Afghani Chicken tikka

Soft and juicy Afghani chicken tikka(Afghani Chicken kebab)

Chicken Afghani Tikka is a popular dish in South Asian region, particularly in Afghanistan and Pakistan. It's a flavorful and succulent chicken dish that is marinated in a rich blend of spices and yogurt, and then cooked in a tandoor (clay oven) for a smoky and charred flavor. Generally served with chutney and salads.

Serving Afghani Chicken tikka with green chutney and onion slices

Tikka and kabab are a favourite to everyone due it's smoky and juicy flavour. They are always considered as healthy due to very less amount of oil uses. Here I am sharing a traditional chicken tikka recipe known as Afghani chicken tikka with step by step guide with pictures and a short video for better understanding. Before we move forward here is a short description about Afghani chicken tikka.

Afghani Chicken Tikka (kebab) is a flavorful and succulent dish that originates from the region of Afghanistan. It is a popular chicken dish that is marinated in a rich and aromatic blend of spices and yogurt.  And this give it a distinct and delicious taste. The marinade includes ingredients such as yogurt, garlic, ginger, cumin, coriander, garam masala, and sometimes saffron, which imparts a unique and vibrant color to the chicken.

After marinating for a few hours or overnight, the chicken pieces are threaded onto a skewers and grilled or roasted until they are cooked thoroughly and become juicy from inside and have a slightly charred exterior. This cooking method gives the chicken a wonderful smoky flavor and a tender texture.

Ingredients require to make

  • Chicken thigh or breast boneless
  • Yoghurt
  • Ginger garlic paste
  • Cheese
  • Cream
  • Cashew Nut paste
  • green chilli paste
  • black pepper powder
  • salt, chat masala
  • cooking oil, coriander leaf, butter
Chicken and other spices ingredients for Afghani Chicken tikka

Time required for the recipe

The total time require to make the recipe is under 30 minutes. Which includes the preparation time of about 15 minutes and cooking time of 15 minutes. Here we excluded the marination time which may vary from 3 to 4 hours or overnight.

Serving suggestion for it

Afghani chicken is often served traditional Afghani bread like Afghani Bolani or butter naan and accompanied by other condiments such as grren chutney, onion slices and lemon wedges. It can be also served as a side dishes with biryani or pulao.

Here is one article for you I am sure you would definately love 15 incredible recipes with tandoori masala.

Steps to make the recipe

1. First marination

Marination is a important part while making any types of kabab or tikkas. It not ony makes the chicken juicy but make it soft and succulent. So always prefer a two step marination process while making any types of kabab and tikka.

In first marination process, take the chicken pieces in a mixing bowl and add giner paste, garlic paste, green chilli paste, salt, lemon juice and little amount of oil. Mix everything nicely and let it marinate for 10 to 15 minutes. Here in this process all the ingredients get a direct contact with the chicken pieces thus it absorb them quite nicely and make the chicken more balanced with taste.

Chicken marinated with salt, ginger garlic paste for Afghani Chicken tikka

2. Making the Afghani marinade masala 

Take a mixing bowl, add the yogurt, ginger garlic paste, green chilli paste, black pepper powder, cumin powder, fresh cream, grated cheese, lemon juice, salt and cooking oil. Give everything a good mix. Taste the seasoning and if required add some. This is the Afghani marinade to be used in next step to marinate the chicken.

Marinate for Afghani Chicken tikka in a bowl

3. Second marination

Take the first marinated chicken and add them into the above prepared Afghani marinade masala paste. Mix all the chicken pieces nicely so that all parts of the chicken are well coated with the marination, Cover and let them to marinate for 3 to 4 hours to absorb all the flavors.

4. Cooking Afghani chicken 

There are many methods available  to cook the chicken ie, traditional method using tandoor, Oven, Pan or air fryer. Go with any method which is comfortable with you. At restaurants this tikka is cooked in a charcoal fire tandoor till they become juicy. to cook in a tandoor all you need few long shewers to thread the marinated chicken pieces. After that place the shewers inside a medium hot tandoor and cover the tandoor with a lid. Rotate the shewers after 3 to 4 minutes and brush some butter over the chicken. It will another 4 to 5 minutes to cook completely. Remove them from the shewers on a serving plate and serve hot with some accomplishment like green chutney, onion slices and lemon wedges. Dont forget to sprinkle some chat masala over the tikkas before serving. This gives them a refreshing  taste.

If you are using an Oven then preheat it at around 200 degree celcius for 15 minutes. Thread the chicken pieces in sheers one by one leaving a very small gap in between them.

Marinated chicken threaded into shewers for Afghani Chicken tikka

This will allow the chicken pieces to cook evenly from all sides. Now place the sherwers on a baking tray lined with aluminium foil or on a grease grill rack. Place the baking tray inside the oven and bake for 20 to 25 minutes till the chicken become charred and well cooked. while baking you can brush them with butter and rotate the shewers from one side to another.

