Chicken Tikka


These flavorful bite-sized pieces of boneless chicken are marinated in yogurt and spices then baked to tender perfection! Serve this appetizer with a cooling cilantro and mint dip.

What is Chicken Tikka? Is it Different from Chicken Tikka Masala?

YES they are different.

The word “tikka” just means small pieces and that’s about all these two dishes have in common.

Chicken tikka is made up of small pieces of boneless chicken marinated in yogurt and spices and then baked on skewers.

Chicken tikka masala is a curry made with small pieces of chicken in SAUCE.

So in conclusion: chicken tikka = chunks of meat cooked on skewers and chicken tikka masala = chunks of meat in a creamy spiced tomato sauce (find my recipe here).

Now, you don’t really want to use this chicken tikka IN chicken tikka masala because chicken tikka is so flavorful on its own that the masala would drown out all that flavor. That would be a shame… but you can if you really want to of course.

Instead, enjoy this chicken tikka as an appetizer or as a snack. Or serve it with rice/naan and some veggies to make it a meal. Don’t forget to serve it with chutney!

Cooling Cilantro Mint Yogurt Dip

This chicken tikka goes really well with a side my cooling cilantro mint dip. I love this sauce with just about everything especially with chicken tikka or with kebabs. You only need two things to make this dip: yogurt and cilantro mint chutney aka green chutney.

I almost always have yogurt in the fridge and green chutney in the freezer, so even if we’re having last minute guests, I can quickly whip this dip together and elevate any snack or meal.

I usually bake this marinated chicken but you can grill it too if you prefer – up to you! I can’t wait to hear what you think of it!

Chicken Tikka with Cilantro Yogurt Dip

Chicken Tikka with Cilantro Yogurt Dip

This dish is made by marinating small pieces of boneless chicken in dahi (yogurt) and spices and then baking it in an oven. It’s easy to make and is sure to be a crowd pleaser.
5 from 9 reviews
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Servings 3 -4
Cuisine Indian


Chicken Tikka:

  • 1 pound chicken breast cut into cubes
  • ½ cup yogurt or dairy-free yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon minced ginger
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon Kashmiri chili powder or paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • Pinch of ground cardamom
  • Pinch of fenugreek leaves kasoori methi
  • Cayenne or red chili adjust to taste

Cilantro Yogurt Dip:


Chicken Tikka:

  • Add the yogurt, garlic, ginger, lemon juice and spices in a bowl and whisk until well combined. Add the chicken, mix well, then place the bowl in the fridge to marinate for 1-2 hours.
  • Preheat the oven to 400°F. Meanwhile take the chicken out of the fridge so that it can come to room temperature.
  • Place the chicken onto skewers, then place on a wire rack on top of a foil-lined pan.
  • Bake for 15 minutes.
  • Once the chicken is cooked through, broil for 3-5 minutes to get a nice charred exterior.

Cilantro Yogurt Dip:

  • Add both ingredients to a small bowl and mix well.
Did you make this recipe?Tag @myheartbeets on Instagram and hashtag it #myheartbeets!

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Find out more about my cookbooks Indian Food Under Pressure and South Asian Persuasion.

About Ashley

Hi, I’m Ashley. Thanks for being here! I truly believe that food brings us closer together. Gather around a table with good food and good people, and you’ll have the ingredients you need to create some happy memories. My hope is that you find recipes here that you can’t wait to share with family and friends.


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  1. Melissa says

    5 stars
    I made this recipe last night. I thought it would take more of an effort than it did. I didn’t bother with skewers, just placed the marinated chicken on racks instead. It was SO GOOD, pretty close to our local Indian restaurant. My cilantro was bad so I didn’t get to test out the dip. ☹️
    Will definitely make again!

  2. Tori says

    5 stars
    Love the spices you use to develop the flavors of India. Every cook uses their own set and I have fallen in love with yours. Making chicken with this marinade for the second time in a week. Rather than cutting the chicken into small pieces, I’m using cutlets, so I can make a sandwich on naan. I sear the cutlets on a cast iron grill pan to get some char, then stick it in the oven for 10 minutes. I’m addicted to your cilantro-mint chutney and love it as it is with the chicken, without mixing it with yogurt.

    Your onion masala has also become a stable ingredient around here.

    Thanks for the great recipes!

  3. Liz says

    Small Chicken cubes for 15 min at 400 degrees sounds like it would way overdone and tough. Is this correct?

    • Joe says

      5 stars
      The time and temperature are correct. Even after this time in the oven, I had them under the broiler for 4-5 minutes per side and it still wasn’t overdone. The thick marinade keeps the chicken nice and moist. My cubes were generally 1+”, although some were smaller.

      • Ash says

        Sounds great but I do not want to be left on wired rack, any other options. Also, what temperature do I need to set for broil.?

    • scotty says

      5 stars
      We do ours on a Traeger… we’ve used mesquite and then applewood on separate occasions and they both turn out great!

      We have to double or triple the recipe because the whole family loves it.

      • Maneesha says

        5 stars
        You did it again, Ashley! Another great recipe! My husband and I enjoyed this for lunch, and we had it as chicken tikka tacos with chutney! So delicious! I’ll definitely be making this again! I still have leftover marinated chicken in the fridge, so now I’m going to use the marinated chicken in your chicken tikka masala recipe!

paneer lababdar

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