Desi Chicken Curry (Indian Country Chicken Curry)

5 from 1 vote

Make this Indian country-style Desi Chicken Curry at home using my easy recipe. Serve it with roti or rice for a hearty meal (gluten-free).

Desi chicken curry served in a bowl.
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About Desi Chicken Curry

Desi in Hindi means country style (village style).

This Desi Chicken Curry (Indian Country Chicken Curry, Village Style Chicken Curry) is a flavorful and robust curry made using chicken pieces, onions, tomatoes, and a few everyday Indian spices.

The country cooking style is known for its simplicity. The dishes are made using readily available ingredients, and nothing is fancy about them. No grinding the masala, simple ingredients, and easy process. However, the dishes are high in flavor and this chicken curry is no exception.

This spicy and masaledar chicken curry is also a great recipe if you are new to cooking; it’s so simple.

I cooked this village-style chicken curry in a regular non-stick pan, but to get the best flavor, cook it in an earthen pot (handi) over a wood fire. The smoky flavor that it imparts to the curry is unmatchable.

This desi chicken curry recipe is gluten-free and you can easily double or triple it.

Here are some more chicken curry recipes that you may like to try

Ingredients

You will get all the ingredients to make this curry in an Indian grocery store near you.

Desi chicken curry ingredients list 1
Desi chicken curry ingredients list 2
Desi chicken curry ingredients list 3
Desi chicken curry ingredients list 4

Chicken – For the best flavor, opt for skinless bone-in chicken pieces. The bone gives a lovely flavor to the curry.

In villages, this curry is made using country chicken (desi chicken), which tastes much better than the broiler chicken we get in the cities. If you can access desi chicken, use it for the best taste.

Oil – I prefer using mustard oil or ghee to make this curry. But you can use any cooking oil that you have handy.

Whole Spices – Whole spices infuse an aroma when added to hot oil, making the curry taste fabulous.

You will need cumin seeds (jeera), cloves (laung), cinnamon sticks (dalchini), black peppercorns (kali mirch), mace (javitri), and bay leaves (tejpatta).

Lightly crush all the spices in a mortar and pestle before adding them to hot oil for the best flavor.

Spice Powders – You will need a few basic spice powders such as coriander powder, turmeric powder, Kashmiri red chili powder, and garam masala powder.

I prefer Kashmiri red chili powder instead of regular chili powder, as it adds a nice color to the curry without making it too spicy. You can use paprika powder or cayenne pepper instead of chili powder.

Adjust the spices according to your taste and preference.

Others – You will also need ginger garlic paste, salt, red onions, white granulated sugar, fresh ripe tomatoes, Indian green chilies, and cilantro (fresh coriander leaves).

You can adjust the green chilies per your taste. Serrano peppers or Thai green chilies can be used instead of Indian green chilies.

I always prefer fresh tomatoes, but you can also use canned crushed tomatoes.

How To Make Desi Chicken Curry

Marinate The Chicken

Rinse 2 pounds (1 kg) of skinless bone-in chicken (cut into 1 and ½-inch pieces) with water and drain well.

Add

  • rinsed chicken
  • 2 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
  • 2 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 2 teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon salt

to a large mixing bowl and mix well to coat them with the marinade. Set the bowl aside for 30 minutes.

Chicken and marination ingredients added to a bowl.
Marinated chicken.

Make The Curry

Add

  • 3-4 cloves
  • 1-inch piece of cinnamon stick
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 2 flowers of mace

to a mortar and pestle and crush lightly.

Whole spices added to a mortar and pestle.
Crushed spices.

Heat 6 tablespoon of mustard oil in a pan over medium-high heat.

Once the oil is hot, add 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, crushed spices, and 2 whole bay leaves and saute for 4-5 seconds.

Cumin seeds, crushed spices and bay leaves added to hot oil.

Add

  • 1 cup of thinly sliced red onions
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon granulated white sugar

and cook until onions turn golden brown (10-12 minutes), stirring frequently.

Sliced onions, salt and sugar added to the pan.
Onions fried until golden brown.

Add the marinated chicken along with the marinade to the pan and cook for 6-8 minutes, stirring frequently.

Marinated chicken added to the pan.

Now add 1 cup of thinly sliced tomatoes and 3-4 green chilies (slit into half) and cook for 2-3 minutes.

Tomatoes and green chilies added to the pan.

Add 1 cup of water and mix well.

Water added to the pan.

Reduce the heat to medium-low.

Cover the pan with a lid and cook until the chicken is tender and cooked through (40-45 minutes), stirring a few times.

Pan covered with a lid.

Add more water if you like a thinner gravy. Check for salt and add more if needed.

Garnish with 2 tablespoon chopped cilantro and serve hot.

Ready desi chicken curry garnished with cilantro.

Pro Tips By Neha

Use bone-in chicken pieces for the best taste in the curry.

If you are not a bone-in chicken person, use boneless chicken breast or thighs cut into bite-size cubes. Make the curry without adding the chicken until it is almost cooked. Now add the boneless chicken pieces and cook for 15 minutes. Add chicken broth in place of water while cooking to compensate for the flavor imparted by the bones.

