This dump and go Slow Cooker Chicken Curry masala is simple yet so deliciously perfect one pot dish. Cooked in the crockpot, this curry has the right balance of spices, spot on flavors with tender juicy chicken - all goodness and happy tummy!
Dunk your favorite naan bread or top the steamed rice with this luscious curry, oh so yum!
So, I have to confess this with a regret, I am pretty late in owning a slow cooker. I wish I had grabbed it long back, cooking one pot meals would have been a breeze.
I have to say this, slow cookers are amazing, and I mean it! Dump all the things at once, let the slow cooker do it's job. And, Voila! You have delicious meals ready to come straight to the table.
Tasty dinners, curries, pastas, soups and what not! Finally, I have joined the bandwagon and there's no looking back.
About the recipe
This is flavourful Indian dhaba style chicken curry dish cooked in slow cooker with onion tomato, yogurt and spices. With classic flavor profile, this dish is rich, smoky and so finger licking good!
It is a very basic Indian style crockpot chicken recipe but with loads of flavor. Do you know why? Alright, let me tell you!
Whenever you slow cook meat protein even with basic spices or marinades, the results are bang on! Coz, meat cooks in its own juice for hours giving you the best outcome.
Slow heat always cooks the meat perfect giving you really rich and hearty meals. And, slow cookers does exactly the same job. No mess, no fuss and only tasty meals!
Plus, the dump and cook thing is such an awesome part of slow cooker recipes. Without a doubt, I say that slow cookers are perfect for Indian recipes.
In olden days, meats were marinated with few basic ingredients and then it was slow cooked in an earthen pots on charcoal fire for hours. I still go for this method but then do the cooking on gas stove on low heat instead of charcoal fire.
Now, after using crockpot to make this lip smacking Indian chicken curry, I am not going to go for any other method. Do I need to say more? I guess not 🙂 !
So with out wasting much times let's head on to see how to make the best Indian slow cooker chicken curry in dhaba style.
Chicken : I love to use chicken on bones for this recipe. The juicy flavor and taste that comes out of bones from slow cooking makes is irresistible.
Bone in pieces gives such an awesome taste that you really need not add vegetable or chicken broth for flavor enhancement.
Chicken cooks in it own juices with spices to give beautiful and delicious curry dish. You will definitely love to indulge in it.
Onions : You will need very finely chopped or grated onion for this recipe.
You may find many other recipes on the net that shows the sautéing of onion and ginger garlic here. Honestly, you don't need to do this step here.
Tomatoes : I have used my homemade pureed tomatoes here. But you can use grated as well. You can also used canned tomatoes or Puree here.
Ginger, Garlic and Green Chilies : You can use them as grated, chopped or crushed and even paste. Whatever is suitable for you, go for that.
Instead of green chilies, you can also use chopped or minced Serrano peppers
Usually, minced garlic and ginger does the perfect job. I was too lazy to peel and mince garlic and ginger, so I replaced it with my pre made ginger, garlic and green chili paste.
Spice Powders : Basic spice powders like ground Coriander, Red Chilli Powder, Turmeric, Cumin powder and Garam Masala goes in.
Grated Nutmeg : Nutmeg gives amazing earthy aroma and taste to they dhaba style curry. So, I would highly recommend to not to miss this.
Whole Spices : You would be needing fennel seeds, cinnamon sticks, green cardamom, cloves, black peppercorns and Bay leaf.
Yogurt : It gives nice base and taste to the gravy.
Oil, Ghee, salt and pepper
Lemon juice, chopped coriander leaves and live charcoal.
Step by Step Instructions
To begin with, clean, wash and strain the chicken well to get rid of extra moisture.
Then, add chicken into the slow cooker pot.
Add rest of the ingredients into it along with only ¼ cup of water. Photo 1 and 2.
Note : I am adding a bit of water as my family loves it with a nice gravy. But, if you want gravy to be thick, then you do not need to add water at all.
Mix everything well. Photo 3.
Cover with lid and cook on high for 3.5 hours. I got perfect cooked intact chicken in 3.5 hours. The time may range from 3- 4 hours on 'High' or 6 hours on 'Low'. Photo 4.
Once cooked, add lemon juice and mix.
Now, switch off and unplug the slow cooker. Place a steel bowl or foil piece over the chicken. Put live charcoal in bowl and pour ghee over it. Photo 5 and 6.
Immediately cover the cooker with lid and let it sit for 5 minutes. Photo 7.
After 5 minutes, discard the coal and garnish with chopped coriander leaves. Photo 8.
Serve this dhaba style slow cooker chicken curry with favorite bread or rice.
