Enjoy this dairy-free and gluten-free Chicken Vindaloo with rice or naan for a satisfying dinner!

Chicken Vindaloo served in a bowl along with naan bread.
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Vindaloo is a popular curry to order at restaurants, similar to Chicken Korma, Kadai Chicken, and Chicken Tikka Masala. The most common version of this curry is made with pork. However, we will change it up and make Chicken Vindaloo.

Authentic vindaloo curry gets all of this flavor from chicken marinated in freshly ground whole spices. So don’t skip that step when making this delicious curry!

We loved this Chicken Vindaloo. My daughter, who is super fussy and does not typically like much spice in her food, devoured this chicken. She just cut it into pieces and enjoyed it with a fork. So I am sure you will love this Chicken Vindaloo. Enjoy it with this delicious Mango Lassi.

If you are looking for a vegetarian version of this curry, check out my paneer vindaloo recipe.

Watch How to Make Chicken Vindaloo


Vindaloo comes from carne de vinha d’alhos, which literally means “meat in garlic wine marinade”. This was “Indianized” by the local Goan cooks with the substitution of vinegar for the red wine and the addition of dried red chili peppers with additional spices.

Vindaloo has become synonymous with ‘super hot and spicy curry’. However, in reality, this curry is not the most spicy. Yes, we add lots of spices, but it does not have the heat as other curries.

Traditionally, Vindaloo is eaten with pav (similar to dinner rolls). Now, people around the world enjoy it with naan, rice, or any Indian flatbread.

Some Misconceptions about Vindaloo Curry

  1. Vindaloo is a very spicy curry – Vindaloo curry gets a lot of this flavor from the whole spices that are blended to make a vindaloo sauce. With these whole spices, dry red chilies are added. However, these chilies do not make the curry very hot.
    • I like to add dry Kashmiri red chili when making Vindaloo sauce. These chilies give a wonderful red color to the curry but are mild. You can definitely add more or another variety of red chilies to make the curry spicier.
  2. Vindaloo has the word “aloo” in it. “Aloo” means potato in Hindi. You will find that many restaurants add potatoes to vindaloo curry. However, the traditional recipe for vindaloo does not have any potatoes in it.

Perfect to enjoy even on weeknights!

Give this Chicken Vindaloo a try, and do share how it turns out!

How to make Chicken Vindaloo in the Pressure Cooker?

Now, let’s see how to make this delicious vindaloo curry. If you are new to the Instant Pot (pressure cooker), check out this Instant Pot Quick Setup Guide to get you started.

The main steps are

  1. Making the vindaloo curry paste
  2. Marinating the chicken
  3. Making the curry

Making the Vindaloo Paste

  1. Turn on the pressure cooker on sauté mode and add the dry whole spices to the pressure cooker – dry red Kashmiri chilies, coriander seeds, cloves, cinnamon, cardamom, peppercorns, cumin and mustard seeds.
  2. Sauté for about a minute until they are fragrant and slightly browned. Make sure they do not burn. Turn off sauté mode.
  3. Transfer the whole spices to a grinder.
  4. Add ginger, garlic, tamarind paste, and vinegar. Vinegar adds a wonderful tangy taste to the curry. I used rice vinegar in this recipe.
  5. Grind to make a smooth paste. I added about 3/4 cup of water when grinding.
Dry spices sautéed in the instant pot and then added in a grinder

Marinating the Chicken with Vindaloo Paste

  1. Cube chicken thighs to about 2 inches in size.
  2. Add the ground curry paste to the chicken.
  3. Mix well and refrigerate for 15 minutes to overnight.
Chicken marinated with vindaloo spice paste

Making the Pressure Cooker Vindaloo Curry

  1. Start the pressure cooker in sauté mode and heat the oil in it.
  2. Add onions and saute for about 4 minutes until they turn golden brown.
  3. Then add turmeric and salt.
  4. Add the marinated chicken and saute for 3 minutes while stirring frequently.
  5. Mix in any remaining vindaloo paste from the marinade in 1/4 cup water and add to the pressure cooker.
  6. Deglaze the pot. Make sure nothing is stuck to the bottom.
  7. Pressure cook for 5 minutes, then do a 5-minute NPR. This means after the pressure cooker beeps, let the pressure release naturally for 5 minutes, then do a quick release manually.
  8. Add brown sugar and stir in the curry.
vindaloo curry with chicken in the Instant pot

Garnish with cilantro and enjoy!

