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Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala

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Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala

Let your crockpot do the work for you with this easy dinner recipe for Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala! Vegetarian? No problem! Read on for a vegan option.

slow cooker chicken tikka masala 1

I know many of you are huge slow cooker fans, so I thought another easy weeknight crockpot dinner recipe was in order. (Psst: here are a few of my other crockpot faves: Slow Cooker Moroccan Chicken Stew and Slow Cooker Stewed Lamb with Veggies.)

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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 leaving for work, or on the weekend when you have a few minutes to spare, and then when you get home it’s ready and waiting. Isn’t that the best?!

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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.

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. 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! 🙂

slow cooker chicken tikka masala ingredients 1

So – to make this, simply 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.

slow cooker chicken tikka masala recipe

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!

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Slow Cooker Chicken Tikka Masala

by fANNEtastic food

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 6-7 hours


Ingredients (serves 6)

  • 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 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 on high for 3-4 hours.
  • Serve over brown rice and wilted spinach, topped with cilantro and yogurt (if desired).
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Love easy meal ideas? Check out my 7 easiest dinner recipes post for more inspiration!

What sort of other slow cooker meal ideas/recipes would you like to see? I’m happy to take requests!

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