Yogurt and spice infused chicken kabob cooked in a creamy tomato sauce and served with easy stove-top garlic naan.
If I had to pick a cuisine to live on for the rest of my days, Indian would win by a long shot. Indian food is extremely comforting and warms your belly. Just in time for fall and winter!
I’ve simplified my favorite chicken tikka masala dish so you can make it at home and get delicious restaurant style results in under 30 minutes. The sauce is so finger licking good, I promise you’ll go back for seconds and thirds.
The chicken is first marinated in a spicy yogurt mixture than grilled until charred and tender (also known as the ‘tikka’). If you don’t have a grill you can grill the kabobs on a hot griddle on the stove top or place them under the broiler in the oven. I like the broiler methods because the fire directly roasts the kabobs so they char and taste just like restaurant kabob.
While the chicken (tikka) is grilling, the creamy sauce is prepared. Then once the chicken is perfectly charred and tender, it is then added to the sauce and tossed through to completely coat the chicken with the intense flavors of the sauce. The result is an explosion of flavors in your mouth from the grilled tikka kabobs and masala (sauce). And that folks is chicken tikka masala. But that’s not all! You can’t have chicken tikka masala without naan (bread). When making Indian at home things can get a little complicated so I like to keep things as simple as possible. I use regular pizza dough to make the naan and cook them one by one in a pan on the stove top. I also brush the dough with minced garlic and butter while it’s in the pan. The garlic is unbelievable and make’s the naan that much better. The dough puffs up into fluffy bread that’s perfect for soaking up all the yummy masala sauce.
- For the chicken kabobs tikka
- 1 cup plain yogurt
- 2 tablespoons Ginger-Garlic Paste or 1 tablespoon minced ginger + 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon garam masala see note below for recipe
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs and cut into large bite-sized chunks
- For the masala sauce
- 2 tablespoon butter
- 2 teaspoons olive oil
- 1/2 cup minced onion
- 1 jalapeno pepper minced
- 3 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tablespoon ginger minced
- 1 cup diced tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon garam masala
- 1 teaspoon paprika optional
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup heavy cream or sour-cream
- Minced fresh cilantro for garnish
- For the garlic naan:
- small Pizza dough
- 4 cloves minced garlic
- 2 tablespoon melted butter
- Marinate chicken: Combine yogurt, ginger + garlic, garam masala, cayenne, black pepper, and salt. Add chicken cubes and toss to coat. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes or up to 24 hours. Remove chicken from fridge and thread onto kabob skewers. Grill chicken in a 450F pre-heated oven under the broiler for 15-20 minutes or on an outdoor grill or griddle pan until chicken is charred in center is tender.
- To make the sauce: While the chicken is cooking, prepare the sauce. Heat a large heavy-duty pan to medium/high heat. Add oil, butter, and onion. Cook until onion begins to brown. Add the jalapeno, garlic, ginger and cook for 2 minutes or until garlic begins to brown. Add the tomatoes, tomato paste and spices. Cook for 5 minutes. Pour in 1 cup of water and allow mixture to simmer on a low/medium heat for 15 minutes. Add cream and cook for just 2-3 minutes. Mix in the cooked chicken and stir to coat.
- To make naan bread:Combine the butter and garlic in a small bowl. Set aside. Divide pizza dough into 8 equal portions. Roll the dough to a small circle using a rolling-pin. Heat up a skillet (cast-iron preferred) over high heat and lightly grease the surface with some oil to avoid the dough from sticking to the skillet. Place the dough on the skillet. When it puffs up and bubbles and burnt spots appear, flip it over and spread with the garlic butter mixture. Cook until done. Repeat the same until all dough are done.
We made this at our house… and it was a HUGE success! The family was practically fighting over it during dinner AND the day after. It was delicious, and tasted very authentic, but not too spicy! the spice was perfect. And the Naan was great too! Yum!
Can we substitute coconut milk for heavy cream?
This is a great dinner. It’s on the regular rotation in my home. I make a bunch of the garam masala spice mix at one time and store it in a air tight container. Then when I make this I just pull out.
my husband requested curry chicken the other night. This Recipe is simple to follow, allows for some errors with timing (i Had to let my masala simmer for an extra 30 minutes after complete) and it still came out great! Hubby said it was one of my best. I did add a little curry powder and sage and May substitue water for chicken broth next tIme. This will be a staple in our home!
This looks so good. Do I use diced tomatoes from a can or fresh tomatoes? Thank you. Making it next week.
I always like to use fresh tomatoes but canned should work too!
Absolutely delicious recipe! Very easy to make and just as flavorful (if not better) as takeout
When does the paprika go in?
Add it when you add the tomatoes, tomato paste and spices when making the sauce.
I made this tonight and I thought it was delicious! A new recipe to add to the rotation. Thanks!
Glad you enjoyed! It’s one of our faves 🙂
do they need to be cooked on skeweres? because I don’t have any.
Yes, you can cook them without the skewers! Line a sheet pan with aluminum foil and place the chicken pieces on the pan. I usually do that when I don’t have the skewers!