09 December 2021: Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala with Cauliflower & Peas

Like many home cooks, I fall into routines and habits that are easy and comfortable. One piece of kitchen equipment that I had been using fairly regularly throughout the spring and summer, my Instant Pot, recently had been sitting idly in a cupboard for the last several weeks. So when I was meal planning last week, I went in search of an Instant Pot recipe that I could throw into the rotation. Skinny Taste, one of the best recipe sites I found, has many Instant Pot recipes and – bonus – each recipe on the website lists nutrition information. For me, at this time of year, it is important to keep tabs on what I’m consuming in order to avoid overeating.

This was a tasty and warming dish on a cold December night, one that I’ll no doubt go back to many times. I stay away from full fat coconut milk as a personal choice, substituting the lower fat product, which I don’t believe made a difference in taste.

Instant Pot Chicken Tikka Masala with Cauliflower and Peas

Recipe and Nutrition Info from Gina Homolka of Skinny Taste


  • 1-1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cubed
  • 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 TBSP ghee, butter or coconut oil for df (I used coconut oil)
  • 1/2 chopped onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp grated ginger root (fresh – not the powder!)
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp ground cardamom
  • 14 ounce can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 2 C cauliflower florets
  • 1/2 C frozen peas
  • 1/2 C full fat canned coconut milk (I used low fat)
  • 1/4 C fresh cilantro leaves, for serving


  1. Season chicken with 1 teaspoon salt.
  2. Press saute button on Instant Pot and melt the butter,
  3. Add onion, garlic, ginger and 6 spices (from coriander to cardamom) and saute until the vegetables are soft and the spices are fragrant, about 2 to 3 minutes.
  4. Add the tomatoes and use an immersion to blend until smooth (or blend in the blender) (here’s where I just mashed up the diced tomatoes a bit with a fork – I kind of liked the chunckiness).
  5. Add the chicken, remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and stir, cook high pressure 15 minutes. (You may need to add about 1/4-1/2 cup of liquid to the Instant Pot so there’s plenty of liquid – refer to your Instant Pot’s cooking instructions)
  6. Quick release.
  7. Add the cauliflower and peas and cook 2 minutes on high pressure.
  8. Quick release, stir in coconut milk and serve garnished with cilantro.


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