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How to make Tandoori Chicken Tikka

Tandoori chicken tikka are pieces of chicken coated in the tandoori twist yogurt marinade and skewered resembling a chicken kebab! Everything on a stick tastes better and way more fun during the grilling season!

What are the differences between tandoori chicken, chicken tikka, and chicken tikka masala?!?!?!?!?!

  • Tandoori chicken: whole chicken or whole pieces of chicken with bone (chicken thighs, wings, legs) marinated in yogurt/spices cooked in a tandoor oven.
  • Chicken tikka: pieces of meat most common chicken breasts (boneless) marinated in yogurt/spices skewered and cooked on a grill or in a oven.
  • Chicken tikka masala: marinated pieces of chicken in yogurt/spices cooked in a rich tomato sauce. Masala translates to blend of dry and fresh spices in Hindi.

Key Notes

  • Marination: this is key! Whip up the marinade in minutes and let time do the work for you! 30 minutes will suffice, but 24 hours will really let the flavors sing!
  • Oven, grill, or air fry: I’ve included instructions for air fry and oven. The grill well look it up!
  • Dairy free substitution: Try coconut cream or non dairy yogurt.
  • Basting: brushing the kebabs with melted butter, ghee, or olive oil helps to keep the chicken moist.

What to serve with chicken tikka?

  • Turmeric basmati or jasmine rice (recipe below)
  • Curry potato salad
  • Cucumber salad
  • Raita

Tandoori Chicken Tikka

Spice up your summer chicken kebabs using tandoori twist!
Course Dinner
Cuisine Indian


  • 1 cup Greek yogurt, plain
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp tandoori twist
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2.5 lbs. chicken cut into bite size pieces (skinless/boneless) thighs or breasts
  • skewers
  • melted butter or olive oil for brushing
  • lime wedges and dash of tandoori twist for garnishing

Turmeric Rice

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/4 cup onion, finely diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup basmati or jasmine rice (rinsed well)
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • salt/pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • cilantro or parsley for garnishing


Tandoori Chicken Tikka

  • Prepare the yogurt marinade: In a medium bowl, stir together the yogurt, olive oil, tandoori twist, lemon juice, and salt. Add the chicken to the yogurt marinade; stir to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes up to 24 hrs.
  • If using wooden skewers, soak them in water for at least 30 minutes before baking. Pre-Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Remove the chicken from the marinade and thread onto skewers and place on an aluminum foil-lined large baking sheet. Bake for 10-12 minutes.
  • Remove from oven baste with olive oil or melted butter and flip. Turn oven to 420 degrees F. and bake for another 10-12 minutes. Broil on high for 2-3 minutes for the charcoal look/flavor. Remove from oven and lightly sprinkle with tandoori twist. Serve with lime wedges!

Air Fry

  • Line the drip tray of the fryer with aluminum foil. Place the marinated chicken pieces in the basket in a single layer. Air fry at 400 Degrees F for 8-10 minutes. Baste with butter, flip, and baste with butter on the other side. Air fry for another 8-10 minutes until the chicken is cooked and slightly charred

Turmeric Rice

  • Rinse rice until water runs clear, drain. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, add olive oil. Add onion and garlic, saute until softened (3-4 minutes). Add rice and turmeric. Stir until combined.
  • Add chicken broth and bay leaf, cover pan. Increase heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, allow to simmer 15-20 minutes, or until liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and allow to sit for 5 minutes. Remove bay leaf, fluff with a fork and garnish with cilantro or parsley.
Keyword summer recipes

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