Ultimate Guide to Chicken Tariwalya: Recipe & Serving Tips

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Written By Haryana’s Restaurant

Authentic Indian Food – Classic Indian Cuisine in Terrace BC

Imagine diving into a dish so rich in flavor and history that each bite transports you to the bustling streets of Northern India. Chicken Tariwala, a beloved classic in Indian cuisine, is renowned not just for its robust spices and tender meat, but also for its comforting, home-cooked essence. This dish, with its roots deeply embedded in Punjabi kitchens, has been warming hearts and homes for generations.

What makes Chicken Tariwala stand out in the vast landscape of Indian curries is its simplicity and the accessibility of its ingredients. You don’t need a pantry full of exotic spices to achieve its authentic taste. A few basic ingredients and your passion for cooking are all it takes to bring this delightful curry to life. Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a curious novice, this recipe promises a culinary adventure that’s both satisfying and surprisingly straightforward. Ready to give it a try?


Embark on your culinary journey with Chicken Tariwala by gathering the following ingredients. These staple items are likely already in your pantry or easily found at your local grocery store.

  • Chicken: Start with 2 lbs of skinless, bone-in chicken pieces. This could be thighs, drumsticks, or a mix of both for varied texture.
  • Yogurt: 1 cup of plain yogurt, whisked until smooth. This will help tenderize the chicken and add a creamy texture to the sauce.
  • Tomatoes: 3 large ripe tomatoes, finely chopped. These will break down into a rich, tangy base for the curry.
  • Onions: 2 large onions, finely sliced. They add a sweet, caramelized depth to the dish.
  • Garlic Paste: 1 tablespoon garlic paste for a robust flavor foundation.
  • Ginger Paste: 1 tablespoon ginger paste, adding a warm, spicy undertone.
  • Green Chilies: 2 green chilies, slit lengthwise. Adjust more or less according to your heat preference.
  • Cilantro: 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro for garnishing. It brings a burst of freshness and color.
  • Spices for the Curry:
  • Cumin Seeds: 1 teaspoon, for a nutty aroma.
  • Turmeric Powder: 1 teaspoon, for color and mild medicinal notes.
  • Coriander Powder: 2 teaspoons, it’s earthy and aromatic.
  • Garam Masala: 1 teaspoon, a blend that adds the characteristic warmth to the dish.
  • Red Chili Powder: 1 teaspoon, for that essential kick.
  • Salt: According to taste.

Make sure each ingredient is prepared as listed to ensure a smooth cooking process. As you gather and prep your ingredients, the excitement of bringing this traditional dish to your kitchen grows, setting the stage for a delightful cooking experience.

Required Tools and Equipment

As you embark on your culinary journey to prepare Chicken Tariwala, having the right tools and equipment will make the process smoother and more enjoyable. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Heavy-Bottomed Pan: Choose a large, heavy-bottomed pan or a deep skillet. This type of cookware distributes heat evenly and prevents the spices and chicken from burning.
  • Cutting Board and Sharp Knife: A durable cutting board and a sharp knife are essential for prepping your ingredients. You’ll use these to chop the onions, tomatoes, and cilantro, and to cut the chicken into pieces.
  • Measuring Cups and Spoons: Accurate measurements of ingredients are crucial for achieving the perfect balance of flavors in Chicken Tariwala. Ensure you have a set of measuring cups and spoons handy.
  • Mixing Bowls: You’ll need at least two mixing bowls—one for marinating the chicken and another for blending spices and yogurt together.
  • Wooden Spoon or Spatula: A wooden spoon or a heat-resistant spatula will help you stir the ingredients without scratching the surface of your pan.
  • Lid for the Pan: To cook the chicken thoroughly and infuse it with flavors from the spices and yogurt, you’ll need a lid that fits well on your pan. This helps in retaining moisture and heat during cooking.

Gathering these tools before you begin cooking will help ensure that your kitchen workflow is uninterrupted and efficient. Now that you have all the necessary equipment, you’re all set to start cooking the delicious Chicken Tariwala.


Follow these detailed steps to create a mouthwatering Chicken Tariwala, capturing the essence of Northern India in your kitchen. Ensure you have all your ingredients and tools ready to streamline the cooking process.

