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A bowl of chicken tikka masala with rice and naan

Chicken Tikka Masala

Katerina | Diethood
This simple stove top Chicken Tikka Masala recipe is rich and creamy with huge flavor. The tender marinated bits of chicken are charred, juicy, and delicious.
Servings : 6
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins


For the Chicken and Marinade
  • 1.5 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts or chicken thighs, cut into bite size cubes
  • ½ cup plain yogurt
  • 6 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1 teaspoon coriander
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
For the Chicken and Sauce
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 yellow onion, finely diced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 6 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 tablespoon sweet paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 can (15 ounces) tomato puree/tomato sauce
  • cups water
  • cup heavy cream
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • chopped fresh cilantro or parsley, for garnish


For the Chicken and Marinade
  • In a large mixing bowl combine chicken pieces with yogurt, garlic, garam masala, turmeric, cumin, sweet paprika, coriander, salt, chili powder, and ground ginger; mix until well combined.
  • Cover with plastic wrap and set aside for at least 30 minutes, or overnight in the fridge.
For the Chicken and Sauce
  • Heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Add half of the marinated chicken pieces to the hot oil and cook for 2 minutes per side; remove from skillet and continue to cook the remaining chicken. Add more oil, if needed.
  • Remove chicken pieces from skillet; set aside and keep covered.
  • Wipe down the skillet and set it over medium-high heat.
  • Add 1 tablespoon oil and 2 tablespoons butter to the skillet; when butter is melted, stir in the onions, salt, and ginger.
  • Cook, stirring frequently, for 3 minutes, or until onions are soft.
  • Add garlic and cook for 20 seconds.
  • Stir in sweet paprika, garam masala, cumin, turmeric, ground ginger, and ¼ teaspoon salt; continue to cook for 20 seconds or until fragrant.
  • Stir in tomato sauce, then water.
  • Bring mixture to a simmer; cover and reduce heat to low. Continue to cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Remove cover.
  • This part is optional, but recommended: using a hand blender, blend the sauce until creamy. If you don’t have a hand blender, use a normal blender, but blend the sauce in several batches. SKIP THIS PART IF you don’t have a blender.
  • Keeping the sauce set over medium heat, whisk heavy cream into the prepared sauce; whisk continually until thoroughly combined.
  • Whisk in the sugar and butter. Stir until butter is melted.
  • Add chicken back to the skillet; simmer for an additional 6 to 8 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and sauce is thickened and bubbling.
  • Serve over rice and garnish with chopped fresh cilantro.




Calories: 344 kcal | Carbohydrates: 12 g | Protein: 28 g | Fat: 21 g | Saturated Fat: 12 g | Cholesterol: 111 mg | Sodium: 1472 mg | Potassium: 830 mg | Fiber: 3 g | Sugar: 6 g | Vitamin A: 1557 IU | Vitamin C: 10 mg | Calcium: 90 mg | Iron: 2 mg | Net Carbs: 9 g

Nutritional info is an estimate and provided as courtesy. Values may vary according to the ingredients and tools used. Please use your preferred nutritional calculator for more detailed info.

Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: chicken tikka masala recipe, easy chicken dinner idea, indian chicken tikka