Chicken Bhuna: A Thick and Flavorful Curry

Chicken Bhuna is a delicious and aromatic curry that originates from North India. It is characterized by its thick, reduced sauce that clings to the chicken pieces, offering a concentrated burst of flavor in every bite. The term “bhuna” refers to the method of cooking the spices and meat over high heat to develop a rich, intense flavor.

Chicken Bhuna Ingredients:

  • 1.5 lbs chicken, cut into pieces
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 large onions, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1-inch piece of ginger, grated
  • 3 tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 green chilies, sliced (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • Fresh cilantro for garnish


  1. Cook the Onions:
    • Heat the vegetable oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the chopped onions and cook until golden brown, about 10 minutes.
  2. Add Garlic and Ginger:
    • Add the minced garlic and grated ginger to the onions and sauté for another 2 minutes until fragrant.
  3. Cook the Tomatoes:
    • Add the chopped tomatoes to the pan and cook until they soften and break down, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add the Spices:
    • Stir in the ground cumin, ground coriander, turmeric powder, chili powder, garam masala, paprika, and salt. Cook for another 2 minutes, stirring constantly to toast the spices.
  5. Add the Chicken:
    • Add the chicken pieces to the pan and cook on high heat for about 5 minutes, stirring frequently to brown the chicken.
  6. Add Yogurt:
    • Lower the heat to medium and stir in the plain yogurt. Cook for another 10-15 minutes, allowing the yogurt to thicken and coat the chicken pieces.
  7. Reduce the Sauce:
    • Continue to cook the chicken on low heat, stirring occasionally, until the sauce reduces and clings to the chicken pieces, about 10-15 minutes. Adjust the seasoning if needed.
  8. Finish:
    • Stir in the chopped cilantro and lemon juice. Cook for another 2-3 minutes.
  9. Serve:
    • Garnish with additional cilantro and serve hot with steamed rice, naan, or roti.

Serving Suggestions

Chicken Bhuna is best served with steamed basmati rice, naan, or roti. A side of cucumber raita or a green salad complements the rich, spicy flavors of the curry.


Chicken Bhuna is a thick, flavorful curry that showcases the traditional method of bhuna cooking, resulting in a rich and aromatic dish. Perfect for any occasion, this curry is sure to impress with its intense flavors and satisfying texture.