Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala, made with chicken or kept VEGAN with coconut milk, chickpeas and veggies. Serve over basmati rice, or, for a low-carb, paleo version, serve it over a bowl of baby spinach! A simple healthy weeknight dinner!
Turn instant pot pressure cooker to Saute function.
Cut chicken into cubes and sprinkle with salt and pepper and set aside.
Saute shallot, garlic and ginger in oil until fragrant, about 2-3 minutes. Add tomatoes and their juices. Add seasoned chicken, and all the spices – cayenne, cinnamon, coriander, cumin, paprika, fennel, dried fenugreek leaves, turmeric and graham masala and salt and sugar.
Add the coconut milk and add 2-3 cups veggies like cauliflower florets if you like and a good stir.
Set the Instant Pot -if using chicken breast, to pressure cook on high for 7 minutes (9 minutes for chicken thighs) and manually release ( throw a kitchen towel over the steam spout). Open the pot. At this point, stir in the remaining coconut milk if you like, and allow the chicken to “relax” and sauce to thicken a bit more. (It will thicken as it cools). If the sauce still seems too runny for your liking, you could thicken with a slurry of 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon water. If you happen to over reduce the sauce and it tastes too intense, you can soften it up with a little more coconut milk or plain yogurt to taste.
Adjust salt and spice level to your liking. If serving over rice, I like to “up” the salt a bit as the rice will soak it up.
Feel free to add cayenne or chili flakes to taste for extra heat.
As usual, with pressure cooked meats, this will taste much better the next day.
If making the VEGAN VERSION – Saute shallot, garlic and ginger in oil until fragrant. Add all the spices, sauce 1-2 more minutes, letting them toast. Add the tomatoes and coconut milk. Add the sugar and salt. Add the drained chickpeas, potatoes (or cauliflower) and red bell peppers, and give a good stir. Pressure cook on high for only 5 minutes! Manually release to keep veggies from getting too soft. Set Instant Pot to “saute” function, add peas and let them cook five minutes. As the sauce cools, it will thicken.
If cooking chicken version on the stove top, heat oil in a large Dutch Oven. Saute onion, garlic and ginger in oil, until fragrant, about 2 minutes, over medium heat. Brown the chicken lightly, sauting and stirring for a few minutes. Add all the spices to the chicken, cook for 1-2 minutes. Add tomatoes and coconut milk. Give a good stir and add the salt and sugar. Simmer gently on medium heat until chicken is cooked through, about 15-20 minutes.
If cooking Vegan Version on the stove top, heat oil in a large Dutch Oven. Saute onion, garlic and ginger in oil, until fragrant, about 2 minutes, over medium heat. Add all the spices and lightly toast. Add tomatoes and coconut milk. Stir and salt and sugar. Add the drained chickpeas and potatoes. Simmer gently on medium heat uncovered, until potatoes are tender, about 1o minutes, then add bell pepper and peas. Simmer 5 more minutes.
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