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Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala

  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 5 hours 10 mins
  • Total Time: 5 hours 25 minutes
  • Yield: 6-8 servings


Recipe gently adapted from Foodie with Family


To prepare the chicken

  • 9 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 24 tablespoons butter (to be used for browning the chicken)

For the sauce

  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons garam masala
  • 1 large piece of ginger (23 inches in size), peeled and grated
  • 4 cups crushed tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 whole jalapeno, washed, stem removed and pierced several times with a sharp knife
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream

To Serve

  • Buttered basmati rice with peas
  • Chopped cilantro (for garnish)


  1. Cut the chicken thighs into 1 to 1 ½ inch pieces. Place in a bowl with the 1 teaspoon salt, coriander, cumin and yogurt. Stir until all of the chicken pieces are coated. Cover and let sit for about 10-15 minutes at room temperature.
  2. In a large skillet over medium high heat, brown the chicken pieces in batches – using about a tablespoon of butter per batch. Transfer the browned chicken to the slow cooker as each batch is finished.
  3. Once all of the chicken is cooked, using the same skillet, prepare the sauce by melting the 4 tablespoons of butter over medium high heat. Add the onions, garlic and 1 tablespoon of salt and cook, stirring frequently until the onions are lightly brown around the edges.
  4. Stir in the garam masala and ginger, and cook for about 1 one minute.
  5. Raise the heat to high and add in the crush tomatoes and sugar. Stir frequently, scraping the browned, caramelized bits from the bottom of the pan. When the tomato mixture comes to a boil, remove from heat and pour into the slow cooker. Add the pierced jalapeno pepper.
  6. Put the lid on the slow cooker and cook on low heat for 5 hours, or until the chicken is tender.
  7. Whisk the cornstarch into the heavy cream and stir until smooth. Add the heavy cream mixture to the slow cooker and stir to blend. Replace the lid and cook for another 10 minutes or until the sauce is bubbling around the edges.
  8. Serve the Chicken Tikka Masala over hot buttered rice and peas. Garnish with chopped cilantro (optional but recommended).