Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala [VIDEO]

Catalina Castravet
By Catalina Castravet
Published:
4.94 from 16 reviews

Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala is creamy, flavorful and the chicken is incredibly tender. It is easily made in the Pressure Cooker with the rice at the same time. Also, check out the short recipe video attached below.

Instant Pot dinner recipes are favorite around here, because they are easy to make, and are perfect during weeknights. Like our popular IP Orange Chicken, IP General Tso, and IP Mongolian Chicken, this delicious homemade dish is full of amazing flavors.

Image of instant pot chicken tikka masala over white rice.

Easy Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala

This Chicken Tikka Masala is the easiest way to make your favorite Indian dish at home. I have hooked on it 10 years ago when I moved to NYC. At that time, my fiance took me out to an Indian restaurant, and I fell in love with this dish.

The delicious buttery and tender chicken, full of aromatic spices in a creamy tomato sauce is still a favorite. I love making it at home and serve it with buttery rice and garlic naan, its such an indulgence.

Making Chicken Tikka Masala in the Pressure Cooker is the quickest and easiest way to enjoy it at home. The chicken turns up tender and flavorful. The best part is that you make the rice at the same time, with the pot-in-pot method.

If you have all the spices on hand, this becomes such an easy and rewarding recipe. The rice is so flaky and perfect and makes sure you use that naan to soak all the creamy goodness. If you don’t have a pressure cooker, you can try this recipe in the crockpot.

Image of instant pot chicken tikka masala.

What is in Chicken Tikka Masala?

It is a very popular and flavorful Indian inspired recipe,  that is rich and creamy. The dish consists of bite-sized pieces of juicy boneless chicken bathed in a rich, thick spiced curry sauce.

Also, unlike other Indian dishes, this recipe is not overly spicy (although you can make it spicier if you wish). The sauce is orange in color, and it usually contains a creamy ingredient like coconut cream or yogurt. 

Instant pot basmati rice image.

Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala Spices used:

  • Ground Cumin – is used in Mexican, Middle Eastern and Indian dishes, a little goes a long way as it has a beautiful, bold flavor.
  • Turmeric – is great in recipes, but you can actually use it to fight colds as it has powerful anti-inflammatory effects and is a very strong antioxidant.
  • Ground Coriander – always great to have on hand as it is wildly used is recipes from many cuisines.
  • Garam Masala – is a blend of ground spices commonly used in India, Pakistan, and some other South Asian cuisines. I personally used it exclusively when I cook Indian dishes, so a small jar will last you a long time.
  • Curry Powder – again, this is also a blend of more spices, I don’t use it a lot, so a small jar lasts us a long time.
  • Ginger – can be used in a variety of recipes.

Picture of instant pot chicken tikka masala recipe.

How to make Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala?

For exact recipe steps and ingredient measures, please see the recipe card below. Also, watch the short video attached for an easy step by step tutorial. 

  1. First, season the chicken with spices.
  2. Then, melt the butter in the Pressure Cooker using the SAUTE function. Then, add the onion, garlic, ginger, and spices. Cook and stir until fragrant.
  3. Add the chicken, and cook it until browned. Stir in the tomato sauce. Cover and cook under pressure. 
  4. Lastly, add the cream and stir to combine. 
  5. Serve over rice. 

What is the difference between the Butter Chicken and Chicken Tikka Masala?

Both dishes are very similar, the only main difference lies in the way they are cooked and in the ingredients used. Butter Chicken uses a lot of butter,  whereas Tikka Masala uses more masala or spices.

Picture of pressure cooker chicken tikka masala.

What is a 10 Minutes Natural Pressure Release?

A Natural Pressure Release means that the pressure is released gradually. For a Natural Pressure Release, you click on Keep Warm and wait 10 minutes. After this, you open the valve and let any leftover pressure to release. Another option is to Turn Off/Unplug the pressure cooker, wait 10 minutes, and after that open the valve.

A natural release is usually used when cooking soups, meat in a large amount of sauce, pasta, or steel-cut oats. This method prevents any foam from the dish to shoot out through the valve, which can happen during a Quick Pressure Release.

Other delicious Pressure Cooker recipes:

Photo of pressure cooker chicken tikka masala.

How to store it?

To refrigerate – Store leftover in an airtight container. Then, refrigerate for up to 3 days. 

To freeze – This dish can be easily frozen. To do so, you will have to let the chicken mixture and rice cool to room temperature, then seal in separate large zip-top plastic freezer bags. Label with the date, and freeze for up to 3-4 months, or longer if you use a deep freezer.

