Chicken curry is a yummy tasty non-vegetarian dish that is believed to originate from Indian Sub-continent region. At present it is one of the most popular curry dish worldwide. If you like Indian subcontinent style food and like non-vegetarian food we are sure you must have tried it in quite a lot of places. In countries like United Kingdom, United States it is quite common to find this dish in restaurant menu. Chicken curry recipe is a simple and easy non-vegetarian recipes which has quite a lot of variation. In this article we will be covering the Indian style Chicken curry which is great for party with friends and family.
You may want to give this dish a try during holidays and family gatherings. It is a great dish for winters especially during Christmas and New Year holidays. Chicken Curry unlike other non-vegetarian dishes such as Mutton Curry and Rogan Josh takes less time. This is mostly due to the fact that Chicken is quite tender as compared to other meat.
In many western countries Chicken curry is a popular dish however the restaurants in these countries scale down a lot on its spices and hotness due to local population taste preference. Chicken curry is a spicy non-vegetarian dish and in this article we cover the non-scaled down version of this recipe. If you prefer moderate spices, please scale them down to your tasting. Also to get best experience we recommend using fresh spices while cooking.
While scaling down some spices is fine, it is great to enjoy spicy dishes with their best combos. If you prefer to experience the spicy version of dishes, you can choose suitable sides like sweets, yogurt or Raita.
Raita are quite popular side dishes that go with spicy dishes like Chicken Curry purely because it balances out the spicy effect. Some popular combination of sides for Chicken curry are – Cucumber Raita while in desserts you can compliment it with dishes like – Gulab Jamun. If you have nothing else and things go crazy have some yogurt in reserve to cool yourself down.
Now without much delays let’s get started and learn how to make Chicken curry at home.
Ingredients for Chicken Curry
Most of the ingredients required to make this dish is easily available in nearby grocery store and supermarkets. If you are living outside, many of these spices are now-a-days readily available in major superstores under Asian/Indian food section.
Now-days there are many Chicken curry spices and sauces available in the market but there are only few companies who we can say invest time and effort in bringing the right taste to their consumers. M.D.H Spices is one such company we vouch for that brings authentic Indian curry flavour to its consumers.
We used M.D.H Chicken masala for best authentic Indian chicken curry flavour.
There are a couple of more companies who invest and have great line of spices but M.D.H is one of our favourites. Therefore for our Chicken Curry Recipe we recommend them. Also, just to clarify that we are not in paid partnership with MDH. The reason for us recommending this brand is because we ourselves use it to cook various dishes and they have never disappointed us till now.
Good spices are key to your curry experience and therefore choose the best for great curry experience.
To cook this dish we have used M.D.H Chicken masala along with few whole spices.
Chicken curry preparation time and taste changes drastically based on Chicken breed. We used Chicken available in most super-markets and shops and have less cook time. Since Chicken is quite tender it is better to have bigger chicken pieces for the dish. This is different to how you take small-medium meat pieces for other non-vegetarian dishes like Lamb Curry and Mutton Curry. If you will take small pieces of chicken, you can easily overcook them and spoil the dish.
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Once you have the right Chicken that you want to cook it is always good to wash it thoroughly. Wash it a couple of times and drain the water properly. For best taste buy freshly cut Chicken from the market and ensure it is thoroughly cleaned. After washing raw meat it is always a good idea to wash your hands with soap to avoid contamination.
Preparation For Chicken Curry
In this current Chicken curry preparation we used approx 1 Kg of Chicken. Once you have the right Chicken that you want to cook it is always good to wash it thoroughly. Wash it a couple of times and drain the water properly.
Now let us chop onions, green chillies, ginger and Garlic. You need good quantity of onions and tomatoes to make thicker gravy. You can also chop tomatoes or better to make tomato puree. In this recipe we used Tomato puree instead of chopped tomatoes.
You need to ensure that you use good amount of ginger and garlic to go along with onion to get best Chicken curry flavour. It is the key to a great, tasty and awesome Chicken curry.
In some variations of Chicken curry recipe people prefer to dice ginger as it gives the peppery and somewhat sweet ginger flavour while eating Chicken curry. Usually with grated ginger you won’t get this same exact experience. In our current Chicken Curry recipe we are using grated ginger as kids usually do not like larger ginger pieces because of it gingery flavour.
In many hilly regions of Northern India using long slices of ginger or diced ginger is the preferred way of cooking this dish. Ginger is one of the key ingredients in Chicken curry and also while cooking other meat dishes so get some fresh ginger and get going.
