Mouthwatering Grilled Tandoori Chicken

a white platter containing grilled chicken, paratha bread, and fresh cilantro.

Tandoori Chicken that is marinated and then grilled is mouthwatering! Chicken thighs are massaged with an authentic tandoori spice mixture, then mixed with plain yogurt and allowed to marinate overnight. Serve with rice, other curries, in Kathi Rolls, or use as a base for butter chicken. 

The Best of Summer Grilling

Today I want to share with you one of my absolute favourite grilled chicken recipes. This Tandoori Chicken is really easy to make and results in the most mouthwatering grilled chicken. The combination of warming spices and cooling yogurt really work together to create a moist, flavourful grilled chicken. 

Raw chicken covered in bright orange spices

A Delicious Masala Spice Mix

The best way to get the most flavourful Tandoori Chicken is to make your own Tandoori Masala spice mixture with fresh roasted and ground spices. Let’s be honest, not everyone has whole spices in their cupboard. There’s nothing wrong with ground spices, though they will lose their potency quicker than their whole counterparts. Alternatively, you can find suitable spice mixtures at the grocery store that will work just fine.

Raw chicken covered in bright orange spices and dotted with white yogurt.

A Magic Marinade

Once you have the Tandoor spices massaged into the chicken thighs (and I do recommend thighs but you can use breasts if you prefer) then it’s time for the yogurt. Why yogurt? Yogurt is slightly acidic and is a great way to slowly tenderize meat. It also contains friendly microbes which work alongside the lactic acid to break down the protein fibers. A yogurt marinade works similar to citrus juice or vinegar but at a much slower, gentler pace. 

Raw chicken covered in bright orange spices and yogurt.

How to Cook Tandoori Chicken

The best, most authentic Tandoori Chicken is cooked in a Tandoor clay oven. However, most home cooks do not have access to such an oven and so, the best home method is to grill it on the barbecue. Always, pre-heat your barbecue on high for the best results. This helps to achieve that sought after darkened sear pattern on your chicken. Once the chicken is seared, turn down the barbecue slightly and raise the chicken to the upper grill or grill indirectly for the remainder of the cook time. Alternatively, great Tandoori Chicken can also be achieved in a regular oven using the broil function. Just lift the rack right (almost to the top) and broil on a foil lined baking sheet for ten minutes, then flip it over and broil for another ten minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. 

a white platter containing grilled chicken, paratha bread, and fresh cilantro.

What Should I do with My Tandoori Chicken?

There are many ways to enjoy this delicious chicken. Eat it as part of a whole meal with rice, naan, and other curries. It’s delicious on pizzas or in sandwiches or wraps. One of my favourite ways is to go a step further and transform it into Butter Chicken (use the sauce that I created here). It’s fairly simple, and the chicken has already has so much flavour, you just can’t go wrong. 

a white platter containing grilled chicken, paratha bread, and fresh cilantro.

Love Tandoori Chicken? Here Are More Great Recipes from Dish ‘n’ the Kitchen

Tandoori Masala

Butter Chicken Meatballs

Pin it HERE.a white platter containing grilled chicken, paratha bread, and fresh cilantro.

Yield: 5 servings (2 thighs per person)

Mouthwatering Grilled Tandoori Chicken

Mouthwatering Grilled Tandoori Chicken

The perfect summer grilled chicken recipe for marinated and grilled Tandoori Chicken. Serve with rice, other curries, in Kathi Rolls, or use as a base for butter chicken.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Additional Time 8 hours
Total Time 8 hours 20 minutes


  • 10 skinless, boneless chicken thighs
  • 1/4 cup masala spice mixture
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro; chopped


1. Place chicken and masala mixture in a bowl or ziploc baggie.

2. Massage masala spices into chicken. Season.

3. Add yogurt and cilantro and massage to coat the chicken thoroughly.

4. Allow to marinate for at least 8 hours or over night.

5. Pre-heat your barbecue and grill until chicken is grill marked and has reached an internal temperature of 165 F (or 74 C).


  1. Terri

    This sounds so easy and delicious, Bernice! I haven’t done much Indian cooking and my daughter is crazy for it. I want to try this. Yummy!


    1. Bernice Hill

      Give it a try! If you prefer a pre mixed tandoori spice mix, you can get a good one at Mad Dog Cafe in Dead Man’s Flats.


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