Homemade Chicken Jalfrezi in a deliciously thick, spicy sauce. I love this for a quick weeknight meal when I’m craving a good curry. Serve it with my quick and easy pilau rice – all ready in 40 minutes.

Chicken Jalfrezi with pilau rice. Red onion and coriander sprinkled on top.
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We love a good curry at home, and you’ll often find me whipping up a quick Thai curry on a busy weeknight, or making a slow cooker curry when we’ve got friends round for dinner. It’s also the number one food I crave when we come back from holiday.

We have so much fun trying all the local cuisines and basically eating everything in sight, but when I get back home, dinner is a saucy curry with lots of rice.

Overhead image of Chicken Jalfrezi with pilau rice in a blue bowl. The curry is topped with red onion and coriander and there is a piece of chapati in the edge of the bowl.

This jalfrezi is a great one to make when you’re craving that spicy-curry kick.

I like to marinate the chicken first with cumin, coriander, turmeric and garam masala. No too long – 10-15 minutes is enough. Then after that, we’re talking 30 minutes from start to finish.

Fry the marinated chicken in a little oil and butter.

chicken frying in a pan with spices
Indian spiced marinated chicken frying in a pan

Then add in sliced onions, chillies, garlic and ginger before adding the next layer of spices.
We’re using the same spices you used to marinate the chicken (this time to flavour the sauce). We also add in a little salt.

spices being added to a pan with chicken and onions

Next in goes chopped peppers, tinned tomatoes, stock and tomato puree. That needs to bubble away for about 10 minutes, then it’s ready to serve.

Close up of chicken jalfrezi in a pan

Lots of spices and a nice kick of heat, with plenty of sauce to soak into the rice.

Speaking of rice – did you know how easy it is to make pilau rice at home? I’ve got the recipe for you here (click on the image to take you to the recipe):

Wide image of Pilau rice in a white oblong bowl on a white surface.

Dish the jalfrezi up with that lovely fragrant Pilau rice, and sprinkle on some red onion and coriander before serving.

What to serve with your curry:

Chicken Jalfrezi with pilau rice in a blue bowl on a blue background. There is a bowl of tomato and onion salad in the background, along with forks, pieces of chapati and a further bowl of food just in shot.

📺 Watch how to make this Chicken Jalfrezi (and the pilau rice too!)

YouTube video

Want to use the Curry Base Gravy Method for this Curry?

Check out the notes section of the recipe card of my Curry Base Gravy to see how I convert this recipe to use a make-ahead curry base.

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4.94 from 60 votes

Chicken Jalfrezi Recipe

Homemade Chicken Jalfrezi in a deliciously thick, spicy sauce. Serve it with my quick and easy pilau rice – all ready in 40 minutes.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 people
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: Asian



  • 3 chicken breasts (about 500g/1.1lbs) chopped into bitesized chunks
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp garam masala


  • 1 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 large onion peeled and sliced
  • 1 red chilli sliced
  • 1 green chilli sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and minced
  • 2 tsp minced ginger
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 ½ tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 red bell pepper sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper sliced
  • 400 g (14 oz) tin chopped tomatoes
  • 240 ml (1 cup) chicken stock ensure this is a gluten-free stock if required
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree paste for US

To Serve:

  • pilau rice or boiled rice
  • fresh coriander
  • chilli flakes
  • sliced red onion
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  • Coat the chicken in the cumin, coriander, turmeric, and garam masala and leave to marinade for 10 minutes, covered in the fridge.
    3 chicken breasts (about 500g/1.1lbs), 1 tsp cumin, 1 tsp coriander, 1 tsp turmeric, 1 tsp garam masala
  • Once the chicken has marinated, heat the oil and butter in a large frying pan and add the chicken. Cook on a high heat for 4-5 minutes until the chicken is sealed.
    1 tbsp sunflower oil, 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • Add the onion to the pan, turn the heat down to low-medium and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often, until the onion softens.
    1 large onion
  • Add the red and green chilli, garlic, and ginger and cook for a further 2 minutes.
    1 red chilli, 1 green chilli, 2 cloves garlic, 2 tsp minced ginger
  • Add in the garam masala, turmeric, salt, cumin, and ground coriander. Stir to coat the onions, and cook for a further 2 minutes.
    1 tsp garam masala, 2 tsp turmeric, 1 1/2 tsp salt, 2 tsp cumin, 2 tsp ground coriander
  • Add in the red and green pepper, tinned tomatoes, chicken stock, and tomato puree.
    1 red bell pepper, 1 green bell pepper, 400 g (14 oz) tin chopped tomatoes, 240 ml (1 cup) chicken stock, 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • Bring to the boil, then simmer for 10 minutes until thickened.
  • Stir in the fresh coriander and serve with rice, topped with fresh coriander, a few chilli flakes, and some sliced red onion.
    pilau rice, fresh coriander, chilli flakes, sliced red onion


