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Delicious Chicken Balti Curry Recipe | Authentic Spices and Aromas

Chicken Balti Curry

Are you in the mood for a flavorful and spicy dish that will tantalize your taste buds? Look no further than the Chicken Balti Curry recipe. This popular dish originates from the Baltistan region of Northern Pakistan and is known for its rich blend of aromatic spices and tender chicken. In this article, we will take you through a step-by-step guide on how to create this delicious and authentic Chicken Balti Curry in the comfort of your own kitchen.



Chicken Balti Curry has its roots in the Baltistan region, which is located in the northern part of Pakistan. However, its popularity extends beyond the region and has gained recognition worldwide as a flavorful and aromatic dish.

The term “Balti” refers to the style of cooking rather than a specific ingredient. It is believed that the dish was introduced by the Balti people, who migrated from Baltistan to the United Kingdom during the 1970s. The dish quickly gained popularity in Birmingham, which has a significant population of Pakistani origin.

The Balti cooking style is known for its quick stir-frying technique and the use of a special rounded-bottom wok known as the “Balti pan.” The pan is typically made of stainless steel and has two handles, allowing for easy tossing and stirring of the ingredients.

The Chicken Balti Curry recipe itself is a delightful fusion of Pakistani and Indian flavors. It combines a blend of aromatic spices with succulent pieces of chicken, creating a dish that is rich in taste and texture.

Over the years, the Chicken Balti Curry recipe has undergone various adaptations and modifications to suit different regional preferences. Today, it is a popular choice in Indian and Pakistani restaurants worldwide, as well as a favorite dish to be cooked at home.

Now that we have explored the history of the Chicken Balti Curry recipe, let’s dive into the ingredients and the step-by-step process of preparing this delicious dish.


Preparation15 mins
Marinating the chicken30 mins
Cooking the spices and onions10 mins
Adding the chicken and tomatoes15 mins
Simmering and thickening the curry20 mins
Total Cooking and Preparation Time90 mins

Please note that the times mentioned are approximate and may vary depending on individual cooking preferences and equipment used. It’s always a good idea to keep an eye on the dish and adjust the cooking time as needed to ensure the chicken is cooked through and the flavors are well developed.


Boneless chicken thighs, cut into pieces400 grams
Onion, finely chopped1 medium-sized
Garlic cloves, minced3 cloves
Ginger, grated1 tablespoon
Tomatoes, chopped2 medium-sized
Fresh cilantro (coriander), choppedHandful
Vegetable oil2 tablespoons
Balti curry paste2 tablespoons
Ground cumin1 teaspoon
Ground coriander1 teaspoon
Ground turmeric1/2 teaspoon
Red chili powder (optional, adjust to taste)1/2 teaspoon
SaltTo taste
Water1/4 cup

Note: The ingredient quantities mentioned are approximate and can be adjusted according to personal taste preferences.



  1. Cut the boneless chicken thighs into pieces.
  2. Finely chop the onion.
  3. Mince the garlic cloves.
  4. Grate the ginger.
  5. Chop the tomatoes.
  6. Chop the fresh cilantro (coriander).

Marinating the Chicken

  1. In a bowl, combine the chicken pieces with grated ginger, minced garlic, and half of the chopped cilantro.
  2. Mix well to ensure the chicken is evenly coated with the marinade.
  3. Cover the bowl and let the chicken marinate for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to develop.

Cooking the Spices and Onions

  1. Heat vegetable oil in a large pan or wok over medium heat.
  2. Add the chopped onion and sauté until it becomes translucent and starts to soften.
  3. Add the Balti curry paste, ground cumin, ground coriander, ground turmeric, and red chili powder (if using).
  4. Stir and cook the spices with the onions for a minute or until fragrant.

Adding the Chicken and Tomatoes

  1. Increase the heat to medium-high and add the marinated chicken to the pan.
  2. Cook the chicken for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until it starts to brown.
  3. Add the chopped tomatoes and season with salt.
  4. Stir well to combine all the ingredients.

Simmering and Thickening the Curry

  1. Reduce the heat to low and cover the pan.
  2. Allow the curry to simmer for about 15 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and tender.
  3. If the curry appears too thick, add a little water to adjust the consistency.
  4. Simmer for an additional 5 minutes to let the flavors meld together.

Serving and Enjoying

  1. Garnish the Chicken Balti Curry with the remaining fresh cilantro.
  2. Serve the curry hot with steamed rice or naan bread.
  3. Enjoy the flavorful and aromatic Chicken Balti Curry!

Now that you have the complete recipe, it’s time to get cooking and indulge in this delightful dish.

Equipment Required

Nutrition Information

Nutrition InformationAmount Per Serving
Serving Size1 person
Calories350 kcal
Total Fat18g
Saturated Fat4g
Trans Fat0g
Total Carbohydrate10g
Dietary Fiber2g
Vitamin D4% DV
Calcium6% DV
Iron15% DV
Potassium10% DV

Please note that the nutrition information provided is an approximate estimate and can vary depending on specific ingredients used and portion sizes. It’s always a good idea to consult a nutritionist or use a reliable nutritional calculator for precise and personalized information based on your specific dietary needs.


