Is Chicken Tikka Masala Spicy? How Much?

The question of “is chicken tikka masala spicy?” has been controversial. Several miscellaneous opinions exist regarding this dish’s style, taste, and texture. However, the answer is incredibly subjective.

Who will answer?

Don’t worry; we’re here to assist you in discovering the answer.

If you want to know the answer, stay with us and read the article.

What is Chicken Tikka Masala?

Chicken tikka masala is essentially “chicken tikka,” translating to ‘little pieces of chicken,’ combined with ‘masala,’ the ‘spice blend.’ This dish features boneless chicken, marinated and oven-cooked or tandoor-grilled before being immersed in a rich onion-tomato gravy. The union of flavorful spices in the masala, including a medley of aromatic herbs and bold spices, creates a deliciously satisfying and comforting meal. The succulent, well-seasoned chicken, bathed in the hearty gravy, makes Chicken tikka masala a culinary delight, offering both simplicity and depth of flavor for an enjoyable dining experience.

So, is Chicken Tikka Masala Spicy?

Contrary to the chicken tikka masala’s color, the dish is mildly spicy. The decisive reddish color resulting from the use of turmeric and paprika might make you think it’s hot. Yet, this spiciness is also subject to the use of spices and seasonings depending on the region. For instance, in the non-subcontinent areas, like the UK or the USA, chicken tikka masala is a bit spicy, but being UK national, in England, you’ll always find it at a mild heat level.

What Makes Chicken Tikka Masala Spicy?

Chicken Tikka Masala gets its spiciness from a blend of bold spices. Chili powder, cayenne pepper, and garam masala contribute heat, while ginger and garlic add zing. The spices infuse into the yogurt-marinated chicken, intensifying the flavor.

The dish’s kick is adjustable based on personal preference or the recipe. Spices like cumin and coriander also play a role, creating a balanced, flavorful heat. It’s the perfect mix of spices that gives Chicken Tikka Masala its signature spicy and aromatic profile, making it a favorite for those who love a bit of heat in their Indian cuisine.

What Makes Chicken Tikka Masala Orange?

Have you ever wondered what gives the beautiful light orange color to the chicken tikka masala’s gravy? 

These are the magical spices paprika and turmeric, usually used to make the famous bright orange sauce. The use of tomatoes further enhances the color.

How do you Make Chicken Tikka Masala Red?

Primarily, chicken tikka masala is of orange color: turmeric, paprika, and tomatoes, when combined with yogurt, create a bright orange color in the gravy. However, you can customize your gravy if you want to see it extra red.

Ingredients to make Signature Orange Colored Sauce for CTM

  • Grated Ginger
  • Minced Onion
  • Grated Garlic
  • Turmeric
  • Paprika
  • Chopped Chili
  • Tomato Purée
  • Curry Powder
  • Sugar
  • Cream

Sauce vs. Dry Masala: How to Use it?

You can prepare chicken tikka masala in two ways: by using dry spices or ready-made paste. To help you prepare in any way, below, we’ve listed two tikka masalas available on Amazon.

Amazon Affiliate Disclosure: Some of the links on this page are affiliate links. This means that if you click on the link and make a purchase, I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. You can read my full affiliate disclosure here.

Maya Kaimal Tikka Masala Sauce

If you hate getting into the detailed process of making the chicken tikka masala sauce yourself, don’t worry! This natural-flavored Tikka Masala sauce is just for you. Yes, you can also get the highly authentic taste of the sauce by using store-bought Chicken Tikka Masala sauce in your kitchen!

Let’s move to the incredible SHORTCUT!

Just cook the chicken chunks in this sauce after the grilling process, and that’s it!

Your Chicken Tikka Masala is ready to serve.

Rani Tandoori Dry Chicken Tikka Masala

Dry chicken tikka masala is the perfect mixture of natural spices that gives the Indian touch to the dish and makes the preparation quick and effortless. It provides the gravy with a distinctive flavor and offers a mouthwatering taste.

You need to heat the oil in a large pan over medium flame and saute the onion until light brown. Add ginger and garlic and cook until aromatic. Instead of adding spices, you need to add the Dry Tikka Masala into the mixture and prepare the gravy.

MAKE YOUR OWN CHICKEN TIKKA MASALA AND SERVE IT THE WAY YOU LOVE!

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Saba Akbar
Saba Akbar

Hello, I'm a culinary explorer and food writer with 25 years of home kitchen expertise. This blog is a treasure trove of my insights on global cuisine, cooking tips, and expert knowledge of kitchen tools.
Besides this, as a GERD survivor, I've transformed my passion for food into a quest for food's GERD-friendliness and healthiness. I believe what you eat shapes your internal environment—join me on this lifelong journey of taste and healthiness!

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