YouTube video


Want to use the Curry Base Gravy Method?
Check out the notes section of the recipe card of my Curry Base Gravy to see how I convert this recipe to use a make-ahead curry base.
What about a gluten-free jalfrezi?
The ingredients I used for this chicken jalfrezi recipe are already gluten-free – but it’s a good idea to check your own brands to be sure.
Can I make it vegetarian?
Yes, add in more veggies in place of the chicken, and use vegetable stock. I like to marinate cubes of courgette and mushrooms in place of the chicken.
Can I make it ahead?
Yes, you can make the jalfrezi ahead, then cool, cover and refrigerate for up to two days. Reheat in a pan over a medium heat until the chicken is hot throughout.
Will it freeze ok?
Yes, freeze in freezer-proof containers with a lid as soon as the curry is cool. Defrost overnight in the fridge, then reheat in a pan  – as per above.
Can I make chicken jalfrezi in the slow cooker?
Yes – bring the curry up to the boil (step 12), then transfer to a slow cooker. Cook for 3-4 hours on high or 5-6 hours on low.
Swap out the chicken for lamb:
Lamb jalfrezi is delicious – but it takes longer to cook to become tender. If you want to replace the chicken with lamb, then add a little more liquid (I would add an extra 140z/400g tin of chopped tomatoes) and simmer for 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Add a splash of water or stock if it starts to look too dry.
Nutritional Information is per serving.


Calories: 312kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 30g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 95mg | Sodium: 1484mg | Potassium: 1041mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 1619IU | Vitamin C: 94mg | Calcium: 78mg | Iron: 4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links – which means if you buy the product I get a small commission (at no extra cost to you). If you do buy, then thank you! That’s what helps us to keep Kitchen Sanctuary running. The nutritional information provided is approximate and can vary depending on several factors. For more information please see our Terms & Conditions.

Posted in Sept 2019 updated July 2020 and October 2021 with new hints and tips and for housekeeping reasons.

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Hi, I'm Nicky 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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  1. Clarissa Mcintyre says:

    5 stars
    This recipe is delicious so good my daughter in law asked if I would make it for 6 of her friends for a night in party can’t wait to try some of your other curry recipes

  2. Graham says:

    5 stars
    Just made for 12 just lovely was very nice and all enjoyed

  3. Rob says:

    5 stars
    Superb, made with chicken thighs and veg stock, and the gravy would suit veg, prawns etc. Took rather longer than 40 minutes – maybe an hour for me

  4. Karen Rhoades says:

    5 stars
    Delicious curry, not too hot but lovely flavours. My husband loved it. I did make it a couple of days before eating and the flavours has definitely improved. I also used chicken thigh meat.

  5. Jenny says:

    Great recipe, less faff than other jalfrazi recipes I’ve used and the tastiest. My family loved it. It will be my go to from now on. Would definitely recommend giving it a try.

  6. Dani says:

    5 stars
    Delicious! I added spinach for some extra veg (without having to wash another dish haha). It was a huge hit! It will be a regular in our house now. Thanks for the great recipe!

  7. L says:

    Hey I was just wondering if the nutritional information for this recipe included the rice and if so what portion size of rice is included in the overall macros? Just wondering for the carb content etc. thank you 🙂

  8. Paul Cowderoy says:

    4 stars
    I just made this and it tastes amazing. Only slight thing I will do differently next time is slightly less stock as it was a little bit watery and need far longer that 1pm is to thicken up. Definitely as good as my local curry house 😀

  9. Lyn says:

    4 stars
    Made this yesterday which was my first attempt at making a curry from scratch. Fantastic, thankyou