Chicken curry with red chillies in silver bowl on wooden board

Chicken jalfrezi

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(94 ratings)

Prep: 10 mins Cook: 1 hr


Serves 4

Instead of calling the Indian takeaway, make your own easy chicken jalfrezi. This curry is also healthy with two of your 5-a-day and a dose of vitamin C

Nutrition and extra info

  • Healthy
  • Gluten-free

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal252
  • fat8g
  • saturates1g
  • carbs11g
  • sugars9g
  • fibre5g
  • protein30g
  • salt0.4g
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    For the sauce

    • ½ large onion, roughly chopped



      Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

    • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
    • 1 green chilli, finely chopped
    • vegetable oil, for frying
    • 400g can plum tomatoes
    • 1 tbsp ground coriander
    • 1 tbsp ground cumin
    • 1 tsp turmeric



      Turmeric is a fragrant, bright golden-yellow root that is most commonly seen and used dried and…

    For the meat & veg

    • 2-3 chicken breasts, diced
    • 1 tsp ground cumin
    • 1 tsp ground coriander
    • 1 tsp turmeric



      Turmeric is a fragrant, bright golden-yellow root that is most commonly seen and used dried and…

    • ½ large onion, sliced



      Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

    • 1 red pepper, chopped
    • 2 red chillies, finely chopped (optional)
    • 2 tsp garam masala
      Garam masala

      Garam masala

      gar-am mah-sarl-ah

      Meaning 'warming spice mix', garam masala is the main spice blend used in North Indian…

    • handful of fresh, chopped coriander leaves
    • cooked basmati rice or naan bread to serve


    1. Take 2-3 diced chicken breasts and coat in 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp coriander and 1 tsp turmeric then leave it to marinate in the fridge while you make the sauce.

    2. To make the sauce, fry ½ roughly chopped large onion, 2 chopped garlic cloves and 1 finely chopped green chilli in a large pan with a little vegetable oil, for around 5 mins, until browned.

    3. Add 300ml water to the onion mixture and simmer for around 20 minutes.

    4. Meanwhile, put a 400g can plum tomatoes in a food processor and give it a good whizz (aim for a smooth consistency).

    5. Heat another large pan and gently fry 1 tbsp coriander, 1 tbsp cumin and 1 tsp turmeric in a splash of oil for about a minute. Add the tomatoes to this pan and simmer for around 10 minutes.

    6. Next, whizz your onion mixture in the food processor and add it to the spiced tomato sauce. Season generously, stir, then simmer for 20 minutes. You can make large batches of this sauce and freeze it for later use.

    7. Fry the marinated chicken in vegetable oil and stir continuously. After a few minutes, turn down the heat and add the remaining ½ sliced onion, 1 chopped red pepper and 2 finely chopped red chillies. Stir until the onions and pepper soften.

    8. Add the sauce you prepared earlier to the cooked chicken and simmer for around 10-20 minutes, adding a splash of water if it gets too thick.

    9. Just before you dish it up, stir in 2 tsp garam masala and handful of chopped coriander leaves. Serve with basmati rice or naan bread.

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    Comments, questions and tips

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    13th Jan, 2013
    Fantastic curry. I added half a small jar of sundried tomato paste to the sauce and three tbsps of natural yoghurt when I put the chicken into the sauce.
    sammijl's picture
    7th Jan, 2013
    Excellent recipe! Made this with Quorn chicken, so ended up veggie friendly. Lovely rich sauce. Added extra spice with half a scotch bonnet chilli as part of the mix.
    8th Dec, 2012
    Followed the recipe, but it seemed to lacking something and the sauce was thin, had to simmer for a while longer to thicken it up.
    11th Nov, 2012
    I made this a few nights ago and we loved it. I only used one red chilli as i dont like my curry hot and it was soooo lovely. Im cooking this for friends at the weekend
    4th Oct, 2012
    Cooked this for my girlfriend this eve...just finished and mouth is still tingling! (I used 3 large chillies!!) really great curry and I enjoyed making it. Took about 45 minutes all in! Nice!
    26th Sep, 2012
    I'm a student, and i definitely make time for this recipe.. fresh or frozen mild or tongue-blasting this is a tasty meal to come home to
    20th Sep, 2012
    and thanks a ton for sharing it because i didn't know how to make it!!
    20th Sep, 2012
    Very authentic jalfrezi! this is exactly how we make it in pakistan at home. I didn't use as much turmeric, in fact i only used 1/4 tsp. the steps can easily be simplified. i browned the onions and garlic, took them out of the wok, popped in the blender and gave them a whiz. fried the marinated chicken cubes till they turned white and added back the onions. I added tomatoes directly into the blender, gave a whiz and added the mixture to the chicken. added all the spices and let it all simmer. in the end, I "bhoonofied" the chicken, i-e i cooked till the oil and the tomatoe sauce separated because this helps get rid of the chicken's natural odor. took me 40 minutes tops (if not less)
    17th Feb, 2012
    17/02/12 I have just made & sampled a Jalfrezi using this recipe as a guide & I must say it is by far the best curry I have ever made or tasted :) My girlfriend said it was as nice if not better than any curry she had sampled in town. I too never used a food processor. I prefer a full bodied curry rather than just sauce. I added mushrooms & served with mushroom pilau rice & garlic cheese nan bread. Will deffo be making again soon.
    12th Jan, 2012
    great recipe enjoyed this curry :)


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