Easy Spicy Indian Chicken Keema Masala Curry Recipe

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Chicken Keema is a quick & easy Indian dry masala curry typically served with flatbreads like naan and paratha.

Our traditional spicy Chicken Keema recipe features simple and affordable ingredients like ground chicken, cumin, cinnamon, onion, garlic, ginger, chillies, tomato paste, cilantro and mint.

This healthy Indian dry chicken curry is a family favourite as it can be made in under 30 minutes any night of the week. Enjoy at lunch or dinner alongside samosas, pakora, soup, salad and sweet chutney.

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Save our Indian Chicken Keema Masala Curry recipe to Pinterest!
Save our Indian Chicken Keema Masala Curry recipe to Pinterest!

What Is Chicken Keema?

Chicken Keema is a simple and easy to prepare dish from India.

The word Keema is believed to have been borrowed from the Turkish word Kiyma, which means minced meat. Keema was a popular breakfast staple in the Awadhi cuisine during medieval India. It was an age when the royal families took their culinary affairs almost as seriously as their administrative duties.

The royal cooks of several Mughal rulers created many keema delicacies to delight their beloved king.

One of the most popular ways to make keema is as a dry masala curry served with paratha or naan flatbread. Our Chicken Keema recipe uses this quick & easy dry cooking method.

You can also make a wet Chicken Keema recipe that features a fragrant masala curry gravy sauce by adding fresh chopped tomatoes instead of tomato paste.

Keema can be made with any kind meat but the most popular is minced chicken. The spiced ground meat mixture can also be used to make kebabs and is also sometimes used as a filling for samosas or naan.

Traditional Chicken Keema recipes feature ground chicken, onions, garlic, chili, ginger, tomatoes, fragrant spices and fresh herbs.

Traditional homemade Chicken Keema recipe ingredients.
Traditional homemade Chicken Keema recipe ingredients.

Travel to India by Cooking Chicken Keema at Home

I love traveling through Asia.

My first visit to Asia had me living in South Korea for a year as a teacher and it’s where I was first introduced to fermented vegetables like kimchi.

After my contract ended in Seoul I travelled throughout Asia for 6 months, visiting the PhilippinesIndonesiaMalaysiaSingaporeCambodiaLaosMyanmar, ThailandVietnamThe Maldives and India.

I spent over a month traveling through India. I started in the capital, eating my way through the bustling markets and fine dining restaurants in Delhi. I then embarked on a magical weekend getaway to awe-inspiring Taj Mahal in Agra. In India’s north you’ll find plenty of barbecue, Chilli Paneer Masala and wheat-based flatbreads.

For the second half of my Indian adventure I explored the southern state of Kerala. The south is famous for its seafood, coconut, tropical fruits, and rice based side dishes like crispy dosa. The colonial capital of Cochin was formerly run by the Portuguese. It’s also one of the only places in India you can find beef on a menu.

After enjoying a jaunt to the Maldives my India trip came to a close in the Bollywood capital, bustling and cosmopolitan Mumbai. The city is famous for its specialty street foods and fine dining restaurants at opulent luxury hotels. The Taj Mahal Palace in particular serves one of the world’s most famous Afternoon Teas.

What I found most fascinating is India’s distinct regional food cultures. Much like the regional cuisines found in FranceGermanyItaly or Spain, each city in India had its own local speciality.

After you’ve traveled to India, return home to prepare a fragrant feast for friends and family featuring our flavourful Chicken Keema recipe!

Chicken Keema is flavoured with garlic, ginger, onions and spices like cinnamon, cumin and coriander.
Chicken Keema is flavoured with garlic, ginger, onions and spices like cinnamon, cumin and coriander.

Where To Eat Chicken Keema Curry

If you live in a large city in Canada or America you’ll likely have access to local Indian restaurants that serve their own unique Chicken Keema recipe.

Haven’t traveled to India before? It may be helpful to first sample Chicken Keema Curry at a local Indian restaurant to better understand how the dish is served. You can assess the desired spicy heat level and what types of flatbread to serve at the table.

In Toronto, popular Indian restaurants that may serve Chicken Keema Masala include Udupi PalaceLahore Tikka House and Kothur Indian Cuisine.

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Authentic Chicken Keema recipe photo image.
Authentic Chicken Keema recipe photo image.

My Family Loves Chicken Keema Masala

I’ll never forget my first experience eating dry Chicken Keema Curry.

On my final day in Delhi I enjoyed a fabulous feast at Nom Nom Restaurant at the luxurious Ashok Hotel.

The waiter asked me if I’d like to try the chef’s signature specialities, a selection of Indo-Chinese dishes. The table soon filled with steaming dim sum, plump prawns, curry noodles, duck pancakes and a steaming bowl of Chicken Keema Masala.

My eyes bulged as I scooped the spicy ground chicken curry into my mouth with the help of a flaky paratha. I loved the simplicity of the healthy dish. Exotic spices and plenty of fresh herbs created an explosion of flavour in my mouth.

After traveling throughout India and eating at some of the world’s best Indian restaurants I was excited to share my love for Chicken Keema Curry with family at home.

I’ve hosted many Indian-themed feasts, showcasing dishes from Kerala to Bengal via fragrant curries, fresh salads and hearty soups.

When I finally made my parents this homemade Chicken Keema recipe they practically licked the bowl clean. I knew they’d both enjoy the dish because they love simple chicken dishes, fresh herbs and Indian flatbread like naan.

If you’ve traveled to India on holiday there is no better way to share your adventure at home with family and friends at home then by serving this spicy Chicken Keema recipe!

Garnish Chicken Keema Dry Curry with fresh herbs and sliced chili.
Garnish Chicken Keema Dry Curry with fresh herbs and sliced chili.

