Chicken Tikka Masala & Cauliflower Rice

IMG_1907Hello. Hello. This rich and luxurious Chicken Tikka Masala with caulirice is a real treat. It will also help  save pounds on the scales and in your wallet.  More importantly it tastes so much better than an take-away, is straight forward to make and naturally free of gluten, grains, sugar and dairy.

January can be tough and this is the time a lot of us start our new healthy excercise regimes and new year resolutions!?  If your making your self miserable not eating X or doing Y it’s likely you’re not going to stick at it for long. I’m a great believer in balance and enjoying life.

So why not give yourself a night off?  Cook a lovely treat (mostly the day before) that is packed full of flavour, minus the additives, fattening fat and general nasty crap your body doesn’t need and $$ of a take-away.  Have some fun at home, in January?!! It can happen.

Curry snobs might turn their nose up at Chicken Tikka Masala and claim it as an anglicized version of an authentic Indian curry but nobody can be sure of its origin and there is no getting away from the fact that it is one of the most popular curry’s the world over and in my opinion for good reason.

My Chicken Tikka Masala is packed full of rich creamy flavour, naturally grain and gluten free and with minimum dairy (see below for a dairy free option). It packed full of good fat using the indian ghee and coconut cream. Not only giving a creamy taste without the cream but also full of antioxidants, vitamins and super nutrients.

I eat this with cauliflower rice, a favourite food in our house and often by most people who’ve tried it.

An adaptable dish without the rice grains and packed full of nutrients it can be used anywhere a traditional recipe would use rice. There are some fantastic recipes out there (go Google),  one of my favourite uses is for risotto, see here.



Grain/Gluten/refined sugar Free with Dairy Free Option

A creamy and succulent favourite curry full of fresh spices and herbs that will cheer up the dullest of January (or any month) nights in.  

Serves 6



Ideally make 2 days before you wish to eat the curry

  • 4 boneless, skinned free-range (ideally organic) chicken thighs cut in to bite size chunks
  • 4 boneless, skinned free-range (ideally organic) chicken breasts cut in to bite size chunks
  • Juice from 2 x lemons
  • 4 x garlic cloves minced or grated
  • 1 inch of ginger, grated
  • 2 x tablespoons of garam masala (shop bought or see recipe below)
  • 2 x tablespoons of cumin
  • 1.5 x tablespoon of smoked paprika
  • 200ml, approx. 1 x cup of plain yoghurt (I used goats) or sub with dairy free yoghurt


  • 8 x cardamom pods
  • 5 x whole cloves
  • 1 x tablespoon of coriander (cilantro seeds)
  • 2 x teaspoons of cumin seeds


  • 3 x tablespoons of ghee (you can sub this for extra virgin olive oil)
  • 3 x small onions
  • 8 x cardamom pods
  • 1 x cinnamon stick
  • 4 x cloves
  • 1 x tablespoon of garam massala
  • 2 x tablespoons of paprika (add more if you want a redder curry – see below)
  • 1cm x ginger grated
  • 2 x small red chillies cut finely
  • 500g, approx. 3 cups of tomato passata (ideally organic)
  • 300ml, approx. 1&1/4 cups of water
  • 100g, approx. 1/2 cup x creamed coconut (I used Biona Organic)
  • 1 x juice of a lemon
  • Dash of plain yoghurt (omit for dairy free)
  • 1 x handful of coriander (Cilantro) leaves


  • 2 x good size cauliflowers
  • 5 x tablespoons of ghee or 3 x tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 x generous handful of almond flakes



Ideally make 2 days before you wish to eat the curry

  1. Place the chopped chicken in a bowl and mix the lemon juice over, cover and marinade in the fridge for 30 mins.
  2. Add the rest of the marinade ingredients (if making your own garam masala see below) stir cover and marinade in the fridge, ideally over night).


  1. Warm a pan on a medium heat before adding the cardamom pods and cloves, quickly followed (in less that a minute) by coriander seeds, quickly shake the pan so that nothing burns before immediately adding the cumin seeds leave for a few seconds (10-15) before setting aside.
  2. When cooled grind all of the spices together in a pestle and mortar straining in a sieve if necessary.


  1. Take the marinaded chicken pieces and arrange on a grill pan and grill on a medium heat for approx. 8 minutes before turning over each piece of chicken and grilling on the other side for a further 8 minutes then put to one side.
  2. Place the ghee in a large pan on a gentle heat to melt before adding the onions and gently heating for 5 mins until soft and golden.
  3. In a pestle and mortar grind the cardamom pods, cinnamon stick and cloves into a smooth powder, use a sieve if necessary.
  4. Add the garlic and ginger to the softened onions and stir through for a minute before adding all the powdered spices.
  5. Then add the passata, water, chillies and coconut cream and stir all ingredients together to make a smooth creamy sauce, if you’d like your sauce add a little more paprika a pinch at a time until you get the colour you require.
  6. Add the chicken pieces but not all of the marinade (I find this makes the sauce too sour cover cover and ideally leave overnight, this will intensify the flavours.
  7. When you are ready to eat, quickly bring the curry to boil and then gently simmer on a low heat for 10 minutes.
  8. Take off the heat and add the juice of a lemon, before seasoning with sea or hymalayen salt and ground pepper to taste.
  9. If you can tolerate dairy and like an extra creamy sauce add your dash of yoghurt before finally decorating with your coriander leaves.


  1. Remove the stalks and leaves from the cauliflower and blitz the heads in a food processor (or chop very finely) to create a fine cauliflower ‘rice’.
  2. Warm the ghee or oil in large frying pan and heat the ‘rice’ through on a gentle heat for approx. 5 minutes.  Season with sea or himalayan salt and pepper to taste and then sprinkle with the almond flakes before serving.

Notes:  The curry and rice will keep well covered in the fridge for up to 3 days.  Enjoy!


11 Responses to “Chicken Tikka Masala & Cauliflower Rice”

  1. Karinna

    Happy to see you tackling curry – I think I remember you saying a while ago it’s a bit out of your comfort zone, but this looks and sounds delicious 🙂 Life is always better with curry!!


      You are right it used to daunt me. But recently I’ve been reading and experimenting lots and am now stsrting to understand the basics and am loving my iwn curries. Will be blogging more later this year. Thank you and good to see you!

      • Karinna

        Great! So much about cooking curries well comes down to having that confident touch. People often tell me they’re scared of it, but like you say, once you’ve got the basics down it’s all uphill 🙂 Happy experimenting!

  2. Sophie33

    YUmmmm! A delcious combined dinner that I love! I fell in love recently too with cauliflower rice! 🙂 MMMMMM!

  3. Cauliflower | Tabitha's Gluten Free Dishes

    […] most people who have tried it for the first time to swap it for regular rice with Curries like my Chicken Tikka Masala with Cauliflower Rice click here for the recipe.  I would add however that to really enjoy Cauli Rice you need to add butter, ghee or coconut oil and […]


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