chicken tikka masala

Chicken Tikka Masala Recipe

By Swasthi on November 26, 2022, Comments, Jump to Recipe

This Chicken Tikka Masala is spicy, creamy, flavorful and crazy delicious! You won’t want to stop with one serving! Make this better than restaurant Chicken tikka masala at home with my easy time-tested recipe. I also share plenty of options to grill the chicken – in Oven, air fryer, on a griddle or skillet. Cooking this flavor-packed curry is easier than you think. Serve it over basmati rice, Cumin Rice or with Butter Naan, Roti, Paratha or any flatbread of choice.


Chicken tikka masala

About Chicken Tikka Masala

Chicken tikka masala is a classic curried dish with soft tender chunks of char-grilled chicken, simmered briefly in a delicious & super aromatic tikka masala sauce/gravy. The dish comprises of 2 components – one is chicken tikka and the other is the masala, which is the gravy or sauce in which the tikkas are simmered.

The word tikka literally means a piece or chunk and here chicken tikka are grilled chunks of chicken that are first marinated in spiced & herbed yogurt and then char-grilled to perfection. These smoky and aromatic tender chunks are simmered in a creamy, delicious and flavoursome onion tomato masala, known as tikka masala.

The finished dish has a super addictive smoky flavour, tastes creamy and supremely delicious!!!

This world popular dish has its origin from Northern India, where chicken tikka kebabs were cooked in a tandoor consisting of live charcoal or wood fire. These are served as an appetizer with coriander/ Cilantro Chutney and Mint Chutney. However tikka masala sauce/gravy is said to be a British curry, popularized by the Indian Chefs, working in Britain.

As you research, you will find many stories on the origin of chicken tikka masala and a few dozens of variations to cook this dish.

Chicken Tikka Masala Vs Butter Chicken

A lot of people think Chicken tikka masala and Butter Chicken and Chicken Jalfrezi are same but in fact they are not. Chicken tikka masala is on the spicier side, is made with boneless chicken and has a chunky sauce due to the usage of chopped onions. It is also cooked in oil and sometimes a small amount of butter is used.

But authentic Indian Butter chicken has no onions and can be made with bone-in chicken and is essentially cooked in butter. The main characteristic of an authentic Butter chicken is its smooth silky sauce and is low on the spice levels, with sweet notes but not prominently sweet tasting.

My Recipe

My recipe is easy enough for beginners and gives you the best chicken tikka masala that actually tastes better than in any restaurant. You can easily tweak the spice levels by following my notes and tips below.

Here are the key differences between the Indian Chicken Tikka Masala and the British Chicken Tikka Masala: My recipe works well for both the versions

The Indian version of tikka masala has whole spices like bay leaf, cinnamon, cloves and cardamoms. 2 interesting ingredients you always find is the bell pepper & onions in the tikka skewers. However I have not added them here just to keep the recipe simple. You won’t find any of these in the British curry.

The Indian style Tikka Masala uses cashews to give that creamy and naturally sweet flavour. Very little quantity of cream is used at the end mostly for garnish and to adjust the flavours. The British tikka masala has a lot of cream and no cashews are used.

Indian masala makes use of fresh tomatoes (chopped or pureed) so your dish has more fresh flavours. The British chicken tikka masala is essentially made with passata/ bottled or canned tomato puree which imparts umami flavors. Some recipes even use canned tomato soup & tomato paste.

Indian Vs British Tikka Masala

To summarise, Indian chicken tikka masala has fresh flavors due to the use of fresh tomatoes. It’s creamy, rich and delicious and won’t make you feel bloated as there is a very small amount of cream used. Cashews impart a magical creamy texture and flavour without making you feel heavy.

The British tikka masala has more deep flavors due to the use of passata and you will love this if you love the delicious umami flavour. But this requires plenty of cream to balance the taste of passata else you will only taste tomatoes in the curry.

Over the years I have tested this recipe with fresh tomatoes, canned tomatoes – fire roasted, bottled tomato puree/passata from different brands. So I have updated the recipe for both the versions and note that all brands of tomato puree or canned tomatoes won’t work here.