Health Benefits

Our healthy Chicken Keema recipe is packed full of healthy ingredients!

Chicken is high in protein and provides B vitamins such as niacin, which helps your body access the energy in foods.   

Chilli has been proven to help reduce the duration of sickness, prevent heart disease, and promote weight loss. 

Onions are a humble vegetable packed with vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals. Regular consumption of onions can help boost digestive health and reduce the risk of developing heart disease.

It is only recently that scientists have begun to identify the components responsible for garlic’s myriad health benefits. Rich in phytochemicals and potassium, garlic helps boost your immune system, fight cancer and protect your heart.

Rich in a group of phytochemicals called carotenoids, tomatoes may help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, and provide protection against cancer. Tomatoes are also a good source of immune-boosting vitamin C.

Ginger contains at least 14 phytochemicals, many of which have impressive antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It also has a good source of copper, which supports your bones, blood and nervous system. 

A rich source of blood-building iron, cumin may also help balance your blood sugar levels and reduce bad cholesterol. It is also traditionally used as a digestive aid.

Rich in energy-boosting manganese, cinnamon is also antibacterial and may protect your brain against Alzheimer’s disease.  

A good source of bone-strengthening vitamin K, cilantro is also rich in antioxidants that help protect the eyes from damage by free radicals. 

Fresh mint is antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, and can have a calming effect on the digestive system. It is also a good source of folate, which supports blood health. 

This Chicken Keema recipe is an easy, healthy and affordable Indian recipe.
This Chicken Keema recipe is an easy, healthy and affordable Indian recipe.

Cooking Tips

If it’s your first time cooking Chicken Keema Masala at home be sure to review our recipe below. Here are some helpful tips and tricks to get you started.

  • We suggest using a large wok when preparing Chicken Keema Curry as it allows you to distribute the heat evenly and offers plenty of space to toss and stir the ingredients together without splatter. You can also use a large skillet with a lid.
  • We’ve used ghee in this recipe but you can substitute for butter or canola oil.
  • If you like spicy food feel free to add additional green serrano chilies. If you don’t like spicy food be sure to remove the seeds before adding the chopped chili into the wok.
  • We’ve used tomato paste in this recipe but you can substitute for 1 finely chopped plum tomato. If you want to prepare a wet Chicken Keema recipe add additional diced tomato.
  • We’ve used a red onion in this recipe but you can substitute with shallots, cooking onions, sweet Vidalia onion or white onion.
  • Keema is most often prepared with ground chicken but you can substitute for minced beef or pork if you prefer.
Chicken Keema is an Indian dry masala curry.
Chicken Keema is an Indian dry masala curry.

What To Serve with Keema

Chicken Keema is one of our favourite quick and easy Indian dry curries to make at home.

The healthy recipe is often served as a main course or entree with flatbread like paratha and naan. The dish is traditionally eaten with your hands. Diners rip pieces of flatbread to scoop the tender minced chicken pieces. You can also serve the dry curry with steamed basmati rice.

You can serve Chicken Keema as a simple lunch or dinner on its own, or as one of many dishes for a proper Indian feast. We often like to serve Chicken Keema with a selection of appetizers like pakoras or samosas. If you’re hosting a special celebration decorate the table with a selection of healthy salads, soups, curries and kebabs.

If you’re hosting a large Indian-themed dinner party or buffet you may want to serve Chicken Keema with these popular recipes:

Serve Chicken Keema with Indian flatbread or steamed rice.
Serve Chicken Keema with Indian flatbread or steamed rice.

You May Also Enjoy These Chicken Recipes…

Now you're an expert on how to make the best spicy Chicken Keema recipe!
Now you’re an expert on how to make the best spicy Chicken Keema recipe!

Step by Step Chicken Keema Recipe Video

How To Make Chicken Keema Masala Curry

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5 from 1 vote

Chicken Keema Masala Curry

How to make the best healthy Chicken Keema recipe. Our easy Indian dry masala curry features chicken mince, tomato, onion, chili and spices.
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time30 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Chicken Keema
Servings: 4
Calories: 287kcal


  • Wok or Large Skillet
  • measuring cups
  • measuring spoons
  • French knife
  • Wooden spoon


  • 2 tsp Ghee
  • 1 tsp Canola Oil
  • 1 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1 tsp Peppercorns
  • 1 tsp Coriander Seeds
  • 1 Cinnamon Stick
  • 1 Red Onion finely chopped
  • 1 tsp Grated Ginger
  • 1/2 tsp Crushed Garlic
  • 2 Green Chilies chopped
  • 1/2 tsp Red Chili Powder
  • 2 tbsp Tomato Paste
  • 400 g Ground Chicken


  • 1/4 cup Cilantro chopped
  • 15 Mint Leaves chopped


  • Heat the ghee and oil together in a shallow saucepan or wok with a lid over medium heat. When hot, add the cumin, black peppercorns, coriander seeds and cinnamon and fry for 30 seconds or until they start to sputter. Add the onion, ginger, garlic, green chilies and cook for 5-7 minutes until the onions are light brown around the edges.
  • Add the red chili powder, tomato paste and ground chicken and stir fry for 10-15 minutes until all the water evaporates and the chicken is cooked through. Season with salt before turning off the heat.
  • Garnish with chopped cilantro and mint and serve hot with naan or rice.


Calories: 287kcal | Carbohydrates: 7.9g | Protein: 30.5g | Fat: 14.7g | Saturated Fat: 5.8g | Cholesterol: 104mg | Sodium: 144mg | Potassium: 500mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 3.3g | Calcium: 51mg | Iron: 3mg

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