Chicken Bhuna

Chicken Bhuna

5 from 6 votes
Rich, flavourful, and hearty, this chicken bhuna recipe is great for a midweek meal. Made in under an hour, this chicken curry recipe does not skimp on flavour. Serve with a side of chapatti and enjoy.
Chicken Bhuna

Anyone who loves Indian food should try this chicken bhuna recipe. Spicy and flavourful, this classic Indian dish is made with boneless chicken cooked to perfection in an onion and tomato masala. 

Being Pakistani, I love my curries and there are so many different varieties of chicken curries. From chicken vindaloo to chicken tikka masala, there will definitely be something to suit your taste buds.  

Now, the name of this recipe comes from the fact the chicken is in essence ‘fried’ in the masala. ‘Bhuna’ is the Urdu term for fried, hence the recipe name.  

Unlike a lot of other chicken bhuna recipes, I have made a much simpler version as it only requires one pot and you don’t need to marinate the chicken beforehand. 

I have kept it simple without overcomplicating it too much. With that being said I would stick to using fresh ginger and garlic, instead of the store-bought pastes. This will really help to enhance the flavour of the curry.  

The onions form the base of this masala, as they do in most chicken curries, therefore the trick is to allow the onions to caramelise correctly. This is an important step in making a great and flavourful curry.  

Caramelising onions causes the natural sugars in the onions to break down and turn golden brown, adding depth of flavour and sweetness to the dish.  

This process also softens the onions and creates a silky texture, which thickens the masala. 

Caramelised onions not only serve to build the curry’s rich and complex aromas, but they also provide a gorgeous colour to the dish, making it more visually appealing. So, don’t skip this step! 

Another reason to make this curry is that chicken bhuna is a very versatile recipe that may be made as spicy or mild as desired. Use more chilli powder for extra heat. Use less chilli powder for a milder flavour.

I love my spice, but the rest of my family does not. So, I have kept this recipe sort of in the middle. It isn’t too spicy, nor is it too mild.  

It is best to use boneless chicken thighs instead of chicken breast. This is because chicken thighs have more fat, thus adding more flavour. They also are more moist and less prone to becoming dry or overcooked. 

You could also use bone-in chicken if you want. However, if you do this remember to increase the cooking time as bone-in chicken requires longer to cook. 

Serve chicken bhuna hot on the stove with some steamed basmati rice and raita or a simple homemade naan bread.  

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Chicken Bhuna

Chicken Bhuna

by Nabeela Kauser
Rich, flavourful, and hearty, this chicken bhuna recipe is great for a midweek meal. Made in under an hour, this chicken curry recipe does not skimp on flavour. Serve with a side of chapatti and enjoy.
5 from 6 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 40 mins
Total Time 50 mins
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Indian, Pakistani
Servings 4
Calories 250 kcal



  • Begin by heating oil in a large pan over medium heat.
  • Proceed to add chopped onions and sauté them until they turn translucent and start to brown. This should take about 5-7 minutes.
  • After that, add minced garlic, ginger, and green chillies to the pan and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes until they release their fragrance.
  • Then, add chopped tomatoes to the pan and cook for 4-5 minutes until they become soft and pulpy.
  • Add chicken pieces to the pan and stir them well to coat with the tomato mixture. Cook for 5-7 minutes or until the chicken changes colour.
  • Next, add ground coriander, ground cumin, turmeric powder, chilli powder, and salt to the pan. Mix them well to combine.
  • Cook for 2-3 minutes and add 2 tablespoons of water to release the colour of the spices.
  • Pour water into the pan and stir well. Cover the pan and cook on medium heat for 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is fully cooked and the sauce has thickened.
  • Finally, garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with rice or naan bread. Enjoy your tasty chicken bhuna dish!


Nutritional facts:
The provision of nutritional information is done so merely as a courtesy and should not be taken as a guarantee.


Calories: 250kcalCarbohydrates: 13gProtein: 13gFat: 17gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0.1gCholesterol: 45mgSodium: 719mgPotassium: 531mgFiber: 4gSugar: 6gVitamin A: 1264IUVitamin C: 25mgVitamin D: 0.1µgCalcium: 47mgIron: 2mg
Keyword Chicken, Cooking, Curry, Food, Indian, Indian Food, Meat, Recipe, Spicy
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Hi, I’m Nabeela and I love to cook! I want to share with you my favourite, delicious family-friendly recipes. I want to inspire you to create fantastic food for your family every day.

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