Chettinad Chicken / Chicken Chettinad curry

Chettinad chicken or chicken chettinad  is a classic Indian recipe from a place called Chettinad, Southern Tamil Nadu. This place is well known for their cuisine and the Chettinads are considered as master chefs. Chettinad cuisine is one of the spiciest and the most aromatic cuisine in the Indian Menu.

In my earlier post i had written on the Chettinad curry powder which we use and make Chicken Chettinad today. As i already had the chettinad masala handy, the whole procedure didn’t take more than 30 minutes. I replaced grated coconut with 1/2 cup coconut milk and the recipe got even more simpler. I used a store bought coconut milk tin of 200ml . I did not grind again and saved my time there.

You can serve this with paratha, roti, naan, phulkas or appam.


Chicken – 1kg (cleaned and cut into curry pieces)

Chettinad chicken masala – 4tbsp

Coconut milk – 200 ml

Onion – 2medium (finely chopped)

Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp

Tomato – 3 medium ( finely chopped )

Ginger-garlic paste – 1tbsp

Coriander leaves – 1/4 cup(finely chopped)

Oil – 3tbsp

Ghee/clarified butter – 2tbsp

Salt to taste.


  1. In a heavy bottomed kadhai, add oil and ghee and allow it to heat
  2. Add chopped onions and sweat them
  3. Add ginger-garlic paste and saute till the raw smell disappears
  4. Add turmeric powder and mix well
  5. Add chopped tomatoes and a little salt. Mix well
  6. Wait till the tomatoes turn mushy
  7. Add chicken and saute till they are half cooked
  8. Add chettinad masala and mix well.
  9. Adjust salt accordingly.
  10. When the chicken is almost done add coconut milk and cook further till perfection.
  11. Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot with rotis or naan.


  • You can increase the spice level by adding chopped green chillies in the step 8
  • The tomatoes which i used were very sour and hence i didn’t use lemon juice for the sour taste. You can add lemon juice in the step 9 if the tomatoes are bland in taste.
  • Make sure you use only the ripened tomatoes as they tend to contain more juice and cooks faster.
  • When you add coriander leaves, also add few chopped coriander tender stems. They give a very nice flavour.
  • For Vegetable Chettinad, all you have to do is simply replace chicken with mixed veggies 🙂
  • The traditional recipe calls for grated coconut to be ground along with the chettinad masala. You can follow that as well. Make the chettinad masala+grated coconut paste ready and Replace the step 8 with this paste and also skip step9



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