BowlsChickenCurriesIndianMainsPakistaniQuick & Easy

Chicken Bhuna Masala

1 hour 20 minutes Cook
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let’s get real – who doesn’t love an amazing chicken Bhuna masala? really, i can’t think of a single individual.

Bhuna curries are popular at the British Indian takeout scene – you’ll regularly hear this call alongside Jalfrezis, Karahis and Dopiazas.

however the trouble is, I’ve attempted my truthful share of curries from those take outs and really? Lacklustre at first-class.

As any Asian can be able to attest, a whole lot of curries obtainable are simply the same creamy, sweet base used for the entirety. the entirety tastes the same. simply with unique ingredients. adequate, I received’t taint every British Indian restaurant with the identical brush, that would be wrong, but i have no longer had in particular exceptional curry dine-outs on any of my vacations across the u . s . a .,

Chicken Bhuna Masala - NomNomWow
Chicken Bhuna Masala – NomNomWow

What makes a good Chicken Bhuna Masala then?

So first of all, we could cross ahead and placed that shaker of curry powder to the aspect.

Sorry, were given nothing in opposition to the usage of curry powder, but we’re after the actual deal, amiright?

So for that, I’m going to getting inside the spices that definitely make the curry powder, however in my personal portions.

here’s what else makes an awesome chicken Bhuna masala

  • fresh ingredients – onion, ginger, garlic, tomatoes – all sparkling, no compromises!
  • The garnishes – chillis and fresh coriander are a need to
  • A thick, tasty, well spiced masala that’s crafted from caramelised, melted onions and garlic and jammy tomatoes
  • A small variety of aromatic spices. In my recipe, I don’t use anything specifically fancy, however the coriander and cumin play a quite critical position inside the flavour.
  • The real approach of the ‘Bhun’, which I’ll inform you approximately subsequent

What’s a Chicken Bhuna Masala?

‘Bhuna’ refers to a way in cooking wherein the beef is seared or sautéed on high heat.

It’s a method that’s paramount in all Pakistani cooking. It’s commonly universal amongst the fine Pakistani cooks that no curry is worth the attempt if it hasn’t had a very good ‘bhuna’ consultation, also known as ‘sautéing it till it is able to now not be sautéed any more’.

Chicken Bhuna Masala curries are generally a dry curry with a thicker masala and no soupiness, like my No effort Bhuna Gosht Masala. The distinction among the No attempt Bhuna Gosht Masala recipe and this Bhuna chicken is that the searing in the Gosht takes place on the end. The searing here will happen closer to the start. This effects is a jammier masala wherein the onions and tomatoes melt into each other a great deal better.

I’ve written about this with a variety of gusto and passion (lol) in my Matar Keema recipe right here. you may check that submit out too once you’ve read this if you want to realize greater about the ‘Bhun’.

How Can You Serve Chicken Bhuna Masala?

Garnish this chicken Bhuna Masala curry with masses of coriander and more than one crimson chillies if you’re feeling as much as it!

in this example had this with warm chapattis on the first day and rice tomorrow and they were each similarly as correct. It’s what’s so amazing about this curry, it’s simply such a non-fussy dish! it would go top notch with Mattar Pilau too!

Some additional, good-to-know tips for Chicken Bhuna brilliance

  • Even as this recipe doesn’t utilise entire spices, you could genuinely throw in a few black peppercorns for a few more heat, or some entire cardamoms (black or green) for a candy fragrance. I decide upon my curry as the recipe is just out of personal desire to not have that sturdy garam masala sort of flavour, but if that’s your jam, move for it!
  • The exceptional type of salad to serve along this is either a kachumbar salad (simple diced onions, tomatoes and cucumber) or some onions doused in vinegar for a kick. scrumptious!
  • As with all recipes, the best of your ingredients count. continually choose fresh anyplace you can. If you may get keep of natural hen, that is excellent – however you may want to boom prepare dinner instances with the aid of about 30 minutes more
  • If you can dry roast your spices earlier than the usage of them, then my pal, you’ll be BLOWN AWAY by using the flavour. This tip applies to all curries, no longer just this. To dry roast your spices, heat a dry pan, preferably solid iron, till it’s hot and add one spice at a time. Roast this, stirring it continuously till it begins to release smoke. right now upon the freeing of smoke, dispose of the spice from the pan, and then proceed onto the next spice.
Chicken Bhuna Masala

Chicken Bhuna Masala

let’s get real – who doesn’t love an amazing chicken Bhuna? really, i can’t think of a single individual.
prep time
10 mins
cooking time
1 hour 20 minutes
total time
1 hour 30 mins



  • 2 medium onions

  • 4 medium tomatoes

  • 6 tbsp oil

  • 5 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 tbsp ginger, minced

  • 800 grams chicken, bone in

  • 0.5 tsp turmeric (haldi)

  • 3.5 tsp coriander (dhania) powder

  • 2.5 tsp cumin (zeera) powder

  • 1.5 tsp salt, or to taste

  • 1.3 tsp red chilli powder

  • 1 tsp paprika

  • 0.5 tsp black pepper, ideally coarsely ground

  • coriander, fresh, for garnish, optional

  • red chilli, fresh or dried, for garnish, optional


Heat the oil in a pan and add the garlic, ginger and onions. Saute this on medium heat till brown and almost burning on the edges. This will take about 10 minutes.
Add the tomatoes, spices and 1/4 cup water. Cook this for 5-10 minutes till the masala looks thick and jammy
Turn the heat to high and add the chicken. Sear the chicken till it no longer remains pink and browns ever so slightly. If you want it to form a slight crispy crust, you can saute it for longer. The more you sear the chicken at this stage, the better the results are
Once the chicken has browned, turn the heat to the lowest possible, cover and let simmer for 30-40 minutes. You may not need to add any water because the chicken will release a lot of it's own juices, but do check every 10-15 minutes to ensure it isn't burning. If needed, add 1/4 cup of water.
After 40 minutes, this is how much water I had! At this point, you want to uncover it and begin to dry up the curry till the masala is thick and coating the chicken pieces. This took me 10 minutes but it depends on how much water your chicken released. Stay close by at all times during this stage and stir often.
Your Bhuna Chicken Masala is done! Garnish with fresh coriander and red chillis and serve with rice or chapattis.
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