To make thicker curry you can also use 1 small/medium potato. This is an optional ingredient and you may choose not to add it at all. Again, in some variations of Chicken curry recipe people prefer to use corn-starch to make thick curry but based on our personal experience this may just spoil the great taste. If you use potato, it will basically get soft and mashed up by the time your Chicken curry is ready.
Do not add too much potato else it will also ruin your curry experience. If you prefer to use potato then wash, peal and dice it into small pieces. This will ensure it cooks easily.
Once you add potatoes (optional) you are all set to cook Chicken curry! So, let us move to the next section – how to make Chicken curry.
How To Make Chicken Curry
To cook great authentic Chicken curry you may want to invest some time in getting good quality of spices from the market. Also, it is better to have some whole spices for great taste.
While you can get many ready made Chicken curry spices and sauces in the market, fresh spices takes your curry experience to a whole new level. Try it and you will know exactly what we are telling you.
To cook this dish we have used M.D.H Chicken masala along with few whole spices. Also, we used deep pan slow-cook Chicken curry method to make it. You can very well use Pressure cooker to cook this dish but it tastes best when slow-cooked in a deep pan. This is mainly because by slow cooking you give enough time for Chicken to cook with gravy and therefore it becomes juicy.
Since we now understand the role of great spices and the cooking method used let us start cooking this excellent dish.
First let us start by preparing masala for Chicken curry. Therefore, switch on the gas flame and take Vegetable oil in a deep pan or pressure cooker. You can choose other cooking oil as well to make this dish. Many people prefer to use Olive oil while some prefer to use Mustard Oil. If you choose to cook this dish in Mustard oil then you may want to lower the quantity of oil specified in the recipe card else it will be just too much fiery.
Now, once the oil is hot add whole red chillies, black cardamom and cloves to it.
Let them saute for 30 sec and add a pinch of Asafoetida (Hing, as per taste) to it. Now, add chopped onions to it and saute them until onions turn golden brown in colour. Remember onions should cook properly else it will make your Chicken curry sweeter rather than spicy and this will just spoil the dish.
Once the onions are sautéed properly, add chopped green chillies, garlic cloves and grated or diced ginger to it. Take care that you have used good amount of garlic and ginger and that they are in equal proportion. Sauté them again for few minutes.
Now it is time to add all the spices and salt to the gravy mixture and cook it for another two minutes. Add small amount water if required.
As the gravy will cook, you will start getting the aroma of spices and appreciate the smell of fresh spices. If the spices are not good and fresh you will not get the brilliant smell of spices and the taste will be mediocre as well.
The gravy masala is now ready to add Chicken pieces to it.
Add 2 cups of water and stir it. Let the Chicken cook with gravy for 15 – 20 mins. This will ensure that the curry masala will mix well with the Chicken and you get a juicy chicken.
Now add tomato puree to the curry and stir it well. If required add a cup of water to cook it well.
Cover the pan with a lid and let it cook for 20 – 25 mins on medium flame.
Usually fresh Chicken is tender and you may want to check in between if you need to cook more. As we already mentioned cooking time is also dependent on the breed of Chicken. If you regularly bring Chicken from your regular place or super market then you would already have a good idea of the time it would take to cook Chicken.
If this is the first time you can use our timings for reference but keep checking in between. You don’t want your chicken to overcook else it will be too tender to give a proper taste.
If the Chicken is not freshly cut or is slightly aged then it may take a little bit more time to cook.
Use a fork to check if Chicken is now tender and soft. Once the Chicken is tender it is time to turn down the flame.
Your Chicken pieces should now be soft and juicy and your Chicken curry is ready to eat.
Your tasty Chicken curry is ready for serving. Serve Chicken curry hot and before serving garnish it with some chopped Coriander leaves.
If you do not have Clarified butter, then top it up with some unsalted butter to get best flavour.
How to make Chicken Curry with Pressure Cooker
As you can see in the above method of preparing Chicken curry in open pot or as it is commonly known as slow cooking method it takes a lot of time to cook this dish. In case you would like to enjoy this dish but don’t have enough time for it what would you do?
Well if you have a Pressure Cooker at home then you can basically speed up the cooking process and save around 30 mins of your cook time. Usually there is a slight difference in the taste but in no way would we be able to suggest which one is better since it depends on person to person.
While generally people often suggest slow cook meat as better in taste, meat prepared in Pressure cooker is equally good.
The main reason why slowly cooking Chicken curry tastes better is because it lets the spices be absorbed properly by the Chicken and makes it juicy. If you have enough of time, it is better to slow cook the meat than to use the pressure cooker. Give it a try and you will find the difference.
