Tandoori Chicken

Tandoori Chicken

This Tandoori Chicken is just as good as what you'd get at an Indian restaurant and it's so easy to make! Chicken thighs are soaked in a creamy, well spiced, yogurt based marinade and then cooked on the grill to get that traditional char.

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Tandoori Chicken
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours 35 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 339 kcal
Author: Jaclyn


  • 3 lbs bone-in or boneless skinless chicken thighs, trimmed of excess fat
  • 1 (5.3 oz) container fat-free Greek yogurt (heaping 1/2 cup)
  • 2 Tbsp vegetable oil or olive oil, plus more for grilling
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 Tbsp minced fresh garlic
  • 2 Tbsp peeled and minced fresh ginger
  • 1 Tbsp paprika (not smoked!)
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, add more or less to taste
  • 1/4 tsp cardamon (optional)
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Fresh cilantro, for garish


  1. To a medium skillet add paprika, cumin, coriander, turmeric, cinnamon, cayenne pepper and cardamom.

  2. Cook over medium heat until slightly toasted and fragrant, stirring frequently, about 1 - 2 minutes. (In a rush this step can be skipped, it just adds a little more flavor).

  3. In a large mixing bowl whisk together Greek yogurt, oil, lemon juice, garlic, ginger, spices from skillet, and season with salt and pepper (I use 1 1/2 tsp salt and 1 tsp pepper).

  4. Add chicken thighs and toss well in mixture to coat evenly.

  5. Cover bowl and transfer to refrigerator and let marinate at least 3 hours and up to 10 hours.

  6. Preheat a grill over medium-high heat to about 425 degrees.

  7. Clean grill grates and brush with oil.

  8. Grill chicken about 10 - 12 minutes per side for bone-in thighs (5 - 7 minutes per side for boneless thighs), while basting once lightly with oil if desired to reduce exterior drying, until chicken registers 165 on an instant read thermometer in center near bone.

  9. Let rest a few minutes off heat, serve warm with cilantro.

  10. Recipe source: inspired by Serious Eats and Emeril Lagasse