Authentic Indian curries do not use cornstarch, curry powder, canned tomato puree, or any stock. It is cooked using simple, fresh, and high-quality pantry staples, making this chicken curry delicious.

Add extra water and adjust the consistency to make the gravy thinner.

Add some ghee at the end of cooking for an enhanced and richer taste.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I add vegetables to this desi-style chicken curry?

This curry tastes great when prepared only with chicken. But if you want to add veggies, you can add potatoes, cauliflower, carrots, etc.

How do I make desi chicken curry in a traditional Indian pressure cooker?

You have to follow the same process as given below. Instead of cooking it covered in a pan, you can cook it in a pressure cooker for 2 whistles on high heat. Let the pressure release naturally, open, and serve hot.

How to make this country chicken curry in an instant pot?

Press the SAUTE button on the Instant Pot. Now follow the same process as given below. Once you add in the water, stir it and close the pot lid.

Press PRESSURE COOK and set the timer to 6 minutes at high pressure. Cook until the timer goes off. Let the pressure release naturally, and then open the lid. Garnish with cilantro and serve hot! You can check my detailed Instant Pot Chicken Curry recipe here.

Serving Suggestions

Desi chicken curry tastes great with almost all Indian bread such as Phulka, Plain Naan, Tandoori Roti, Rumali Roti, Lachha Paratha, or any other bread that you make at home. Serve some sliced onions and lime wedges on the side.

It can also be served along with steamed rice, Jeera Rice, Bagara Rice, or any other lightly spiced pulao.

You can also serve it with Chicken Biryani and Raita.

Storage Suggestions

This village style chicken curry will last in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days when stored properly in an airtight container.

Reheat it in a pan or microwave until nice and warm.

If you make it in large quantities, reheat only the amount you want to serve.

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Make this Indian country-style Desi Chicken Curry at home using my easy recipe. Serve it with roti or rice for a hearty meal (gluten-free).
5 from 1 vote

Desi Chicken Curry Recipe (Country Chicken Curry, Village Style Chicken Curry)

Make this Indian country-style Desi Chicken Curry (Village Style Chicken Curry) at home using my easy recipe. Serve it with roti or rice for a hearty meal.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Marination Time: 30 minutes
Total: 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings: 6 people

Ingredients 

To Marinate The Chicken

  • 2 pounds skinless bone-in chicken (cut into 1 and ½ inch pieces)
  • 2 teaspoons ginger garlic paste
  • 2 teaspoons coriander powder
  • 2 teaspoons Kashmiri red chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon salt

For The Curry

  • 6 tablespoons mustard oil (or any other cooking oil)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 3-4 whole cloves (laung)
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns (kali mirch)
  • 1 inch piece of cinnamon stick (dalchini)
  • 2 flowers mace (javitri)
  • 2 whole bay leaves (tejpatta)
  • 1 cup thinly sliced red onions
  • 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon white granulated sugar
  • 1 cup thinly sliced tomatoes
  • 3-4 green chilies (slit into half)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro (fresh coriander leaves)
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Instructions 

Marinate The Chicken

  • Rinse chicken with water and drain well.
  • Add rinsed chicken, ginger garlic paste, coriander powder, red chili powder, turmeric powder, garam masala powder, lime juice, and salt, to a large mixing bowl and mix well to coat them with the marinade.
  • Set the bowl aside for 30 minutes.

Make The Curry

  • Add cloves, cinnamon, black peppercorns, and javitri to a mortar and pestle and crush lightly.
  • Heat oil in a pan over medium-high heat.
  • Once the oil is hot, add cumin seeds, crushed spices, and bay leaves and saute for 4-5 seconds.
  • Add onions, salt, and sugar and cook until onions turn golden brown (10-12 minutes), stirring frequently.
  • Add the marinated chicken along with the marinade to the pan and cook for 6-8 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Now add tomatoes and green chilies (slit into half) and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  • Add 1 cup of water and mix well.
  • Reduce the heat to medium-low.
  • Cover the pan with a lid and cook until the chicken is tender and cooked through (40-45 minutes), stirring a few times while cooking.
  • Add more water if you like a thinner gravy. Check for salt and add more if needed.
  • Garnish with cilantro and serve hot.

Video

YouTube video

Notes

If you are not a bone-in chicken person, use boneless chicken breast or thighs cut into bite-size cubes. Make the curry without adding the chicken until it is almost cooked. Now add the boneless chicken pieces and cook for 15 minutes. To compensate for the flavor imparted by the bones, add chicken broth in place of water while cooking.
Add some ghee at the end of cooking for an enhanced and richer taste.

Nutrition

Calories: 263kcal, Carbohydrates: 7g, Protein: 18g, Fat: 18g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g, Monounsaturated Fat: 10g, Trans Fat: 0.02g, Cholesterol: 86mg, Sodium: 946mg, Potassium: 355mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 3g, Vitamin A: 436IU, Vitamin C: 9mg, Calcium: 26mg, Iron: 1mg
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