Also for more authentic flavour we recommend using an earthenware pot as this was how Chicken curry was prepared in older times and when cooked this way, the dish simply tastes awesome.
To make Chicken Curry with pressure cooker you basically need to follow exactly the same steps as mentioned in the main recipe but instead of slow cooking close the pressure cooker lid as soon as you add Chicken and tomato puree.
You may want to give 1 whistle on high and 2 on low flame. Remember the whistle count here is indicative as usually this will differ for each brand of pressure cooker so experiment with yours. Now turn off the flame and let the pressure release gradually. It is time to check if the Chicken is ready! Open the pressure cooker and check if the chicken is tender? If it is tender then your dish is ready.
In case your gravy is thinner because of excess water, cook it for another 10 mins by keeping the pressure cooker lid open. Your Chicken curry is now ready.
Serving Ideas for Chicken Curry
Chicken curry goes well with many side dishes. Since it is a spicy dish it is good to serve some yogurt (curd) side dishes with it. While your curry is cooking we recommend preparing some raita such as Cucumber Raita or Boondi Raita to serve with the dish. Raita is one of the popular side dishes that goes well with Chicken curry and Rice. Many places serve Chicken curry either with plain or sweet and salty yogurt (curd).
Chicken curry is a perfect winter dinner dish for large family gatherings and festivals so you may want to give it a try in your next family gathering.
Why not make Chicken curry during Christmas or New year holidays or over a long weekend?
Chef Recommendation for Chicken Curry
- We recommend to use potato in our chicken curry recipe. This is to make the gravy thicker and retain necessary flavour. If you like you can use corn-starch in place of potato.
- You can use salted/unsalted butter instead of Clarified butter if it is not readily available
- To get best authentic flavour do not scale down on the spices and use good quality spices.
- With our Chicken Curry recipe we recommend using M.D.H Chicken Masala for best flavour. This is because based on our personal experience MDH spices provide great flavour. You can use any other Chicken Masala available at the near-by store but look out for good quality spices.
- To speed up the cooking process you can use pressure cooker.
- Best way to prepare Chicken curry is by slow cooking in a deep pan with a lid. Prefer to use earthenware if possible.
- Authentic Chicken curry recipe suggests using good amount of onion, garlic and ginger as these are the main ingredients to make gravy.
Yes, Chicken curry can be reheated once or twice though we advice not to overdo it as it may upset your stomach. Also, if not stored properly the food may easily get spoilt. In-fact if you cook Chicken curry and keep it for few hours and reheat it the Chicken is much more juicy. To reheat, it is better to do so on a cooker/stove rather than microwave else Chicken may become more dry. If you curry is too thick, just add a little water, stir it and give it a boil.
Yes, you can leave Chicken curry overnight and reheat it next morning. In-fact if you cook Chicken curry and leave it overnight the Chicken is much more juicy as it stays in the curry for longer allowing spices to be soaked in properly. To reheat we suggest to add a little water and give it a boil over cooker/stove rather than to microwave it. In this way the Chicken will be more juicy and not become dry.
No, Chicken curry is not healthy as it requires good amount of oil and butter to cook it. Ideally if you lower the amount of oil used in preparing the curry and lower down the spices you can have it more frequently. In this way you tend to make it a better healthier option than the original recipe. Though it contains Chicken which some may consider healthy but it is the amount of oil and Calorie that basically balances the healthy part. Too much spicy food is anyways not good for health in longer run.
No. You should not eat curry everyday. Curry is traditionally prepared in lot of oil and butter so you may want to avoid eating it every day. If you usually go for take aways we recommend not to go for curry everyday. Try some other food which will take care of your mental and physical health.
Chicken curry if refrigerated properly can easily go on for 3-4 days after cooking but we advice not go beyond 2 days as it may start getting spoilt without visible spoil marks. Always smell it and see that it does not have visible marks of being spoilt before eating. If you think the curry is spoilt please do not eat it as it may cause food poisoning.
Yes. Chicken curry or any food for that matter cause food poisoning. Food poisoning is usually caused if the ingredients such as Chicken is not fresh or it had been cooked and not stored properly. Avoid eating any food that has visible marks of being spoilt.
Chicken curry is a popular dish that goes well with steamed rice, jeera rice, paratha and Naan. For those who prefer bread over rice, you can serve Chicken curry with Naan. Since Chicken curry is quite spicy it is best to serve with yogurt or Raita. Compliment Chicken curry with some dessert to take off some of the heat from this spicy food.
