Best Chicken fry masala recipe

Chicken fry masala is a spicy and delicious semi-gravy chicken dish that serves as an appetizer or a side dish! This easy and simple Chicken Fry masala recipe is perfect for bachelors and beginners who are very new to cooking.

The dish is quite similar to South Indian (Andhra Pradesh and Telangana states) Chicken fry but has extra masala over every tender and soft piece of chicken which is full of flavor.

Chicken fry is my childhood favorite and I’m for sure for most non-vegetarians too. It was a Sunday special, as a side dish with basmati rice or steamed rice and tomato or pepper rasam. But, as it has masala, it can be paired with rotis or parathas too.

This easy dish, Chicken fry can probably have thousands of variations — spices to marinate, the domination/strong flavor of a specific whole garam masala, deep fry, special homemade masala paste, etc.

chicken fry masala

About Chicken Fry Masala recipe

Chicken Fry Masala is a South Indian stir-fried chicken dish with a spicy and lip-smacking spice mixture coating each piece.

Unlike chicken curry, this chicken dish has a thick gravy coating the chicken pieces. For a thick gravy, I add water which is just enough to cook the meat. The meat is cooked on a low flame in its own juices and this makes the masalas penetrate well into the meat. 

I make this chicken fry masala when I feel lazy or run out of time and want to make something delicious. This particular recipe always jumps on top of my list, as this is the quickest and easiest of all.

On a Sunday afternoon. I was requested to make chicken fry with only 45 minutes for lunch. With no time to make homemade masala paste, I used readymade masala powder and prepared the dish. It was appreciated by the family members. Since then, this has become a favorite recipe.

Later, I had requests repeatedly by my wife to make exactly the same.

The recipe I will share is a simple and basic recipe with easily available ingredients and the end result will make you lick your fingers clean. The best part of this chicken fry masala recipe is, that you don’t need to marinate the chicken.

For chicken fry masala ingredients needed are jeera/cumin seeds, onion, ginger garlic paste (freshly made or store-bought), green chilies, curry leaves, red chilly powder, turmeric powder, chicken masala, garam masala, lemon juice, and coriander leaves. Tomato can be added, but for me, it lowers the spice level of the dish. So, I avoid it.

Though the ingredients are minimal, I specifically like the spiciness, tang, and aroma of curry leaves.

Do you want to prepare a special chicken dish during the weekend? At the same time, with some easily available ingredients from your pantry? Give this simple chicken fry masala recipe a try, for a taste like never before! This is a mouth-watering spicy chicken fry recipe, try it once and it will become your everyday easy chicken fry recipe.

Recommended brands for Chicken Masala powder:

  • Everest-Chicken Masala
  • Tata Sampann Chicken Masala
  • MDH Chicken Masala
  • Catch Chicken Masala
  • Badshah Chicken Masala
how to make chicken fry masala

Reasons to try

Super easy recipe but damn delicious!

No grinding or blending.

Minimal ingredients.

Bachelor and beginner-friendly recipe.

No need to marinate the chicken for hours.

Easily customizable.

Serve it as an appetizer, as an accompaniment to alcohol, or as a main dish.

A perfect side dish with Indian flatbread or rice.

An ultimate favorite for spice lovers.

The magic is in the preparation process and the order of ingredients.

Pro Tips

While this is a fairly easy recipe to make, I’m mentioning a few tips that have helped me and will help you while cooking chicken in general.

Wash the chicken pieces well. To get rid of the meat smell, all you need is vinegar and water. Fill a large bowl with 1/4 cup vinegar and 2 cups of water and mix well. Add the chicken pieces and let them sit in the mixture for 15 mins. Discard the water.

Drain the water completely. If the chicken pieces have moisture, it will drop the temperature of the vessel and the chicken pieces will taste as if boiled.

If possible, use a thick bottom vessel and it should not be a non-stick or heavy-bottomed skillet, such as cast iron.

In this recipe frying the onions properly is crucial. Saute the onions until they turn a light golden color. While simmering the curry, the onions disintegrate which will thicken the base gravy and form a lavish sauce.

Sear the chicken pieces well. Make sure to sear the chicken pieces on high heat only until they change to white color before being braised in their own juices.

Add the salt and red chili powder before simmering the chicken. This will ensure that the meat absorbs the flavors of the spice powder.

As this dish is semi-gravy, use water just enough to cook the chicken.

Do not overload the vessel. Chicken pieces will sear better if every piece touch bottom of the vessel.

Add delicate spice powders at the end so that the dish is fragrant and aromatic.

The curry leaves and green chilies are added at the end for flavor and aroma.

Cook until the oil separates. It indicates that the ingredients are cooked well. When it’s done, you will be able to smell the beautiful aromas of the spices.

Ingredients to make Chicken Masala fry

Chicken: I always prefer chicken on the bone to make chicken fry or curry. In this recipe, I’ve used curry cut which is a mix of bone-in breast, wings, thighs, and legs.

The juices released from the bones add flavor to the dish and the meat around the bone is moist and succulent. However, you can make the dish with boneless breast or thighs too. The cooking time will depend on the meat’s size and quality.

Oil: any neutral flavor oil.

Onion and Ginger-garlic paste: They form the base of the masala.

Spice powders: turmeric powder, red chili powder, coriander powder, chicken masala, and garam masala.

Herbs: curry leaves and coriander leaves. Try not to skip them.

