This BEST masala chicken curry you could make at home on a weeknight! This is my go-to chicken curry recipe! I have been perfecting this for a couple years and my family devours it every time I make it! It has been a trial and error type of recipe. Lots of fails to get it just right, but this is the flavor and texture that hits exactly the right spot when I'm craving a simple chicken curry.
I have to emphasis this: this isn't an Indian chicken curry that you're used to. Its not chicken tikka masala or chicken butter chicken. It is actually not even my mom's chicken recipe.
But it is really delicious! And actually very easy to make! I break always it down into 3 easy sections whenever I make this:
- Prep the ingredients
- Get the sauce cooking. Blend the sauce, get it back in the pot.
- Add the chicken, cook the chicken and eat!
The Texture of this Sauce is Everything!!
The texture was the hardest part of me. I kept making really good tasting chicken, but the texture was usually too chunky and yet somehow watery. So the easiest solution, that for some reason took me years to come up with, was to just blend the sauce.
But the really trick to getting a thick, creamy, rich curry sauce is potatoes. I know you're thinking, 'but I do not see any potatoes there'. Well that's because the potatoes get cooked and blended with the sauce!!! That one potato makes the sauce absolutely luscious!
The seasoning for this weeknight masala chicken is pretty standard Indian masala.
- healthy amount of garam masala
- red chilli powder
- garlic - freshly grated
- ginger - freshly grated
- apple cider vinegar - adds that needed acidity, but gives it a hint of sweetness as well
- black peppercorns
- salt - to bring it all together
Weeknight Masala Chicken
- 2 tablespoon oil
- ¼ teaspoon peppercorns
- ¼ teaspoon cloves
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 onion chopped
- 1 14 oz canned tomato diced tomatoes
- 1 potato peeled and chopped
- 5 garlic cloves sliced
- 1 inch ginger sliced
- 2 teaspoon garam masala
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon red chili powder use more for your desired level of heat
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 cup water
- 6 bone-in chicken chicken thighs skinless, cut each thigh into 3 or 4 pieces
- 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro optional, for garnish
- Heat cooking oil in a large pot to medium high. Add the whole spices: whole peppercorns, cloves, cinnamon stick to the oil. Allow to heat for about 1 minute so the spices can infuse into the oil.
- Add onion, stir and cook for about 1 minutes. Add entire can of tomatoes, potato, garlic, ginger and the dry seasoning: garam masala, ground cumin, turmeric, red chili powder and salt. Add in the apple cider vinegar and ½ cup of water. Stir to combine and cook for 10-15 minutes.
- Remove from heat, allow to cool for a few minutes. Remove and discard the cinnamon stick. Either transfer the onion-tomato-potato masala mixture to a blender or use an immersion blender right in the pot. Blend until smooth, or you reach your desired consistency. Return the sauce/gravy to the same pot at medium high heat. (Use about ½ cup water to help get all of the sauce out of the blender)
- Add the chicken to the pot and cook for about 20-25 minutes. Add water if needed for the right consistency of sauce after the chicken is cooked, since the chicken releases water.
- Once the chicken is cooked, remove from heat, garnish with cilantro if using. Serve warm with naan or rice!