Go Back
+ servings
Karahi Chicken in wok with spices in plate to side

Karahi Chicken

Karahi Chicken or Kadai Chicken is a popular restaurant favourite and a dish that hails from Lahore, Pakistan but is popular across Indian and Pakistan. It is a must try recipe, that is easy to make, incredibly aromatic and very flavourful.

Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine Indian, Lahori, Pakistani
Keyword Chicken Kadai, Chicken Karahi, Lahore Chicken Karahi
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 655 kcal
Author Safira


  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup Oil Adjust if this feels like too much
  • 6 Cardamom Pods cracked open
  • 1 inch Cassia Bark/Cinnamon
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • 6 Peppercorns
  • 6 Cloves
  • 4 Green Chillies pierced
  • 8 Chicken Legs/Thighs Mixed
  • 1 ½ Inch Ginger crushed
  • 4 - 8 cloves Garlic crushed
  • 250 g Tomatoes Pureed or Chopped in half
  • Salt
  • 1/2 tsp Turmeric
  • 1 tsp Chilli Powder
  • 1 ½ tsp ground Coriander
  • 1 ½ tsp ground Cumin
  • 1 tbsp Dried Fenugreek slightly crushed between your fingers (Optional)
  • 1 tsp Garam Masala


  1. Heat oil in a wok over medium/high heat.

  2. Add Cardamom, Cinnamon, Bay Leaves, Peppercorns, Cloves and Green Chillie and allow to cook in the oil. Cook till fragrant. This will take about 1 - 2 minutes.

  3. Add Chicken. Cook for 1 - 2 minutes.

  4. Now add the Ginger and Garlic and stir in. Saute for 1 - 2 minutes.

  5. Add tomatoes and salt. Cover the wok with a lid and turn the heat down to low.

  6. Simmer for 10 - 15 minutes. (If using tomatoes that have not been pureed, the skins should have lifted a little. Lift them off and discard).

  7. Add Turmeric, Chilli Powder, Ground Coriander and Ground Cumin. Cover and cook on low heat for 10 minutes.

  8. Remove lid, add the Fenugreek and Garam Masala and cook for 5 minutes.

Recipe Notes

Tips for making the best Chicken Karahi

  • Cooking whole spices in oil is really important in this recipe. It lends so much flavour. Try not to skip this bit.
  • In this recipe, I use more oil then I usually would. Again, this adds a lot of flavour but you can reduce the quantity down if you prefer.
  • In a traditional Lahori Chicken Karahi, whole tomatoes are added and cooked down and then the skins are lifted off. I have used pureed tomatoes for ease. 
  • Kasuri Methi in this quantity adds a very slight bitterness but it isn't essential. 
  • Always add Garam Masala towards the end of the cooking time. This is because the spices in it are usually already pre roasted.
Nutrition Facts
Karahi Chicken
Amount Per Serving
Calories 655 Calories from Fat 504
% Daily Value*
Fat 56g86%
Saturated Fat 10g63%
Cholesterol 160mg53%
Sodium 257mg11%
Potassium 519mg15%
Carbohydrates 9g3%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 29g58%
Vitamin A 639IU13%
Vitamin C 12mg15%
Calcium 46mg5%
Iron 2mg11%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.