Avoid using canned tomatoes with citric acid added to it. This results in a metallic taste in the dish. I use passata from Mutti brand. It is sweet (no added sweetener) and won’t make your dish overly sour/tangy.

Indian tikka masala with bell peppers
Indian chicken tikka masala with bell peppers

How to Make Chicken Tikka Masala (Stepwise photos)

Chicken Marinade

1. Dice chicken to 1 to 1½ inch pieces and add to a large mixing bowl. Pat dry with a few kitchen tissues to make sure there is no excess moisture. For this recipe, you will need about 22 to 23 oz (635 to 650 grams) boneless chicken thighs or breasts. A little more or less is just okay.

Add the following:

  • ½ to 1 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • ½ teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon salt
spices to make chicken tikka

2. Add 1 tablespoon lemon juice and 1 tablespoon oil. Try to avoid lime juice here. For authentic Indian tikka flavors, use mustard oil.

oil and lemon juice to chicken tikka marinade

3. Add 1 tablespoon ginger garlic paste and 1 tablespoon kasuri methi (dried fenugreek leaves).

ginger garlic and kasuri methi to the tikka marinade

4. Add ½ cup Greek yogurt / strained yogurt or Hung curd. You won’t use the runny yogurt with whey here because that will let out a lot of moisture and ruin your tikkas. If you do not have it, you can make your own from my post here – Strained yogurt or Hung Curd. But note that you have to make this 12 hours in advance because this takes time.

add thick curd or Greek curd to make chicken tikka masala

5. Mix up everything well. Cover with a cling wrap and let it rest for a minimum of 8 hours & up to 48 hours in the refrigerator. If you are in a rush you may cook them after 3 hours but longer the better as they really become juicy and soak up all the flavors well.

resting chicken marinade

Make The Tikka Masala

6. Pour 3 tablespoons oil or ghee or a mix of both to a pot or pan. When it turns hot, add 1 ½ cups onions (1 large or 2 medium) and sprinkle 1 teaspoon salt. Saute on a medium heat until they turn deep golden. We don’t want the onions to be half cooked here.

saute onions to make chicken tikka masala

7. Add 1 chopped green chilli (optional) and 1 tablespoon ginger garlic paste. If you don’t have it, you can make your own by following this Ginger garlic paste recipe. Saute for about 40 to 60 seconds until you begin to smell the ginger garlic.

add ginger garlic to make chicken tikka masala

8. Turn the heat to low, add

  • 1 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1 tablespoon coriander powder
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala
  • 1 ½ teaspoons cumin powder
add spices to the tikka masala sauce

9. Stir well quickly. We don’t want to burn the spices.

heating spices

10. Immediately pour the tomato puree. If using fresh tomatoes, you will puree 500 grams (1.1 pounds) ripe red tomatoes in a blender to a smooth puree. Or use 1 ¼ cup (10 oz) bottled tomato puree/ passata.

pour tomato puree

11. Cook this on a medium high heat stirring often until the masala thickens as shown in the picture. This step takes some time so be patient and cook down the tomatoes as the curry develops a flavor at this stage. You may check the video in the recipe card for consistency. While you cook the tomatoes here, bring 2 cups of water to a rolling boil in another pot.

cooking tikka masala in a pan

12. When the tikka masala turns thick, pour the hot water and give a good mix.

pour hot water

13. Cover and simmer on a low heat until the sauce becomes fragrant and thick.

simmering tikka masala in a pan

Grill the Chicken Tikka

14. While the tikka masala cooks, grill your chicken tikka. Thread the chicken on to the skewers and place them on a prepared tray. Place the tray in the middle rack, in a preheated oven at 240 C or 460 F for 9 to 10 mins.

grill chicken tikka in oven

15. Later turn them with the help of a tong and bake for another 9 to 10 mins. If they look dry in between you can baste the tikkas with the marinade. To char your chicken, broil for 2 mins or until slightly charred.

