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If you often find yourself heading to your favorite local Indian spot for curry, you need to try this Coconut Chicken Tikka Masala. It’s likely healthier, has incredible flavor, and can be made using only a handful of pantry staple ingredients…that you may even have on hand. My secret is to blend up a quick homemade yellow curry, which becomes the base flavor. I also add coconut milk to the chicken, which keeps the masala creamy. It adds a hint of coconut flavor, which I find to be really nice with Indian cuisine. AND…the flavors get even better the next day, meaning leftovers are especially delicious!

overhead photo of Super Simple Coconut Chicken Tikka Masala with towel in photo

We’re less than one week out from the release of Half Baked Harvest Super Simple. And today I’m sharing a recipe straight from the pages of the new cookbook! Some of you might recall, but I asked everyone on Instagram which recipe they’d like to see this week and the Tikka Masala won. It was a very close call between the TIkka Masala and Beef Bourguignon, but Masala won fair and square!

To be 100% honest, I’m not sure I’m really ready for the release of this cookbook. You guys, I am SO NERVOUS. I think even more nervous than the first cookbook, I just really want you all to love this book!! It’s very scary and I’ve had a nervous pit in my stomach for days now. But don’t take that wrong, because I am so excited too! I cannot wait to share this book with you all. My hope is that it brings to you so many new recipes to fall in love with.

And today, a sneak peek at one of my personal favorite recipes, the chicken Tikka Masala!! With homemade naan…of course.

PS. Barnes & Noble is selling signed copies

photo of Half Baked Harvest Super Simple cookbook

The Details.

This recipe is well, Super Simple!

Start with the curry paste. I have a hard time finding a really good yellow curry paste locally, so I decided to make my own. It takes only minutes to put together and you probably already have everything you need in your pantry right now.

I toss an onion, shallots, garlic, plenty of ginger, and a couple of spices into a blender (or food processor). Then I process it all together until a paste forms. No chopping, no weird ingredients, nothing fancy. Just simple and delicious.

The cool thing about this curry paste is that it lasts for up to a month in the fridge. So if you love making curry I’d recommend doubling the recipe and keeping a batch in the fridge for incredibly fast weeknight curries. Perfect for cold and cozy fall/winter days.

overhead photo of Super Simple Coconut Chicken Tikka Masala in skillet

Now, onto the chicken.

Since the curry paste adds all the flavor, the chicken just needs to be marinated for thirty minutes in the paste. Oh, and add in some Greek yogurt too. This tenderizes the chicken and makes for a creamy sauce. If you’re really short on time, you can skip marinating and just move right onto cooking.

Tip: Before you start the chicken, make a pot of rice. You can’t have Tikka Masala without rice.

Then simmer the chicken on the stove with coconut milk, and tomatoes paste. Minutes later your Coconut Chicken Tikka Masala will be done. And your kitchen will smell amazing, like deliciously slowly simmered Indian food.

Again, super simple.

side angled photo of Super Simple Coconut Chicken Tikka Masala in bowl with rice

So how does it taste?

SO GOOD. I know that the recipe feels simple and the steps are easy, but I promise, this tastes like real deal Chicken Tikka Masala…but with the slightest hint of coconut. It’s rich, creamy, perfectly spiced, and is best served over steamed rice with warm naan for scooping up all that sauce.

I was so excited to have the chance to make this again that I even shot some new photos, fresh for the blog. I filmed a quick Instagram story video as well. That sauce is just so creamy and brightly colored that I had to capture it.

Also? Recreating this recipe from the cookbook was especially well-timed. My oldest brother is in town and this is one of his favorite Indian dishes.

My hope in sharing this book recipe today, is to get you all excited for the book’s upcoming release. And maybe, hopefully, to encourage you all to order it too!

If you’ve yet to preorder your copy, you can order a copy on Amazon, OR order a signed copy from Barnes & Noble. Also, if you order the book before December 20th enter your receipt information here, and immediately receive the bonus pack.

The book is out this Tuesday!! Are you all excited? Will you be making Tikka Masala tonight?!?

One final note, I just want to say thank you all so much for your outpouring of support. It’s the most wonderful thing. It means the world to me that you all are so excited to continue cooking with me daily. Your messages, comments, and emails are all read and heard. Just thank you SO MUCH!! I really can’t thank you enough!!

side angled close up photo of Super Simple Coconut Chicken Tikka Masala with fork in bowl

If you make this coconut chicken tikka masala, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!

Super Simple Coconut Chicken Tikka Masala

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories Per Serving: 993 kcal

Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.


Curry Paste


  • 1. To make the curry paste. In a blender or food processor, combine the onion, shallot, garlic, ginger, garam masala, turmeric, salt, red pepper flakes, and lemon zest. Pulse until a smooth paste forms, about 1 minute.
    2. To make the chicken. In a gallon-size zip-top bag, combine 2 tablespoons of the curry paste, the chicken, and the yogurt. Seal the bag and massage the mixture into the chicken to cover completely. Marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes or refrigerate up to overnight.
    3. Heat a large, high-sided skillet over medium heat. Add ¼ cup to 1/2 cup (use to your taste) of the curry paste and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the chicken, coconut milk, and tomato paste. Cover and cook until the chicken is cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove the lid and simmer until the sauce thickens slightly, about 5 minutes more.
    4. Stir in the cilantro and serve the chicken over rice.


Curry Paste: You can double the curry paste and store it refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 1 month, or in the freezer for up to 4 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight. Alternately, you can use store-bought yellow curry paste. 
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overhead photo of Super Simple Coconut Chicken Tikka Masala in bowl with rice

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  1. 5 stars
    Made this tonight & it was delicious!!!! I’ve been craving this dish, and knew I could rely on HBH 🙂 10/10 will make again. Thanks Tieghan!!

