This Tandoori Chicken Marinade is packed with flavor. The recipe is quick to mix up and super freezer-friendly. Make more than one batch!
Ready for a quick and easy dinner that you can prep on Sunday afternoon and throw on the grill a day or two later? Well, I gotcha covered.
Tandoori Chicken Marinade is a regular on my meal prep rotation. I mix up the marinade, add some chicken, and let it all rest until I’m ready to grill it.
The chicken becomes infused with ginger, garlic, and spices, tenderized by the yogurt and lemon juice, and packed with flavor.
Tandoori Chicken Marinade
Marinated in yogurt and spices, Tandoori Chicken is traditionally roasted in a tandoor oven, a cylindrical clay or metal oven used for cooking and baking. It’s often used to bake a variety of flatbread as well.
Yogurt and spices are beautiful, don’t you think?!
Tandoori Chicken has been around a long time. Historically, there’s evidence that this style of chicken has been cooked since 3000BC! So, if you haven’t tried it yet, now’s your chance!
I was a little skeptical about trying something new, especially back when I’d never tasted Indian food before. I worried that I would have youth riots at the dinner table if the kids didn’t like it.
I shouldn’t have worried. This Tandoor Chicken Marinade recipe has been a family favorite since I first made it back in 2008. I did a bit of research and adapted the typical ingredients to my favorite way of marinating chicken.
Apparently, some folks add red food coloring to the marinade in order to give it a vivid read color. Since I prefer to avoid that stuff, I focused on the spices to give it the beautiful hue.
How do you make Tandoori Chicken?
This Tandoori Chicken Marinade could not be easier to make.
- Stir together yogurt, lemon juice, olive oil with paprika, ginger, garlic, salt, curry powder, and chili powder.
- Pour this mixture over chicken breasts and allow the flavors to mingle, marinating it for several hours. If you like, you can place the bag of chicken in marinade in the freezer. It will marinate as it thaws later.
- Remove the chicken from the marinade and cook it over a hot grill.
What do you eat Tandoori Chicken with?
We enjoy Tandoori Chicken with any number of rice dishes or side salads. To give the meal an Indian twist, I like to serve it with naan and Kachumber, an Indian tomato and cucumber salad.
What does Tandoori Chicken taste like?
This Tandoori Chicken Marinade is loaded with flavors! The ginger, garlic, and chili powder give it a kick while the yogurt and lemon juice offer up a tangy tartness. The curry powder ties it all together with that distinct flavor of Indian cuisine.
How to save money making this recipe:
Here are some of the strategies I use to make this recipe more economical:
- Meal plan around what’s on sale. Don’t decide to make this when chicken is $5/pound and you have none in the freezer. Next time you see chicken on sale, add this to your meal plan!
- Do a price comparison. I know that ALDI is the best place for me to buy chicken when there isn’t a great sale elsewhere. It’s normally $1.89/lb! I keep track of prices so that I know who has the best deal where.
- Stock up on ingredients when they are on sale. Buy extra chicken as well as marinade ingredients and stash them away in your pantry so you can make this dish whenever you want.
Tools you might need to make this recipe easy:
This is a pretty straight-forward dish. You don’t need any fancy equipment. However, having some good basic kitchen tools can really make your time in the kitchen more enjoyable. Over time, I’ve honed my collection so that they are perfect for my needs. Here are the tools that I like to use in this recipe.
- plastic cutting boards – I have blue boards for veggies and white boards for meat.
- Ergo Chef chef’s knife – I’ve had my set for several years and they work well for trimming chicken and chopping vegetables.
- 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast
- 3/4 cup plain yogurt
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 tsp paprika
- 2 tsp fresh ginger (grated)
- 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp curry powder
- 1/2 tsp chile powder or ground chile
- Place the chicken breast pieces in gallon-size freezer bag or covered dish.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the yogurt, lemon juice, olive oil, paprika, ginger, garlic, salt, curry powder, and chili powder. Pour this mixture over the chicken.
- Seal the bag and massage it carefully to distribute the marinade all around the chicken. If using a dish, turn the chicken to coat. Cover and refrigerate.
- Marinate the chicken for several hours and cook over a hot grill.