Recipe: Slim Spicy Tandoori Chicken

The use of boneless, skinless chicken and low-fat yogurt helps to reduce the fat that is commonly found in this zesty Indian dish.

Serves: 4

Hands-on time: 35 minutes
Total time: 1 hour 20 minutes


1 tbsp garam masala
2 tsp mild curry powder
1 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp grated ginger root
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp raw honey
1/2 cup low-fat plain yogurt
4 5-oz boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 cup brown basmati rice
1/2 tsp sea salt

1/2 cup nonfat plain yogurt
1 tbsp lemon juice
2 tsp minced fresh mint leaves
2 tsp minced fresh cilantro leaves

In a small bowl, combine garam masala, curry powder, paprika and cayenne. Heat a small dry skillet for 1 minute over medium heat. Add spice mixture and cook, stirring for 1 minute or until spices become fragrant. Immediately transfer spices to a medium mixing bowl and let cool.
Add garlic, ginger, lemon juice, honey and yogurt to bowl with spices and whisk together until well combined.
Rinse chicken and pat dry with paper towels. Using a sharp knife, make 3 diagonal slits 1/4-inch deep into top of each chicken breast. Add chicken to bowl with spice-yogurt mixture and toss until chicken is thoroughly coated. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and place in refrigerator to marinate for a minimum of 30 minutes or up to 12 hours.
Meanwhile, prepare rice according to package directions, set aside. Make the Herbed Yogurt Sauce: In a small bowl, whisk together all ingredients and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes before serving.
Preheat oven to 425˚F. Remove chicken from marinade and place breasts on a rack inside a roasting pan. Sprinkle chicken evenly with salt. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, flipping chicken once halfway through baking time, or until internal temperature of thickest breast is 165˚F. Serve warm with rice and Herbed Yogurt Sauce.
Nutrients per serving (5 oz Tandoori chicken, 3/4 cup brown rice and 2 tbsp herbed yogurt sauce): Calories: 343, Total Fat: 3.5 g, Sat. Fat: 0.5 g, Monounsaturated Fat: 0.5 g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.5 g, Carbs: 41 g, Fiber: 3 g, Sugars: 6 g, Protein: 39 g, Sodium: 369 mg, Cholesterol: 83 mg

Garam masala is a classic blend of spices that forms the basis for many traditional Indian recipes. While you can find garam masala in the ethnic food section of your local grocery store, making your own spice blend enables you to create a signature flavor that’s pleasing to your family’s palate. Begin by combining equal amounts of ground coriander, cardamon, black pepper, cinnamon and nutmeg, then adjust the spices to suit your taste preferences. Garam masala may be stored for up to three months in an airtight container.