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Chicken Chickpea Balti

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This chicken chickpea balti gets restaurant quality results!

You could make this chicken chickpea balti in a normal frying pan. That’s how it’s done these days at most curry houses. The cooked curry is this placed in an ornamental balti bowl and served. 

That’s not the way to enjoy a real balti though. 

Cook and serve this chicken chickpea balti in an authentic stainless steel balti bowl and you will get the true balti experience!

Chicken chickpea balti

So good! Just dip your naan or chapati in and enjoy.

Working ahead…

As with most curry house and Balti house curries, you will first need to cook this authentic chicken chickpea balti with a curry base curry sauce. Here is one of my recipes. 

Although you could add the chicken raw and cook it through, I suggest doing what I did and make tandoori chicken. Here’s a good recipe for that too. 

Do you have to use an authentic balti bowl?

No! As I mentioned above, this isn’t done at most restaurants.

That said, balti houses became popular because they were offering something delicious and different.

There’s just something about cooking a chicken chickpea balti like this and then serving it in the sizzling hot balti bowl it was cooked in. You can pick up an authentic, made in Birmingham balti bowl from The Birmingham Balti Bowl Company.

Special Ingredient Basar

In the recipe, I use Basar curry powder with is a special Pakistani blend of spices.

It isn’t available at most supermarkets but you can find it at Pakistani grocers and online here. I love the stuff and highly recommend that you pick some up.

You could substitute my mixed powder if that is more convenient but the flavour will be different. Not wrong, just different.

One of the key ingredients in Basar curry powder is dried mustard oil powder. It gives the dish a delicious flavour along with a few other spices and chilli powder in the mix.

Step by step photos…

Frying onions and chillies

Heat the oil in the pan over high heat and then add the onion and chillies. Fry for about 3 minutes.

Adding garlic and ginger paste

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

Adding ground spices and tomato puree to pan

In go the tomato puree and ground spices.

Adding base sauce to pan.

Add about half the base sauce and bring to a simmer. Only stir if it is obviously sticking to the side of the pan.

Adding chicken to pan

Stir in the pre-cooked chicken. You could use leftover chicken, tandoori chicken or stewed. Whatever you like.

Adding chickpeas to the pan

Add the rest of the base sauce in small amounts until it is all in the pan. Add the chickpeas.

Finished curry

To finish, season with salt to taste. Sprinkle with the garam masala and garnish with fresh coriander/cilantro

If you like this chicken and chickpea balti recipe, you might like to try some of these too…

Hot as Hell Chicken Phall Balti
Chicken and chickpea balti
Chicken Saag Balti
Chicken balti
Duck balti jalfrezi
Duck and mushroom balti
Keema balti
Rogan josh balti
Prawn balti
Paneer balti

Yield: 1

Chicken Chickpea Balti

chicken chickpea balti
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes


  • 2 tbsp rapeseed (canola) oil
  • 1 /2 onion, finely chopped
  • 3 green bird’s eye chillies – finely chopped
  • 2 tsp garlic and ginger paste
  • 1 tsp basar curry powder or chilli powder
  • 1 tsp mixed powder
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • 70ml ( ¼ cup) tomato puree
  • 250ml (1 cup) base sauce (approx..)
  • 5 – 6 pieces of cooked chicken
  • ¼ cup cooked chickpeas (garbonzo beans)
  • ¼ tsp kasoori methi (dried fenugreek leaves
  • Salt to taste
  • Juice of ½ lime
  • 2 tbsp chopped coriander
  • 2 tsp plain yoghurt or leftover tandoori marinade (optional)


  1. Heat the Balti pan over high heat and add the oil. When shimmering hot, stir add the onion and chillies and fry for about 3 minutes or until soft and translucent.
  2. Stir in the garlic and ginger paste and fry for a further 30 seconds to cook out the rawness.
  3. Add the ground spices followed by the tomato puree. Stir well to combine and then add about a third of the base sauce.
  4. Bring this to a rolling simmer and add the chicken pieces. Using a spoon, coat the chicken with the sauce and add a little more sauce to help the chicken heat. Only stir if the sauce is sticking to the sides of the pan.
  5. Be sure to scrape any caramelised sauce, sticking to the pan back into the sauce for extra flavour.
  6. Add the chickpeas and the remaining sauce. The add the kasoori methi. Garnish with some coriander and add the lime juice.
  7. Season with salt to taste and serve hot.
  8. Optional - Stir in some plain natural yoghurt or leftover tandoori marinade for a creamier texture.

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