Chicken Korma Vs Tikka Masala: What’s The Difference?

If you’re anything like us, then you’ve probably spent your fair share of time pondering whether chicken tikka masala is better than chicken korma. We mean, they’re both curries made with chicken; how can there be that much of a difference?

Chicken korma and chicken tikka masala are two dishes that, until recently, were almost always associated with being Indian. They are British people’s favourite takeaway curry, after all. But the popularity of these two dishes has increased so much in recent years that we can now find them on the menus of almost any restaurant or cafe that offers ‘authentic’ Indian food.

It might be difficult to believe for those who have only ever seen them in a takeaway box, but both chicken korma and chicken tikka masala are traditional Indian dishes. They’re staples of the cuisine from the southern state of Kerala. But while they may both originate from the same place and share some very similar flavours, they couldn’t be more different.

Chicken Korma Vs Tikka Masala

Difference Between Chicken Korma and Tikka Masala

When it comes to Indian food, there are a lot of different curries and dishes to choose from. Two of the most popular options are chicken korma and tikka masala. While both of these dishes are incredibly tasty, they do have some key differences that set them apart. Keep reading to learn more about the differences between chicken korma and tikka masala.

The Main Difference Between Chicken Korma and Tikka Masala is that Chicken Korma is a gravy dish while Tikka Masala is more of a dry dish. The other difference between these two dishes is that Chicken Korma uses cream and yogurt to make the gravy while Tikka Masala uses tomatoes and heavy cream.

When it comes to the ingredients, chicken korma is typically made with a mixture of yogurt, cream, and spices. Tikka masala, on the other hand, is made with tomatoes, onions, and a variety of different spices. If you’re looking for a dish that is richer and creamier, chicken korma is the way to go. However, if you’re looking for a dish that is slightly lighter and has more of a tomato-based flavor, tikka masala is the better option.

Another key difference between these two dishes is the cooking method. Chicken korma is typically slow-cooked, which allows the flavors to really develop and meld together. Tikka masala is typically cooked at a higher temperature for a shorter amount of time, which gives it a slightly more grilled flavor.

How to make Chicken Korma


  • Boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • Kosher salt
  • Garlic cloves, finely grated
  • Ginger, finely grated
  • Ground cumin
  • Ground coriander
  • Cayenne pepper
  • Ground turmeric
  • Ghee or vegetable oil
  • Onion, finely chopped
  • Tomato paste
  • Coconut milk
  • Fried shallots (for serving)
  • Fresh cilantro leaves (for serving)
  • Cooked basmati rice (for serving)


  •  Season the chicken with salt, garlic, ginger, cumin, coriander, cayenne, and turmeric.
  • In a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium-high heat, melt the ghee or heat the oil. Add the chicken and cook until browned all over.
  • Stir in the onion and tomato paste and cook until the onion is softened about 5 minutes.
  • Pour in the coconut milk and bring to a simmer. Cook until the chicken is cooked through and the sauce is thickened about 15 minutes.
  • Serve with fried shallots, cilantro, and basmati rice.

This Chicken Korma recipe is Indian comfort food at its best. Tender chicken thighs are simmered in a fragrant and creamy sauce made with coconut milk, ginger, garlic, and spices. Serve it over basmati rice for a complete meal. For an extra touch of luxury, top it with fried shallots and fresh cilantro leaves. Enjoy!

How to make Tikka Masala


  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish


  • In a large bowl, combine the chicken, onion, garlic, garam masala, cumin, turmeric, cardamom, and cloves.
  • Pour into a slow cooker. Add the tomatoes, yogurt, cream, salt and pepper.
  • Stir well to combine. Cover and cook on LOW for 6-8 hours or on HIGH for 3-4 hours until the chicken is cooked through.
  • Garnish with cilantro leaves before serving. Serve over steamed rice or with naan bread.

Enjoy your homemade Tikka Masala!


So, what’s the verdict? Both chicken korma and tikka masala are delicious options that will leave you satisfied. If you’re looking for a richer, creamier dish, chicken korma is the way to go. However, if you’re looking for a lighter, more tomato-based flavor, tikka masala is the better option. Whichever you choose, you really can’t go wrong!

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