Similarly you can use a non stick pan or tawa to cook the afghani chicken tikka.  Heat a pan with some oil over a medium hot flame. When the oil become hot lower the gas to low and carefully place the marinated chicken pieces one by on on the pan. Just make sure to shake off any excess marinate from the chicken before adding them on the pan.

Cooking Afghani Chicken tikka on a pan

 Cook them for 2 to 3 minutes or untill the sides become charred. Flip them to another sides and cooked till charred. Cook them till they become crisp and well done. 

Charred cooked Afghani Chicken tikka on a pan

You can thread the chicken on a shewer and place over a direct fire flame to get a smoky flavor.

Afghani Chicken tikka (kebab) recipe Video

If you love this recipe then here are some more tikka recipe I am sure you would definitely love them to make at home.

Frequently Asked  Questions on Afghani Chicken Tikka (kebab)

1. What is the difference between  Afghani Chicken and tandoori Chicken?

The main basic difference in between them is the taste. Afghani chicken are creamy and nutty in flovor whereas tandoori chicken is spicy and a bit tangy. Cream, Cheese and Cashew are not used to make a tandoori chicken whereas these are used in afghani chicken.

2. What is Afghani Chicken made of? 

Afghani chicken is made of with some aromatic spices.Some are Curd, cashew, cheese, cream, ginger, garlic, green chilli and black pepper powder.

3. Which Chicken part is best to used in Afghani chicken tikka?

It is best to use Chicken thigh boneless to make any types of kebab or tikka. If you are using chicken breast boneless then make sure to cut them into strip size not in cubes. Breast part of chicken are often become dry when used as a tikka. 

Tips to make best afghani chicken tikka

  1. Don't forget to use lemon juice to mannate the chicken
  2. Always prefer to use Chicken thigh boneless for a juicy texture.
  3. Keep atleast 2 hours to marinate the chicken
  4. While cooking always brush some cooking oil or butter over the chicken. This will help the chicken not to become dry.
  5. If using Chicken breast boneless then cut them into strip size. 
Difference between Afghani Chicken tikka and Chicken malai tikka
  • Afghani Chicken tikka is little more spicy than malai tikka which is full of creamy in taste.
  • Spices like cumin powder, black pepper powder are not use in chicken malai tikka.

Afghani Chicken tikka recipe

Serving Afghani Chicken tikka on a garnish plate

A rich creamy and delightful dish originated from Afghanistan, made with a yoghurt based marination. This chicken are shewered and cooked till perfection resulting a succulent, smoky and juicy tikka on your plate.

Preparation time : 15 minutes

Cooking time : 15 minutes

Serving : 2

Author : Mobasir Hassan


  • 250 grams boneless chicken pieces, cut into bite-sized chunks
  • 1/4 cup plain yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons cream
  • 1/2 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 1/2 tablespoon garlic paste
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 cup grated cheese 
  • Salt to taste
  • 4 tablespoons oil
  • Butter or ghee for basting (optional)
  • Chopped cilantro or coriander leaves for garnishing
  • Sliced onions and lemon wedges for serving


  1. In a bowl, combine yogurt, cream, ginger paste, garlic paste, lemon juice, ground cumin, salt, and oil. Mix well to form a smooth marinade.
  2. Add the chicken pieces to the marinade, ensuring they are well-coated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a lid, and let it marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2-3 hours, or preferably overnight. This allows the flavors to develop and the chicken to become tender.
  3. Preheat your oven to 200°C (392°F) or prepare a grill. If using wooden skewers, soak them in water for about 20-30 minutes to prevent them from burning during cooking.
  4. Thread the marinated chicken pieces onto the skewers, shaking off any excess marinade. Leave a little space between each piece for even cooking. Place the skewers on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil or on a greased grill rack.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven or grill for about 15-20 minutes, turning the skewers occasionally, until the chicken is cooked through and slightly charred on the edges. You can also baste the chicken pieces with butter or ghee during grilling for extra flavor and moisture.
  6. Once cooked, remove the skewers from the oven or grill.
  7. Garnish the Chicken Afghani Tikka with chopped cilantro or coriander leaves. Serve the Chicken Afghani Tikka hot, accompanied by sliced onions and lemon wedges. It can be enjoyed as an appetizer or as a main dish with naan or rice.

Nutritional Values (250 gm Chicken)

  • Calories: Around 300-350 kcal
  • Protein: About 30-35 grams
  • Carbohydrates: Approximately 5-10 grams (mainly from any marinade containing sugar or yogurt)
  • Fat: About 20-25 grams (varies depending on cooking method and marinade ingredients)

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