Easy Masala Chicken Breasts

These easy masala chicken breasts are marinated in Indian spices, yogurt, and citrus, then grilled to perfection. Masala chicken breasts make a delicious main dish or can be sliced and added to salads, wraps, or various curries and soups. This recipe is perfect for health-conscious individuals looking for lean proteins to add to their diet. Our recipe calls for garam masala, widely available online, in South Asian markets, and some grocery stores. 

garam masala

What is garam masala?

Garam masala is a mixture of spices, usually toasted and ground fine, used in South Asian cuisine. It is not to be confused with curry powder, a different spice blend that draws its yellow hue from turmeric and may or may not contain curry leaves. Garam masala is darker in color contains earthy spices such as coriander, fennel, cumin, cardamom, cinnamon, red chili powder, and cloves. These ingredients can change from region to region, slightly altering the flavor of the masala. 

Easy Masala Chicken Breasts: The Ingredients

  • Chicken breasts, skinless and boneless
  • Whole Milk yogurt
  • Limes
  • Onion
  • Garlic
  • Chili powder
  • Cilantro
  • Oil
  • Garam masala
  • Cumin
  • Salt and black pepper

Marinating:

  • Yogurt marinades, like the one used in this masala chicken breast recipe, are an integral part of South Asian cooking and help tenderize and flavor meats before they hit the grill. 
  • To make the masala marinade, place ingredients in a food processor and puree into a smooth mixture. Taste the marinade, and make adjustments as needed.
  • Place chicken breasts into a resealable plastic bag or large glass dish. Pour the marinade over the top and turn to coat. Seal bag or cover dish with plastic wrap and place into refrigerator for 6-12 hours.
Easy Masala Grilled Chicken

Easy Masala Chicken Breasts: The Grilling

  • Preheat your grill for medium-high heat, or 375 degrees F. Have a reliable instant-read thermometer nearby to check for doneness. 
  • Remove chicken from marinade and place on the grill. Cook for 7-9 minutes per side or until internal temperature at the thickest part of the breast reaches 165 degrees F. Adjust heat as needed. 
  • Once cooked through, remove the masala chicken breasts from the grill and let them rest for at least 5 minutes. Serve whole or slice and serve with your favorite sides.
  • Store leftover chicken breasts in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days. Freeze for up 3 months in vacuum-sealed bags.

Tip:

For faster cooking, flatten the chicken breasts. Place one breast at a time between two pieces of plastic. Using the smooth side of a kitchen mallet, gently strike the chicken breasts from the center, moving outward to create a uniform thickness of 3/4″. Marinate the masala chicken breasts and grill as directed.

 

Easy Masala Chicken Breasts

Easy Masala Chicken Breasts

These easy masala chicken breasts are marinated in a flavorful spice, yogurt and lime mixture, then grilled. They can be served as the main dish, or sliced and added to salads wraps or various types of curries and soups.
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Cuisine: Indian, South Asian
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 5 People
Calories: 354kcal

Ingredients

  • 5 chicken breasts boneless and skinless
  • for marinade:
  • 1 1/4 cups yogurt Whole Milk (do not use Greek style)
  • 3 limes juiced
  • 1/2 onion roughly chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic peeled
  • 1 chili pepper, seeded and roughly chopped (choose type and heat preference)
  • 1/4 cup cilantro leaves
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons cumin powder
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Place marinade ingredients in a food processor and puree into a smooth mixture. Taste for salt content, made any adjustments as needed.
  • Place chicken breasts into a resealable plastic bag or large glass dish. Pour marinade over top and turn to coat. Seal bag or cover dish with plastic wrap and place into refrigerator for 6-12 hours.
  • Preheat grill for medium high heat.
  • Remove chicken from marinade and place on the grill. Cook for 7-9 minutes per side or until internal temperature at thickest part of breast reaches 165 degrees F. Adjust heat as needed.
  • Once cooked through, remove from heat and let meat rest for a few minutes. Serve whole or slice and serve with your favorite sides.
  • For faster cooking, flatten the chicken breasts. Place one breast at a time between two pieces of plastic. Using the smooth side of a kitchen mallet, gently strike the chicken breasts from the center, moving outward to create a uniform thickness of 3/4". Marinate and grill as directed.

Notes

Photos by: Sabrina Baksh

Nutrition

Calories: 354kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 51g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 153mg | Sodium: 878mg | Potassium: 1057mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 236IU | Vitamin C: 17mg | Calcium: 131mg | Iron: 3mg

Masala photo by: Photo by Luísa Schetinger on Unsplash

Easy Masala Chicken Breasts