Mouthwatering Chicken Cholay Recipe: A Spicy Delight

Welcome to my kitchen, where I’m excited to share with you my favorite recipe for Chicken Cholay. This hearty and flavorful dish is a staple in Pakistani and Punjabi cuisine, and it’s a personal favorite of mine.

If you’re looking for a new recipe to add to your meal rotation, this is the one for you. Chicken Cholay is a perfect combination of tender boneless chicken and chickpeas in a rich and spicy tomato-based curry. It’s a hearty and filling meal that’s easy to make and packed with flavor.

This dish has been a part of my family’s recipe collection for generations, and I’m excited to share it with you. I’ve made some small adjustments to the recipe over the years, but the flavor remains true to its roots.

So, let’s get started and make some delicious Chicken Cholay that will transport you straight to the streets of Lahore.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Chicken Cholay
Chicken Cholay

Are you looking for a delicious and hearty meal that’s perfect for any occasion? Look no further than my Chicken Cholay recipe! This dish is a scrumptious combination of skinless chicken and chickpeas, simmered in a blend of aromatic spices and fresh herbs that will leave your taste buds dancing with joy.

One of the reasons you’ll love this recipe is because it’s packed with flavor. The combination of garam masala, red chili powder, coriander powder, turmeric, ginger paste, garlic paste, and cinnamon stick creates a complex and tantalizing spice blend that will make your mouth water. And don’t worry, the heat level is completely customizable with the addition of green chili peppers.

Another reason you’ll love this dish is that it’s easy to make. With just a few simple steps, you can have a hearty and flavorful meal on the table in no time. Plus, the recipe mix that I use is specially made by a panel of experts using the finest ingredients, so you can be sure that you’re getting exactly the right measures of each spice.

But perhaps the most compelling reason to love this recipe is its versatility. It’s perfect for any occasion, whether you’re hosting a dinner party or just looking for a hearty and satisfying meal for your family. And if you’re looking to mix things up, there are plenty of variations and substitutions you can make to suit your tastes.

In short, my Chicken Cholay recipe is the perfect choice for anyone who loves bold flavors, easy preparation, and versatility. So why not give it a try and see for yourself what all the fuss is about?

Ingredient List

 Juicy chicken pieces and chickpeas simmered in a spicy tomato and onion masala
Juicy chicken pieces and chickpeas simmered in a spicy tomato and onion masala

Let’s gather the ingredients!

For this Chicken Cholay recipe, we will need the following ingredients:

  • Skinless chicken: 5-6 bone-in chicken pieces
  • Green chili peppers: 2-3, finely chopped
  • Fresh coriander: 1/4 cup, chopped
  • Garam masala: 1 tsp
  • Red chili powder: 1 tsp
  • Salt: 1 tsp
  • Coriander powder: 1 tsp
  • Turmeric: 1/2 tsp
  • Ginger paste: 1 tbsp
  • Garlic paste: 1 tbsp
  • Onion: 1 medium-sized, finely chopped
  • Bicarbonate of soda: 1/2 tsp
  • Tomatoes: 2 medium-sized, finely chopped
  • Cinnamon stick: 1 small stick
  • Chickpeas: 1 cup, boiled
  • Cholay Recipe Mix: 2 tablespoons (This mix is specially made by a panel of experts using aromatic spices and the finest ingredients in exactly the right measure. This mix helps prepare an authentic and traditional Chicken Cholay)

Most of the ingredients are easily available in any grocery store, and the Cholay Recipe Mix can be found at any Pakistani/Urdu store or online.

The Recipe How-To

 Perfectly cooked rice makes a great base for this flavorful dish
Perfectly cooked rice makes a great base for this flavorful dish

Now that we know what chicken cholay is all about, it’s time to get cooking. Follow these step-by-step instructions and you’ll have a delicious pot of chicken cholay in no time!


  • 1 lb. skinless chicken, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 tomatoes, chopped
  • 3 green chili peppers, chopped
  • 2 tbsp. ginger paste
  • 2 tbsp. garlic paste
  • 1 tsp. red chili powder
  • 1 tsp. coriander powder
  • 1 tsp. garam masala
  • 1/2 tsp. turmeric
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • Salt, to taste
  • 2 tbsp. fresh coriander, chopped
  • 3 tbsp. oil


  1. In a large pot, heat 3 tbsp. of oil over medium heat.

  2. Add the chopped onion and fry until it turns golden brown.

  3. Add 2 tbsp. ginger paste and 2 tbsp. garlic paste to the pot and stir for a minute.

  4. Add the chicken and fry until it turns brown.

  5. Add 1 tsp. red chili powder, 1 tsp. coriander powder, 1 tsp. garam masala, 1/2 tsp. turmeric, and salt to taste. Mix well.

