• "Tandoori" grilled chicken

    11 votes
    "Tandoori" grilled chicken
    Prep: 30 min Cook: 30 min Servings: 6
    by Chris Patil
    10 recipes
    While this dish isn't made in a traditional Indian clay oven, the yogurt marinade and spice blend can still yield a very authentic-tasting end result on a backyard grill.


    • 6 chicken leg quarters (drumstick+thigh), skinned, and trimmed
    • kosher salt, 1 t
    • lemon juice, 1 T
    • yogurt, 2 cups
    • lemon juice, 1 T
    • ground cumin, 1 T
    • ground coriander, 1 t
    • paprika, 2 t
    • cardamom seeds (hulled), 1/4 t
    • cloves (whole), 1/4 t
    • ground black pepper, 1/2 t
    • kosher salt, 1 t
    • turmeric, 1 t
    • garam masala, 1 t (can substitute 1/4 t each allspice, nutmeg and cinnamon)
    • onion powder, 1 T
    • garlic powder, 1 t
    • cayenne pepper, to taste (I usually use 1/2 t)
    • garlic butter, 1/4 cup
    • oil, 1/4 cup


    1. Make 2-3 shallow cuts (1/4” deep) on the fleshy side of each chicken leg. Dress both sides of each leg with lemon juice and salt and set aside (at least 20 minutes).
    2. In a large bowl, whisk together the yogurt and lemon juice.
    3. Grind together all the spices; add the spice mixture to the yogurt.
    4. Pat the chicken legs dry and add to the marinade (freezer bags work great for this).
    5. Marinate in the refrigerator overnight, turning at least once.
    6. Shake excess marinade off of the chicken.
    7. Brush the chicken with a 1:1 mixture of garlic butter and oil.
    8. On a generously oiled grill, cook the legs over medium-high flame for 20 minutes, turning every 5 minutes. Warning: there will be flare-ups!
    9. Serve with lime wedges (to be squeezed over the meat at the time of eating).

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    • Mihir Shah
      Mihir Shah
      Made this over the weekend. Prepared the marinade on Fri night and bbq'ed on Sat for a party. A HUGE hit. Best dish so far I've tried on the site. Thanks very much, Chris. If you keep 'em coming, I'll keep eating...
      • Lyndsey
        This made a beautiful presentation on the table. Was a big hit with the guests.
        • John Spottiswood
          John Spottiswood
          I tried this when it was broiled in the oven. The marinade was still delicious, but the chicken was a little dry. I'm going to try on the grill next time.
          • Rocio Herbert
            Rocio Herbert
            Made it Friday night for a small group of friends. It was a big hit. There is something gingery and deliciously addicting about the tandoori flavor. Will definitely add it to my party food repertoire. Thank you, Chris.
            • daniellec1
              We really enjoyed this but my marinade was very thick and I didn't understand the garlic butter part, so I skipped it. How did others do it? Pressed garlic with melted butter?
              • Shubhojyoti Bhattacharya
                Shubhojyoti Bhattacharya
                A traditional Tandoori Chicken will taste a bit different from grilled chicken. But this one sounds awesome.


                • ShaleeDP
                  Sounds tasty, i would give this a try when time permits.
                  • Chris Patil
                    Chris Patil
                    The yogurt marinade is enough for at least 9 full legs (or 18 pieces if the drumsticks and thighs are separated).
                    • Rocio Herbert
                      Rocio Herbert
                      Made it again in the oven at 450 for 40 minutes. Cooked just right. The flavors seemed fuller and just DELICIOUS!
                      • Chris Patil
                        Chris Patil
                        • Mihir Shah
                          Mihir Shah
                          Chris - can you delete the "red" chicken. I posted that. I've posted a photo I took last night of the dish (not a great one, but accurate)! You can delete by choosing the "add" button under the photo and then deleting.
                          • Mihir Shah
                            Mihir Shah
                            Made this again last night for a party; but since I just moved into a new house, I didn't have a bbq. Baked in the oven at 425 for 50 min (25 min each side). Should have cooked for about 40 min. Still was fantastic. My favorite recipe so far! Note the new picture!
                            • Chris Patil
                              Chris Patil
                              Thanks to whomever posted that image, though I must warn potential chefs that -- as written -- this recipe does not result in red chicken. To get it red, you have to add food coloring, which I generally don't.
                              • Carol Teng
                                Carol Teng
                                Looks like a great dish. Thanks for posting this!

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