Say goodbye to high calorie takeout and make this delicious low calorie Chicken Tikka Masala. This homemade version will satisfy your cravings without compromising on taste.
This lighter version of the popular Indian takeaway dish, has tender marinated pieces of chicken, in a luscious tomato-based curry sauce with fragrant spices and a silky cream finish using fat free natural yoghurt instead of cream.
How many calories in Chicken Tikka Masala?
If you was to order this from a takeaway or restaurant you can expect it to come in at at around 500-800 calories (sometimes even more) which is before you add any additional sides. That is an estimate as it's hard to give a precise value without knowing exactly what ingredients are added and ever Indian takeaway or restaurant will vary with their recipe.
For the occasional treat it perfectly fine to enjoy a delicious meal out like this, but if you love Indian food like me you want to enjoy Indian cuisine more often while sticking to your daily calorie goal then my low calorie version is a must and it is only 298 calories per serving, which means you still have a reasonable amount of calories for a side of your choosing.
There are lots more recipes around this calorie value in my 200-300 calories recipe section.
If you are using these recipes as part of a calorie controlled diet or healthy eating plan, you can calculate your daily calories by using a calorie calculator, as this will vary per individual depending on various factors.
Ingredients for Chicken Tikka Masala
Don't be put off by the long list of ingredients, most of it is the spices which the majority of us have in our spice cupboard, shelf or drawer. Take away the spices and it is actually very minimal ingredients.
Spices are the essential part of a curry so there really is not way of shortening down the amount used unless you are using a ready made mix or paste, which while convenient can often add additional calories you can save by making your own.
Can I use chicken thigh?
I have used chicken breast in this recipe to bring the calories in as low as possible, but chicken thigh is fine to use also. Just ensure you trim visible fat to make it as lean as possible and remember the calories will be slightly higher so you will need to account for the swap.
How to Stop Fat Free Yoghurt from Splitting in Recipes
Ever stirred some fat free yoghurt into a sauce hoping for a creamy finish only for it to split and look grainy and unappetizing. This is common with fat free dairy products because of the lack of fat they don't emulsify.
However there are couple of tricks of things you can do to prevent any curdling. The one I use most often is to stir a little cornstarch into the yoghurt, then add some of the sauce into the yoghurt/starch mixture to bring up the temp a bit before stirring it into the sauce. The starch and the ensuring it's not cold straight out of the fridge will prevent any curdling.
The last option is of course the just spoon some onto your served dish, but this won't give the lighter creaming finish to a sauce you were hoping for.
Sides to serve with Chicken Tikka Masala
For sides I always like to pair this with some cooked basmati rice and then some of the Greek Yoghurt Garlic Naan which are perfect for scooping up some of the sauce.
If you prefer a more flavoured rice then these pilau rice options are delicious:
Or for a lower carb side try this Cauliflower and Courgette Rice.
Love poppadoms? Did you know you can cook them in the microwave without lots of oil, I just put one in the microwave and cooked for about 30-45 secs and it will pop just like a poppadom. I recommend only cooking one at a time as they don't cook evenly if you try to do more than one.
More Indian Fakeaway Recipes
Looking for some more Indian Fakeaway dishes? Check out these:
- Chicken Korma
- Prawn Puri
- Chicken Dupiaza
- Onion Bhaji
- Vegetable Pakora
- Aloo Gobi
- Lamb Rogan Josh
- Kidney Bean Curry (Rajma)
- Matar Paneer
- Tarka Dhal
or if you would like more recipe ideas or sides to make with this recipe - head on over to the FULL RECIPE INDEX where you will find over 900 delicious recipes with calories and you can search by meal type, ingredients, course, diet and more..
All recipes on Slimming Eats have estimated nutritional information for your convenience.
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For the chicken tikka:
- 600g of chicken breast, diced
- 130g of fat free natural yoghurt
- 4 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 1 tablespoon of ginger root, grated
- 1.5 teaspoons of ground cumin
- 1.5 teaspoons of ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon of paprika (not smoked)
- 1 teaspoon of garam masala
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- ½ teaspoon of chilli powder
- juice of half a lemon
- few drops of red food colouring (optional)
For the masala curry:
- 1 onion
- 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
- ½ tablespoon of ginger root, grated
- 2 teaspoons of paprika (not smoked)
- 2 teaspoons of ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons of ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon of turmeric
- 1 teaspoon of chilli powder
- 4 tablespoons of tomato paste
- 320g of passata
- 350ml of chicken stock
- 130g of fat free natural yoghurt
- 1 tablespoon of cornstarch (cornflour)
- few drops of red food colouring (optional)
- 1 tablespoon of granulated sweetener of choice
- 1.5 teaspoons of garam masala
- to serve: fresh coriander and wedges of lemon
- In a large dish mix together the yoghurt, spices, lemon juice (and red food colouring if using) for the chicken tikka until combined. Add in the chicken pieces are marinate overnight.
- Heat a large frying pan over a medium high heat and spray generously with low calorie spray.
- Add half the chicken and fry until charred on the edges, remove and set aside and repeat with the other half of the chicken. Set all the chicken aside. If you prefer you can cook the chicken on a grill pan.
- Wipe frying pan clean and spray again generously with more low calorie spray. Add in the onion for the masala curry and fry for about 5 minutes until the onion is softened and lightly browned.
- Add in the ginger and garlic and fry for a further minute or so (watch you do not burn the onion, ginger or garlic.
- Spray again with low calorie spray and add in all the spices (except the garam masala) for the masala curry. Add in a few tablespoons of water if need (don't let the spices mixes get too dry or they will burn) and keep added a little water at a time, frying the spices until the mix is paste like.
- Add in the tomato paste and stir until combine, then add in the passata, sweetener and stock, bring to a boil and then simmer for about 8 minutes until the sauce thickens.
- Mix the yoghurt with the cornstarch until all combined in a bowl and spoon about 8 tablespoons of the sauce one at a time into the yoghurt until all combined (these will help prevent the yoghurt from splitting in the sauce).
- Add the yoghurt mix into the sauce in the frying pan slowly stirring as you do, then add in the chicken pieces and let it bubble on a medium heat until the sauce is all creamy and silky in appearance. (approx 5 minutes). Stir in the food colouring if using.
- Sprinkle the garam masala on top, add a lid, turn off heat and leave for a couple of minutes.
- Then squeeze in some lemon juice and sprinkle with fresh coriander.
Please see below for full nutritional info and additional details about recipe:
- Calories - scroll down to nutritional info box
- WW Points and other Slimming or Weight Loss programs - due to plans regularly changing and updating, we recommend calculating with the official tools you get as a member to those plans to ensure accuracy of values.
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Nutrition InformationYield 4 Serving Size 1 SERVING
Amount Per Serving Calories 293Total Fat 4gSaturated Fat 1gTrans Fat 0gCholesterol 130mgSodium 861mgCarbohydrates 22gFiber 3gSugar 11gProtein 43g
Nutritional information and values etc are an estimate and is to be used for informational purposes only. Ingredients can vary greatly from brand to brand and therefore it would be impossible to give accurate information. It is always advised that you calculate by the ingredients you use.