  6. Add the chopped tomatoes and cinnamon stick to the pot. Mix well.

  7. Cover the pot and let the chicken cook until it is tender and the tomatoes have turned into a paste.

  8. Add the drained and rinsed chickpeas to the pot and mix well.

  9. Add 3 chopped green chili peppers and 2 tbsp. fresh coriander to the pot. Mix well.

  10. Cover the pot and let it simmer for 10-15 minutes until the chickpeas are cooked.

  11. Your chicken cholay is now ready to serve. Garnish with additional fresh coriander if desired. Enjoy with rice or naan bread.

Tips for Perfect Results

  • Cut the chicken into bite-size pieces to ensure it cooks evenly.
  • Use fresh spices for the best flavor.
  • Rinse the chickpeas before adding them to the pot.
  • Adjust the amount of chili peppers to your desired level of spiciness.
  • For a thicker sauce, let the chicken cholay simmer for longer.
  • Garnish with fresh coriander for added flavor and presentation.

Now that you know how to cook chicken cholay, you can enjoy this delicious Pakistani dish at home. Don’t be afraid to experiment with flavors and substitutions to make this recipe your own.

Substitutions and Variations

 A warm and hearty meal that's perfect for any day of the week
A warm and hearty meal that’s perfect for any day of the week

One of the best things about cooking is that you can always experiment and make a recipe your own. Here are some substitutions and variations that you can try with this chicken cholay recipe:

– Vegetarian version: If you’re a vegetarian, you can skip the chicken and make a delicious chickpea curry instead. Use canned chickpeas or boil them yourself until they’re tender.

– Spice level: If you like your food spicy, you can add more green chili peppers or red chili powder to the recipe. On the other hand, if you prefer a milder flavor, you can reduce the amount of chili peppers or powder.

– Herbs and spices: The recipe calls for garam masala, coriander powder, turmeric, ginger paste, and garlic paste. However, you can always add other herbs and spices to the mix, such as cumin, cardamom, or bay leaves.

– Tomato sauce: If you don’t have fresh tomatoes, you can use canned tomato sauce instead. This will give your curry a smoother texture and a slightly sweeter taste.

– Meat substitutions: If you don’t have skinless chicken, you can use bone-in chicken, lamb, or beef instead. Just make sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly.

– Serving suggestions: This chicken cholay recipe is traditionally served with rice or naan bread. However, you can also serve it with quinoa, couscous, or any other grain of your choice.

Remember that cooking is all about experimenting and finding what works best for you. Don’t be afraid to try new ingredients and techniques, and have fun in the kitchen!

Serving and Pairing

 Aromatic spices like cumin, coriander, and turmeric infuse this dish with rich flavor
Aromatic spices like cumin, coriander, and turmeric infuse this dish with rich flavor

Now that you’ve prepared the delicious Chicken Cholay, it’s time to serve and pair it with some complementary dishes. This hearty meal is perfect for a family dinner or a potluck with friends. You can serve it with steamed white rice or naan bread to soak up the flavorful gravy.

For a complete Pakistani meal, pair it with some refreshing raita (yogurt dip) and a salad of sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and onions drizzled with lemon juice. You can also add some pickled vegetables on the side for a tangy crunch.

To make it a bit spicier, serve it with some green chili peppers and fresh coriander. These add a burst of flavor and freshness to the dish. Don’t forget to have some extra napkins handy as this dish can get messy but oh so worth it!

If you’re feeling adventurous, try pairing it with some traditional Pakistani drinks such as Lassi (a yogurt-based drink) or Sherbat (a sweet syrup-based drink). These drinks help balance the spiciness of the dish and provide a refreshing break.

Overall, Chicken Cholay is a versatile dish that can be paired with various sides and drinks. It’s a perfect option for a family dinner or a gathering with friends. So, get creative and enjoy this delicious and comforting meal.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 This dish is a great way to use up leftover chicken or chickpeas
This dish is a great way to use up leftover chicken or chickpeas

If you’re planning ahead for a party or a busy week, Chicken Cholay is a great recipe to make in advance. This dish stores well in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, making it perfect for meal prep or leftovers.

To make-ahead, simply prepare the recipe as directed and allow it to cool completely before transferring it to an airtight container. When you’re ready to eat, simply reheat the dish in the microwave or on the stovetop until heated through.

If you have leftovers, store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator. When you’re ready to reheat, add a splash of water to the dish and reheat on low heat. This will help to prevent the dish from drying out.

One thing to keep in mind is that the longer the dish sits, the more the flavor will develop. So if you have the time, let the dish sit overnight in the refrigerator before reheating. This will allow the spices and flavors to meld together for an even more delicious meal.

Overall, Chicken Cholay is a versatile and delicious dish that can be made ahead of time and reheated with ease. Whether you’re meal prepping, hosting a party, or just looking for an easy weeknight dinner, this dish is sure to satisfy.