To thaw – Transfer the frozen meal to your refrigerator the night before you wish to use it to allow it to thaw. Add the sauce to a saucepan and reheat it to at least 165 F before you consume it. Microwave the chicken or heat it up in the saucepan, you can also put it in a hot oven until it warms up.

Pressure cooker chicken tikka masala over white rice and naan.

Tools/ingredients that I used to make the Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala Recipe:

  • Instant Pot – I use it all the time. Also, I have the 6 quarts one but feel free to go with a larger version. It makes weeknight meals so much easier.
  • Garlic Powder – Try to use organic seasoning and spices. I like having garlic powder on hand for seasoning purposes and also slow cooker recipes.
  • Onion Powder – It is perfect to have on hand for seasoning and to create different rubs.
  • Tomato Paste – I always keep Organic Tomato Paste on hand, it adds a lot of flavor and taste to any tomato dish.

Save Recipe
4.94 from 16 reviews
Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala
Author: Catalina Castravet Serves: 6 servings
Prep time: 30 minutes Cook time: 30 minutes Total time: 1 hr

Ingredients

  • 2.5-3 pounds  skinless  (boneless chicken breasts cubed into 2 inch pieces)
  • 1/2 cup  full fat plain greek yogurt 
  • 2 tablespoons  canola oil 
  • 1  large onion  (diced)
  • 1 tablespoon  garlic  (minced)
  • 1 tablespoon  freshly grated ginger 
  • 2 tablespoons  tomato paste 
  • 1 (28 oz)  can diced tomatoes 
  • 3/4 cups  chicken broth 
  • 1 cup  heavy cream 

Spices:

  • 1 teaspoon  garlic powder 
  • 1 teaspoon  onion powder 
  • 1 teaspoon  ground turmeric 
  • 2 teaspoons  garam masala 
  • 2 teaspoons  red curry powder 
  • 1 teaspoon  ground coriander 
  • 1 teaspoon  ground cumin 
  • 2 teaspoons  paprika 
  • 1 tablespoon  kosher salt 

Rice:

  • 2 cups  white basmati rice 
  • 2 cups  water 
  • 2 tablespoons  unsalted butter 
  • ¼ teaspoon  kosher salt 
  •  Garnish: 
  •  Fresh cilantro  (chopped)

Instructions

  1. Add all the Spices to a medium bowl and whisk together with a fork.
  2. Add chicken pieces to a large bowl, mix with the Spices and the yogurt. Cover with plastic wrap and marinate in the fridge for 30 minutes or up to 24 hours.
  3. When ready to cook, turn on the Pressure Cooker and select Sauté, once hot add the oil.

  4. On the side, rinse rice, and set it aside.
  5. Add the chicken and cook 1 minute without stirring. Stir and cook for a few minutes until browned. If needed do this in batches. Using a wooden spoon, make sure you scrape well the bottom of the bowl, to get anything that stuck to it, so it doesn't burn.
  6. Add the diced onion to the pot, cook for 1 minute, stirring occasionally.
  7. Add the garlic and ginger, stir to combine.
  8. Add the tomato paste and stir to combine.
  9. Add the diced tomatoes and the chicken broth. Stir gently to fully combine.

Rice:

  1. Using the Pot in Pot method, take an IP safe bowl, this is the one I use, and add the butter to the bottom of the pot. Add the rinsed rice, salt and the two cups of water. Stir to combine.
  2. Add a long legged trivet into the pot on top of the chicken. Add the pot with the rice onto the trivet.
  3. Close the lid. Make sure the valve points to Sealing. Cook on High Pressure for 4 minutes.
  4. Once the Instant Pot beeps, let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes. Manually release the remaining pressure.
  5. Open the lid, remove the pot with the rice, cover with foil and set aside. Before serving, fluff the rice with a fork.
  6. Select Saute on your Instant Pot, stir the chicken tikka masala gently and cook for about 15-20 minutes, until the sauce reduces and it thickens. Stir occasionally to avoid burning or sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  7. Add the cream, add 1/2 cup first, stir to combine. Taste and adjust for salt, if you want it creamier, add the remaining of the cream and stir to combine. I like adding one cup to mine.
  8. Serve the chicken tikka masala over rice, with naan and garnish with parsley.
0 Calories: 578 Carbohydrates: 57 Protein: 44 Fat: 17 Saturated Fat: 4 Cholesterol: 186 Sodium: 1617 Potassium: 776 Fiber: 2 Sugar: 4 Vitamin A: 550 Vitamin C: 4.6 Calcium: 128 Iron: 3
Save Recipe

Picture of instant pot chicken tikka masala.

