This slow cooker chicken tikka masala is delicious, healthy, and packed with flavor! Coconut milk makes it rich and creamy (without being too heavy), and the combination of warm spices is blissful.
Let your crockpot do the work for you with this easy dinner recipe. Vegetarian? No problem! Read on for a vegan option.
Slow Cooker Tikka Masala with Chicken
I know many of you are huge slow cooker fans, so I thought another easy weeknight crockpot dinner recipe was in order. I mean, who doesn’t love tossing a bunch of ingredients into a pot, then coming back later to an amazing meal?! Low-effort, healthy meals like this are the best, especially for busy weekdays.
Matt and I enjoyed this for dinner last night, and not only is it incredibly delicious, it’s also crazy easy – the only thing you have to chop is the onion!
It’s easy to throw everything into the crockpot in the morning before work, or on the weekend when you have a few minutes to spare, and then when you get home it’s ready and waiting. Yum!
Chicken Tikka Masala Ingredients
To make this slow cooker chicken tikka masala, you’ll need:
- chicken (boneless, skinless breast and/or thighs)
- diced tomatoes
- coconut milk
- fresh ginger
- tomato paste
- spices: garam masala, turmeric, paprika, cumin, coriander
In terms of the protein, chicken thighs hold up well when cooked in the slow cooker (rather than getting stringy like breasts sometimes do). But if you already have chicken breasts on hand, that would definitely work instead!
Traditional Chicken Tikka Masala uses yogurt to add creaminess and richness, but this recipe features coconut milk instead to avoid curdling with the long cooking time.
To make this vegan, simply use 2 cans (drained/rinsed) of chickpeas in place of the chicken (and obviously omit the optional yogurt topping)! A can of chickpeas would also be a fun addition even if you leave the chicken in – I always love chickpeas in dishes like this.
One more tip: if you prefer a spicier stew, add a pinch or two of cayenne pepper to the mix! 🙂
How to Make Tikka Masala in the Crockpot
To make this recipe, simply dice up your onion and toss everything in the slow cooker (<—the one I have). Stir and set on low for 6 to 7 hours. Easy!
It will also work on high for 3 to 4 hours, if you’re making this later in the day.
Serve with the carb of your choice (I recommend 90 second brown rice and/or pita bread or naan) and microwave-wilted spinach. (Put a huge handful of spinach in an empty bowl, microwave 45 seconds). Optional toppings: plain yogurt and fresh cilantro – and of course hot sauce!
Enjoy! You’ll find the full slow cooker chicken tikka masala recipe at the bottom of this post.
Love easy meal ideas? Check out my 7 easiest dinner recipes post for more inspiration! And here are some more ideas:
- Crockpot Turkey Chili
- Sweet Potato and Lentil Curry
- Instant Pot Chicken Tortilla Soup
- Lemon Dijon Sheet Pan Salmon Dinner
- Honey Lemon Chicken (Slow Cooker)
- Easy Minestrone Soup
- Coconut Curry with Chicken
- Crockpot Mexican Chicken
- Mediterranean Sheet Pan Chicken Thighs
- Thai Coconut Chicken Soup
- Instant Pot Spaghetti Squash & Vegan Bolognese
What sort of other slow cooker meal ideas/recipes would you like to see? I’m happy to take requests!
- 1.5 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs (optional - if omitted, add 2 cans of chickpeas, drained/rinsed)
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 tablespoon grated ginger
- 3 cloves grated garlic
- 2 tablespoons garam masala
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- pinch of cayenne pepper, optional
- 1 15-oz can coconut milk
- 1 28-oz can diced tomatoes
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- Instant brown rice, cilantro, yogurt, and wilted spinach for serving (optional)
- Place all ingredients in a slow cooker and stir gently to incorporate. Cook on low for 6-7 hours, or high for 3-4 hours.
- Serve over brown rice and spinach, topped with cilantro and yogurt (if desired).