Chicken Tikka Masala

Chicken Tikka MasalaS

Have I mentioned how much I love my Crock Pot?  Not slow cooker,  Crock Pot.  I have an actual Crock Pot brand slow cooker.  Not one like my mom used to have back in the day.  This thing is massive – 6.5 quart capacity.  Stainless steel (so pretty) and digital.  All sorts of bells and whistles.  I can’t say enough good things about this handy appliance.  It’s one of my favorite kitchen tools, especially when I can make meals like this.  Chicken Tikka Masala with Peas.  Yum.

Here’s the thing.  I’ve made Chicken Tikka Masala many times before.  It’s one of mine and John’s favorite Indian meals.  When I’ve made it in the past, it involved me standing over the stove for several hours.  A labor of love.  This time around, several hours were involved, but most of that time was spent browsing through Target, not slaving over a hot pot.

chicken prep

There is a bit of prep involved here.  First of there’s s the chicken.  Dark meat from boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut up into large chunks.  Lots of flavor.  Toss the chicken with some spices, yogurt and then brown.  Dump it into the Crock Pot.  Not too hard.

sauce prep

Then there’s the sauce.  A rich, spice filled tomato based sauce.  Garam Masala produces the most heavenly aroma when sauteed with onions, ginger and garlic.  All this goodness is mixed with the chicken in the Crock Pot and cooked on low for 5 hours.

slow cooker

5 hours later, your house will smell delicious.  Add some cornstarch, cream and peas.  Serve over rice with lots of cilantro and some naan or flat bread on the side.  I handed John a plate of this when he got home and he devoured it.  It was so much better than my previous versions of Chicken Tikka Masala, with so much less effort.  Oh Crock Pot, how I love you so.

Chicken Tikka Masala2S


Chicken Tikka Masala
Recipe Type: Main Dish
Author: A Dash of Cinnamon
  • 2 lb skinless, boneless chicken thighs – cut into 2 inch pieces
  • 1 T ground coriander
  • 1 T ground cumin
  • 1 t kosher salt
  • 1 c plain greek yogurt
  • 4 T olive oil
  • 1 large onion, peeled and diced
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 t red pepper flakes
  • 1 T kosher salt
  • 3 T garam masala
  • 2-3 inch piece of ginger, peeled and grated
  • 2 – 28 oz cans crushed tomatoes
  • 1 T sugar
  • 1 T cornstarch
  • 2 c light cream
  • 10 oz bag frozen peas, thawed
  • rice
  • cilantro
  1. In a small bowl, combine coriander, cumin and salt.
  2. Place the chicken in a large bowl and toss with the spice mixture. Stir in the yogurt until the chicken is evenly coated. Cover the bowl and allow chicken to marinate in the yogurt for at least 10 minutes.
  3. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Add half of the chicken and cook until browned. Transfer chicken to the slow cooker and repeat with the other half of the chicken.
  4. Using the same skillet, lower the heat to medium and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add the onions, garlic, salt and red pepper flakes. Cook until onions are translucent, 7 minutes. Add the ginger and garam masala. Cook one more minute. Add the tomatoes and sugar. Raise the heat to high and bring sauce to a boil. Pour the sauce over the chicken in the slow cooker, mixing the chicken into the sauce. Cook on low for 5 hours.
  5. Using a fork, whisk the tablespoon of cornstarch into 1/4 cup of the light cream. Add the slurry and remaining 1 3/4 cup of cream to the sauce. Stir until well combined. Add the peas. Cover and continue to cook 10 more minutes.
  6. Serve over rice with chopped cilantro.

Adapted from Tasty Kitchen Blog

Comments: 9

  1. A_Boleyn February 25, 2013 at 12:27 pm Reply

    The masala looks delicious though it bears more than a passing resemblance to my butter chicken which makes it kind of confusing. Do the two gravies taste appreciably different, I wonder?

    I love chicken tikka as an appetizer though, with onions on a sizzling hot plate. The first time I ever had it in a restaurant (2 chunks of chicken) the dish also had 2 pieces of lamb korma and tandoori chicken on the plate. I shared it with my nephew who had ordered a similar vegetarian appetizer assortment.

    • Christy February 25, 2013 at 4:54 pm Reply

      There’s not a lot of difference between butter chicken and chicken tikki masala. I think butter chicken tends to use bone in chicken and be less spicy, but both dishes are made with a tomato cream sauce and totally delicious.

      • A_Boleyn February 25, 2013 at 5:58 pm Reply

        Whenever I make tandoori chicken, I marinate a batch of drumsticks and the same number of boneless skinless thighs and grill them and then I chop up the thighs and throw them in the sauce for the butter chicken. Saves me the extra work of making two separate dishes. :) And the butter chicken freezes well. The tandoori drumsticks … disappear immediately.

  2. Kristie March 28, 2013 at 11:05 am Reply

    I am making this tonight — looks SO delicious! But the ingredient list calls for 2 cups of cream and the instructions only seem to call for 1 cup. Can you please clarify? Thanks!!!

    • Christy March 28, 2013 at 11:29 am Reply

      It should be 2 cups cream. Thanks for catching that. I hope you enjoy it!

  3. Kylie April 5, 2013 at 12:01 pm Reply

    Hi- this looks AMAZING! But I’m sort of confused as to what “light cream” is- light sour cream? Half and half? I’m sorry, I’m not super savvy with cream :)

    • Christy April 6, 2013 at 10:36 pm Reply

      Light cream is like heavy whipping cream, but….lighter. You can find it in the dairy section of your local grocery store. If you don’t find it, you can use heavy cream. Please do not use sour cream. It will curdle and not taste good.

  4. Jessica May 9, 2013 at 10:55 am Reply

    This was delicious! I made it last night but forgot to take the cilantro out of the fridge. My husband loved it. I can’t wait to eat leftovers tonight, with the cilantro this time. Thanks for the recipe! :)

  5. Victoria June 19, 2013 at 8:04 pm Reply

    I found the recipe to be a bit heavy on the tomato and light on the spices. Perhaps because I lived in India for some years. I increased the cumin and garum masala. I used half the tomato and cream. Tasty but still too much tomato flavor. I was actually looking for a chicken tiki recipe. Tandoori without the bones. To see if it differed much from my tandoori recipe.

    I do wish your template allowed me to enlarge the text on my tablet.I found it hard to read with my middle aged eyes. Thanks for sharing.

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