Which one should you choose? – Extraterrestrial recipes (2023)

When it comes to Chicken Chettinad vs. Tikka Masala, each of them uses a unique blend of spices and has its own flavor. But which one should you choose between these two dishes? Read on to find out!

Contents hide

1 What is Chicken Chettinad?

2 What is Chicken Tikka Masala?

3 Chicken Chettinad vs. Tikka Masala: What Are the Similarities?

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4 Chicken Chettinad vs Tikka Masala: What Are the Differences?

4.1 Origin and History

4.2 Taste

4.3 Ingredients

4.4 Manufacturing Process

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4.4.1 Cooking Chicken Chettinad

4.4.2 Cooking Chicken Tikka Masala

5 Which one should you choose?

What is chicken chettinad?

Chicken Chettinad is a spicy and flavorful curry from the Chettinad region (southern India). It can be served with or without sauce.

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Chicken Chettinad is dark reddish-brown in color. This color comes from the addition of red Kashmiri chili powder and is due to the deep roasting of the spices.

Here is a video showing the preparation method.

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What is Chicken Tikka Masala?

Chicken tikka masala is made with tomato-based sauce and cream, giving it an orange color. It's a wholesome dish where every bite explodes with the flavor of authentic Indian spices.

Chef Tom Kerridge sends tikka masalahas "only 350 calories, or 640 calories with rice."

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Fancy a Friday night grab and go? My chicken tikka masala from this week's episode is only 350 calories, or 640 calories with rice. Find the recipe on BBC Food or in my new book#LoseWeightforGood pic.twitter.com/VA5aMr5NAB

– Tom Kerridge (@ChefTomKerridge)26 January 2018

To avoid confusing tikka masala with tikka, read this article on chicken tikka vs. chicken tikka masala.

Chicken Chettinad vs Tikka Masala: What are the Similarities?

Chicken Chettinad and Chicken Tikka Masala are both Indian curries made with a tomato-based sauce and the addition of chicken.

Being from different regions of India, each of them uses different ingredients and has a unique taste. But both are packed with flavors and hot spices.

The only similarity between chicken tikka and chicken tandoori is that they are made in clay ovens called tandoors. Here is a comparative study byChicken tikka masala vs tandoori chickenuncover their similarities and differences.

Chicken Chettinad vs Tikka Masala: What's the Difference?

We will list the differences between Chicken Chettinad and Tikka Masala based on the following aspects:

origin and history

Chicken Chettinad is native to the Chettinad region of Tamil Nadu. The inhabitants of Chettinad were called Chettiyars. They were a community of traders who primarily traded in whole spices.

Which one should you choose? – Extraterrestrial recipes (1)

The influence of whole spices can be seen heavily in Chettinad cuisine.

There are many theories about the origin of chicken tikka masala. Some have traced their origins to the state of Punjab in India. Some believe it was created by Bangladeshi immigrant chefs in Britain in the 1960s. Many people say it was created in a restaurant in Glasgow, Scotland.

Taste good

Chicken Chettinad is a flavorful curry due to the addition of black peppercorns and dried red chilies. Kashmiri Red Chili Powder is also added for the spiciness and for the fiery red color it imparts to the dish.

When making chicken chettinad at home, you can control the seasoning by adding milk to the sauce or reducing the number of chilies used.

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Chicken tikka masala is made in a thick, creamy, tomato-based sauce. It's a slightly spicy curry. The addition of cream softens the spiciness. Its sauce is sweet but savory. And the spices give it an earthy flavor.

Because the chicken is seared before adding sauce, the meat has a charred flavor that pairs well with the creamy sauce.

Which one should you choose? – Extraterrestrial recipes (2)


Here is the list of ingredients used in the preparation of Chicken Chettinad and Chicken Tikka Masala:

Chicken ChettinadChicken Tikka Masala
Curry leavesGaram Masala
The coriander seedsGround cumin
cumin seedsGround Coriander Seeds
fennel seedsRed Chili Powder
Mohnturmeric powder
clovesBrown sugar
Cinammonwhipped cream
Black PeppercornsGinger Garlic Paste
grated coconutSalt to taste
Black and green cardamomKasoori Bockshornklee
turmeric powder
Red Chili Powder

As you can see they both use different spices in their recipe. Some of the base spices are the same, but their treatment is different, which affects the taste.

Also want to know the similarities and differences betweenChicken Makhani against Chicken Tikka Masala?

production method

Let's take a look at the differences in how chicken chettinad and tikka masala are prepared.

Cook chicken chettinad

Which one should you choose? – Extraterrestrial recipes (3)
  1. With Chicken Chettinad, the chicken is placed in a bowl with a vinegar and salt marinade. However, you can add some spices of your choice.
  2. Whole spices like coriander seeds, fennel seeds, poppy seeds, cumin, dried chili peppers, cinnamon stick, cardamom, and peppercorns are roasted with chopped onions, grated coconut, and ginger-garlic paste. Let cool and mix.
  3. Then take some oil in a pan and fry curry leaves in it. Add chopped onions, green chilies, red chilli powder and turmeric. Add chopped tomatoes and fry for 5 minutes. Add the blended paste to this mixture and mix well. Then add a cup of water and simmer for 2 minutes.
  4. Add the chicken and stir well. Adjust the consistency by adding water. Add salt to taste. Cover the pan and let the chicken cook.

Cook chicken tikka masala

Which one should you choose? – Extraterrestrial recipes (4)
  1. In chicken tikka masala, the meat is marinated with yogurt, ginger-garlic paste, turmeric, red chili powder, garam masala, cumin powder, and salt.
  2. For the sauce, put oil in a pan and add chopped onions, green chillies and ginger. Add ginger garlic paste and cook until the smell goes away.
  3. Add your choice of powdered spices, cream and sugar. Stir in the tomato puree or diced tomatoes and puree the mixture.
  4. Sear the chicken pieces for 3-4 minutes on each side and add the sauce. Stir in ½ cup yogurt and garnish with coriander leaves.

Here's a video showing Gordon Ramsay's recipe for a classic tikka masala sauce.

There's just a tiny difference when it comes to thatTochicken Tikka vs. Chicken Tikka Masala. Read this article to learn more.

Which one should you choose?

It's hard to declare a winner in the battle between chicken chettinad and tikka masala. Both are packed with spices and flavors.

Cooking time for chicken tikka masala is shorter because the chicken can be grilled or seared before cooking in the sauce.

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With chicken chettinad, on the other hand, chicken pieces are only cooked in the sauce, which is time-consuming.

So it depends on how much time you have. If you have time to enjoy a delicious home-cooked meal, try chicken chettinad. If you're in a hurry, then Chicken Tikka Masala is your winner!


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