Chicken Tikka Masala Curry

Chicken Tikka Masala

This particular curry recipe, similar to Chicken Tikka Masala, is the one I keep coming back to again and again.  Tikka tomato paste in the creamy sauce, rather than whole tomatoes, but I like to use the fresh tomatoes in my curries. This is easy to make and incredibly DELICIOUS!  This recipe is also great for a firm-fleshed fish or shrimp rendering.  When doing it with fish, cut deboned fish into large pieces and prepare sauce first.  Add fish the last 5-10 minutes of cooking so it won’t overcook and fall apart.  Redfish is an excellent choice for simmered dishes, if you can get it, as it is as firm as chicken or beef and won’t disintegrate in the sauce!  This dish is OK for Induction and is also suitable for Primal diners.  For variety, sometimes I add a little tomato paste to this sauce, which changes it up a bit. 🙂

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1 T. whole cumin seed

2 T. olive oil

3 T. butter

3 oz. sliced onion

2 deboned 7-8 oz. chicken breasts, cut into 1-1½” chunks (or turkey, shrimp or fish chunks)

¼ tsp. salt

¼-½  tsp. cayenne pepper  (use ½ tsp. only if you like it HOT)

1 tsp. ground cumin

½ T. minced fresh ginger

½ tsp. ground turmeric

1 T. Garam Masala 

4 T. fresh cilantro, chopped

1 c. chicken broth

1   whole tomato (3″) , cut into 1″ cubes (use 1 Tbsp. tomato paste for a redder Tikka Masala or Butter Chicken look)

¼ c. heavy cream (Paleo-Primal folks should use coconut milk)

DIRECTIONS:  In a dry non-stick skillet or wok, dry roast the whole cumin seed, stirring, just until they become fragrant but not burned (about 1-2 minutes).  Add olive oil, butter and onions & saute a few minutes.  Add chicken and continue to saute until chicken is opaque.  Add all remaining ingredients except heavy cream. Simmer covered on lowest heat about 30 minutes until tomatoes are tender but not falling totally apart.  Add heavy cream and continue to simmer 5-10 minutes longer.  If desired, slightly thicken with a few successive, light dustings of xanthan gum, whisking constantly between additions.  Serve over steamed cauliflower or basmati rice for non-low-carb guests.  Sometimes I add my cauliflower right into the curry the last 15 minutes of cooking for a change of pace.  Like the tomatoes, do not cook the cauliflower.  Adjust info below if you add cauliflower or other vegetables to the dish.

VARIATION:  Sprinkle in a few frozen green peas as shown above.  But just a few!

NUTRITIONAL INFO: Serves 3, each serving containing:

527 calories

34.6 g  fat

7.83 g  carbs, 2.03 g  fiber,5.80 NET CARBS

44.3 g  protein

194 mg. sodium

7 comments on “Chicken Tikka Masala Curry

  1. Delicious….thank you! Completed thru the onions in a frying pan at lunchtime then put everything but the chicken and cream in a 1.5 qt crockpot to simmer all afternoon. Added panir and the cream about an hour before dinner. Easy and yummy!


    • I’m delighted you liked this dish, Amalie. I agree, this one is very easy. I like your idea of adding paneer. My husband loves paneer in just about any Indian dish.


    • I don’t really like to sub ground for whole. The dry-skillet toasting of the whole gives a flavor you just won’t get out of the ground. But if you must sub, I’d use no more than 2½ tsp. total in the recipe. And I’d add the last one after waiting a bit tasting sauce mid-cooking, as you may only need 1½ tsp. Ground is more intense tasting than whole IMO so I’m much more careful to not overdo when using ground.


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