Do you know the beautiful role of this Indian crockpot chicken curry? You can pair this pure deliciousness with anything and everything!
You will love to eat it with you favorite naan bread, Laccha parathas or phulkas / Chapathi. Even the dinner rolls morsel dunked in chicken curry is heaven!
For healthier chicken curry meal platter, pair it with brown rice with some nice salad and yogurt raita dip.
It also tastes great with quinoa. Pairing it with cauliflower rice makes great options for low carb meal.
All in all, you will end up licking your plate clean in no time! 🙂
How to store this chicken curry masala?
Once cooked, let it cool and then transfer to a clean airtight box, refrigerate upto 5 days. Reheat it in microwave or transfer to a pot and reheat it on stove top.
You can store the leftovers same way.
This curry can be frozen in portions or in bulk in a clean airtight freezer safe box upto 2 months.
To serve, thaw it on the counter for some time and then reheat it in microwave or in pot on stove top.
Ensure chicken cuts are of uniform size for even cooking.
Do not add too much water as slow cookers lock the steam within, there will be no room for water to evaporate.
We wanted this dish to be soupy curry-ish, so I have added only ¼ cup of water. But, if you want thick gravy, please do not add any water into this recipe.
Avoid cooking it beyond 6 hours on 'Low' and beyond 4 hours on 'High'. Further, chicken do not take much time to cook. For me approx 3 hours and few more minutes in total were enough to get perfect cooked chicken.
You can modify the spices and chilies as per you liking.
Smoking this crockpot chicken curry is totally optional. But, for real Indian Dhaba flavor and taste, I prefer doing it. You are free to skip this step.
Frequently Asked Questions
Definitely! You can to use chicken thighs, chicken breasts as well ss chicken drumsticks here.
Just keep a note that if you are using chicken breasts, do not use small cut pieces, keep large chunks and cook.
You can opt to use boneless chicken in this recipe. However, chicken on bone gives the best flavor, so I would recommend that.
Yes, absolutely! Simply skip yogurt, ghee and follow the rest.
Yes, this curry recipe easily qualifies as gluten free option.
Yes, this recipe is Keto friendly.
You can make it Paleo and Whole30 compliant, by skipping or replacing yogurt and ghee. Coconut, Almond or Cashew yogurt works great here.
The answer is yes, you can add potatoes cubes here. In fact you can add vegetables like peppers, peas, sweet potatoes or even carrots for healthier option.
Indeed, yes! You can use 3 tablespoons of curry powder for 2.2 pounds of chicken. Along with it, add paprika or cayenne pepper, cumin powder and bit of Garam Masala Powder.
Garam masala is great spice blend to give intense flavor giving the right taste and aroma to the curry. Try not to skip it!
Yes, follow the exact steps, cover and cook it on low until chicken is tender.
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Slow Cooker Chicken Curry Recipe
- 2.2 lbs Chicken on Bones (cut in medium sized pieces)
- ¾ cup Onion (grated or finely chopped)
- 1 cup Tomato (pureed)
- 1 tablespoon Ginger Garlic (paste or minced)
- 1 teaspoon Green Chillies (chopped or minced)
- ¾ cup Greek Yogurt (whisked well)
- 2 teaspoons Lemon Juice
- 3 tablespoons Oil
- 2 tablespoons Ghee
- Live Charcoal + 1 tsp Ghee or Oil
- Cilantro For Garnish
- 1 tablespoon Coriander Powder
- 2 teaspoons Red Chilli Powder
- ¾ teaspoon Turmeric Powder
- 1 teaspoon Garam Masala powder
- 1½ teaspoon Cumin Powder
- ½ teaspoon Nutmeg (grated)
- 1 teaspoon Fennel Seeds
- 1½ inch Cinnamon Stick
- 4 Green Cardamom
- 4-5 Cloves
- 6-7 Black Peppercorns
- 2 Bay Leaves
- Clean, wash and strain the chicken well.
- Add chicken into the slow cooker pot.
- Add the ingredients into it along with only ¼ cup of water. If you want gravy to be thick, then you do not need to add water at all.
- Cover with lid and cook on high for 3.5 hours. I got perfectly cooked intact chicken in 3 hours and few minutes. The time may range from 3-4 hours on 'High' or 5-6 hours on 'Low'.
- Once cooked, add lemon juice and mix.
- Switch off and unplug the slow cooker. Place a steel bowl or foil piece over the chicken. Put live charcoal in bowl and pour ghee over it.
- Immediately cover the cooker with lid and let it sit for 5 minutes.
- After 5 minutes, discard the coal and garnish with chopped coriander leaves.
- Serve this delicious crockpot chicken curry masala with roti, naan bread or rice along wtith some salad on side.