Tips for Perfect Results

 The perfect blend of sweet, spicy, and savory flavors
The perfect blend of sweet, spicy, and savory flavors

To ensure that your Chicken Cholay is cooked to perfection, I have some tips that will make your dish unforgettable. These tips will help you bring out the best flavors in your dish and make sure that your chicken and chickpeas are cooked to perfection.

Firstly, it’s important to use skinless chicken for this recipe. The reason behind this is that the skin can make the dish greasy and unappetizing. Additionally, chicken without skin will absorb more flavor from the spices and will not interfere with the texture of the dish.

Another important tip is to use fresh coriander and green chili peppers. These ingredients add a fresh and zesty flavor to the dish and will make your Chicken Cholay taste more authentic. In addition, using fresh ingredients will add color and vibrancy to your dish.

When cooking the chicken and chickpeas, make sure to use the right amount of spices. Garam masala, red chili powder, coriander powder, turmeric, ginger paste, and garlic paste are the main spices for this recipe. Make sure to use these spices in the right proportions to achieve the perfect taste.

Bicarbonate of soda is another ingredient that is crucial for this recipe. It helps to soften the chickpeas and aids in the cooking process. Make sure to add the bicarbonate of soda to the chickpeas before cooking them.

When cooking the chicken, it’s important to fry it until it’s golden brown. This will give the chicken a crispy exterior and a juicy interior. Also, make sure to add the tomatoes and cinnamon stick to the pan while cooking the chicken. This will add a sweet and tangy flavor to the dish.

Lastly, using a Cholay recipe mix is a great way to ensure that your Chicken Cholay is prepared in an authentic and traditional way. This recipe mix is specially made by a panel of experts using aromatic spices and the finest ingredients, all in exactly the right measure. Using this mix helps prepare an authentic and traditional dish with ease.

By following these tips and using the right ingredients, you can create a delicious and authentic Chicken Cholay that will impress your guests and bring the flavors of Pakistani cuisine to your table.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, if you’re looking for a delicious and easy-to-make dish that packs a punch of flavor, then Chicken Cholay is the recipe for you! With its mix of aromatic spices, tender chicken, and hearty chickpeas, this dish is sure to become a new favorite in your recipe book.

Whether you’re a fan of Pakistani or Punjabi cuisine, or simply looking to try something new, this recipe is perfect for any occasion. Plus, with the help of our specially made Cholay mix, you can prepare an authentic and traditional Chicken Cholay in no time at all.

So what are you waiting for? Heat up some oil, grab your ingredients, and get ready to indulge in the rich and flavorful taste of Lahori Murgh Cholay. Your taste buds will thank you!

Chicken Cholay Recipe

Serve with Nan, Roti or plain boiled rice.

  • 500 g chickpeas, boiled
  • 1 inch piece cinnamon stick
  • 2 medium tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 4 tablespoons oil
  • 1 tablespoon garlic paste
  • 1 tablespoon ginger paste
  • 14 teaspoons turmeric (haldi)
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon red chili powder
  • 12 teaspoons garam masala
  • 12 cups fresh coriander, chopped
  • 2 green chili peppers, finely chopped
  • 250 g skinless chicken
  1. Place the chick peas, 1 teaspoon salt, cinnamon stick and bicarbonate of soda in a large heavy-based saucepan, add 2 cups water to cover the chickpeas by 2 inches and bring to a boil. still retain their shap.Once the chick peas have become tender keep them with its water, as that is also needed.
  2. Heat oil in a heavy based saucepan. Add onions and stirring frequently, sauté until the onions are light brown, about 5 minutes. Add ginger and garlic, sauté until the mixture turns to a golden color, about 3-5 minutes. (Add 2-3 tablespoons of water, if the mixture sticks to the bottom of the pan.
  3. Add chili powder, turmeric, coriander powder, 1 teaspoon garam masala, remaining salt and a little water to prevent the mixture from sticking to the bottom of the pan. Stirring frequently, fry the mixture for few more minutes. Then add the tomatoes. Still stirring frequently, fry the onion mixture for about 8 minutes until the tomatoes are reduced to a pulp. Add a little water, if necessary, to prevent the mixture from sticking to the bottom of the pan. Keep frying until the oil begins to separate.
  4. Add chicken and stirring frequently, fry to a golden color or all the moisture has evaporated, about 5-8 minutes.
  5. . Add 1 cup water, cover the pan, reduce the heat and allow to cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until the chicken is tender.
  6. Add the boiled chick peas and 2 cups of water from the chick peas. Carefully mix it with the chicken and cook for 5 minutes until the chick peas have absorbed some of the flavor.
  7. Sprinkle remaining gram masala, coriander leaves and green chilies.
Main Course
< 60 Mins, Asian, Healthy, Indian, Low Cholesterol, Pakistani

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