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chicken tikka masala in a grey bowl kept on a black plate

Best Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala Recipe

Best Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala Recipe made with air fried chicken tikkas using the air fryer lid and simmered in a homemade Tikka Masala Sauce. You'll love it with Naan or Rice.
5 from 1 vote
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Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Chicken Tikka Masala, Indian Tikka Masala, Instant Pot Tikka Masala
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 391kcal
Author: Meghna
Cost: $4


For making Chicken Tikka (marinating chicken)

For Tikka Masala Sauce


How to make Chicken Tikkas in the Air Fryer?

  • Dice the skinless boneless chicken breasts into 1 inch cubes, keep them in a bowl. Add all the ingredients mentioned above in the "For making Chicken Tikka" section into the bowl. Rub well to coat all the chicken pieces with the marinade. Leave for 30 mins before you begin air frying them.
  • Set the Instant Pot, do not plug it. Place the air fryer basket inside the steel insert of the Instant Pot.
  • Throw in the cubed onion pieces in a single layer inside the air fryer basket. Spray with oil.
  • Now, place the air fryer steel disc insert inside the air fryer basket. Spray the disc with oil and arrange the marinated chicken pieces in a single layer. Do not over crowd and leave a few openings (holes) on the metal disc open (refer the video or steps pics above). It's a must for hot air circulation.
  • Spray the chicken pieces with oil. Put the air fryer lid on. Plug it.
  • Hit the AIR FRY button and set the temperature to 350 F and the time to 6 minutes. Hit the START button to begin air frying the chicken tikkas.
  • Once, the air frying cycle is over the Instant Pot will begin to beep. Hit the CANCEL button and carefully open the lid (it's very very hot) and place it on the heat proof base that comes along with the air fryer lid. DO NOT place it anywhere else because it's super hot!
  • Now, if you prefer the charred look on the chicken tikkas go ahead and char the chicken tikkas with a torch or you may also put back the air fryer lid and hit the BROIL button to char the chicken pieces for a few minutes. I used a torch for fun :D The beautifully charred Chicken Tikkas are all ready now. Let's make the world's best Tikka Masala Sauce.
  • Also, remove the air fried onion pieces from the air fryer basket and finely chop them.

How to make Chicken Tikka Masala Sauce?

  • We will be making the Tikka Masala Sauce in the Instant Pot and not the air fryer. So, keep aside the air fryer basket along with the metal disc. Plug in the Instant Pot.
  • Rinse the steel insert of the instant pot if you feel like. We did not rinse it.
  • Hit the SAUTE function and keep it at NORMAL heat setting. Add butter and when it melts completely add the finely chopped air fried onion and saute for just 30 seconds.
  • Add the tomato paste and sauce and saute for another 30 seconds.
  • Now, add the ginger garlic paste or minced ginger garlic and saute for another 60 seconds.
  • Add the spice powders like the cumin, garam masala and the paprika and saute for 30 seconds. Add honey and mix well.
  • Add 1 cup water and de-glaze the pot very well by scraping the sides and the bottom of the pot with the help of a spatula. There should not be any bits or crumbs stuck at the bottom of the pot. This is very important & shall prevent the BURN error.
  • CANCEL the SAUTE function, put back the instant pot lid, seal the valve and PRESSURE COOK on HIGH for just 2 minutes.
  • Once, the cooking cycle is over the instant pot will begin to beep. Do a quick pressure release (QPR) by moving the valve from the SEALING to the VENTING position.
  • Add the cream and mix well. Garnish with chopped cilantro and enjoy!



  1. Measuring Units used, 1 cup = 240 ml & 1 teaspoon = 5 ml
  2. Tandoori Masala Sub: Use 1/2 tsp cumin powder + 1/2 tsp garam masala powder + 1 tsp paprika powder.
  3. No Air Fryer Lid: You can skillet roast the chicken tikkas, or oven bake them or even sear them in the Instant Pot on SAUTE function set at NORMAL heat until brown spots/charred spots form.
  4. No air fried onion: Use raw finely chopped onion and saute the onion until translucent.
  5. Ginger Garlic Paste sub: Use minced ginger and garlic.
  6. Heavy Cream: You may increase the quantity.
  7. Spicy Chicken Tikka Masala: Add cayenne pepper powder according to your preference.
  8. Honey: It adds a subtle sweetness and balances the strong flavors of the dry spices. You may certainly increase the quantity.
  9. Storing Tips: Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala lasts for upto 5 days in the fridge. Make sure to store it in dry, clean, air tight containers.
  10. Re-heating Tips: Re heat the dish either in the micro wave with sprinkles of water. You can also heat it on the stove top stirring frequently. Add more cream and chopped cilantro and serve hot.
Calorific details are provided by a third party application & are to be used as indicative figures only.
Nutrition Facts
Best Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 391 Calories from Fat 234
% Daily Value*
Fat 26g40%
Saturated Fat 9g56%
Cholesterol 90mg30%
Sodium 796mg35%
Potassium 821mg23%
Carbohydrates 24g8%
Fiber 5g21%
Sugar 15g17%
Protein 19g38%
Vitamin A 2831IU57%
Vitamin C 17mg21%
Calcium 67mg7%
Iron 4mg22%
* Read our privacy policy - Calorie information is provided as a courtesy only and should be leveraged as an estimate rather than a guarantee.Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


Calories: 391kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 19g | Fat: 26g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 90mg | Sodium: 796mg | Potassium: 821mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 2831IU | Vitamin C: 17mg | Calcium: 67mg | Iron: 4mg