Indian Tomato Chicken Recipe -
Indian Tomato Chicken Recipe
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Indian Tomato Chicken
See how to make chicken thighs simmered with tomatoes and exotic spices. See more
  • READY IN hrs

Indian Tomato Chicken

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"Chicken pieces coated with many fragrant spices like turmeric, cardamom and cloves, then simmered in a tomato sauce. This dish is a family favorite. I have also taken it to potlucks and served it to guests in my home. Everyone asks for the recipe. It is a great slow cooker meal, too."

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 6 servings Change Servings
  • PREP

    15 mins
  • COOK

    2 hrs

    2 hrs 15 mins


  1. Place onion, garlic and ginger in a food processor and process into a paste. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat, add onion paste and saute, stirring continuously, for about 10 minutes.
  2. Stir in the cumin, turmeric, salt, pepper, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, bay leaves and nutmeg. Saute, stirring, for 1 to 2 minutes. Place chicken pieces in skillet and stir them around with the spice mixture until they are well coated.
  3. Saute for another 4 minutes, then pour in the tomatoes with liquid and stir. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 1 to 2 hours, or until the oil has separated from the liquid. Stir occasionally. (Note: If you simmer uncovered, the sauce will thicken; add water, or keep covered while simmering.)
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Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Nov 08, 2007

I'm Indian, and this recipe is pretty darn authentic as far as the ingredients are concerned, with the exception of the bay leaves (we use curry leaves) and the nutmeg. It's nearly identical to how I make chicken curry. The only difference is that I chop up my own tomato, and use less. Also, I've read that some people put green or red bell peppers in their jalfrezis. "Jalfrezi" incidentally means "dry fry" - the intention is to have a very thick gravy that coats the chicken nicely, as opposed to having a very liquidy sauce. But I guess you can make it whichever way you think tastes better! Oh, and by the way, Indian curries usually don't have "curry powder" in them. It's a common misconception. Happy eating!

Most Helpful Critical Review
Oct 15, 2008

want to like it, but missing something....not salty enough. cooked it for 1.5 hrs and still not really right.

Jan 16, 2006

This was great! The only thing I did differently was not haul out the food processor for the paste. I just chopped onion fine, crushed my garlic with my garlic press, and grated my ginger. I like heat so I added something similar to cayenne but one could use red pepper flakes if wanting to kick it up a bit. I added about 1/3 cup chicken broth when adding the chicken to the pan. I threw in about 1/2 cup chick peas with the tomatoes. I think adding the broth helped it not be too dry. I served this over basmati rice with peas thrown into the rice. Very nice easy meal. This is really a great staple recipe for those of us that have just about every type of spice there is. I didn't have to run out for any of the ingredients!

Jun 21, 2008

I've made this several times now and my husband loves it. I've followed the advice of others and simmer 45 minutes covered and 45 uncovered. This recipe as written does not make a lot of sauce, so I have also doubled the tomato and spices with good results. Easy and delicious.

Jul 21, 2003

Very good (and simple) tomato-type curry recipe. My husband, who normally doesn't like dishes this spicy, loved it. I will definitely make it again. Changes I made: I used thinly sliced onions, minced garlic, and finely grated ginger instead of pulverizing them all together. I fried the onions (along with 4 WHOLE cardamom pods, 4 WHOLE cloves, the cinnamon stick and the bay leaves) until deep golden brown, and then added the garlic and the ginger. Note: In my opinion, the success of recipes like this depends on the quality of the chicken. If the chicken is old and tough, your dining pleasure will be diminished :) I've noticed that these packages of boneless, skinless thighs are often seem to contain chicken of inferior quality. This recipe would be just as good in my opinion if a good, whole, fresh chicken were cut up into pieces...with the bone left in.

Jun 08, 2005

Excellent. Has a beautiful spicy Indian flavor. May not be that authentic (?), but was very tasty. <br> Regarding ingredients, I skipped the food processing, instead just cut the onions really really small. I also used one can of diced peeled tomatoes (because I couldn't find crushed in the right size) and squashed/crushed them myself. Finally, I used 4-5 chicken breasts, pressed/cut thinly.<br> Regarding cooking/serving, I cooked (step three) for 45 minutes covered, then noticed how liquidy the sauce was, and then for 45 minutes uncovered. The sauce boiled down to a nice thick very flavorful paste. There wasn't enough sauce to serve this over rice or put extra sauce on rice, but the sauce amply covered the chicken and was great. <br> Some reviewers commented that this dish should be mixed with / served with something else like potatoes. So, I served it alongside the Aloo Phujia (potatoes, onions, and tomatoes) recipe from this site and that pair worked very well together.

Jul 23, 2003

WEll, this was our Valentine dinner tonight. I've made so many other things this past week, I decided to cook a low maintenance meal. This took very little time to make and it produced a great meal. I was tempted to add curry powder to this but didn't because no other reviewer had attempted to do so. I didn't add the cardamom or cloves because I didn't have either one. I did add a bit more salt to my liking. Abby (my 14 month old baby girl) gobbled hers up and my hubby said he liked it as well. My Nathan had a cheeseburger and was happy with that. Thanks Karen.

Jun 23, 2005

OMG this recipe was sooo tasty. Even though I had to improvise cause I didn't have turmeric (I just used about a teaspoon of curry powder), nor ground cardamom (used 2 whole cardamom pods), and used 1 tsp of cinnamon in place of the stick, it was still the bomb. My husband and I love Indian food and this tasted just like the way our Indian friends make it. Very exotic, and very delicious!


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  • Calories
  • 134 kcal
  • 7%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 6.9 g
  • 2%
  • Cholesterol
  • 57 mg
  • 19%
  • Fat
  • 5.4 g
  • 8%
  • Fiber
  • 1.6 g
  • 6%
  • Protein
  • 14.7 g
  • 29%
  • Sodium
  • 547 mg
  • 22%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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