Chicken Vindaloo in the instant pot ready to be served

Look at that color! Doesn’t it look gorgeous?

Chicken Vindaloo shown in a ladle over the instant pot ready to be served

My daughter who is super picky, devoured this chicken. She did not even bother to dip the naan in it, she ate the chicken with a fork.

More Chicken Curries You’ll Love

4.73 from 62 votes

Chicken Vindaloo – Authentic Pressure Cooker Recipe

Authentic Goan Chicken Vindaloo made in the Pressure Cooker or Instant Pot. Enjoy this dairy-free and gluten-free Chicken Vindaloo with rice or naan for a satisfying dinner!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 4


For Vindaloo Paste

For the curry

  • 1 lb Chicken, thighs, boneless and skinless, cut into 2 inch pieces
  • 4 tablespoon Oil
  • 2 cups Onions, diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon Ground Turmeric (Haldi powder)
  • 1 teaspoon Salt , to taste
  • 1 teaspoon Brown Sugar
  • 1/4 cup Water
  • Cilantro, to garnish


Making the vindaloo paste

  • Start the instant pot on saute mode and add the dry whole spices – dry red kashmiri chilies, coriander seeds, cloves, cinnamon, cardamom, peppercorns, cumin and mustard seeds.
  • Sauté for about a minute until they are fragrant and slightly browned. Make sure the spices do not burn. Turn off the instant pot.
  • Transfer the whole spices to a grinder. Add ginger, garlic, tamarind paste and vinegar. 
  • Add 3/4 cup water and grind to a smooth paste. 

Marinating the chicken with vindaloo paste

  • In a large bowl, add the chicken pieces. Add the vindaloo paste to the chicken. Mix well and refrigerate for 15 minutes to overnight.

Making the curry

  • Start the pressure cooker in sauté mode and heat oil in it.
  • Add onions and saute for about 4 minutes until they turn golden brown.
  • Add turmeric and salt.Add the marinated chicken and saute for 3 minutes, while stirring frequently.
  • Mix in any remaining vindaloo paste from the marinade in 1/4 cup water, and add to the instant pot. Deglaze the pot and make sure nothing is stuck to the bottom.
  • Pressure cook for 5 minutes, then do a 5 minutes NPR. This means after the pressure cooker beeps, let the pressure release naturally for 5 minutes, then do a quick release manually.
  • Add brown sugar and stir in the curry.
  • Garnish with cilantro and serve hot with rice, naan or roti.



Pot-in-pot rice: You can make pot-in-pot white basmati rice along with chicken vindaloo in the instant pot. 
Created: This recipe was created in a 6qt Instant Pot DUO60 Multi-use Pressure Cooker.


Calories: 351kcalCarbohydrates: 21gProtein: 27gFat: 18gSaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 72mgSodium: 730mgPotassium: 824mgFiber: 4gSugar: 9gVitamin A: 570IUVitamin C: 90.8mgCalcium: 74mgIron: 2.5mg

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Diet: Dairy-free, Gluten-free, Nut-free
Tried this recipe?Mention @pipingpotcurry or tag #pipingpotcurry!

About Meeta

I strongly believe that each one of us has a chef inside us, we just need to explore the ingredients and create great food. My passion is to share easy, healthy, and wholesome recipes made using Instant Pot & Air Fryer, that are well tested, so you can cook with confidence.

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4.73 from 62 votes (41 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating


  1. Meeta, I do love your recipes. Thank you for this background on Vindaloo. I’m Goan, grew up in East Africa – and didn’t know how this dish got it’s name!

    There are a couple of other Goan dishes – Xacuti – made with either chicken or mutton/lamb (with coconut), and Sorpotel, with pork. Miss my mother’s cooking.

    Thank you.

    1. Hello – Glad to hear you found the information helpful. Thanks for suggesting the other recipes ideas 🙂

  2. Amazing recipe – I always look for recipes that start with the spices you toast/grind yourself as deliver so much more flavour.

    Only thing I found useful was to use my pressure cookers sauce reduction mode at the end to thicken the sauce a little as it was a little wet to my liking, the flavours though were spectacular.