To Air fry, place the tikkas in your tray or basket. Air fry for 6 mins at 200 C or 400 F. Turn them to the other side and air fry for another 6 mins.

To Cook them on the skillet/ pan, Pour 1 tablespoon oil to a heavy bottom skillet or cast iron pan. When the pan is hot, you will place the tikkas in the pan one by one, spacing them apart. Cook for 3 to 4 mins on a medium high heat and turn them to the other side. Cook on the other side until your chicken is almost cooked and charred. I have a picture of this at the end of this step by step photo section.

grilled chicken tikka in air fryer

Make Chicken Tikka Masala

16. When the tikka sauce has cooked well and thickened, pour half cup heavy cream or thickened cream. Or make your own cashew cream. For this, make a fine powder of 30 whole cashews in a grinder, then pour 1/3 cup water and grind to smooth puree. You will get ½ cup thick cream similar to thickened cream. Pour 2 to 3 tbsps water to the grinder and swirl gently and pour that to the tikka masala. If you do not have a powerful grinder, read my tips below.

pour cream to the chicken tikka masala

17. Add sugar and give a good mix.

add sugar

18. Let it simmer until thick and aromatic.

simmering tikka masala gravy before adding grilled chicken

19. Add all of the grilled chicken tikka and 1 tablespoon kasuri methi. Make sure your curry has reached a thick and almost serving consistency before you add chicken. Taste test and add more salt or sugar if required to balance the flavors.

add grilled chicken tikka and kasuri methi to the masala gravy

20. Mix and cook covered, until the chicken is soft and tender. This takes only 2 to 3 mins.

perfectly cooked chicken tikka masala

30. Garnish with 2 to 3 tablespoons of heavy cream or thickened cream and 3 tablespoons of chopped coriander leaves.

garnish with cream and coriander leaves

Serve chicken tikka masala with Butter Naan, paratha, roti or over Jeera rice or plain basmati rice.

Chicken tikka masala served in a white bowl

Pro Tips

Yogurt: Use Greek yogurt or strained yogurt also known as Hung curd in Indian cuisine. Using runny yogurt makes your marinade runny and will drain all of the spicy marinade to the pan when you grill them. The chicken won’t have any flavors. So make sure your marinade is thick.

Yogurt is the key ingredient here. It tenderizes, prevents the chicken from drying out while grilling at high temperatures and adds a unique flavor.

Red Chilli Powder: Use Kashmiri red chilli powder as it is low on heat levels. You will use Indian Chilli powder which is simply pure 100% ground dried red chilies. You can substitute this with paprika. Again you have many kinds here, use smoked paprika. Adjust the quantity to suit your taste.

Chicken Thigh Vs Breasts: You can use chicken thighs or breasts. But note that breasts need long marinade time, a minimum of 8 hours is recommended. Without this they are most likely to dry out and turn chewy. If you are in a rush, use chicken breasts and marinate for a minimum of 3 hours.

Cooking tikka on Skillet or Pan: If you want to cook the tikkas in a skillet or pan, ensure your marinade is thick and not runny else your tikkas will ooze out plenty of moisture and all the masala will come over to the pan and not stay on the tikkas.

Here is a picture of the tikkas grilled in a pan. For the authentic Indian restaurant version, use bell peppers and onions in your marinade. But grill the chicken and bell peppers separately not in the same batch.

grilling in oven or stove top for making chicken tikka masala recipe

Related Recipes

Recipe Card

chicken tikka masala recipe

Chicken Tikka Masala Recipe

Chicken tikka masala is a classic Indian/British dish with soft tender chunks of grilled chicken in a delicious & super aromatic tikka masala gravy. This recipe will give you the best tikka masala! Serve it with Butter naan or with basmati rice.
Pin Recipe Print Recipe

For best results follow the step-by-step photos above the recipe card

Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time40 minutes
Resting8 hours
Total Time1 hour
Servings4
AuthorSwasthi

Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )

  • 630 grams chicken boneless (Preferably thighs, or breasts)
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt (hung curd)
  • ½ to 1 teaspoon red chili powder (Kashmiri red chilli powder)
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • ½ teaspoon cumin powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon kasuri methi
  • 1 tablespoon ginger garlic paste
  • 1 tablespoon oil (mustard oil if you have)

