Arguably the creamiest of all the curries, Pasanda is one of the most popular choices in many Indian curry houses. Rightly so, succulent chicken pieces in a mildly spiced yoghurt and cream sauce, thickened with ground almonds, are extremely decadent and satisfying to eat! We are here to show you that you can easily recreate Chicken Pasanda in the comfort of your own kitchen, and it will only take a well-stocked spice cabinet and 30 minutes of your time!
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What Is Chicken Pasanda Made Of?
- oil: odourless oil is best for this recipe. Use vegetable, rapeseed, avocado or sunflower oil. We used vegetable oil in this recipe.
- brown onion: can be replaced with white onion or shallots.
- garlic: we highly recommend using minced or finely chopped fresh garlic. Garlic powder simply doesn’t add enough aroma.
- ginger: peeled, minced or finely chopped.
- chicken breasts: boneless and skinless, cut into bite-size pieces. You may also make this delicious chicken pasanda recipe with chicken thighs, but make sure to cook the chicken pieces for 2-3 minutes longer.
- cardamom: you can use ground cardamom powder or seeds from 3 cardamom pods ground up in a pestle and mortar.
- curry powder: use mild or medium curry powder, as pasanda curry is not meant to be hot. Alternatively, substitute it with garam masala spice blend.
- other spices: ground coriander, ground cumin, cinnamon, turmeric and chilli powder.
- caster sugar: or white granulated sugar.
- Greek yoghurt: can be replaced with natural yogurt, also known as plain yogurt. Note though, that Greek yogurt has higher fat content, and there is less chance of your sauce splitting. If using, natural yogurt, double the amount of cream in this recipe.
- double cream: also known as heavy cream.
- almond flour: also known as ground almonds or almond meal.
- fresh coriander: roughly chopped.
- flaked almonds: toasted. Or your can toast them yourself in a fry frying pan set over medium heat until they brown and smell all nutty. Toasted almonds are optional, but they do add some needed crunch to the dish.
Heat oil in a large pan over low heat. Add the onions, garlic and ginger and saute them for 5-6 minutes, until the onions are starting to soften.
Then add the chicken pieces to the onion mixture and cook for further 5-6 minutes (they don’t have to cook through completely at this point).
Add all the spices and sugar and stir for a minute to coat the chicken.
Stir in the yoghurt, cream and almond flour and bring the curry to a simmer. Leave it to cook gently for 10 minutes.
Season the curry with salt and pepper. Scatter some toasted almond flakes and fresh coriander and serve!
Whist Indian cuisine is most commonly known for spicy food recipes, this easy Indian Chicken Curry recipe is actually very mild. Gentle heat comes from mild curry powder and a small amount of chili powder added to the sauce, but you can always adjust the quantities to your spice preference. What is more, this curry is made with copious amounts of yogurt and cream, that help cool the dish down further.
Korma and Pasanda are both mild curries that are creamy and sweet. They both contain ground almonds, but Pasanda is milder in flavour and is typically made with lamb in the Indian subcontinent1. Different versions of both korma and pasanda curries are made with coconut milk or coconut cream and cashew nuts. However, most British takeaway versions of the two curries differ in the fact that chicken korma contains coconut, whilst pasanda does not!
It is not recommended. Heavy cream has a high fat content that ensures the pasanda stays smooth and cohesive. Without cream, your sauce is likely to split. Whilst the flavour will not be affected much, the texture and the appearance of the curry will not be appealing.
The addition of ground almonds thickens the sauce, but also adds to the overall flavour and creaminess of the curry.
You can use crushed cardamom pods and a cinnamon stick in this recipe, and ground your own coriander seeds (and cumin seeds), however, our aim was to create an effortless curry recipe, that comes together in less than 30 minutes. If you choose to use various spices in their whole form, we highly recommend cooking the sauce separately first, to allow extra time for the sauce to infuse with the aromas and flavours (cinnamon stick and cardamom pods) without overcooking the chicken.
What To Serve With Chicken Pasanda?
Traditionally, Indian curries are served with rice and flatbreads, and we highly recommend not straying from this grand tradition. Here are a few things we like to serve with this Creamy Chicken Pasanda:
- Naan Bread (or even better, Sourdough Naan Bread)
- Roti (Chapati)
- Pilau Rice
- Try it with cauliflower rice for a lower-carb option.
Let the Chicken Pasanda cool down to room temperature. Then spoon the curry into an airtight container and store it in the fridge for up to 2 days. We do not recommend freezing this curry, as the sauce will likely sprit after thawing.
To reheat, warm the curry in a pan over low-medium heat or in a microwave.
Other Curry Recipes From Around The World
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 brown onion finely chopped
- 3 garlic cloves minced or finely chopped
- 10 g ginger minced or finely chopped
- ⅛ teaspoon cardamom powder or ground seeds from 3 cardamom pods
- 4 chicken breasts cut into bite size pieces
- 2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon mild curry powder
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- ½ teaspoon chilli powder
- 1 teaspoon caster sugar
- 250 g Greek yogurt or natural yogurt
- 50 ml heavy double cream
- 4 tablespoon almond flour ground almonds
- 5 g coriander roughly chopped
- 10 g flaked almonds toasted
- Heat oil in a large frying pan over low-medium heat. Add the onions, garlic and ginger and saute them for 5-6 minutes, until the onions are starting to soften.
- Add the chicken pieces and cook for 5-6 minutes (they don't have to cook through completely at this point).
- Add all the spices and sugar and stir for a minute to coat the chicken.
- Stir in the yoghurt, cream and almond flour and bring the curry to a simmer. Leave it to cook gently for 10 minutes.
- Season the curry with salt and pepper. Scatter some toasted flaked almonds and fresh coriander and serve!