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instant pot chicken tikka masala

Chicken Tikka Masala (Instant Pot + Stove Top Method)

This Chicken Tikka Masala is so easy and quick to make. Step by step photos included for both Instant Pot & Stove Top.
Course Main
Cuisine Pakistani/Indian
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 253kcal


  • 3 tbsp oil (for cooking)

For the Chicken Marinade

  • 1 pound chicken breasts chopped into 1 inch cubes
  • 3 tablespoons yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon kashmiri lal mirch powder*
  • 1 tablespoon ginger garlic paste
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder*
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

For the Masala

  • 1 15 oz can of crushed tomatoes*
  • Salt to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kashmiri lal mirch powder*
  • 1/2 teaspoon roasted cumin powder*
  • 1/2 teaspoon roasted coriander powder*
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 1/2 tsp sugar*
  • 6-8 garlic cloves crushed
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger paste*

For Finishing

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon butter*
  • A handful of chopped Coriander
  • 1 teaspoon dried fenugreek leaves (kasuri methi)


For the Chicken Marinade

  • Mix all the ingredients for the chicken marinade.
  • Marinate for at least 20 minutes or up to overnight, in an air tight container in the fridge. The longer you marinate, the better.

To Make the Chicken Tikka Masala in the Instant Pot

  • Turn on the saute mode on your instant pot. Add the oil and let it heat for 1 minute. Add the marinated chicken and cook for 2- 3 minutes, until no longer pink.
  • Now add the masala ingredients.
  • Mix, and cancel the saute mode. Close the instant pot lid, move the valve to sealing, and put on manual pressure for 6 minutes.
  • Do NPR for 2 minutes and then vent. Open lid. Refer to finishing instructions below in the recipe card.

To Make the Chicken Tikka Masala on Stove Top

  • Add oil to a medium sized pot, and add the oil.
  • Add the chicken and saute for 5-7 minutes until cooked through.
  • Remove the chicken from the pot, and set aside.
  • Now add ginger and garlic, and saute for 20 seconds or so.
  • Then add the spices and saute for 30 seconds. Add the crushed tomatoes. Add the salt and sugar, 1/4 cup water, and allow the sauce to reach a simmer.
  • Lower the heat, and cook for about 15-20 minutes, while stirring every few minutes.
  • Add the chicken back to the pot, and stir to combine. Refer to finishing instructions below.

For Finishing (Both Instant Pot & Stove Top)

  • Turn on the saute mode on the IP OR if using stove top, turn up the heat to medium. Bring the chicken tikka masala up to a simmer. Add heavy cream, kasuri methi, butter and chopped coriander. Serve with rice and or naan.


Kashmiri Lal Mirch Powder: This is mostly for color and does not have heat. If you do not have this on hand, then simply substitute with red chilli powder (but adjust the quantity as it is spicier).
Garam Masala Powder: This is optional, and if you don’t have any on hand you can skip it.
Canned Crushed Tomatoes: Substitute with passata, pureed tomatoes, or even canned diced tomatoes (just whiz them in the blender until smooth, or use a hand blender).
Roasted Cumin and Coriander Powder: To make these at home, you can simply dry roast the cumin and coriander in a pan for a minute or two, and roughly crush. You can also substitute with cumin and coriander powders.
Sugar: I like to add sugar to this chicken tikka masala, to balance the tartness of the tomatoes. It can be skipped, however.
Butter: Optional, but I like that it gives a nice velvety finishing to the chicken tikka masala.


Calories: 253kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 77mg | Sodium: 589mg | Potassium: 532mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 487IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 56mg | Iron: 1mg