For the tikka masala

  • 3 tablespoons oil (or ghee)
  • cups onions (150 grams fine chopped, 1 large or 2 medium)
  • 1 green chilli (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon ginger garlic paste
  • 1 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala
  • 1 tablespoon coriander powder
  • teaspoons cumin powder
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons sugar (adjust to taste)
  • 500 grams fresh tomatoes (pureed or 10 oz., 1¼ cup tomato puree/ passata)
  • 2 cups hot water (more if required)
  • ½ cup heavy cream/whipping cream (or ⅓ cup whole cashews, 30, refer notes)

For Garnish

  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream (or any cream)
  • 3 tablespoons coriander leaves (fine chopped)

Instructions

Chicken Marinade

  • Cube chicken to 1 to 1½ inch pieces. Add them to a mixing bowl. Make sure there is no excess moisture in your chicken. If you want you may pat dry with a few kitchen tissues.
  • Add red chilli powder, garam masala, cumin powder, coriander powder, turmeric, salt, lemon juice, oil, ginger garlic paste, yogurt and kasuri methi. Skip the lemon juice if your yogurt is sour.
  • Mix well. Cover with a cling wrap and refrigerate for minimum of 8 hours and up to 48 hours. If you are in a rush, you may cut down to 3 hours.

Make Tikka Sauce

  • Heat oil or ghee in a pot or pan. Add onions and sprinkle 1 teaspoon salt. Saute until deep golden.
  • Add ginger garlic paste and green chilli. Saute until aromatic, for 40 to 60 seconds.
  • Reduce the heat to low. Add red chilli powder, coriander powder, garam masala and cumin powder. Stir well quickly.
  • Pour tomato puree and cook on a medium high heat until the onion tomato masala becomes really thick and begins to leave the sides of the pan. It also turns fragrant. (Check video for consistency)
  • Pour 2 cups of hot water and cover. Simmer until thick, yet of pouring consistency. (Check video for consistency)

How to Make Chicken Tikka Masala

  • Grill in Oven : While the gravy simmers, thread the chicken to the metal skewers or soaked bamboo skewers and place them in a prepared tray. Bake them in a preheated oven at 460 F or 240 C for 9 to 10 mins. Turn them to the other side with a tong and grill then for another 9 to 10 mins. To char the chicken, broil for 2 to 3 mins or until slightly charred.
  • Or In a Skillet: Pour 1 tbsp oil to a skillet and heat it well. Place the chicken tikka one by one, spacing them apart. Cook on a medium high heat for 3 mins, turn them to the other side with a tong and cook for another 3 mins, until charred and not essentially fully cooked. Remove to a plate and Cook in batches.
  • Or In the Air fryer: Thread on skewers and place them in the basket or in the tray. Air fry for 6 mins, at 400 F or 200 C. Turn them with tongs and air fry for another 6 mins. If they dry out, you may baste with marinade and continue for another 2 mins, until slightly charred.
  • When the tikka masala turns thick, add sugar and the cream (or cashew cream, check notes to make your own). Stir well and cook for a few minutes until thick, creamy and aromatic. (Check video for consistency)
  • Add the grilled chicken tikka and kasuri methi. (Make sure your gravy has reached a thick gravy consistency/serving consistency, before adding chicken). Stir and cook for 2 to 3 mins until chicken tikka is soft and tender. Taste test and add more salt and sugar if needed.
  • Turn off and garnish with cream and coriander leaves. Serve chicken tikka masala with Butter Naan, roti, paratha, basmati rice or Jeera rice.

