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Easy Chicken Tikki Masala (gluten-free, vegan, paleo, dairy-free, healthy)

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Indian food remains one of my favorite International cuisines to date. In fact one of my favorite places to eat this delightful dish is non other than Grand Central Station in NYC! Who would’ve thought that in a place where millions of people cross paths that tucked away in the back would be one of my favorite restaurants. Once things return to normal you seriously have to try this place!

Since I’ve been at home these past few months like everyone else, I decided to take this time to perfect my cooking and baking game. I’ve mastered the Chinese food pork spring rolls, Vietnamese Vegetable Rolls, and even managed to make kick butt Pierogies, but one dish which had reminaed untouched by my graces is Indian food. Sure I have made coconut chicken curry but tackling the Tikki Masala sauce was exactly the adventure I’d been looking for.

So I battled with the garlic and sliced up those tomatoes and came up with an Indian sauce which I am quite proud of and I hope you will enjoy as well.

Dairy-free/vegan options

If you choose to make this recipe, I included dairy-free and vegan substitutions for you. For instance this recipes calls for butter but you can easily replace this with your favorite vegan butter. Earth balance makes a great alternative. This recipes also called for heavy cream which you can easily replace with a non-dairy cream alternative. The one I use in this recipe is by Let’s Do Organic and it’s a coconut cream alternative but there are tons of other brands out there that make vegan alternatives. If you are unable to find any substitutions for the cream you can use either coconut milk, almond milk or your favorite vegan milk to replace this ingredient but I do want to note that I have not tried this recipe with a regular milk substitution so I cannot say how it will turn out.

If you use regular milk to replace the cream and the recipe works fine then be sure to let me know by leaving a comment below so I can make a note of this! 🙂

** The final vegan substitution is for the chicken. If you’re making this recipe vegan then use your favorite meatless substitute like tofu or beyond meat to replace the chicken ingredient. Just be sure to use in the same amount – 1lb. Pan fry your tofu or grill your beyond meat the way you prefer then come back to this recipe and start on step 3.

** Or if you prefer to just double the amount of veggies in this recipe you can avoid the need for meat all together. Just start on step 3 of this recipe if you’re only using veggies.

When I am in a pinch for time but am craving some delicious Indian food I always turn to the trusty Maya Kaimal products. This brand offers tons of delicious Indian sauces and meals that are the perfect fix for your spicy cravings! I will use her sauces in place of my Tikki Masala sauce recipe below on some nights when I don’t feel like cooking and then follow the rest of the directions the same! It’s a quick and affordable option if you’re in a time crunch.

If you do decide to make this recipe they tag @runningwitht or use the hashtag #diylifestylecooking on Instagram so I can see how your recipe came out!

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Ingredients

  • 1 lb chicken tenders or breast – if you buy the breast make sure to cut up into thin slices like tenders are – replace with your favorite vegan meat like tofu or beyond meat if making vegan ** Read note above for how to substitute with vegan options
  • 1/2 bag of veggie mix – make sure to buy one where all the veggies are small and thinly sliced. My store calls this the coleslaw mix. ** Read note above for how to substitute for only a veggie tikki masala with no need for meat

Sauce:

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp of your favorite vegan butter- mine is earth balance. Use regular butter if not making dairy-free
  • 1 large onion – diced
  • 1 tbsp garlic – minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger – finely cut up
  • 2 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp brown sugar – replace with coconut sugar or a sugar replacement like brown sugar stevia if need be
  • 15 oz can tomato sauce/puree
  • 1 1/4 cups heavy coconut cream – it can me a mixture of coconut and almond milk cream if that’s all your store sells. Use regular heavy cream if you’re not making dairy-free
  • Water- may be needed if sauce is too thick, add in 1 tbsp increments – optional
DIY Lifestyle
DIY Lifestyle

