My first custom recipe is here! This is one that has taken a year to perfect. I absolutely LOVE Asian and Eastern Indian food, and this dish is my all time favorite. I used to go to a certain popular Indian restaurant here in Arizona, but as some of you may know, they had a cockroach infestation and my family saw a cockroach crawling on their naan bread. Needless to say, we stopped eating there, and the only other close by Indian place uses waaaayy to much basil and cilantro in everything, it’s hard to taste the other flavors in their dishes. So out of desperation for yummy chicken tikka masala during my pregnancy, I learned how to make it (easily) at home.
The first time I made this, it took THREE HOURS to get into the crock-pot, because I was completely new to cooking anything but microwavable food and had never even used the stove or crock-pot myself. Now that I’m familiar with it, I usually have in all in the pot and ready to go in under 30 minutes. Hope you all enjoy this, it’s very mild compared to some other recipes so if you’re unfamiliar with Indian cuisine or are not usually experimental with food, this is a pretty good starting place. I have made this both with chicken and chickpeas (to make it vegan) and its amazing either way!
Ingredients: (Feeds about 6 people)
- 2 containers of pre-diced chicken (makes this so much quicker than dicing yourself) or 3 cans of chickpeas.
- 2 single serve containers of Greek yogurt or vanilla coconut yogurt
- 1/3 yellow onion chopped YOU WILL NEED DOUBLE THE SPICE LISTED FOR ALL SPICES BELOW, AS YOU WILL USE THE SAME AMOUNT TWICE.
- 2 tablespoons of garam masala (spice)
- 1 tablespoon of coriander (spice)
- 1 tablespoon of cumin (spice)
- 1 tablespoon of dried cilantro (spice)
- 2 teaspoons of basil (spice)
- 1 tablespoon of minced garlic/garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons of sugar of choice
- 2 (28 oz) cans of crushed tomatoes
- 2 cans of coconut cream (thicker and richer) or coconut milk (thinner and less rich)
- 2 teaspoons of salt
- 1 tablespoon of coconut oil
- 3 kale leaves and/or 2 large carrots
- 1 cup of canned or frozen peas
- 1 cup of canned or frozen corn
- Rice of choice and/or Naan bread of choice
Put chicken or chickpeas in a large bowl, add yogurt and spices and stir well so the yogurt coats all the chicken or chickpeas, let sit for 10-20 minutes.
FOR THE CHICKEN ONLY: After sitting, stir once more and add to a pan at medium high heat with oil of choice or a nonstick pan. Cook chicken thoroughly and when done, put in crock-pot.
FOR THE CHICKPEAS ONLY: Add directly to crock-pot. DO NOT cook on stove.
Add crushed tomatoes and coconut cream or milk to crock-pot, stir well, add sugar and add same amount of spices as earlier to the mixture, add salt, chop and add onion & veggies, add garlic, lastly add coconut oil.
Turn crock-pot on high and cook for 2-3 hours for chicken, only 2 hours for chickpeas! Then cook naan or rice according to it’s instructions and enjoy!
Extra: When using naan bread, I buy original flavor and make my own garlic sauce to coat it in before baking.
Ingredients for Naan Bread Garlic Sauce: (Enough for 4 bread slices)
- 1 teaspoon of garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon of garam masala
- 2 tablespoons of butter of choice or unflavored coconut oil
- 1/4 teaspoon of dried cilantro
Melt butter or coconut oil, add spices, mix well and lightly coat each bread slice on the top side, heat as directed on the package. Use the delicious naan bread to soak up the broth part of the chicken tikka masala.