Notes

  1. Avoid using Canned tomatoes with citric acid added to it.
  2. Avoid using sour yogurt. If it is even slightly sour, avoid using lemon juice.
  3. To make the cashew cream, powder cashews finely in a grinder jar and pour ⅓ cup water to it. Grind to a smooth thick creamy paste. You will get half cup cashew cream. Later pour 3 tbsps water and swirl the jar and pour that as well to the gravy. If you do not have a powerful grinder, you may soak the cashews in ⅓ cup hot water for 15 mins, grind them with the same water to a smooth puree. I have tried and both work equally well. 
  4. If cooking tikkas on the pan, they don’t need to be fully cooked but must be almost there. If you try to fully cook, they may dry out, turn hard and chewy.
  5. To make this authentic Indian, add 1 bay leaf, 3 to 4 cardamoms, cloves, 2 inch cinnamon to the hot oil before sautéing the onions. Also add bell peppers and onions to the marinade before grilling them. Use mustard oil for the tikkas.
  6. Make this ahead by splitting the recipe. Marinate chicken the previous night. Also make the gravy till the tikka sauce the previous day. The next day grill the tikkas and heat the gravy, add the cream and simmer. Later add the tikkas. 
  7. To mimic the smoky flavor of the Tandoor, you may smoke your chicken tikka masala. For that, Place a small piece of foil or a tall steel cup on the finished chicken tikka masala. Hold 1 to 2 inch piece of natural wood charcoal with a tong and burn it on direct fire until red hot. Later place it on the foil kept over the curry or in the steel cup. Quickly pour ¼ tsp ghee on the hot coal. Immediately cover the pot and smoke for 4 to 5 mins. For stronger flavor, add another ¼ tsp ghee on the coal and repeat the smoking. If you overdo this, it will have very strong smoky flavors, so be cautious. You may check my Dal Makhani video to see how I actually do it.
  8. To make more servings, start with 2 cups of water to cook the gravy. As you cook, add half cup more at a time only if required (for 2x & 3x). Taste test the gravy after cooking with 2 cups of water, onions should be tender and soft but not crunchy or partially cooked. If they are undercooked, pour more hot water and simmer until well cooked.
  9. For 2x and 3x, double and triple the quantity of water for cashew cream. Cashews have a thickening property, if you reduce the water your curry won’t turn thick.

Alternative quantities provided in the recipe card are for 1x only, original recipe.

For best results follow my detailed step-by-step photo instructions and tips above the recipe card.

Video

NUTRITION INFO (estimation only)

Nutrition Facts
Chicken Tikka Masala Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 660 Calories from Fat 450
% Daily Value*
Fat 50g77%
Saturated Fat 15g94%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 10g
Monounsaturated Fat 22g
Cholesterol 153mg51%
Sodium 1083mg47%
Potassium 819mg23%
Carbohydrates 16g5%
Fiber 4g17%
Sugar 9g10%
Protein 35g70%
Vitamin A 2031IU41%
Vitamin C 31mg38%
Calcium 118mg12%
Iron 3mg17%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe?Mention @SwasthisRecipes or tag #swasthisrecipes!

© Swasthi’s Recipes

Chicken Tikka Masala Recipe first published in September 2012. Update and republished in June 2022.

Chicken Tikka Masala Old Recipe

Marination
400 to 500 grams chicken cubes (boneless chicken)
1 tsp Kashmiri red chili powder
Lemon juice from ½ lemon (refer notes)
½ cup Greek yogurt or hung curd or 1 cup curd (refer instructions and notes)
⅛ tsp turmeric
1 tsp coriander powder
½ tsp cumin powder
1 tbsp. ginger garlic paste
1 tsp kasuri methi (dried fenugreek leaves)
Salt to taste
1 tbsp. oil for frying
Ingredients for gravy
3 tbsps. oil
½ tsp cumin
1 bay leaf
1 to 2 black cardamom
3 green cardamoms
3 cloves (can use up to 5)
1 inch cinnamon stick (can use 2 inch stick)
3 medium onions finely chopped
3 medium tomatoes (pureed)
2 tsps ginger garlic paste
1 ½ tsp coriander powder
1 tbsp red chili powder
¼ tsp turmeric
4 tbsp cashewnut and melon paste (you can just use cashew paste)
½ tsp Kasuri methi
¼ cup cream (optional, can even use smooth almond or cashew milk or cream)
½ tsp. Garam masala
Coriander leaves chopped
½ tsp. sugar (optional)
Vegetables (chop large cubes)
1 large onion (separate the layers of onion cubes)
½ small green capsicum
½ small red capsicum (optional)
1 tomato (remove the pulp) (optional)

