili Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • For the Sauce:
  • 29 oz Tomato Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Olive Oil
  • 1 large White Onion, diced
  • 2 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons Paprika
  • 3 teaspoons Cumin
  • 1 teaspoon Cayenne
  • 1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1 cup Non-fat Half and Half
  • 1/2 cup Cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  1. In a large bowl, whisk all of the ingredients for the marinade together. Pound the chicken with a mallet to flatten it until it increases in size by half. Add the chicken to the marinade, cover the bowl, place it in the fridge, and let marinate for at least 4 hours and up to 24 hours.
  2. Once the chicken is done marinating, prepare the sauce. Sauté the onion in the olive oil over medium heat until soft, this will take about 8 minutes. Then add the garlic and cook for another minute. Add the tomato sauce and the spices, stir and let cook for 3 minutes. Add the half and half and the cream and let simmer while you prepare the chicken.
  3. You can either cook the chicken under a broiler or cook it in a grill pan. I prefer to use a grill pan. Start by drizzling a tablespoon of olive oil in the pan, and heat the pan to high heat. Gently shake off any excess marinade and add the chicken to the grill pan - you will want to do this in two or three batches. Cook the chicken for 3 minutes per side, and then add it to the sauce and let it cook in the simmering sauce for another 15 minutes. Serve with naan or rice.

Miz Helen

Tuesday 7th of February 2017

Your Chicken Tikka Masala looks delicious and I am pinning it! I really appreciate you sharing with us at Full Plate Thursday, hope you have a great day and hope to see you again soon! Miz Helen

Helen at the Lazy Gastronome

Wednesday 1st of February 2017

Sounds great! Thanks for sharing at the What's for Dinner link party.

Melissa Ruddy

Monday 30th of January 2017

We also order this dish out but would love to try it at home. Saving this one in my recipe file to give it a go!

Janet Annas Vinyard

Monday 30th of January 2017

Hi Kit, Your chicken tikka masala sounds wonderful! I love the variety of spices used in this recipe - thanks for sharing! Blessings, Janet

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