Prep the Chicken

  1. Start by thoroughly washing 500 grams of bone-in chicken pieces under cold running water. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels to remove excess moisture.
  2. In a large bowl, combine 200 grams of plain yogurt, 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder, 1 teaspoon of red chili powder, and salt to taste. Mix these ingredients well to form a marinade.
  3. Add the chicken pieces to the marinade, ensuring each piece is well coated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the chicken marinate in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, but ideally for 1 to 2 hours to deepen the flavors.

Prepare the Masala

  1. While the chicken is marinating, finely chop 2 large onions, and mince 4 cloves of garlic and a 2-inch piece of ginger.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a heavy-bottomed pan over medium heat. Once hot, add the chopped onions and sauté them until they turn golden brown, stirring occasionally. This should take about 8 to 10 minutes.
  3. Add the minced garlic and ginger to the pan and cook for another 2 minutes, until aromatic.
  4. Puree 3 medium tomatoes in a blender and pour this into the pan along with 1 teaspoon of garam masala, 1 teaspoon of coriander powder, and 1/2 teaspoon of cumin powder. Stir well and cook the masala until oil begins to separate from the mixture, which usually takes about 5 to 7 minutes.

Cooking and Finishing Chicken Tariwala

  1. Bring the marinated chicken out of the refrigerator and let it come to room temperature, which usually takes about 10 minutes.
  2. Add the chicken along with all the marinade into the pan with the masala. Stir well to combine.
  3. Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking.
  4. Cover the pan with a lid and reduce the heat to low. Let the chicken simmer for approximately 20 to 25 minutes, or until it is fully cooked and tender. Stir occasionally.
  5. Check the seasoning and adjust with salt or additional spices if needed. If the sauce is too thick, add a small amount of water to reach your desired consistency.
  6. Remove from heat and let the Chicken Tariwala rest for a few minutes before serving, allowing the flavors to meld together beautifully. Serve hot with basmati rice or naan for a complete meal.

Serving Suggestions

After mastering the rich and nuanced preparation of Chicken Tariwala, the next key step is presenting and serving it in a way that complements its delightful flavors. Chicken Tariwala lends itself wonderfully to a variety of side dishes that enhance the overall dining experience. Here are some delectable ways to serve this traditional Northern Indian dish:

  • Basmati Rice: The classic choice. Serve your Chicken Tariwala over a bed of steaming basmati rice which will soak up the curry’s flavorful sauce, offering a perfect balance to every bite.
  • Naan Bread: No Indian meal feels complete without naan. Scoop up the rich curry with a piece of warm, buttery naan. This combination not only tastes wonderful but also adds an authentic touch to your meal.
  • Roti or Chapati: If you prefer something a bit lighter than naan, opt for roti or chapati. These provide a similarly satisfying experience with a subtler flavor.
  • Raita: Prepare a cooling cucumber or mint raita to complement the spices in Chicken Tariwala. The freshness of the yogurt-based side dish provides a soothing contrast to the heat of the curry.
  • Pickled Vegetables: Serve a side of tangy pickled vegetables to add an extra burst of flavor and a crunchy texture that contrasts with the tender, flavorful chicken.
  • Green Salad: A simple green salad dressed with lemon juice and a hint of salt makes a refreshing side that cleanses the palate.
  • Lime Wedges and Fresh Coriander: Offer lime wedges and a sprinkle of freshly chopped coriander as garnishes. The acidity of the lime enhances the flavors, while the coriander adds a burst of freshness.

These serving suggestions are designed to not only complement the flavors of your Chicken Tariwala but also to turn your meal into a festive, multi-dimensional culinary experience. Choose one or combine a few to tailor your meal to your taste preferences and make the most out of this delicious dish.


So now that you’ve got the scoop on making Chicken Tariwala why not give it a try for your next meal? It’s a delightful way to dive into the heart of Northern Indian cuisine and impress your family or guests with something exotic yet approachable. Don’t forget to enjoy the process from marination to the final garnish. Happy cooking and enjoy every bite of this flavorful adventure!

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