  • Use boneless chicken thighs for this recipe as they remain tender and flavorful during cooking.
  • Marinate the chicken for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to penetrate the meat.
  • Adjust the spice levels according to your preference. If you prefer a milder curry, reduce the amount of red chili powder or omit it altogether.
  • Balti curry paste can be found in most grocery stores or Asian markets. If unavailable, you can make a homemade version by combining a blend of spices like cumin, coriander, turmeric, and paprika.
  • Add a splash of water if the curry appears too dry during cooking.
  • Allow the curry to simmer on low heat to enhance the flavors and ensure the chicken is cooked thoroughly.

Pros & Cons

✔️ Bursting with flavors and spices❌ Requires some ingredient preparation
✔️ Versatile – can be customized with vegetables or different proteins❌ Requires marinating time
✔️ Aromatic and satisfying❌ Some spices may not be readily available
✔️ Easy to adjust spice levels❌ Cooking time may be longer than other recipes
✔️ Can be paired with rice or naan bread for a complete meal❌ May be too spicy for those with sensitive palates


In conclusion, the Chicken Balti Curry recipe offers a delightful culinary experience that is rich in flavors, aromas, and spices. This dish combines tender chicken, a harmonious blend of spices, and the freshness of vegetables to create a truly satisfying meal. The versatility of the recipe allows for customization, whether you prefer to add your favorite vegetables or substitute the protein to suit your dietary preferences.

Preparing the Chicken Balti Curry may require some ingredient preparation and marinating time, but the end result is well worth the effort. The burst of flavors and the aromatic notes will transport you to the vibrant streets of Baltistan, where this dish originated. Whether you’re a spice enthusiast or prefer a milder flavor, the recipe can be easily adjusted to suit your taste preferences.

With its enticing colors, tantalizing aroma, and the option to pair it with rice or naan bread, the Chicken Balti Curry promises a complete and satisfying meal for you and your loved ones. Whether you’re a seasoned cook or a culinary novice, this recipe offers a wonderful opportunity to explore the world of authentic Pakistani cuisine in the comfort of your own kitchen.

So, don’t hesitate to gather the ingredients, follow the simple steps, and embark on a culinary adventure with the Chicken Balti Curry. Treat yourself and your taste buds to the delightful flavors and aromas that this dish has to offer. Get ready to savor every bite and experience the magic of this exquisite recipe.


  • 🌶️ Spice Extravaganza!
    • Did you know that the Chicken Balti Curry recipe is known for its spicy kick? The combination of aromatic spices like cumin, coriander, and turmeric gives this dish its signature flavor. Get ready to experience a burst of flavors with every mouthful!
  • 🌍 Cultural Fusion
    • The Chicken Balti Curry recipe is a delightful fusion of Pakistani and Indian flavors. It originated from the Baltistan region in Pakistan but gained immense popularity in Indian cuisine as well. This dish beautifully showcases the culinary connections between neighboring regions.
  • 🍛 The Wok Connection
    • The traditional Balti pan used for cooking this curry is believed to have originated from the wok. Its unique rounded-bottom shape and two handles make it perfect for quick stir-frying and tossing ingredients. Embrace the authentic cooking experience with a Balti pan or adapt using a similar wok!
  • 📆 Migration Influence
    • The Balti people, who migrated from Baltistan to the United Kingdom during the 1970s, played a significant role in popularizing the Chicken Balti Curry. Today, it is a beloved dish in British cuisine and can be found in numerous Indian and Pakistani restaurants across the UK.
  • 🌶️ Spices at Your Fingertips
    • To create the perfect balance of flavors, Balti curry paste is often used in the recipe. However, you can also prepare your own Balti spice blend at home by combining a variety of spices, including cumin, coriander, paprika, and garam masala. Feel free to unleash your creativity and experiment with different spice combinations!


Can I use bone-in chicken for this recipe?

Yes, you can use bone-in chicken, but keep in mind that the cooking time may need to be adjusted to ensure the chicken is fully cooked.

Can I make this recipe ahead of time?

Absolutely! The flavors of the Chicken Balti Curry tend to develop even more when allowed to sit for a few hours or overnight, making it a great option for meal prepping.

Can I freeze the leftovers?

Yes, you can freeze the leftover Chicken Balti Curry. Store it in an airtight container or freezer bag and consume within 2-3 months for the best quality.

Can I substitute the Balti curry paste with another type of curry paste?

While Balti curry paste is traditionally used in this recipe, you can experiment with other curry pastes such as tikka masala or vindaloo to create a different flavor profile.

Can I make this recipe vegetarian or vegan?

Absolutely! Simply replace the chicken with tofu, paneer (Indian cottage cheese), or a variety of vegetables to make it vegetarian or vegan-friendly.

Is this recipe spicy?

The spice level can be adjusted to suit your preference. You can reduce or omit the red chili powder to make it milder, or add more if you prefer a spicier kick.

Can I use canned tomatoes instead of fresh ones?

Yes, you can use canned tomatoes as a substitute for fresh ones. Opt for diced or crushed canned tomatoes for convenience.

Can I make this recipe in a slow cooker?

Yes, you can adapt this recipe for a slow cooker. Brown the chicken and sauté the onions and spices on the stovetop before transferring everything to the slow cooker. Cook on low heat for 4-6 hours or until the chicken is tender.

What can I serve with Chicken Balti Curry?

Chicken Balti Curry pairs well with steamed rice, naan bread, roti, or even quinoa for a healthier option. You can also serve it alongside a side salad or raita for a refreshing contrast.

Can I make this recipe gluten-free?

Yes, you can make this recipe gluten-free by ensuring that all the ingredients used, including the spices and curry paste, are free from gluten. Double-check the labels or opt for certified gluten-free products.