This basic tandoori chicken recipe is so basic, it can hardly be called a recipe. It comprises of three ingredients: a store-bought tandoori paste, some yoghurt and some chicken.

But I have given it its own place to live in the Feel Good Eating recipe archives because it is a relatively simple way to prepare chicken that produces a protein option that is incredibly tasty and way more interesting than just pan frying some chicken.


A white enamel plate filled with Tandoori chicken tenderloins.


It is great is you are looking to expand your variety but don’t want anything too complicated or time-consuming.

My go-to is chicken tenderloins when I use this basic tandoori chicken recipe because they cook really quickly and their size work in a multitude of meals and dishes.

The preparation and cooking instructions below are based on the ones you will find on the Patak’s Tandoori Paste label.

The other common supermarket pastes/marinades are Masterfood’s Charred Tandoori Style Marinade and the Sharwood’s Tandoori Paste. Their preparation instructions are quite similar, but please do refer to their respective labels if using them.


A griddle pan of Tandoori Chicken tenderloins


What do you eat tandoori chicken with?

Tandoori chicken is actually really versatile. Once you have your pile of cooked chicken, you might like to use it in the following ways:

  • In a wrap
  • In sandwiches
  • To make tandoori chicken pizza
  • In a salad
  • With sides like rice or crispy potatoes
  • With raita or yoghurt and cucumber in naan bread
  • Added into a curry like butter chicken


How long will the cooked tandoori chicken keep?

Like all cooked animal protein, the cooked tandoori chicken needs to be stored in the fridge and should be consumed within 3 days.

I have not tried to freeze and reheat the leftovers (between making pizzas and putting the chicken in wraps, we tend to go through the whole batch in my house quite easily!).

However, if you don’t feel you will consume 500g of cooked chicken within three days, you can halve the tray of raw chicken before you marinade it and store the remaining half a tray in the freezer. You will also need to halve the amount of tandoori paste and yoghurt you use for the marinade.


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A white enamel plate filled with Tandoori chicken tenderloins.

Basic Tandoori Chicken Recipe

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  • Author: Nina Mills
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 6 minutes
  • Total Time: 31 minutes
  • Yield: 500g cooked chicken 1x
  • Category: Basics
  • Cuisine: Indian


3 ingredients, a bowl and a griddle pan are all that is needed to whip up some delicious tandoori chicken that can then be used a multitude of ways.



4 tbspn store-bought tandoori paste

2 tbspn Greek or plain yoghurt

500g chicken tenderloins


To marinate

  1. In a glass or ceramic bowl, mix together the tandoori paste and yoghurt.
  2. Add the chicken and stir well to coat the chicken evenly with the mixture. Cover and place in the fridge to marinate for a minimum of 20 minutes. The longer you leave the chicken to marinate, the more intense the flavour will be.

To cook

  1. Heat a non-stick griddle pan on a medium-high heat. You may like to give the pan a spray of cooking oil to make it extra non-stick.
  2. Cook chicken tenderloins in batches so they don’t crowd the griddle pan (you want the pan to stay dry so that you get those nice char marks on the chicken). The chicken tenderloins will need to be cooked for about 3 minutes on each side. You will know they are done when you cut open a couple of pieces and the insides are white, and the juice runs clear. If the juices are pink, or the inside still has parts that look like raw chicken on the inside, they need a bit longer.


A glass or ceramic bowl is required for this recipe as the marinade might stain a plastic bowl. Metal bowls react with marinades causing the cooked protein to taste funny, so give them a miss.

You can use 500g of chicken breast or chicken thighs, but you will have to cook the chicken pieces for longer. The same food safety ‘rule’ applies – they are cooked when a cut piece of chicken is white in the centre and the juices run clear.

If you don’t have a griddle pan, a regular frypan will work fine. You can oven bake the chicken as well, but given the tenderloins cook so quickly, I find it isn’t worth the extra effort baking would require with pre-heating the oven, preparing trays etc.

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A white enamel plate filled with Tandoori chicken tenderloins.