Slow Cooker Tikka Masala Chicken

4 servings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 8 hours
Marinate 8 hours
Total Time 16 hours 5 minutes

Slow Cooker Tikka Masala Chicken is an easy recipe for a saucy Indian curry with all your favorite Indian Restaurant flavors!

If you’ve made our Grilled Chicken Tandoori, you know how easy it is to make restaurant-style Indian Recipes in your own home. No special equipment required, just a little prep time and a lot of spices!

Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala in crockpot insert


The next time you are in the mood for Indian food, put down the telephone or car keys, and try one our easy homemade recipes instead. You’ll be surprised how simple flavorful dishes like Tikka Masala or Indian Butter Chicken are to make at home. If you don’t have any garam masala on hand, we have a recipe below that you can make from your own pantry!

This crock pot Indian Chicken is full of all the spices and seasonings you find in an Indian restaurant dish with the hands off convenience of a slow cooking. Plus making it at home means you can alter the spices to your tastes or what you have on hand. If restaurant-style Tikka Malasa Chicken is usually too spicy, make your own Garam Masala blend (recipe in this post!) and leave out the cayenne pepper. 


Our Crockpot Chicken Tikka doesn’t have a lot of yogurt or heavy cream. This is to prevent the sauce from breaking, but you can certainly add in more at the end of cooking if you’d like.

Slow Cooker Tikka Chicken works best with bone-in chicken so it doesn’t dry out with the long cook time. You can use a whole chicken, cut up into pieces, or bone-in chicken thighs, chicken drumsticks, or chicken breasts. Boneless chicken breasts or thighs are better for our Slow Cooker Butter Chicken.

The traditional way to serve Indian recipes with is with fragrant rice, so use basmati or jasmine rice to make Steamed Rice. The slight heat and heavy spices of this recipe taste delicious with Indian Raita, a cool cucumber sauce.

Indian Chicken Tikka Masala Crockpot thigh in bowl with rice


  • Veggies: Add veggies and grains to your Slow Cooker Tandoori Chicken to make a one-pot meal. Try snow peas, carrots, chickpeas, potatoes, or green beans for an easy, hearty dinner.
  • Dairy Free: To make this chicken dish dairy-free, substitute coconut milk or dairy-free plain yogurt for the greek yogurt. You can also make the marinade richer with a can of coconut cream.
  • Seasonings: Other seasonings you can add to your marinade are lime juice, cardamom pods, cumin, coriander, chili powder, fresh ginger, fresh garlic, or cilantro.

Garam Masala Blend

  • 2 tablespoons cumin
  • 1 tablespoon coriander
  • 1 tablespoon cardamom
  • 1 tablespoon ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg

Instant Pot Tikka Masala Chicken

  • Marinate chicken at least 8 hours in yogurt and spices.
  • Remove chicken from refrigerator 30 minutes before cooking and shake off any excess marinade.
  • Pour 1 cup chicken broth into bottom of pressure cooker.
  • Spray trivet with cooking spray and place inside pot.
  • Place chicken on trivet, stacking if needed.
  • Secure lid and seal pressure valve. Cook on Manual High Pressure for 15 minutes.
  • Naturally release pressure. Place under broiler for 5 minutes if desired to get char.

Oven Tandoori Chicken

  • Marinate chicken in yogurt and spices overnight.
  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a large casserole dish with cooking spray.
  • Remove chicken legs from marinade, shaking off any access, and place in baking dish without touching. Discard remaining marinade.
  • Cook chicken legs for 25-30 minutes, turning once halfway through cooking.



  • Serve: Keep on warm setting for up to 4 hours or at room temperature for up to 2 hours before storing.
  • Store: Refrigerate in an airtight container or plastic bag for up to 4 days. Leftovers would be great in our Chicken Tikka Masala Bake!
  • Freeze: Freeze cooked Slow Cooker Tandoori Chicken pieces in a sealed container for up to 3 months. Do not freeze raw chicken in the yogurt marinade.

Slow Cooker Tikka Masala in grey bowl

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Slow Cooker Tikka Masala Chicken

Slow Cooker Tikka Masala Chicken is an easy recipe for a saucy Indian curry with all your favorite Indian Restaurant flavors!
Yield 4 servings
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 8 hours
Total Time 16 hours 5 minutes
Course Dinner
Cuisine Indian
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 6 chicken thighs , bone in and skin on
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup greek yogurt
  • 1 yellow onion , diced
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste


  • Add all the ingredients to a large covered container and mix well.
  • Let marinade in the refrigerator for at LEAST 8 hours, preferably 24 hours.
  • When ready to cook, pour entire container into slow cooker with the chicken thighs skin side up.
  • Cook on low for 7-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours.


Calories: 355kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 32g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 125mg | Sodium: 728mg | Potassium: 458mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 820IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 122mg | Iron: 1mg

Chicken Tikka Masala

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

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  1. I’ve made several Masala recipes and I think this is the worst.
    No flavor, not original. Don’t base your Masala off this. Yuc

  2. All your recipes are soooo tasty & easy to make! I love, love, love the fact that ALL your recipes are on ONE page!!! You have a wonderful site Sabrina!