Chicken Tikka Masala

Author Karen Gibson


for the chicken:

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder use hot or mild, according to your preference
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, trimmed of fat (Note: SoupAddict usually uses a mix of breasts and thighs. Thighs are more flavorful and, in these times, economical. Which is a nice way of saying that SoupAddict is a cheapskate.)
  • 1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt Note: SoupAddict uses Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 medium garlic cloves minced or pressed through a garlic press (about 2 teaspoons)
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger

for the masala sauce

  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 medium onion
  • diced
  • about 1 1/4 cups
  • 2 mediumgarlic cloves minced or pressed through a garlic press (about 2 teaspoons)
  • 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
  • 1 fresh serrano chile ribs and seeds removed, flesh minced (Note: if you like things ┬íHOT!, as opposed to [hot], incorporate the ribs and seeds. That's where most of the heat of hot peppers resides.)
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon table salt
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves


for the chicken

  • Combine cumin, coriander, cayenne, and salt in small bowl. Sprinkle both sides of chicken with spice mixture, pressing gently so mixture adheres. Place chicken on plate, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 to 60 minutes. Use that time to prep the other ingredients. In large bowl, whisk together yogurt, oil, garlic, and ginger; set aside.
  • Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position (about 6 inches from heating element) and heat broiler. Using tongs, dip chicken into yogurt mixture (chicken should be coated with thick layer of yogurt) and arrange on wire rack set in foil-lined rimmed baking sheet or broiler pan. Discard excess yogurt mixture. Broil chicken until thickest parts register 160 degrees on instant-read thermometer and exterior is lightly charred in spots, 10 to 18 minutes, flipping chicken halfway through cooking. While the chicken cooks, make the sauce

for the sauce

  • Heat oil in large Dutch oven over medium heat until shimmering. Add onion and cook, stirring frequently, until light golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Add garlic, ginger, chile, tomato paste, and garam masala; cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add crushed tomatoes, sugar, and salt; bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in cream and return to simmer. Remove pan from heat and cover to keep warm.
  • While sauce simmers, cut the chicken into 1-inch chunks. After you remove the sauce pan from the heat, stir the chicken into warm sauce (you don't want the chicken to simmer in the sauce). Stir in cilantro, adjust seasoning with salt, and serve.