Healthy Slow Cooker Tikka Masala a flavorful, lightened up version of this classic Indian dish. With aromatic Indian spices, chicken, tomato sauce and coconut milk, this has become one of my favorite slow cooker meals.
I love Indian food. I never really had Indian food until late in life, sadly. It wasn’t until my early 20’s when I traveled to large cities and ventured out to eateries I never would have tried with my corporate clients. I remember the first time I tried Indian food was in Boston. I was so scared to try it, silly I know. But I instantly fell in the love with the naan. I mean who wouldn’t?!
We ordered several dishes, so that I could sample them all. My favorite of the night was Tikka Masala. I love the smell, the color and this chicken dish was full of flavor.
While my husband is not a big fan of Indian food (he hasn’t tried many things though), I want my kids to have at least some exposure. So I set out to make this dish. I found over the years that the easiest way to make it was in the slow cooker. Typically I use sour cream or heavy cream in this dish, but after a friend recently had her first little one, a cute baby boy. I decided to try coconut milk, because I knew she used coconut milk. So hoping I could make a dish she would love and enjoy, I took one of my favorite slow cooker meals and adapted it to make this healthier and I love it even more!
Added bonus is my family enjoyed it too. While it took some convincing to try they eventually did and while they would rather eat it with naan, I went with rice. Add as much or as little cilantro as you desire and get ready to devour.
Happy New Year friends! XOXO San
Don’t forget to pin this to your favorite Pinterest board for later.
- 1 yellow onion, diced
- 2 lbs. bone-in chicken thighs, skin removed
- 30 ounces tomato sauce
- 3 tablespoon fresh grated (or finely chopped) garlic
- 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
- Freshly cracked pepper
- 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon garam masala
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon curry powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup full-fat coconut milk
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
Add the onion to the bottom of your slow cooker.
Add the chicken right on top of the onion.
Pour the tomato sauce over the chicken.
Top the sauce with garlic, ginger and all of the seasonings: 1 tablespoon of the garam masala, paprika, turmeric, curry and salt.
Gently stir together the sauce with the seasonings.
Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook for 3-4 hours on high (or 6-8 hours on low).
Once it is finished cooking, using tongs remove the chicken thighs from the sauce and transfer them to a plate or cutting board. Remove the bones from the chicken and then shred all of the chicken meat. I do this using two forks and just pull the meat apart.
Once the chicken is shredded add it back to the sauce.
Stir together the 3/4 cup coconut milk and the remaining teaspoon of garam masala. Pour coconut milk into chicken and sauce.
Serve over rice or with flat bread and top with fresh cilantro.
This makes a great freezer meal!