Directions

  1. Turn on your grill and set at medium to high heat. Then take your chicken and put on the grill to cook until nice and crisp. Note: Don’t use any marinades on chicken because it will take away from the flavor of the sauce. If making vegan then grill/pan fry the way that meat call for. If only making this recipe with veggies skip steps 1 & 2 and start on step 3. ** Read Note above for more info on this
  2. Once your meat is cooked cut up into 1 inch size pieces. Then put to the side and start working on the sauce.
  3. Melt butter in a frying pan and add onions until they become caramelized. About 4 minutes.
  4. Add ginger and garlic and saute until fragrant (about 1-2 minutes), then add garam marsala, cumin, turmeric, chili powder, salt and pepper, stirring to combine everything.
  5. Pour in tomato sauce and let simmer for 15 minutes until the sauce thickens and turns a deep red color.
  6. Stir in the cream and brown sugar, add your chopped up grilled chicken and half of the veggie packet and cook until sauce is thick and bubbling.
  7. Serve over a bed of brown, white or basmati rice. Enjoy 🙂

Easy Chicken Tikki Masala

DIY Lifestyle
(Vegan, paleo, gluten-free, dairy-free, healthy)
Course Dinner
Cuisine Indian
Servings 5 servings

Ingredients
  

  • 1 lb chicken tenders or breast – if you buy the breast make sure to cut up into thin slices like tenders are – replace with your favorite vegan meat like tofu or beyond meat if making vegan ** Read note above for how to substitute with vegan options
  • 1/2 bag of veggie mix – make sure to buy one where all the veggies are small and thinly sliced. My store calls this the coleslaw mix. ** Read note above for how to substitute for only a veggie tikki masala with no need for meat
  • Sauce:
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp of your favorite vegan butter- mine is earth balance. Use regular butter if not making dairy-free
  • 1 large onion – diced
  • 1 tbsp garlic – minced
  • 1 tbsp fresh ginger – finely cut up
  • 2 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 tsp brown sugar – replace with coconut sugar or a sugar replacement like brown sugar stevia if need be
  • 15 oz can tomato sauce/puree
  • 1 1/4 cups heavy coconut cream – it can me a mixture of coconut and almond milk cream if that’s all your store sells. Use regular heavy cream if you’re not making dairy-free
  • Water- may be needed if sauce is too thick add in 1 tbsp increments – optional

Instructions
 

  • Turn on your grill and set at medium to high heat. Then take your chicken and put on the grill to cook until nice and crisp. Note: Don’t use any marinades on chicken because it will take away from the flavor of the sauce. If making vegan then grill/pan fry the way that meat call for. If only making this recipe with veggies skip steps 1 & 2 and start on step 3. ** Read Note above for more info on this
  • Once your meat is cooked cut up into 1 inch size pieces. Then put to the side and start working on the sauce.
  • Melt butter in a frying pan and add onions until they become caramelized. About 4 minutes.
  • Add ginger and garlic and saute until fragrant (about 1-2 minutes), then add garam marsala, cumin, turmeric, chili powder, salt and pepper, stirring to combine everything.
  • Pour in tomato sauce and let simmer for 15 minutes until the sauce thickens and turns a deep red color.
  • Stir in the cream and brown sugar, add your chopped up grilled chicken and half of the veggie packet and cook until sauce is thick and bubbling.
  • Serve over a bed of brown, white or basmati rice. Enjoy 🙂

Notes

** The final vegan substitution is for the chicken. If you’re making this recipe vegan then use your favorite meatless substitute like tofu or beyond meat to replace the chicken ingredient. Just be sure to use in the same amount – 1lb. Pan fry your tofu or grill your beyond meat the way you prefer then come back to this recipe and start on step 3
** Or if you prefer to just double the amount of veggies in this recipe you can avoid the need for meat all together. Just start on step 3 of this recipe if you’re only using veggies
Make this recipe and use the hashtag #diylifestylecooking on instagram or tag @runningwitht so I can see how the dish came out!

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