Chicken Tikki Masala

Chicken Tikka Masala with Cilantro Chutney

I made this for dinner four days ago and have not been able to stop thinking about it since. I’ve been fantasizing about it, remembering the flavors and wondering how soon is too soon to make it again. (Tomorrow? Do I have to wait a few weeks or can I get away with tomorrow?) Just now I discovered about 10 bites worth of leftovers in the fridge and I almost wet myself with joy. It’s 8:00pm but I didn’t care: I heated it up and scarfed it down. I just might have a Masala problem.

But it’s for a good reason! I cannot even begin to describe to you all how insanely delicious this is. The creamy-spicy sauce, the tumeric-flavored rice, the tender broiled chicken…. Oh, my goodness. Beyond delicious.

What really takes it over the top, though? The cilantro chutney that goes along with it. Oh, people. It’s cool and fresh and absolute perfection when combined with the spiciness of the masala sauce.

There is no way words can do any justice to this meal. You simply just have to take my word for it. AND GO MAKE IT. It is seriously that good. I know I say that a lot, but, folks, this time I really, really mean it.

Chicken Tikki Masala

I found the recipe on The Pioneer Woman. I had no need to change anything about it. And since she has far superior pictures to what I could ever contemplate giving you, I’ll just let you go right to her recipe here.  It’s very easy, and can be on your table in 30-45 minutes.

I did go ahead and make my own Garam Masala, like it says in the post, because I couldn’t find it at the grocery store and didn’t feel like going other places looking for it. I had all the spices on hand except for the fennel, and it was perfect. Also, if you make it yourself, you can decide how much Cayenne to put in and make it more or less spicy depending on your taste. (And it looks so purty! Sand art!)

garam masala

And – bonus! – the spices in this? All those delicious Indian spices that make this so awesome? They’re anti-inflammatory. That’s right, they’re delicious AND they decrease your old-lady-joint problems all in one go. So, if my over-the-top description of the flavor alone hasn’t sold you on this, maybe that fact will!

So, for the Masala recipe, go to Pioneer Woman, look at her excellent pictures, and print it off. But you have to promise me – PROMISE ME – that you’ll make the Cilantro Chutney I’m going to give you here to go along with it. It makes all the difference. I saw the recipe in a newspaper article about Indian food. Written by, like, real Indian people. So it’s the real deal. (I assume.) It’s super simple, but you do need a food processor for it. You might be able to do it in a blender…but I’m thinking that might not really work. You can try if you want, though.

The recipe I have calls for “one bunch” of cilantro and “one half bunch” of mint. What does that mean? After puzzling over it, and since I didn’t want the mint to be too overwhelming, I opted for about a 1:4 ratio of mint to cilantro. (I roughly had about 1/4 the amount of mint as cilantro).

Cilantro Chutney

Throw it all into the food processor and squeeze in the juice of one lime.

Cilantro Chutney

Add in some salt and an onion.

Cilantro Chutney

And then process until it’s very smooth. It shouldn’t be chunky like salsa, but more like pesto.

Cilantro Chutney Cilantro Chutney

The recipe that I have also called for adding in a hot pepper, but I love to leave this cool and refreshing as a contrast to the spicy sauce so I never put it in. If you want to, though, you of course can go ahead.

Serve a dollop (or more) with the Chicken Tikki Masala, and eat it together. It’s ah-maaaaz-ing.

Chicken Tikki Masala


Chicken Tikka Masala recipe  (with much better pictures than you’ll ever get from me. Alas.)

Cilantro Chutney
Recipe type: condiment
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro
  • ¼ - ½ bunch fresh mint (about ¼ the amount of cilantro that you have.)
  • 1 lime
  • ½ onion
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1-2 green chili peppers (optional. I prefer it without because it's a nice contrast to the masala)
  1. Place all ingredients in a food processor and process until very smooth. That's it. Really. Serve as a condiment with spicy Indian dishes.


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