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Indian Chicken Korma Curry

This perfect chicken korma recipe is mildly spiced but full of flavour and wrapped in a silky smooth and creamy yoghurt based sauce.

Portrait image of a creamy chicken korma curry served with boiled rice and toasted almonds

Nobody Puts Curry in the Korma.

The chicken korma is a curry with a but of a bad rep in the world I grew up in. Among many things it was called a curry for people who do not like curry!

The reason for this is that it was the item on the menu that evolved into a dish that a waiter could recommend to British diners that would not be too “spicy”.

It is a long way from a Lamb Madras or even a Beef Vindaloo!

My version is NOT that korma! My perfect chicken korma is light and fragrant with a thick tart yoghurt “gravy”.

In many ways it is similar to a chicken passanda.

My influence for this chicken korma recipe came from a recipe I stumbled on by Atul Kochhar.

The first Indian chef to receive a Michelin star and the owner of a restaurant that I consider to be one of the best I that have ever eaten in, ‘Benares’!

This recipe reduces the amount of cream usually and sticks with yoghurt. This adds a delicious tartness to the fragrant spices in the silky korma sauce.

My recipe also does not use coconut milk, a common and relatively modern addition to chicken korma recipes.

Portrait overhead image of a creamy chicken korma curry served with boiled rice and toasted almonds.

Ingredient Substitutions.

A word of warning for those of you on a diet, please take care if you are planning to use low fat yoghurt, or cream.

Both of these products will increase the chances of your korma sauce splitting. Now your homemade chicken korma curry will still be edible, however it will best eaten with your eyes closed!

You can reduce the chances of this happening by adding something to stabilise the dairy elements.

Flour or cornflower works well but you will need to significantly increase the water content and as a result the spicing.

You can swap the ghee for an oil if you wish, something like rape seed (canola) or peanut oil would work well.

If you wanted a bit more of a veggie element you could throw in loads of spinach at the end. You will end up with a mild but delicious version of a chicken saag.

Portrait close up image of a creamy chicken korma curry served with boiled rice and toasted almonds.

Serving Suggestions.

Soooo, its a curry, a curry with a nice thick “gravy”… so that means only one thing if you ask me, and that is naan bread!

Although a chapati or roti would be a perfectly acceptable bread element for this recipe.

I have mentioned before that I have no qualms about going full carb overload. As a result, I usually go naan bread and boiled rice with my chicken korma.

But there are other options, Bombay potatoes pair really well with the thick and creamy sauce.

If you wanted to go with greens then these Indian Green Beans would also work perfectly.

Never let it be said again that the chicken korma is for people that do not like curry!

Square image of a creamy chicken korma curry served with boiled rice and toasted almonds.
Yield: 2 Servings

Chicken Korma Recipe

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

A chicken korma is a Mughal Indian curry dating back to the 16th century, featuring a silky yoghurt based sauce and fragrantly spiced it is a winner!


  • 400 g (14 oz) Chicken Thighs
  • 30 g (1/4 Cup) Nibbed Almonds
  • 75 g (1/2 Cup) Onion
  • 200 g (3/4 Cup) Greek Yoghurt
  • 2 Tbsp Cream
  • 15 g (1/3 Cup) Coriander Leaves
  • 1 Tsp Garam Masala
  • 1 Tsp Turmeric
  • 1/2 Tsp Kashmiri Chili Powder
  • 75 ml (1/3 Cup) Water
  • 50 g (4 Tbsp) Ghee
  • 1 Stick Cinamon
  • 2 Cloves
  • 4 Green Cardamom Pods
  • 1 Tsp Coriander Seeds
  • 1/2 Tsp Salt


  1. Place the almonds in a pan and then toast them either in the oven or on the stove top.
  2. Slice your chicken thighs which should be boneless and skinless into bite-sized pieces.
  3. Roughly chop the onion and then blend to a smooth paste adding water as necessary.
  4. Melt 20 g of ghee in a pan over a medium heat.
  5. Add in the onion paste and cook until golden, this will take 5-7 minutes.
  6. Sprinkle in the turmeric, garam masala and chilli powder and stir for 30 seconds.
  7. Add the chicken stir to coat.
  8. Season with salt and add the water and cook for 5 minutes.
  9. Add the cream and yoghurt and simmer on low, for 35 minutes.
  10. Chop the coriander.
  11. Just before serving melt the remaining ghee in a pan over a high heat.
  12. Add the green cardamom pods, coriander seeds cloves and cinnamon stick.
  13. Stir until they begin to crackle.
  14. Then add the ghee into the curry, discarding the seeds and add the coriander and serve topped with the toasted almonds.


It is important not to boil this chicken korma sauce, ensure that you keep the cooking at a gentle simmer in order to prevent the sauce separating.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 874Total Fat: 67gSaturated Fat: 29gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 36gCholesterol: 343mgSodium: 1099mgCarbohydrates: 19gFiber: 4gSugar: 10gProtein: 57g

Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.

Did you make this recipe?

If you made this recipe, I'd love to see what you did and what I can do better, share a picture with me on Instagram and tag me @krumplibrian and tell me how it went!

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Sara Lynn

Tuesday 28th of April 2020

This looks incredible! Love korma but have never thought to make it at home :)

Gail Warwick

Monday 4th of March 2019

Does this recipe call for fresh curry leaves or will dried work? I will need to order them on-line as I live in a very small town with only one market and there isn't a big demand. Thanks!

Brian Jones

Monday 4th of March 2019

Fresh curry leaves are much better than dried, but they only have a shelf life of around a week. Fortunately, they freeze wonderfully! I struggle to get them too and have been unsuccessful in growing a curry plant, to be honest if I can only get dried I would skip using them. Dried will add a little flavour but not enough to make it worthwhile.


Saturday 29th of September 2018

I enjoy the recipes, they are a sampler of international cuisine and not just regional meals. Being a newbie, do you have any favorite Hungarian dishes? I subscribed to learn more about the Magyar table and their customs. No criticism intended just hungry for for the knowledge.


Brian Jones

Monday 1st of October 2018

Hey Ish...

I'm not Hungarian so this is not the place to come for a deep understanding of Hungarian customs and culture, I'm a migrant in Hungary so very much view things from the outside in with a sense of wonderment and often confusion. Having said that I do have a few Hungarian recipes here, a couple of Gulyás (goulash) recipes a couple of Paprikás (Paprikash) recipes, I even have a cake.

Having said that Hungarian food culture does seep into other areas of my cooking such as my use of paprika in lots of my recipes, and my use of pickles has gone through the roof.

Paul edwards

Monday 3rd of September 2018

Brian, Love your recipes. I want to knock up this Korma but I live in Thailand. I'll have to knock up the Garam myself but Kashmiri chilli is not available. Ive got chilli sauces, powders and fresh from this region. Can you suggest a substitute ? Regards paul.

Brian Jones

Monday 3rd of September 2018

Hey Paul... Good to hear from you!

I'm not sure I can give substitute without knowing what your local produce is like but you sound confident of knocking up a garam masala so hopefully a good description of Kashmiri chili powder will help push you in the right direction. Kashmiri chili powder is a blend of chili powders designed to be relatively mild and usually used in large volumes to give a vibrant red colour without killing people with heat. Having said that it does have a rich flavour probably the closest thing I can describe it as is a relatively mildly spiced paprika, although the sweet stuff and not the smoked stuff.

Hope that gives you a hint and a push in the right direction.




Thursday 30th of August 2018

ugh, it's midnight here and you are making me hungry for some korma! Thanks, Brian.

Brian Jones

Friday 31st of August 2018

lol... I'm pretty sure you could score some if you needed too ;)