How to make the recipe

Make Hung yogurt or curd
Add yogurt or curd to a thin cheese cloth or muslin cloth and knot it. Hang it inside the refrigerator for 5 to 6 hours for the whey to drip off completely.
Make the chicken tikka
Pat dry chicken with kitchen tissues.
Add the marination ingredients to a bowl and marinate the chicken. Set aside in the refrigerator for at least 2 hrs, overnight yields the best.
You can grill these in a preheated oven at 240 C for 20 minutes. Adjust the timing slightly.
If you do not have a oven, you can pan roast the chicken tikka. Add one tbsp. oil to a non-stick pan and heat it. Swipe off the excess marinade from the chicken and fry them on a high flame till they are almost cooked. The masala burns quickly at this stage, so take care. Do not cook on a low flame, the tikka gets spoilt with all moisture oozing out. Do not overcook the tikka, they turn hard.
While the tikka is getting cooked, marinate the veggies in the left over marinate that was swiped off the chicken. Repeat swiping off the excess marinade from the veggies and fry these for 2 minutes or more till the marinade dries up. Transfer this to a wide tray. The chicken should look moist, tender and veggies crunchy, with the marinade almost dried up.

Make the gravy

Grind tomatoes to a smooth puree in a blender. Set this aside. You can also use chopped tomatoes.
Pour oil for the gravy to the same pan. Add whole spices, allow them to sizzle.
Add chopped onions, fry evenly till they turn golden.
Stir in garlic ginger paste, fry till the raw smell disappears.
Pour in the tomato puree, red chili, coriander powder, salt. Mix and fry for 2 to 3 minutes.
Stir in cashew & melon paste, fry till the mixture leaves the sides of the pan
Add sugar, tikka pieces and veggies, stir well and fry for 2 to 3 minutes.
Add water just enough to make a gravy. Bring it to a good boil & cook until the gravy turns thick.
Add kasuri methi cook for 2 to 3 mins.
Pour in the cream, add garam masala and add coriander leaves, off the flame. Keep covered for at least 15 minutes
Serve with paratha, roti, naan
Notes
Lemon juice- you can skip using lemon juice if using sour yogurt
making hung curd- one cup yogurt usually yields ½ cup hung curd. But that depends on the kind of yogurt

Chicken Tikka Masala Recipe

About Swasthi

I’m Swasthi Shreekanth, the recipe developer, food photographer & food writer behind Swasthi’s Recipes. My aim is to help you cook great Indian food with my time-tested recipes. After 2 decades of experience in practical Indian cooking I started this blog to help people cook better & more often at home. Whether you are a novice or an experienced cook I am sure Swasthi’s Recipes will assist you to enhance your cooking skills.

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Hi
Can you pre-cook/grill the chicken skewers well in advance, maybe batch cook it and freeze for later use.
Likewise the masala sauce?
Then simply match up the two for a quick meal?
Also, I live in Turkey where melon seeds are plentiful. What is the benefit of these for the paste? Do you have a recipe?

5 stars
Amazing recipe! Always turnsnout great. But earlier, you had this other chicken tikka masala recipe which required bell peppers, chunks of sauted tomatoes, cashew and melon seeds paste. I cant seem to find it. Could you please help me with the link? That was like my go to recipe for parties.

Thank you 🙂

Amazing recipe! Always turns out great. But earlier, you had another chicken tikka masala recipe which required bell peppers and chunks of tomatoes, cashew and melon paste. I cant seem to find that now. Could you help me with the link. That was my go to recipe for parties.

Hey have you changed the recipe a bit cause earlier when I tried the same recipe it was little different with capsicum and all.