And that is not all folks! Why not compliment Chicken curry with some sides and sweets. Shall we take this opportunity to invite you to discover more tasty and yummy recipes in our food wonderland.
- Check some tasty desserts in our Dessert section.
- Check out other cool non-vegetarian and egg dishes –
- Why not try few sides with spicy dishes –
Chicken Curry Recipe
Main Ingredients for Chicken Curry
- 1 Kg Chicken
- 4 tbsp Vegetable Oil
- 2 Whole Red Chillies
- 2 Whole Black Cardamom
- 4 – 5 Cloves
- 1.5 tsp Salt As per taste
- 2.5 tsp Deggi Red chillies powder
- 1.5 tsp Turmeric
- 2 tsp Coriander Powder
- 2.5 tsp Chicken Masala
- 2 tsp Garam Masala
- Pinch of Asafoetida Hing
- 4 Medium sized Onions
- 4 Small tomatoes
- 6-7 Garlic cloves
- 4 long green chillies
- 3 inch ginger
- Few Coriander leaves To Garnish
Optional Ingredients for Chicken Curry
- 1 medium Potato
Preparation Steps to make Chicken Curry
- First thoroughly wash Chicken pieces and drain water.1 Kg Chicken
- Now chop onions, tomatoes, green chillies, garlic cloves and grate ginger. You can also dice ginger if you prefer to do so.4 Medium sized Onions, 4 Small tomatoes, 6-7 Garlic cloves, 4 long green chillies, 3 inch ginger
- To make thick gravy you can use 1 medium potato. Many prefer to use corn-starch but this may spoil the taste of Chicken curry.1 medium Potato
- If you prefer to use potato then wash, peal and dice it into small pieces.1 medium Potato
Steps to make Chicken Curry
- Take Vegetable oil in a deep pan. Once the oil is hot, add whole red chillies, black cardamom, and cloves.4 tbsp Vegetable Oil, 2 Whole Red Chillies, 2 Whole Black Cardamom, 4 – 5 Cloves
- Saute them for 30 sec and add pinch of Asafoetida (as per taste) to it. Add chopped onions to it and saute them until onions turn golden brown in colour.Pinch of Asafoetida, 4 Medium sized Onions
- Now add chopped green chillies, garlic cloves and grated or diced ginger to it. Take care that the quantity of garlic and ginger is in equal proportion. Saute them for few minutes.6-7 Garlic cloves, 4 long green chillies, 3 inch ginger
- Add all spices to the gravy mixture and cook it for 2 minutes. Add 2 – 3 cups of water and let it cook for another 5 minutes.1.5 tsp Salt, 2.5 tsp Deggi Red chillies powder, 1.5 tsp Turmeric, 2 tsp Coriander Powder, 2.5 tsp Chicken Masala, 2 tsp Garam Masala
- Now add Chicken pieces to the gravy. Add 2 cups of water and stir it. Cover it with a lid and let it cook for 15 – 20 minutes. Add finely chopped potatoes to the gravy as well. This step will ensure that the curry masala will mix well with the Chicken and you get a juicy chicken.1 Kg Chicken, 1 medium Potato
- Now add tomato puree and cook it for 20 – 25 mins. If required add a cup of water to cook. Cover the pan with a lid and let the Chicken cook slowly in medium flame.4 Small tomatoes
- Keep running the curry after 10 mins or so and ensure you add some water to balance the curry thickness.
- Pierce Chicken with a fork and see if it breaks easily. This is a sign that the Chicken curry is cooked.
- Now turn down the flame and you are now ready to server yummy tasty Chicken curry.
- Your tasty Chicken curry is ready to be served hot. Before serving the dish garnish it with chopped Coriander leaves and top it up with some Clarified butter. Serve it with Steamed rice (preferably Basmati Rice) or Naan.Few Coriander leaves
- If you do not have Clarified butter, then top it up with Unsalted butter.
- If you want to make much thicker gravy, you can use Corn starch but we prefer to use potato as it does not spoil taste.
- You can use salted/unsalted butter instead of Clarified butter.
- To get best authentic flavour do not scale down on the spices. The more the better it tastes.
- We used M.D.H Chicken Masala for best flavour. You can use any other Chicken Masala available at the store.
- If you do have a pressure cooker and want to save sometime then you can use it instead of cooking in a deep pan. It would easily save you 20 mins or more of your time to cook this dish.
- Chicken curry requires good amount of onion, garlic and ginger as these are the main ingredients to make gravy.