The following is a guest recipe by Niyati Nakra and Abhi Chhabra of Baking It. Check out our interview with them here!

"Chicken Tikka Masala is an undisputed Indian food favorite and works extremely nicely in a pie, scattered with nigella seeds for a bit of naan nostalgia. Growing up it was the most popular Indian comfort food for all of us and any given chance of incorporating it in a baking dish has to be grabbed at the very first instance.  

This recipe is homey, cozy and will warm you up with a nice blend of juicy seasoned chicken and velvety tomato cream sauce.  

But what made it ultra special when we made this in Baking It were the spices we used from SKORDO and we think that they made all the difference. We thought of recreating it again with all the spices we used from SKORDO and it turned out be even better.  

So here’s is our recipe and the steps for the chicken tikka masala pie. We hope you all have as much as fun recreating it as much we had creating it."

Photos and recipe by Niyati + Abhi of Licious Lens

Makes 1 pie


For Chicken Tikka:

 First Marination  

  • 1 1/2 pounds chicken breast, boneless, skinless cut into medium cubes
  • 1 tablespoon salt  
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled and mashed into a paste 
  • 1 (1-inch) piece ginger, peeled and mashed into a paste 
  • 1 lemon, juiced

Second Marination 

  • 1 tablespoon Deggi Red Chile Powder (see Notes below)
  • 2 teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon black salt, Himalayan 
  • 1 tablespoon cilantro stems, chopped
  • 1/3 cup plain greek yogurt
  • Marinated chicken, from first marination
  • 1 tablespoon Tandoori 
  • ¼ teaspoon Garam Masala 
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon dry fenugreek leaves powder or kasoori methi
  • 1 tablespoon chickpea flour 
  • 2 tablespoon mustard oil, store bought


 For Tikka Masala Sauce 

  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter 
  • 2 whole dried Kashmiri red chiles  
  • green cardamom pods
  • 4 medium sized tomatoes, cut in half 
  • ½ inch fresh ginger, sliced 
  • 2-3 cloves garlic
  • 2 medium white onions, cut in half
  • ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon Deggi Red Chile Powder (see Notes below)
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 2 cups water
  • salt to taste
  • 6-8 whole cashews 
For Onion Tomato Masala  
  • 2 tablespoons Ghee 
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2-3 bay leaves
  • 1 large onion, chopped 
  • 2 teaspoons Ginger Garlic paste, reserved from marination
  • 1 teaspoons Deggi Red Chile Powder 
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoons ground turmeric 
  • 1 large tomato, finely chopped 
  • prepared chicken tikka 
  • prepared tikka sauce 
  • ¼ cup heavy cream 

To Finish:

  • fresh cilantro
  • heavy cream 
  • 1 package store bought pie crust
  • 1 egg, for egg wash
  • Nigella seeds


For Sauce:

  1. In a deep pot, add oil. Once the oil is hot, add chiles and green cardamom.  
  2. Add tomatoes, ginger, garlic and sauté over medium heat. Add white onion and sauté well.  
  3. Add ground turmeric powder, degi red chile powder, ground coriander, and sauté on medium flame for 4-5 minutes.  
  4. Add water and mix well.
  5. Add salt to taste, cover it with the lid and cook on medium high heat for 5-7 minutes until the tomatoes get soft.  
  6. Add cashews and bring to a boil briefly. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly. Transfer it into a blender and make a smooth paste, straining it once through a sieve. Keep aside for further use.  

 For chicken tikka marination  

First Marination 

  1.  In a bowl, add chicken breast, salt to taste, ginger garlic paste, lemon juice and marinate well and keep it aside for 30 minutes.  Reserve 2 teaspoons of ginger garlic paste for Onion Tomato Masala.

For Second Marination  

  1. In a large bowl, add deli red chili powder, Kashmiri Chile Powder, black salt, ground tandoori spice, greek yogurt, marinated chicken, ground corianderground cumin powder, garam masala, dry fenugreek leaves, chickpea flour and mix everything well and keep it aside for a few minutes.  

For Tikka  

  1. In a shallow non-stick pan, add 2 tablespoons of ghee and 2 tbsp unsalted butter once it's hot, then sear the marinated chicken tikka. Baste occasionally to coat all sides with ghee and cook evenly. (Alternatively, you can bake for 18-20 minutes at 350 degrees F.)
  2. Transfer the cooked tikka to the plate and keep aside for further use.  

For Onion Tomato Masala  

  1. In a shallow pan, add ghee, butter once it's hot, add bay leaf, onion and sauté well.  
  2. Add ginger garlic paste, Deggi Red Chile Powder, ground corianderground turmeric and sauté well. 
  3. Add tomato and sauté for 4-5 minutes.
  4. Add prepared chicken tikka, prepared gravy and give a nice stir.  
  5. Cook for 4-6 minutes on low flame.
  6. Add a pinch of garam masala and a few crushed fenugreek leaves.
  7. Finish with a drizzle of heavy cream.  

tikka masala pie

For the pie 

  1. Roll your pie dough into a 12" circle, and transfer to a 9" pie dish. 
  2. Whisk you egg with a small amount of water to make an egg wash.
  3. Spoon the curry with chicken over one of the sheets of pie dough , making sure the chicken is evenly distributed.
  4. Brush around the edge with egg wash and lay the other sheet of pastry on top.
  5. Brush with egg wash and sprinkle with nigella seeds.
  6. Bake for 35 mins at 425 degrees F and then for 10 mins at 350F without opening the oven door until the pastry has puffed up nicely.
  7. To enjoy, serve each slice with a side of Tikka Masala sauce.
  1. Can we substitute Kashmiri Chile Powder for Deggi Red Chile Powder?  Now this is a great question! So they both are used in curries to give the curry a bright red color. They both are not spicy however we think the heat quotient of Kashmiri Red Chile powder is slightly higher than the Deggi Red Chile powder so it could get a little spicy! You can find Deggi Red Chile powder easily in an Indian grocery store. If not available, then you can definitely go with Kashmiri Red Chile Powder.
  2. Can we substitute more Kashmiri Chile powder for whole dried Kashmiri Chiles? We would say about 3 tsp but we would prefer whole as it imparts a brighter red color   
  3. Can “Black Salt” can be substituted with “Black Hawaiian Sea Salt”?  You cannot use Black Hawaiian Sea Salt but you can definitely use Black Himalayan rock salt! You can easily find it in any Indian grocery store!
March 25, 2022

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