5 stars
Amazing recipe! Turned out fantastic. I used cashew butter and no cream. Will be making this again. Thank you

5 stars
This is my 3rd time making this chicken tikka masala. I find using fresh tomatoes & cashew puree make this dish amazing like the real Indian food I had eaten in Delhi. Your recipes are amazing. Your butter chicken and naan are great too. Thank you for all the work you do.

5 stars
Thank you for sharing this, and for updating it over time. I made it tonight and we loved it! Even my 6 year old! There was silence at dinner while everyone ate happily….until they asked for seconds. The work definitely makes me appreciate my local Indian restaurants more, haha!

5 stars
Tastes wonderful. I kind of botched the prep by not simmering the tomatoes down fully but used more tomatoes than called for (garden tomatoes from my garden) and I didn’t puree them either, as I like the chunky pieces-though very few of those as it cooks down nicely. Did the tempering with cloves, cardamom, cinnamon stick and bay leaves, that really imparted a nice flavor. I think that part is missing in so many recipes passed around on the internet (the Westernized ones, I guess) Thank for sharing this!

5 stars
Great instructions, easy to follow and a great taste. Had to improvise a little but will be cooking this and trying the other recipes!

5 stars
OMG this recipe is amazing! I come from an Italian family, so Indian cooking is very new for me. I found an Indian market near my home to buy spices. This chicken tikka masala recipe is so delicious – better than any restaurant I’ve been to. I love the cashew cream and the sweetness it imparts. I appreciate all of the photos and step by step instructions. Thank you so much for taking the time to share these recipes with us!

5 stars
I am excited tot ry this recipe for a friend’s birthday. She specifically requested Tikka Masala. I wonder if it can be made earlier in the day? They arrive in the early afternoon and we will eat around 6. I want to have as much prepared as possible so I can visit with them. I am making Tikka Masala, Naan and Raita. I am open to suggestions on what I can make or prep ahead for best results.

5 stars
Thank you Swasthi. My tikka masala comes out very delicious! My family is addicted to it. Made it thrice so far and love your naans too. Will be making your biryani next!

5 stars
The taste was great! I made the indian version: fresh tomatoes and cashew cream. For 6 persons, so i x1.5’ed the entire thing.

I had one issue: the end product was too runny. Could that be because the fresh tomatoes are quity watery, same for the cashew cream? Or because i added 3 cups of boiling water in step 12?

Any idea?

Again thanks for the recipe, I will make the dahl makhani next!

This recipe sounds amazing. My 2 lb chicken is resting in the fridge. I sub ginger garlic with ground. How much do I add for the curry. Thank you

Hi, my daughter has a nut allergy to cashews, can i use any substitute or if i leave this out will it still taste ok?

5 stars
Hi, I’m exciting to try this recipe. For the gravy, it says “3 cloves” – I’m guessing this is cloves of garlic?

Oh got it, thanks!

I love your recipes too. Always a success. Trying to figure out how to increase ingredients.
So for the chicken tikka masala – if i wanted to cook for 18 people…your calculation says 3 kilos of chicken – is that correct?

Thanks

Hi, I love your recipes! First time making this one, can i do the gravy the day before? all the way up to adding the cashew nuts, then let it cool down, and the next day cook and add the chicken, veggies and sugar? Thanks!!

Sorry, that should say cashew paste, not cashew cream. I was thinking about the cream later in the recipe, lol.

Hi Swasthi,

I have cashew butter on hand. Would I be able to substitute it for cashews/cashew cream, and if so, how much should I use?

Hello Swasthi,
It’s the first time I’m going to make your recipes. I’ve made this one before following other recipe but I’ve read such great comments on your site (on a few recipes) that I decided to try your tikka masala recipe. I have read the recipe a few times and I don’t see where are you using the lemon. Could you explain that part? Thank you.
Also, I saw in one of the comments that you use amul or nestle cream. Can you explain what do you mean exactly? I know nestle is a brand but, is there only one kind of nestle cream? And amul, is also a brand (I don’t remember that name)?
And, one more question, how long in advance can I make this recipe?

Thank you very much for your time. I’m planning on making this chicken for a group of friends on Saturday… I can’t wait.