Green chilies: are per spice preference.

Salt to taste.

How to make Chicken Fry Masala

1 & 2. Heat oil in a heavy bottom pan on medium flame. When hot, add cumin seeds, chopped onions, and curry leaves. Saute on medium flame until the onion color changes to a light golden color.

Adding curry leaves will add flavor to the dish.

3. Add ginger-garlic paste and saute until the raw smell goes away.

4. Add turmeric powder and saute for a few seconds.

5 & 6. Add the washed chicken pieces and sear on high flame until the color changes to white.

Searing the surface of the chicken helps lock in the tenderness and moisture in the meat.

7 & 8. Turn the flame to low, and add salt, chicken masala, and red chili powder. Give a good mix.

9. Saute the chicken pieces with the spices for 1-2 minutes.

10 & 11. Add 1/2 cup of hot water and give a good mix.

12. Cover the pan and simmer the curry on low flame for 20-30 minutes or until the chicken pieces are tender.

Note: After 10 minutes open the lid. If the masala sticks to the bottom of the pan, sprinkle little water and mix well. Cover and continue to simmer until the chicken is cooked tender (can take 15-20 minutes or more). Once the chicken is cooked, check for seasoning (salt and spice) and add accordingly.

chicken fry masala step 3

13 & 14. Add coriander powder and garam masala. Mix well and continue to simmer for 5 minutes.

15. Lastly, add curry leaves, coriander leaves and slit green chilies. Continue to cook until masala coats the chicken pieces well.

Adding curry leaves at this stage will give a beautiful aroma.

16. Chicken Fry Masala is ready. Serve hot with flatbread or rice and dal.

chicken fry masala step 4

Serving Suggestions

In the South, the classic combo is with tomato rasam, pepper rasam, tomato pappu, or sambar and steamed rice.

My personal favorite is as a side dish with bagara rice, other rice variety options are jeera rice, plain basmati rice do check the recipe and give it a try.

It’s a fry but has enough masala coating the chicken pieces that you can dig in with your roti, chapati, paratha. Do not miss sliced onions and lemon wedges with it.

Storage Suggestions

Store the leftover in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 2 days. If you are hosting a party at home, you can make the dish a day ahead, let it cool completely, and refrigerate it.

Before serving, reheat in a microwave or in a pan on the stovetop. The masala will dry out. So, sprinkle little water and heat until the dish is hot.

Variations

Add Kashmiri red chili powder for vibrant red color.

Can use a combination of oil and ghee to cook. Or, cook in oil and add ghee at the end.

You can substitute chicken with mutton or prawns for making a variation of this dish.

Can add a small tomato or a few tablespoons of curd.

If you are a vegetable drumsticks lover, add them to this dish and thank me later.

You can cut down the number of onions and make the chicken dry.

Can add different spice powders like tandoori masala, kura/koora karam, or meat masala.

More Chicken recipes

Andhra Chicken roast

Easy Chicken curry

Hyderabadi Dum ka Chicken

Ginger Chicken

Chicken masala curry

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Recipe Card

chicken fry masala recipe

Chicken Fry Masala

Author: Santosh Allada
Chicken Fry Masala is a typical South Indian style. It is a stir fry recipe made with spices easily available at home. It is one of the best chicken side dishes which is spicy and finger-licking good. It is easy to cook and can be made within 30 mins.
4.50 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Appetizer, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Indian, South Indian
Servings 3 people

Ingredients
  

  • 500 gms Chicken (bone-in)
  • 4-5 tbspn Oil
  • 1 tspn Cumin seeds
  • 3 medium Onions (finely chopped)
  • 1 tbspn Ginger Garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 1-2 tbspn Red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp Chicken Masala
  • 1/2 tbspn Coriander powder
  • 1-2 tspn Garam Masala
  • 1 sprig Curry leaves
  • 2-4 Green chilies (adjust as per your taste)
  • 2 tbsp Coriander leaves
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 Lemon (optional)

Instructions
 

  • Heat oil in a heavy bottom pan on medium flame. When hot, add cumin seeds, chopped onions, and curry leaves. Saute on medium flame until onion color changes to light golden color.
  • Add ginger-garlic paste and saute until the raw smell goes away.
  • Add turmeric powder and saute for a few seconds.
  • Add the washed chicken pieces and sear on high flame until the color changes to white.
  • Turn the flame to low, add salt and red chili powder. Give a good mix.
  • Saute the chicken pieces with the spices for 1-2 minutes.
  • Add 1/2 cup of hot water and give a good mix.
  • Cover the pan and simmer the curry on low flame for 20-30 minutes or until the chicken pieces are tender.
  • Note: If the masala sticks to the bottom of the pan, sprinkle little water and mix well. Continue to repeat steps 9 and 10 until the chicken is cooked tender (can take 15-20 minutes or more). Once the chicken is cooked, check for seasoning (salt and spice) and add accordingly.
  • Add coriander powder and garam masala. Continue to simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Lastly, add curry leaves, coriander leaves, and slit green chilies. Continue to cook until the masala coats the chicken pieces well.
  • Chicken Fry Masala is ready. Serve hot with flatbread or rice and dal.

Notes

Cooking time may vary depending on the quality and pieces of meat. If the chicken pieces are big, it may take up to 30-40 mins to cook tender.
Alter the quantity of spices as per your preference.
For a change in flavor, you can use biryani masala or meat masala too.



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