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Chicken Pathia

Like your curries sweet, sour and mildly spiced? Try this chicken pathia!

Chicken pathia is a UK original! It was developed first by Bangladeshi chefs at British curry houses in an attempt to compete with the hugely popular sweet and sour chicken that was becoming popular at Chinese takeaways. 

Chicken pathia most definitely got the result they were looking for and now it is difficult to find a curry house menu that doesn’t feature this delicious curry.

Chicken pathia

Like it sweet, sour and a bit spicy. You are going to love this one!


Chicken pathia… What flavour to aim for…

If you are thinking about making this restaurant style chicken pathia, you probably already know that it is a delicious combination of sweet and sour.

In this case, the sweetness comes from the sugar and mango chutney. The sourness is from the lemon juice and tamarind.

There is also a hint of spiciness from the chilli powder.

All of these flavours can be adjusted to taste by adding less or more of each.

I love this chicken pathia recipe exactly as written but feel free to adjust the recipe to your own preferences. You’ll like it much better then. 

The difference between this chicken pathia and the one in my cookbook ‘The Curry Guy Bible’.

No much! 

In my cookbooks, my curry house curry recipe serve four people.

On my blog, I have written them in curry house portions to serve one to two people.

Recipe ingredient substitutes for chicken pathia…

Chicken pathia is hugely popular at restaurant but so are other variations.

You might like to add tandoori prawns to the sauce instead of chicken to make a prawn patia. Lamb, vegetable kofta, paneer, beef… All of these will work. 

About the prepared ingredients…

This is a curry house recipe and in order to get those right, you need to use a base sauce. Here is one of my recipes.

It takes about an hour to make but don’t let that stop you! A large batch of base curry sauce is enough for about 30 portions. It freezes really well.

This comes in really handy when you want a curry house style chicken pathia or any of the other famous curries. Once your prep work is done, this chicken pathia can be whipped up in minutes.

Pre-cooked meat and/or vegetables is also good to have on hand. Not only does it speed up the cooking process, it also adds another layer of delicious flavour.

Working ahead…

Indian restaurant curries like this chicken pathia usually include a lot of ingredients.

I recommend getting all of your ingredients ready.

This saves having to look for essential ingredients while cooking.



Chicken pathia

So easy to make! You really can recreate the most popular curry house curries at home!

Would you like to see step by step photos of how to make chicken pathia?

Here you go…


Frying onions

Fry the chopped onion until soft and translucent.

Adding garlic and ginger paste

Stir in the garlic and ginger paste and fry for about 30 seconds.

Adding spices to the pan

Add the ground spices and sugar to the pan.

Adding tomato puree to pan

Add the tomato puree and give it all a good stir.

Adding base sauce to the pan

Add the base sauce and bring it to a simmer.

adding pre-cooked chicken

Stir in the pre-cooked chicken.

Adding mango chutney and tamarind

add the tamarind, mango chutney and dried fenugreek.

adding colouring

Add the lemon juice. Then a little red food colouring if preferred. This adds no flavour. Then garnish with chopped coriander (cilantro).


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Here are some more curry house favourites you might like to try!

Chicken Tikka Masala
Chicken Korma
Chicken Madras
Chicken Dhansak
Lamb Rogan Josh
Lamb Vindaloo
Chicken Chilli Garlic
Lamb Bhuna

chicken pathia curry

Dig in!

Yield: 4

How to Make Chicken Patia Curry - A Sweet And Sour Curry House Favourite

How to Make Chicken Patia Curry - A Sweet And Sour Curry House Favourite
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes


  • 2 tbsp rapeseed (canola) oil
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp garlic and ginger paste
  • 1 tbsp mixed powder
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder (more or less to taste)
  • 1 tbsp sugar (more or less to taste)
  • 70ml (1/4 cup) tomato puree
  • 300ml (1 1/4 cup) approx. base curry sauce
  • 350g ( 12oz) pre-cooked chicken
  • 1/2 tbsp smooth mango chutney
  • 1/2 tsp tamarind concentrate
  • 1/2 tsp dried fenugreek leaves (kasoori methi)
  • Juice of one lemon
  • red food colouring (optional)
  • 2 tbsp chopped coriander (cilantro)
  • Salt to taste


  1. Heat the oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat. When hot, stir in the chopped onion and fry for about 3 to 5 minutes or until soft.
  2. Add the garlic and ginger paste and stir, allowing to sizzle for about 45 seconds.
  3. Now add the mixed powder, chilli powder, and sugar and fry for a further 30 seconds.
  4. Add the tomato puree followed by a ladle of base sauce. Continue adding a little base as required. If the curry is looking too dry, add more base sauce. If too saucy, just cook it down.
  5. Stir in the pre-cooked chicken or what ever pre-cooked main ingredient you like.
  6. Now add the tamarind concentrate and mango chutney and stir it into the sauce.
  7. Allow to cook down to your preferred sauce texture or add more base sauce if necessary.
  8. Add the dried methi and lemon juice. The stir in the food colouring if using.
  9. Garnish with the chopped coriander (cilantro) and season with salt to taste.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 257Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 40mgSodium: 471mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 4gSugar: 12gProtein: 13g

The above nutritional info is done with a program and is just an estimate.

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I hope you enjoy this restaurant style chicken pathia recipe. If you do try it, please leave a comment. I would love to hear from you.

Deborah curtisc

Sunday 1st of August 2021

Hi there, I’ve bought a tamarind block is this the same as concentrate ? Or do I have to add water to piece of the block ?

Kind regards Deborah

Dan Toombs

Wednesday 4th of August 2021

Add some boiling water to the block and put it through a sieve. Thanks Dan


Saturday 22nd of May 2021

Is there a huge difference between pathia and chasni? Could I add mint sauce to the pathia or would you avoid that ?

Dan Toombs

Monday 24th of May 2021

There are just some subtle differences if you look at the recipes but yes you could definitely add mint sauce to pathia if you like the sound of that. I usually say if it sounds good it probably tastes good! Thanks Dan


Saturday 4th of April 2020

Is the mint sauce TABLESPOONS? Put 3 in an was still quite strong. Had to put a bit of sugar in to balance it a bit

Dan Toombs

Tuesday 7th of April 2020

Hi Rob

Please use my recipes as guides as we all have different tastes. Sounds like you did in this case which is great!

Thanks, Dan


Sunday 17th of March 2019

Dan thank you My wife and I tried your recipe for the pathia and it was bang on could not believe it superb...chicken tikka is The next one on the list we bought one of your books thanks again Dan


Tuesday 2nd of March 2021

Hi Dan what is the mixed spices mate ?

Dan Toombs

Tuesday 19th of March 2019

Hi Neil

That's great to hear! Thank you very much.



Thursday 12th of October 2017

Can you use tandoori style chicken instead of pre-cooked chicken for this recipe?


Dan Toombs

Friday 13th of October 2017

Hi Ross

You sure can. It would be really good.

Thanks, Dan

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