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Close up of chicken curry to show texture of the gravy and succulent, juicy pieces of chicken

Easy Chicken Curry for Beginners

Incredibly easy to put together, no fancy ingredients or complicated method, this chicken curry recipe is perfect for beginners or novice cooks. But also perfect for anyone who wants a really good homestyle chicken curry that tastes like a million bucks!
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 6 people
Calories 338kcal
Author Richa


  • 1 kg Chicken skinless, bone-in, curry cut (cut into 1.5 inch pieces)
  • ½ teaspoon Turmeric Powder
  • ½ cup Curd/Yogurt
  • 3 Onions roughly diced
  • 8-10 Garlic Cloves peeled
  • 1 inch Ginger
  • 4 Tomatoes roughly diced
  • 3 tablespoon Oil
  • 1 teaspoon Jeera
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • 2 Cardamom Pods
  • 2 tablespoon Meat Masala
  • 1 tablespoon Coriander Powder
  • ½ teaspoon Turmeric Powder
  • 2 teaspoon Kashmiri Chilli Powder
  • 1.5 teaspoon Salt divided
  • 1-1.5 cups Water
  • 2-3 Green Chillies
  • ¼ cup Coriander finely chopped


  • Marinate chicken in curd, turmeric and salt while you get everything ready - about 15-20 minutes is enough
  • Grind together onions, ginger and garlic to a rough puree and set aside. Grind tomatoes also to a rough puree and set aside
  • In a kadhai or deep bottom pan, heat oil and add jeera, bayleaf, cloves and cardamom.
  • Once the jeers starts spluttering, add the onion paste and cook for about 12 minutes stirring every few minutes to ensure the paste doesn’t stick to the bottom and burn. The onion paste should become a light brown in colour
  • Add tomato puree, meat masala, coriander powder and chilli powder and mix. Cook this for 3-4 minutes till you can see a little oil separating on the sides and top.
  • Add chicken and dry roast it in the masala for a minute or two
  • Add water and mix well. Bring to a boil and then lower the flame and cook this covered for 30-35 minutes till the chicken is tender.
  • Add lots of chopped coriander - this adds a lot of flavour. Curry is ready!



  1. Do not skip the curd chicken marinade. The curd marinade tenderises the meat gently and effectively as compared to acidic marinades like lemon or vinegar which toughens the meat. 
  2. Grind onions, ginger and garlic as well as tomato to a rough blend, do not make it a smooth puree. This is necessary as these ingredients continue to break down while cooking. Keeping it a rough blend will also provide the gravy like texture required for the dish. 
  3. Cook the onion paste till it turns light brown in colour. Remember to stir frequently as it can easily stick to the bottom and burn. Once it turns light brown in colour, the raw aroma also goes away. 
  4. Cook the tomatoes until the oil separates i.e., there is a thin layer of oil on top. The oil separating is an indicator that the spices have combined and are cooked through. It also indicated that the excess moisture has evaporated. 
  5. Do not skimp on the coriander - it really elevates the flavour of the dish!


Calories: 338kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 20g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 772mg | Potassium: 569mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 1876IU | Vitamin C: 20mg | Calcium: 89mg | Iron: 2mg