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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 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. 4 stars
    This turned out well, and we both enjoyed it served on rice, but I found myself wishing that the curry flavor was a bit more pronounced. Don’t get me wrong, it was delicious, but maybe if I had added some curry powder it would have been even more so. I did save the leftover curry paste and will now look for a recipe to use it in!

    1. Hey Helen,
      Happy Friday!! I appreciate you making this recipe and your comment, so glad to hear it was delish! xx

    1. Hi Jessalyn,
      I would add chili flakes or cayenne:) Please let me know if you have any other questions, I hope you love this recipe! xx

  2. If I’m just using store bought yellow curry paste do I still use the same amount? It seems like the bottle is a little small to be able to use 1/2 cup

    1. Hi Cami,
      Yes, you will still want to use 1/2 cup of curry paste. Please let me know if you have any other questions, I hope this recipe turns out well for you! xx

  3. Could I swap the chicken and use steak instead? We always have steak on hand because my husband’s parents have a cow farm.

    1. Hey Tracey,
      Happy Monday!!⛄️ Thanks so much for making this recipe and sharing your feedback, I love to hear that it turned out well for you! xT

  4. 5 stars
    1st time I made it I used Tandoori masala – excellent vibrant red color – nice warm heat. My son had me add quartered onion slice with the chicken as that is how is fave restaurant makes it. We both were so impressed – great flavor, easy prep! Making it tonight with the garam masala – added the onion again. Smells amazing!! Thanks for the great recipe!!!

    1. Hey Becky,
      Happy Monday!❄️🎄 I appreciate you making this recipe and sharing your review, so glad to hear it was enjoyed! xT

  5. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this recipe, so flavorful! My hubby likes it so much he makes it 2-3 times a week, then takes a break for about a month or so, then it’s back in the rotation. Prepping this for my youngest to help with her cooking. Unfortunately, she has to work during Christmas. Can you clear up one thing? I printed out the recipe for her and my copy states 314 calories, but her’s states 993 calories. Which is more accurate? Thank you again. You are very talented.

    1. Hey Cathy,
      Happy Monday!❄️🎄 I appreciate you making this recipe and sharing your review, so glad to hear it was enjoyed! Hmm, that’s really weird, not sure why that happened! I always recommend that if the nutritional information is important to you, you use your own personal calculator. Ours is automatic and controlled by google. It’s not something we’d prefer to be using. We are required to. I’m sorry for the trouble, we do our best! xT

  6. 3 stars
    This recipe smelled so good while making but it left the chicken tasting very bland. I love, love Indian food but I was sad that this wasn’t very good. Sorry Tieghan. Still think you have the best site for delicious recipes!

    1. Hi Maree,
      Thanks for giving the recipe a try and sharing your feedback. Was there anything you may have adjusted? Let me know how I can help! xT

  7. We enjoyed this very much. I used all the curry mixture since some people thought it was bland & I also added a touch of sugar. I keep fresh ginger in my freezer & it is so helpful to always have it available.

    1. Hey Shelly,
      Awesome!! Thanks so much for making this recipe and sharing your review! Love to hear that it was enjoyed! Happy Sunday!🎄

  8. 2 stars
    This was ok, nothing amazing though….. Garam Masala is best at the end of cooking, and three tablespoons is far too much. I was still curious to try, but best to leave these types of recipes to the people that understand how/when to use spices. 🙂

  9. 5 stars
    This recipe was amazing! So much flavour, simple to make. My only complaint is my blender (vitamin) wouldn’t properly blend the curry paste because there were no wet ingredients so it was quite chunky but the overall flavour of this dish was just unreal. Thank you !!

  10. 5 stars
    So very yummy!! It took me quite a bit longer than the stated time, but I will plan for that next time. 5 stars!

    1. Hey London,
      Happy Wednesday! I love to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks so much for making it and sharing your feedback! xx

  11. 5 stars
    So easy and amazing flavors! This was restaurant quality and everyone in the family enjoyed. Even the 6 year old!

    1. Hey Tyra,
      Happy Wednesday! I love to hear that this recipe was enjoyed, thanks so much for making it and sharing your feedback! xx

  12. 5 stars
    This was really easy to make and delicious! Thank you! Do you have any other recipes that use the curry paste? I have so much leftover and want to try something new.