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Comments

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Mike

Wow this looks better than at our Indian restaurant, amazing! :)

Reply

yes! its so good!

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Delaney | Melanie Makes

I want to try this recipe!

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Dee

I can't wait to make this in my Instant Pot. Looks so good!

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Anna

One of my favorite dishes to make in the IP! So crazy delicious!

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Erin | Dinners,Dishes and Dessert

This Instant Pot chicken recipe is so unique! Looks so perfect! Definitely a must try!

Reply

Jacque Hastert

I can't wait to try this out in my IP. I am always look for new, delicious, and simple recipes for it.

Reply

Abeer

Wow! What a great dinner idea!

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Patricia @ Grab a Plate

Loving all the flavor in this dish, and the IP for sure makes it easy to make! Looks delicious!

Reply

Abigail

What is the "long legged trivet" you use? This is harder to find than I thought it would be.

Reply

Just search on amazon for Instant Pot long trivet, thats where I got mine.

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Beth

Is the garma masala a substitute for all the other spices in this recipe????I've never made Indian food.

Reply

no its not, its also a blend of spices, but it should not be subtitled for all the spices in this recipe.

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Berni

Will this work with fat free yogurt? And can coconut milk be used in place of the heavy cream?

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kavitha

what is the measurement of long trivet 

Reply

not sure, I got it on amazon, if you search for Instant Pot long trivet.

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Yasar saglik

Followed the recepie minus the coriander.  It was lovely.  I also added saffron to the rice which made it better.  Thank you

Reply

Share

Do I need a smaller batch for my Mini Lux 3 quart Instant Pot? email me if you can. Thank You!!!!!

Reply

hi, I never used the 3qt, but I would say that you have to use a smaller batch for it, this recipe makes quiet a lot of food.

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Sandi

This recipe looks so goodbut I’m trying to limit my carbs. If I make it without the rice, do I need to adjust the amount of time it cooks? Thanks!

Reply

you can skip the rice, but cooking time stays the same.

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Amina Hussain

Any substitutes for red curry powder? Didn't seem to find it at my local grocery store.

Reply

You can add a little more cumin, paprika and cayenne pepper powder.

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Charlene Stevens

Can my favorite food (Indian) be prepared without dairy ingredients? I want to start cooking it at home so I have that control in my 3qt. Am I dreaming?

Reply

You can use soy milk or coconut milk, there are many alternatives to dairy so you should be good.

Reply

Mudassir

Love your recipes. Trying to watch calories and need to know how many servings is this recipe for and the calorie count you mentioned is for how many serving? Thanks!

Reply

The calories displayed are for 1 serving. The recipe shows how many servings it makes, but the calories are for 1 serving. Thank you for following :)

Reply

Melissa Boersma

I have red curry paste (not powder). Is that an exact option for substitute?

Reply

Yes, you can use that!

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Rachel H Kay

Can you do this with brown basmati rice?

Reply

Yes, sure, you will just have to adjust the timing slightly.

Reply

Jen

I’ve never had this but based on the ingredients, I’d love it. I still don’t have an instapot!!

Reply

Amber Myers

I love this dish. It's been ages since I've had it so I'm excited to try it out. Yum!

Reply

Tasheena

This looks so savory! Looking forward to making this for my family.

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Crystal Carder

This looks like a great and easy recipe for those hot summer days!

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Melissa

I cook chicken more than anything in my instant pot and I'm always looking for new recipes. Thanks.

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heather

This is one of my favorite Instant Pot meals!

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Melissa Dixon

I am always looking for fun ways to use my instant pot. This looks like a meal the whole family would love, thanks for sharing.

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Monica Y

Yummy, I need to get the ingredients and make this recipe soon. I love cooking using my instapot

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Lizzie Lau

Your chicken masala recipe sounds so good. We have some amazing Indian restaurants where I live, so I've never tried making it.

Reply

Swathi

That chicken tikka masala looks delicious along with rice it is blissful meal.

Reply

Bolupe

I love my curry but I have not tried an instant pot chicken Tikka Masala yet. I will be following this recipe for an instant pot chicken Tikka Masala.

Reply

Bethel

Now that looks really delicious. Your pictures are so good I could almost taste how yummy it is!!

Reply

Thank [email protected]

Reply

Natalie

What a lovely family dinner option. My boys love when I make tikka masala chicken. Never tried doing it in instant pot. Sounds so easy. Will give it a try.

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