  2. 5 stars
    This was delicious, and definitely super simple! Do you have any other recipes that use the same curry paste? It’s delicious, and I’d love to try some other dishes with the remaining paste. Thanks!

      1. Thank you! I was just looking at the meatball soup recipe. Would I use the paste I made for the chicken in place of the red curry paste in the meatball soup recipe? Or would it also replace other ingredients as well? Thanks so much!

  3. 4 stars
    You know I’m a true blue fan of all your recipes but this one was missing SALT! I should have tasted to check for seasoning but I let my guard down bc you’re always so spot on. But it definitely needed salt.

  4. Hi tieghan!
    I’m wondering if I could make this with cream or 2% milk instead of the coconut milk. I don’t love the flavor of the coconut, but I’ve used it in some past recipes, which are all incredible by the way. If so, would it be a direct substitution? I know I’m asking a question you may not have the answer to because you said the recipe in a specific way, so no problem if not!! thanks so much

    1. Hey Jonathan,
      Cream or any other milk that you enjoy will also work here! I hope this recipe turns out amazing for you, please let me know if you give it a try! xx

  5. 5 stars
    made this yesterday and it was so easy and absolutely delicious!
    my tips:
    – I added a 1/2 tsp of Amchur powder to the curry paste (ONLY because I have it and it’s always a fun ingredient to add to Indian dishes)
    – I marinated the chicken cubes for a few hours
    – I added 2 cups of cauliflower at the same time as the chicken and they cooked to perfection. 🙂
    – served with jasmine rice, naan, and a cucumber/yogurt/mint salad

    this is definitely going into the rotation. three cheers for Tieghan!

    1. Hey Shannon,
      Happy Wednesday! I really appreciate you making this recipe and sharing your review, so glad it was a winner! 🤩

  6. Help! My curry paste was so bitter! I tasted it by spoon from the food processor & decided to use store bought instead. Did I miss a step? Would the bitterness lessen once cooked?

    1. Hi Jennifer,
      Oh no! So sorry to hear about the curry paste! Were any of your ingredients expired? That could be an issue! Let me know so I can help further! xx

    2. I’m trying this tonight and i thought the same thing. If you taste it directly from the paste, it will taste bitter, but once you add the tomato paste and coconut milk, it all comes together for the right fragrance, taste and consistency. Keep on!

    1. Hey there,
      Awesome! I am so glad to hear that this recipe was tasty for you, thanks for making it! Hope you’re off to a great weekend! xx

    1. Hi Judy,
      I’m honestly not sure. Tomato paste is a thick paste and super concentrated. Let me know if you give the recipe a try! xx

  7. 5 stars
    Made this tonight with basmati rice and HBH naan. It was soooo good! Marinated the chicken for a few hours because that’s how much time I had. Going to make and freeze extra curry paste so the next batch goes that much faster. Tasty and cooks up quickly if you prep the chicken and paste in advance. Thank you!

    1. Hi Tracy,
      Wonderful!! I love to hear that this recipe was a winner, thanks so much for making it and sharing your review! xT

  8. 5 stars
    Super easy to put together, and incredible flavors!! Will definitely be adding into our monthly meal rotation 🙂

    1. Hi Molly,
      Happy Friday! I am so excited to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks a bunch for trying it out! ?xx

  9. Hi I have never sent a comment but literally you made family meals our favorite part of COVID. We tried everything! This recipe is a true fave but wondering if it can be made in the insta pot?

    1. Hey Jessica,
      Happy Wednesday!! Thanks a bunch for making this recipe and sharing your review, I love to hear that it was tasty! Thanks for making so many recipes:) Yes, you could do this in the instant pot on high pressure for 8 minutes.?

      1. 5 stars
        Oh my goodness, this was absolutely delicious! I have made similar Indian recipes before, but never taken the time to make my own curry paste, but oh my. This was absolutely worth the time and the effort. As was making HBH homemade naan. My entire family devoured this meal, including an 8, 5 and 2 year old. So good! Can’t wait to make it again!

  10. 5 stars
    Amazing! Not at all hard to make and absolutely delicious. I served it with naan, rice, and roasted sweet potatoes. A perfect meal.

    1. Hey Chloe,
      Happy Wednesday! Thanks for sharing your review and making this recipe, I am so glad it was a winner! xxTieghan

  11. 5 stars
    I’ve been on a mission to find a delicious cream free masala and this was everything and more! Adding to our rotation!

    1. Hey Alexis,
      Happy Friday!! Thanks so much for trying this recipe out and sharing your feedback! I love to hear that it was a hit!☀️

  12. This is probably our favorite HBH recipe! I’m newly married and have been cooking lots of HBH recipes to impress my husband. This one is so easy and delicious and hits the spot when you’re craving Indian food. I love that you have extra curry paste to make more all month long. And we just found out that Trader Joe’s sells Naan bread so the perfect compliment!

    1. Hey Brooke,
      Awesome!! I am so glad to hear that this recipe was enjoyed! Thanks for making it and sharing your feedback:) xx

  13. Soooo good! My husband who is on the pickier side and doesn’t like Indian food went back for seconds because he loved it so much! The recipe was super simple and delicious. I will definitely be making this again!

    1. Hey Emily,
      Awesome!! Thanks for making this recipe, I love to hear that it was enjoyed! Have a great week:) xTieghan

      1. 5 stars
        Wow this meal was so easy to make and super delicious. Thanks so much! A definite winner in our house ?

        1. Hi there,
          Happy Wednesday! Thanks so much for making this dish, I love to hear that it was tasty! xTieghan