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

Ingredients 

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

Instructions 

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.

Video

Notes

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.

Nutrition

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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94 Comments

  1. A few clarifications please. Are you using bone-in or boneless chicken and skin-on or skinless? Are you sauteeing the dry spices and curry on high? Which grinder are you using, and would a blender work instead? Are you using black or yellow mustard seeds? Might I use Cardamom seeds rather than the whole pods? I guessed on these, and it turned out great – I’m mostly just curious. Incidentally I used 2.5 teaspoons of the Kashmiri chile powder, and it was flavorful but mild – no detectable heat. I might add a touch of cayenne in tomorrow’s effort. I also used ghee for the oil. Thank you for sharing.

    1. Hi Tim – Great questions. I used boneless and skinless chicken thighs. I sautéed on Saute(Normal) setting in the instant pot. I used the Vitamix to make the paste, but you can use any blender to do it. I used black mustard seeds, and the whole pod of the cardamom. Glad that you enjoyed the curry!

  2. If you don’t have whole kashmir Chili’s, can you use kashmir chilli powder? If yes, any thoughts on how much? Thank you,

    1. Hi Mike – Sure, you can use Kashmiri chili powder too. I would add about 1 teaspoon. You can also start with lesser and add more to the curry later depending on your preference. Hope you enjoy the vindaloo.

  3. I love every single one of your recipes, and this was dinner last night! I’m loving exploring Indian foods and I’m making them myself! So far I’ve made Butter Chicken, Toor Dal, Palak Paneer, Spiced Potatoes, Egg Curry, Chicken Biryani, Lamb Rogan Josh, Tikka Masala, Tandoori Chicken, Gulab Jamun Cake, and now Chicken Vindaloo!

    It was great (even when I modified with using some as ground spices). I expected this to be spicier — at least that’s the way I remembered vindaloo. Should I have used a different kind of chilli? I used the kashmirilal that I typically do for nice color.

    Thanks for this treasure trove of great food!

    1. Hi Jordan – It is wonderful that you have been trying so many indian dishes. There is so much to explore. You can definitely increase the heat in this recipe by adding some additional red chili powder.

    1. Hi Lekha – Yes, I would do everything 4x. But you can try with a little lesser liquid (3x in place of 4x). Hope you enjoy it!

  4. I love the spice mix but there has to be a mistake with the 3/4 cup of water for the paste. Its just watery mush that way for me and I measured everything exactly. It still turns out great but its no more that 1/4 cup that I can see.

    1. Hi Pail – Sometimes the chicken releases a lot of liquid. Make sure to sauté the chicken after adding to the pot, that helps to cook off some liquid. Feel free to reduce the amount of water added. I am glad you still enjoyed the curry.

  5. Hi – this recipe looks lovely, but I don’t own a pressure cooker or instant pot. Could I cook this in a pan on the hob, or in the oven?

    1. Hi Jane – You can surely make this recipe in a pan. Follow the same steps. In place of pressure cooking, cook the chicken in a pan covered for about 10 minutes, then cook uncovered about 7-10 minutes until it is cooked through. Hope you enjoy the curry!

  6. Question for you – is tamarind concentrate the same as tamarind paste? Is it ok if I substitute tamarind paste for concentrate on this recipe?

    1. Hi Nadia – I believe concentrate is same as the paste (pulp with seeds removed). Hope you enjoy the vindaloo curry!

    1. Hi Stephanie – I would say 20 minutes on high pressure would work well for lamb in this curry. Hope you enjoy it!

  7. Long ago, just as I was discovering veganism, I enjoyed a vindaloo dish in an Indian restaurant. I was so enthralled with the richness and depth of the spices that, to this day, I have no recollection of what the chef substituted for the chicken! Can you help me out? I really want to make this dish

    1. Hi Janet – I would think mixed veggies or chickpeas could work well in this recipe. You can also try tofu for a vegan version. Hope you enjoy it!