Chicken Tikka Masala: The Indian Curry Invented in the UK


We all love a traditional and heart-warming curry from time to time, and you may be surprised to discover that one of India’s most infamous dishes is actually thought to be a British invention! After all, there is a reason why it has been named Britain’s favourite and most popular dish for several years in a row. Ironically, we actually import the curry to countries like Pakistan, India and Bangladesh where it is enjoyed by both locals and visitors alike. Read on as we go over everything there is to know about Chicken Tikka Masala…

Many people are actually unaware that a ‘masala’ is a blend of spices like cardamom, cinnamon, coriander, cloves and cumin that have been ground into a powder or paste and are used in order to flavour a variety of different dishes in Indian cuisine. When it comes to curry, these spices are used in order to create a mouth-watering sauce that accompanies the meat and/or vegetables it is infused with.

On the other hand, chicken tikka itself is a dish that originated in India and involves cooking marinated chicken breast in a combination of yogurt and spices like garlic, cumin, paprika, garam masala and cayenne for at least 4 hours. The meat is then roasted for ultimate perfection and unbeatable flavour.

It is thought that Chicken Tikka Masala as a curry was invented in 1970s Scotland by a Bangladeshi chef whose name remains unknown, and historians theorise that this mystery chef decided to coat his boneless pieces of chicken tikka, which are traditionally served on a skewer, with a rich, mildly spicy and tomato-based sauce in order to please his customers. With this said, it is important to note that some people do denounce this history and remain adamant that the curry’s origin is deeply rooted in India itself.

Here at Royal Nawaab, our team of talented chefs are trained with the authenticity of Indian and Pakistani cuisine in mind. After all, we are the best restaurant Manchester has to offer because we know what our diners are looking for. With this said, chicken tikka masala holds a special place in all of our hearts and that is why it is one of our most popular dishes. For all your Indian cuisine needs, get in contact with a member of the Royal Nawaab team today!