    1. I totally agree. Starting with fresh spices definitely elevates the flavor. Thanks for sharing back your feedback!

  3. hi Meeta,
    tried your vindaloo recipe for the first time and in the instant pot.. it turns out perfect and delicious.. better than the most restaurant. thank you for posting these amazing recipe.. will make it again for sure..

  4. I don’t have an Instant Pot..I do, however, have the old traditional whistling type of pressure cooker…Any ideas on how to make it in that?🤔

    1. Hi Anamit – You can follow the same recipe, but pressure cook for 1-2 whistles. Keep medium-high heat for sautéing and while pressure cooking. Let the pressure release naturally. Hope you enjoy the vindaloo!

  5. You didn’t get back to me in time so I winged it and used brown coriander and I watched and rewatched the video and I believe the mustard seeds were brown. The flavors were there and it was really good. I did a double batch and I feel like I should have not done that. I was confused because the paste was more watery I am not sure what I did wrong on that. I also googled how to make tamarind paste out of concentrate and it was a 2 to 1 ratio. I tablespoon of concentrate and 2 tablespoons of water. I ended up doing a cornstarch slurry after everything was cooked to thicken it up, I am sure I did something wrong not sure what. Maybe because I did the double batch I couldn’t brown the chicken at all because there was too much sauce?? I ended up cooking it in the sauce a little and then trying to bring to pressure and it took to long and wouldn’t come to pressure so I added time and it didn’t do anything bad at all cooked just fine. I just knew this was going to be delicious so I wanted extra, next time I will do a single batch. I didn’t have the wet grinder or a vitamix, so I roasted the spices and put them in my spice grinder then added everything to my food processor and that seemed to work well. I wasn’t sure at which point to add the Kashmiri chili powder as my Indian market only had ground. I added it at the end, when I was putting everything into my spice grinder it was still cooking I think because there was a little bit of smoke which stressed me out because I thought I was going to ruin it. In the end even with my mistakes it was really really good. I ended up adding a little more salt but again could have been because I did the double batch. I am sharing this recipie with my friends and am moving on to make a bunch of your others, especially since I now have all the spices needed practically. Thank you for sharing your recipes I am very excited to try most of them.

    1. Hi Leslie – So sorry that I was not able to get back to you in time. I am so glad you still tried my recipe and are eager to try other recipes. I really appreciate that a lot. I used brown mustard seeds and brown coriander seeds in the recipe. The initial sautéing of chicken helps to extract some of the chicken liquids. With double quantity, just sauté for a bit longer. Also, with chicken curry recipes, you can increase the water 1.5x in place of 2x as chicken releases a lot of liquid. You added the red chili powder at the right time. You can also add it to the curry while sautéing the chicken. Thanks again for being so kind and sharing about the blog with your friends ❤️

  6. I went to the Indian supermarket to get all my spices for this recipe. I have a few questions and I hope you answer before I make tomorrow. There were two different colors of mustard seed and coriander. There were brown and yellow mustard seeds and brown and green coriander. Which color of each item do I use? In addition to that I found tamarind concentrate not paste, how much of the concentrate do I use to equal the paste? I know it’s not going to be the same amount because on the package they make it pretty clear that the amounts won’t be the same but they don’t tell you what the amount would be.

  7. You don’t mention for saute whether it is low/med/high and also for bringing to pressure low/med/high ? I can’t wait to make this, I will be adding potatoes and doubling this because this looks pretty darn legit, we are picky when it comes to Vindaloo.

    1. Hi Leslie – I use the default setting for both – sauté is on Normal and Pressure Cook on high. Glad you enjoyed the recipe (from your other comments).

  8. Will this turn out well if made with paneer, chickpeas, or both? I am a vegetarian but this looks delicious. Also, will it freeze well?

    1. Hi Barbara – The sauce of this recipe is really good and would go with any veggies or chickpeas. You can skip marination, and pressure cook for the time needed for the veggie you use. eg if using sweet potatoes chunks, just pressure cook for 2-3 minutes. If using canned chickpeas, then pressure cook for 5 minutes. I need to work on a vegetarian version for my husband too, who does not eat meat :-). I do think this recipe will freeze well.

    1. Hi Dayne – You could use ground spices if you don’t have whole. However I do recommend whole spices as freshly ground spice paste does give a much better flavor to this curry. Hope you enjoy the vindaloo.

    1. The cooking time will remain the same even if you double the recipe. The instant pot will just take longer to come to pressure.