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If you think crockpots are only for pot roasts, think again!  This Crockpot Chicken Tikka Masala is sweet, spicy, and sooooo easy to make!

Crockpot Chicken Tikka Masala

My crockpot chicken curry is one of my most popular recipes, so when I was planning the recipes for my Crockpot Chicken Freezer Meals eCookbook I made sure to include some fun recipes like Chicken Tikka Masala and Thai Chicken.  Yum!  (You can see the full list of recipes here.)

I asked the people who follow my Facebook page which recipe they wanted to see for free on my blog and this was the clear winner, so here you go.

Here’s what I love about this recipe:

  • It’s sweet, spicy, and delicious.
  • It only requires nine ingredients and most of them are staples in my kitchen.
  • I can add it to the crockpot in the morning or freeze everything raw in a baggie for later.

Crockpot Chicken Tikka Masala

Yields: 6 servings


  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • Two 15oz cans of tomato sauce
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 8oz heavy cream (1 cup or 1/2 pint)


  1. Add all ingredients to slow cooker and cook on “low” setting for 4 hours in a 6-quart slow cooker or 8 hours in a 4-quart slow cooker.

To Freeze and Cook Later

  1. Label your freezer bag with the name of the recipe, cooking instructions, and “use-by” date.
  2. To your freezer bag add all ingredients.
  3. Remove as much air as possible and seal for up to three months.
  4. When ready to eat, thaw freezer bag overnight in refrigerator or in the morning in water.
  5. Add contents of freezer bag to slow cooker and cook on “low” setting for 4 hours in a 6-quart slow cooker or 8 hours in a 4-quart slow cooker.

Serve with naan or rice and a salad.

Crockpot Chicken Tikka Masala

Thoughts or questions?  Please leave a comment below and I’ll respond as soon as I can.  I’d love to hear from you. 


  • KG in MT says:

    Has anyone ever tried this using coconut milk rather than heavy cream?
    Also, I’ve been avoiding canned tomato products because most of them still have BPA in the can lining, and the acid from the tomatoes can make cause the BPA to leach into the food. Instead, I’ve been buying jars of strained tomatoes when they’re on sale (they’re expensive, unfortunately!). Any opinion on whether strained tomatoes would work well?
    I got a crockpot with a timer for Christmas and just bought the cookbook bundle, so I’m excited to get started with some healthy, easy meals for my family–our usual menu has been needing a major overhaul for a long time, and now I’ve got the tools to do it!

    • Kelly says:

      I think coconut milk will work because I used canned unsweetened coconut milk in my chicken curry recipe. Strained tomatoes will change the texture of the sauce, but you could give them a try if you don’t care about that.

      • KG in MT says:

        Since I have a picky family and I’m new to this, I think I’ll just stick with your tried and true methods–at least the first time around! 😉 Maybe I’ll venture into strained tomato territory once I get a few successful meals under my belt…

    • Melissa says:

      I did it with coconut milk tonight — and also made it in the saucepan instead of a crockpot — and it was great!!

    • Kathryn says:

      I made this with canned coconut and it was delicious!

  • Patty says:

    How does the cream hold up in the freezer and then slow cooker? It seems I remember some advice to add cream last to avoid curdling.

  • Stacy says:

    I have a question about the heavy cream. Where do I find it? I was looking in our dairy aisle and saw heavy “whipping” cream and also creamer, but nothing labeled heavy cream, or is heavy whipping cream the same thing? I vouched for subbing coconut milk instead since I wasn’t sure. Thanks!

  • virtuallinda says:

    Making this now, smells great! Can you freeze a cooked portion for eating later? I know I can’t REFREEZE it, but can I make it fresh then freeze leftovers? Actually wondering that about a lot of your recipes. There’s only 2 of us so that would give me some more options. Thank you!! I have a lot of meals planned out!!

    • Kelly says:

      You can freeze any of my meals after cooking them. They’re the same as any other cooked meal. You can also cut them in half and cook in a smaller crockpot.

  • Rosie says:

    Please just to clarify, When you say tomato sauce do you mean sauce that here in New Zealand we eat with fries and sausages etc? (It has sugar and herbs and spices etc, you might call it ketchup??) Or is it a can of puréed tomatoes?

  • Silver says:

    I used curry paste instead of powder, and it really takes the flavors over the top. I use 3.5 T paste since we like big flavors. Also, biryani paste works great as well, it has a slightly more floral note and goes very well with chickpea curry. Either way, if you have access to curry paste, give it a whirl!

  • Corrin says:

    Can I use bone-in chicken thighs in this recipe instead of breasts?

    • Kelly says:

      I would probably use boneless chicken thighs instead. My only concern with bone-in thighs is that the meat might cook down and fall apart and then you’ll have to fish the bones out of the sauce.

  • Bruna says:

    This was AH-mazing!! I did add a couple other “Indian” spices like turmeric, Garam masala and freshly ground coriander, plus I put in one small finely chopped onion and some ginger. Again, to die for!
    Thanks for sharing, Kelly. I love your blog

  • Carly says:

    Have you ever thrown in veggies like peas/cauliflower? Wondering how they freeze/cook with everything else.

    • Kelly says:

      Yes! They’re good. I prefer store-bought frozen cauliflower and broccoli in my freezer meals over fresh because they oxidize if frozen raw and don’t taste good.

  • Rachel says:

    I would like to add some veggies to this. Have you tried it with cauliflower, peppers, or any other veggies that would help stretch the chicken?

  • Jen says:

    This is one of my favorites! It comes out delicious every time, and I follow the recipe exactly as you have it. I just add frozen peas to it at the end. Gotta have something green. Peas are just enough to not detract from the sauce.

  • Ash says:

    Could you use nonfat Greek yogurt instead of the heavy cream?

  • Kristi says:

    Have you ever tried making this not in a slow cooker? Wondering if recipe would still work if it was done on a stovetop?

  • Betsy Lemal says:

    Would this recipe work with ALL greek yogurt, instead of heavy cream?


  • Carissa says:

    Has anyone made this without honey? I’m wondering if it would taste ok. I’m on a SIBO/candida diet and can’t do anything sweet. I’ll also be subbing coconut milk for the cream.

  • Jan says:

    I’d love to make this but can’t use honey. Any substitution suggestions please.

    • Silver says:

      Can you have other sweeteners? Maybe sucanat or agave if you use that? I would personally sub pure maple if no honey was on hand. Hope this helps!

  • Kelley says:

    This was AMAZING! We love Indian food but I’ve never been super successful cooking it at home and having it taste like a restaurant. We all agreed this was the closest I have ever gotten and it tasted pretty much the same as our local Indian restaurant. I did sub thighs because I think they retain moisture better in the crock pot but other than that I made as written. I also prepped one for the freezer at the same time to eat after I have my baby in the next few weeks.

  • Sue says:

    This recipe is listed on the 31 keto crockpot freezer meals, but tomato sauce is very high in carbohydrates. Is there any way to make it more keto friendly?

  • Cheryl says:

    LOL – am I the only person to notice that there’s no garam masala in this tikka masala recipe? Is there a reason you don’t have it?

    • Michele says:

      I wondered too, that is always part of my other chicken Tikka recipes, was going to do half the amount of curry & use the garam masala & see how it went.

  • Erin Jones says:

    My family thought it was great. Just the right amount of spice for us. Came out a bit soupy, but we ate it over rice. Next time we might try to add some veggies– cauliflower, potatoes, peas. So proud that we just MADE Indian food at home! Thanks for the recipe!!

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