barbecued tandoori chicken

barbecued tandoori chicken

barbecued tandoori chicken with a yogurt mint dressing

A couple of years ago I went through a big curry eating and curry making phase. It was a great experience not only for the eating aspect but also learning about different methods of cooking and about the use of spices to enhance the flavour of meats and vegetables. Whilst I still enjoy a good curry my barbecue, sorry, barbecues get more attention these days so I thought I’d combine the best of both worlds here and barbecue some tandoori chicken.

This recipe forms the basis of a butter chicken recipe (stay tuned!) but also tastes great served with a mint and coriander yogurt dressing and some poppadoms. The added char from the barbecue really kicks the flavour along and the use of tandoori food colouring gives the chicken a wonderful colour.


for the chicken

  • 1kg skinless chicken breasts or thighs
  • 1 tsp crushed garlic
  • 1 tsp finely grated ginger
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp chilli powder
  • 1/2 tsp dry roasted and ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp dry roasted and ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 125g natural Greek-style yogurt
  • 1/4 tsp tandoori food colouring

for the yogurt dressing

  • 100g natural Greek-style yogurt
  • 1/2 tbsp chopped coriander leaves
  • 1/2 tbsp chopped mint leaves
  • juice of 1/4 lemon or lime


  1. Cut slits across the breasts or thighs about 5mm deep and 15mm apart.
  2. In a large bowl mix together the garlic, ginger, salt, chilli powder, cumin, coriander, cinnamon and lemon juice along with 2 tsp of water.
  3. Add the chicken pieces, coast and massage the mixture into the slits. Remove to a flat marinating dish.
  4. In a seperate bowl mix together the yogurt and food colouring. Add to the chicken and marinate overnight if possible.
  5. Fire up your barbecue for indirect cooking or if you have a grill barbecue fire it up to a medium heat.
  6. If cooking indirect, cook the chicken until the internal temperature reaches 145f/63c then sear directly over the coals or burners until the temperature reaches 155f/68c. Cook to 155f/68c if grilling.
  7. For the yogurt dressing simply mix the ingredients together in a small bowl or cup. Serve with the chicken along with poppadoms.

For other barbecue ideas click here.