{recipe} Easy Chicken Tikka Masala at Home

Chicken Tikka Masala is one of my favorite dishes to order at an Indian restaurant, but I had never dared to try and make it at home. Recently our friend Ehab cooked up a batch for a dinner party and I fell in love with it. The best part is that the recipe is surprisingly simple and requires very little prep time.

Ehab recently launched a great new recipe storage and sharing site called Foodfolio. I love Foodfolio because you can add recipes to your personal Foodfolio site by url instead of just bookmarking them in your browser, which can get pretty messy. You can also easily search, share, and print. For example, to get this recipe from Ehab’s collection, I just went to his public Foodfolio page and easily found the recipe. For those of you who drool over internet recipes, this is a great way to save them for later! You can also enter your own recipes to share. Since I use my blog to document recipes I’ve tried already, I put all of the things I want to try in my Foodfolio. Then, when I’m stumped for inspiration, I head over there for ideas.

I adapted Ehab’s recipe for chicken tikka masala and made it for my book club dinner, served with saffron basmati rice. To make the saffron rice, you can use a pot on the stove or a rice cooker. Add the appropriate ratio of dry rice and cold water to the pot or rice cooker, but hold out 1/4 cup of the water. Boil 1/4 cup of water and put a pinch of saffron threads in. Wait about 10 minutes until the water is yellow. Dump the water and the saffron threads into the waiting dry rice and cold water. Cook the rice as you normally would.

Easy Chicken Tikka Masala at Home

serves 8


  • One 16 or 17 oz container of thick Greek-style yogurt, full fat or 2% fat (not nonfat)
  • 2 tsps salt
  • 2 tsps garlic salt
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
  • 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed of fat and cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 2 tsps olive oil
  • 2 tsps cumin seeds
  • 28 oz can of diced tomatoes, drained of liquid
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream


  • In a non-reactive bowl, combine yogurt and all spices except cumin seeds. Add chicken pieces and mix to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least four hours (up to overnight.)
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Remove chicken from yogurt with a spoon and place into a glass or ceramic casserole dish. Bake chicken in the oven for 45 minutes, turning once halfway through. Remove from oven.
  • In a heavy pot, heat oil and cumin seeds. When the seeds start to pop and sizzle, add tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes. Turn heat to low.
  • Add cream and stir to combine. Spoon chicken into tomato mixture and pour any remaining yogurt sauce into the pot. Cook 10 minutes more on low heat, stirring frequently. Be careful because if the mixture gets too hot, the yogurt can curdle and the cream can separate. (The yogurt may curdle a little bit which is good for the texture, but you don’t want it to go all the way.)
  • Serve with basmati rice.
  • Make ahead: you can bake the chicken and cook the cumin and tomatoes a couple of hours ahead and leave them on the stove, then combine the tomatoes, chicken and cream and cook for the final 10 minutes just before serving.

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4 Responses

  1. Dana says:

    That is one of my favorites as well, the recipe sounds great!

  2. Ben says:

    Delicious … and super easy! Thanks for the “make ahead” instructions!

  3. Marghi says:

    Made this for a dinner party and everyone asked for the recipe. The quote: “Better than at a restaurant!”