This pressure cooker chicken curry is our favourite go-to recipe when we crave for a chicken curry on a weekday.
Thinly sliced onions sauteed with cumin and fennel seeds followed by chilli, garlic, and ginger for the flavourful curry base. And all the magic happens when we cook chicken with this curry base in a pressure cooker. To summarise, it is a delicious chicken curry made in a pressure cooker with ease!
Pressure cooker memories
There will be hardly any kitchens in India without a pressure cooker. My mom, who is from the generation of empowered Indian kitchens with gas stoves, exhaust fans, and smokeless wood stoves has an arsenal of pressure cookers in many sizes and shapes. I have seen her mom, my grandmother, use them too. But I don’t think that was her main utensil. Her kitchen had a lot more firewood to use. A lot of cooking was done on woodfire stoves with brass and iron utensils. Whereas my mom, when my parents were living in a more urban setting, preferred the efficiencies* and precision offered by the pressure cookers.
We also got one when we got married and moved into our new home. We use it almost every day – it can be used to make rice, to cook lentils, chickpeas, or meat, or even a biriyani!
For most dishes, the finishing touches are done outside the cooker. But in this chicken curry, everything happens inside the pressure cooker. We will start by sauteeing spices and onions in oil (without pressure cooking) to make the curry base. We’ll then add chicken and pressure cook, which will be followed by simmering and garnishing. If this is not magic, what is!
Scroll down and check out the step-by-step recipe. If you are looking for more pressure cooker recipes, I have one here – Pressure Cooker Mutton Biriyani. It is a winner, and you don’t have to try hard! If you liked this pressure cooker chicken curry, I recommend checking out the following recipes as well.
*Intrigued by the science behind pressure cookers? Check out this beautifully written piece explaining it all, here.
Pressure Cooker Chicken Curry
- 500 grams chicken
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 green chillies sliced lengthwise
- 6-7 cloves garlic sliced
- 1 inch ginger sliced
- 2 medium onions thinly sliced
- 1 medium tomato
- 1 1/2 tablespoon kashmiri chilli powder
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
- garam masala a pinch
- coriander leaves (cilantro)
- Heat some oil in a pressure cooker.
- Reduce to a medium flame.
- Add cumin seeds, fennel seeds, and bay leaf.
- As soon as they temper, add ginger, garlic, and green chillies.
- Mix well and add onions.
- Combine well and saute till the onions turn tender.
- Now add the chopped tomato and combine well.
- Cook for a couple of minutes while stirring occasionally.
- Once the tomatoes turn soft, add Kashmiri chilli powder and turmeric powder.
- Combine well and cook until the oil starts separating.
- Now add the chicken pieces and salt, and combine well.
- Do not add any water.
- Close the pressure cooker and lock the lid.
- On a high flame, pressure cook until you get the first whistle/steam.
- Switch off and let the pressure cooker cool naturally.
- Open the lid only after the pressure is fully released.
- You can see that chicken is cooked well. Water from the chicken would have added to the gravy.
- Switch on the stove and keep on a medium flame.
- Add 1/4-1/2 cup water. This depends on how much gravy you want in the curry.
- Add salt if required.
- Combine well and bring to boil.
- Simmer to reduce the curry a little.
- Add a pinch of garam masala and chopped coriander leaves.
- Combine well and simmer for a few minutes.
- Once it is back to boil, switch off.
- Serve hot with rice, bread, or roti.