Serve up this incredible keto Chicken Tikka Masala recipe for dinner this week. Succulent pieces of tender chicken smothered in a creamy sauce filled with bold spices. This Indian dish is a lighter version that doesn't lack flavor just calories. Skip takeout from your favorite Indian restaurant and make this Chicken Tikka Masala slow cooker recipe today.
If you’ve never tried Indian food before I dare you to try this, it is flavorful without being spicy and the perfect stick to your ribs type of meal for cold winter nights. I first had Indian when my husband and I were dating. I was a vegetarian then, and I wanted to try Indian food after a friend from my photography classes kept raving about the cuisine of his culture. It was perfect. I was surprised at how tasty a plate of vegetables and rice could be.
Indian Inspired Chicken Tikka Masala Recipe
After dinner, we went to visit a little shrine nearby and (in the cold February weather) my husband proposed! I’ve been a fan of Indian food ever since. However, my kids are not huge fans so often my husband, and I will make this for date night and eat alone in the kitchen.
Meanwhile, the kids eat something easy like pizza and have a movie night (we spread out a blanket in the living room, and they get to have dinner while watching a movie – they love doing this). Most of the time I will freeze half the batch of this so we can have a second date night without cooking!
Can You Make Chicken Tikka Masala In A Slow Cooker
Yes! I share stovetop and slow cooker options. I have found both options taste amazing, and sometimes the slow cooker is a better fit for me and my schedule. This Chicken Tikka Masala slow cooker recipe is outstanding and easy to make.
What Is Garam Masala?
In my recipe I use Garam Masala, this is an Indian spice that adds so much depth to your chicken tikka masala crockpot recipe. It is filled with spices like saffron, fennel seeds, ginger, garlic, and more. Depending on the brand you buy will vary in the spices used.
BUT, if you don't want to buy this spice individually for this keto chicken tikka masala recipe, you can make your own. You might find you have all these spices on hand already, and won't have to buy this specific spice. Either way, the Garam Masala spice is pretty affordable!
What is the Difference Between Butter Chicken and Chicken Tikka Masala?
The most significant difference between butter chicken and chicken tikka masala is how the dishes are prepared. Butter chicken uses a lot of butter and offers a vibrant and creamy sauce that is mellow. Chicken Tikka Masala uses a lot more spices, and depending on the recipe you can come across some recipes that are incredibly spicy.
Is Chicken Tikka Masala Indian?
Yes, this is a classic and very popular Indian dish that you will be able to order in most Indian restaurants. They tend to call the sauce gravy, and it is bold in flavor and highly addictive.
Is Keto Chicken Tikka Masala Healthy?
I share a lighter low carb version that will cut out a lot of empty carbs. My recipe is grain free, dairy free, and gluten-free. I wanted to create a dish that fit many people's dietary needs but without all the extra carbs. I think you all will enjoy this adapted version of Tikka Masala.
Does Tikka Masala have Dairy?
In my Chicken Tikka Masala slow cooker or stove top version, I use coconut milk as the creamy base. This also gives your sauce a really rich and creamy texture you would not get from using milk.
What To Serve With Chicken Tikka Masala
We serve over cauliflower rice or even steamed cauliflower. This keeps it a lower carb version, but if you want you can do regular rice as well. Shirataki rice I hear is another fabulous option. Or skip the bed of rice and eat it as is, and slather up the sauce with some naan bread.
How Long Will Keto Chicken Tikka Masala Last In Fridge
If you have leftovers, you can toss in the fridge for up to 3 days. Then after that, any leftovers will need to be thrown out.
Can You Freeze Indian Curries?
Yes! We do it often, and it reheats beautifully. Just freeze in airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge the night before then reheat on the stove or even slow cooker. If the sauce separates a bit, use a whisk to help get it blended. Then heat some cauli-rice and serve!
As you can see we are a massive fan of this Chicken Tikka Masala crock pot or stovetop recipe! We have been making this recipe for years, and each time it is such a treat. Let me know how you like this recipe!
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- 2 tablespoon butter or coconut oil
- 1 onion halved and sliced
- 2.5-3 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs
- 28 oz can whole peeled tomatoes with juices
- 3 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 tablespoon dried minced garlic
- 2 teaspoon garam masala
- 2 teaspoon ground cumin
- ½-1 teaspoon crushed red pepper optional
- ⅔ cup coconut cream or full fat coconut milk
- ½ teaspoon gluccomannan optional, but helps the sauce to thicken
- 1 teaspoon salt
Slow Cooker Instructions:
- Mix everything except the gluccomannan in the crock-pot and cook for 2-3 hours on high or 4-6 hours on low. Cut or shred the chicken into small pieces. Sprinkle the gluccomannan over the top five min before serving and mix well. Serve over steamed cauliflower or cauli-rice.
- Melt butter or coconut oil in large nonstick skillet on medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened. Add chicken and lemon juice. Cover and cook until the chicken is no longer pink. Stir in the paprika, minced garlic, garam masala, and cumin; cook and stir 1 minute. Add tomatoes; mix well.
- Mix coconut cream in. Sprinkle gluccomannan over the top (if using) and mix in well. Add salt and red pepper to taste, if desired. Bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low; stirring frequently, simmer 5 minutes or until slightly thickened. At this point, you can turn it to low and ignore it until dinner time. Shred or cut the chicken into small pieces. Serve over steamed cauliflower or cauli-rice.
Looking for more flavorful low carb eats?
Try my Peanut Thai Shrimp, Beef and Broccoli Recipe, and Mexican Chicken Casserole.
Originally Published on January 14, 2016. Revised and Republished on February 28, 2019.
Pat Moffitt says
I'm always happy when I get your email with more recipes. I know I can trust them to work and be yummy.
I have a question about the crock pot. Can this recipe work in an instant pot slow cooker function? If so, do I need to make any changes? AND Could I make half a recipe in a small6 qt crock pot.
Yes, it will work in the instant pot. No changes are necessary. And yes, you can half it.
Kimberly Morais says
Lite coconut milk ok?
What is the gram per serving ? Just when I come to weigh it out per meal I don’t understand how much per serving is. Sorry for a dum question
I'm sorry I don't have that information. A serving is 1/8th of the recipe.
Elayne P Creighton says
I found it a tab "sharp"...Maybe too much lemon for us...However, I added a cup of whipping cream, and it was super good.
This looks great! Would it work with heavy cream instead of coconut milk?
This looks like a much simpler recipe than I have used. I'm going to have to give this a try very soon!
love your recipes