|September 26, 2022


If you’ve been scratching your head, wondering exactly what to serve with your Chicken Tikka Masala, worry not! 

You’ve arrived at the right place!

This article lists some of the most popular side dishes you can quickly prepare for your tandoori chicken tikka recipe.

Want a quick answer? Here you go…

The best dishes that usually pair well with chicken tikka are

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  1. Pulau-rice
  2. Garlic naan
  3. Raita, and
  4. Mint chutney. 

Now, if you’re calorie-conscious, or well and truly into healthy eating, you can try baingan-bharta, cabbage stir-fry, and kachumber (cucumber, onion & tomato salad) to pair with your tandoori chicken tikka for healthier options. And for vegan tikka masala, try pairing saag-aloo and dal-tadka. For more fun pairings, you can also try halloumi fries, onion pakora, and even pooris!

Ready for your lip-smacking culinary journey? Let’s jump right in.

Pulao Rice

Veg Pulao

Rice is generally considered the best side for dishes like tikka masala. Although plain long-grained basmati rice works perfectly well, if you want an upgraded meal, try this pulao-rice recipe instead. 

Just imagine scooping a generous serving of your saucy tikka masala over this lip-smacking bed of fluffy, fragrant rice. Pure bliss isn’t it?

Pulao can be prepared by cooking the basmati rice in a spiced broth, thereby soaking each grain with bold, delicious, and exotic flavors.

This easy pulao recipe requires minimal effort and can be prepared in less than 30 minutes.

Garlic Naan

Garlic Naan

Don’t want to have rice with your tandoori chicken tikka masala?

No problem.  Switch to garlic naan instead. 

Now, please don’t confuse naan with pita bread – naan is made with an enriched dough that makes it soft and tender. Just perfect for soaking up the gravy from your tikka masala. 

Garlic Naans are traditionally made in a tandoor, but then you can just as easily cook them over your stovetop.

Roasted Cauliflower

Roasted cauliflower

Roasted cauliflower dish is yet another excellent accompaniment to chicken tikka masala, whether you’re making a meat-based or plant-based version. The recipe is quite straightforward – you just have to prep and season your cauliflowers, then let the oven do its job. After 30 minutes, you’ll have mouthwatering crispy cauliflower florets seasoned with warm spices like cumin, paprika, and turmeric. 

This turmeric roasted cauliflower recipe is just so good – You can’t be blamed if you devour these before dinner starts.

Cucumber Mint Salad

Cucumber Mint Salad

As we know, Chicken Tikka Masala is a heavy dish, so you may want a light side dish, that balances out the heaviness.

Cucumber mint salad is a no-cook dish that can be prepared in just a few minutes. The combination of yogurt and mint gives a cool and refreshing bite, making this salad the perfect balancer for rich dishes like tikka masala.

Give this recipe a try for your next feast.

Cachumber (Kachumbar) salad

Cachumbar salad

Brighten up your tikka masala with a serving of kachumber salad on the side. Like the mint salad described above, this is another cool Indian salad dish that is very simple and incredibly easy to put together. Here cucumbers, tomatoes, and onions are tossed in with lime juice and cilantro, thus infusing them with a zesty flavor. The citrusy notes of lime help to balance out the richness and heaviness of chicken tikka masala.

You can even add some pomegranates to your kachumber salad for some added crunch and sweetness.

Baingan ka bharta (Roasted Eggplant Mash)

Eggplant Mesh

Still searching for a Punjabi alternative that pairs up superbly with your tikka masala? You just can’t go wrong with baingan bharta (mashed and roasted eggplants).

Never heard of it? Well, read on…

Baingan Bharta is a dish featuring mashed and roasted eggplants cooked along with onions, tomatoes, and various masalas. Here, the eggplant is traditionally roasted over a direct flame in a tandoor, but you can also do it very effectively over your stovetop.

A word of caution though: If you know your guest doesn’t like eggplants, baingan bharta may then not be the perfect accompaniment with chicken tikka for them.



For a moment, leave everything aside, and just try something entirely different with your tikka masala — drop the garlic naans and make some hot and fluffy pooris instead.

Poori is a puffy, fried Indian bread that’s very crispy and fluffy at the same time. You can use these to scoop up your chicken tikka masala’s flavor-packed gravy and meat. Rest assured; you won’t ever regret making these delightful poori puffs.

Dal Tadka (spicy and tempered lentil gravy)

Dal Tadka

Want something extra comforting to go with your tikka masala? Then look no further than this protein-loaded dal-tadka. It’s a lentil dish that’s the perfect accompaniment, especially for plant-based variations of tikka masala. The best part is – You can easily prepare dal-tadka on your stovetop, for an effortless cooking process.

Serve a fresh bowl of dal-tadka alongside your vegan/paneer tikka masala for the ultimate comfort meal.

frequently asked questions

What is traditionally served with chicken tikka masala?
Does any vegetable go well with chicken tikka masala?
Does chicken tikka come with rice?
Can we eat chicken tikka daily?

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