This chicken saag is delightfully rich, intensely flavorful, and ultra comforting! Lightly spiced chicken is simmered in a creamy spinach curry until perfectly tender and delicious. Ditch the takeout this week and whip this chicken saag recipe together for a super satisfying restaurant-quality meal!
What Makes This Chicken Saag So Good
- It’s loaded with flavor and the perfect dish to make for friends and/or family! Everyone will lose their minds over this perfectly spiced, creamy, and comforting meal.
- It’s surprisingly healthy and loaded with veggies. The base of this chicken saag recipe is a curry made of mostly spinach. Two whole bags of spinach, in fact! Chicken packs in the protein while spinach packs in a ton of vitamins and minerals.
- It’s a foolproof method that yields restaurant-quality chicken saag that is arguably better than takeout! You’ll start by baking the chicken then making the curry, then leaving everything to simmer for a few minutes. The final result is a totally irresistible Indian curry!
Key Ingredients for Chicken Saag
Frozen Spinach – Fresh or frozen spinach both work for this recipe. However, I find frozen spinach much more convenient and just as tasty. Simply steam two bags of frozen spinach according to the package instructions. Once steamed, run the spinach through a food processor or blender until puréed. The level at which the spinach is pureed is totally up to you. Whether that means totally smooth or with a few spinach pieces remaining!
Garam Masala – Garam masala is a popular spice throughout Indian cuisine. It’s a warming blend of cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves, among other spices. It smells and tastes incredible! If you don’t have any garam masala at home, I highly recommend picking some up the next time you’re at the grocery store. Most stores carry this Indian spice in either the spice aisle or the ethnic food section.
Half-and-Half – Thick and creamy half-and-half contributes intense richness to this chicken saag recipe. If you don’t have half-and-half you can use heavy whipping cream instead. However, avoid substituting it with low-fat or skim milk which will result in a thin and watery curry.
- Be patient while cooking the onion, garlic, ginger, and serrano chiles! The goal is to achieve a deep, dark brown color from your aromatics. It’s imperative to the overall flavor of this dish that you do not rush this step! Continue cooking, stirring regularly so that it doesn’t burn, until the mixture becomes a rich brown color.
- Serve this chicken saag over cauliflower rice for a keto-friendly meal! Both the half-and-half and full-fat yogurt increase the fat in this dish. Therefore, simply replace the usual white rice with cauliflower rice to keep the carbs low!
- Store any leftover chicken saag in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days. When ready to eat, either reheat in a skillet over medium heat on the stove for 5 minutes. Or place in the microwave for 30 second intervals until warmed throughout.
More Indian Recipes You’ll Love
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- Baking dish
- Food processor or blender
- Large skillet
For the Chicken
For the Saag
- 3 tablespoons ghee
- 2 12-ounce packages frozen spinach steamed
- 6 garlic cloves minced
- 1 ½ tablespoons fresh grated ginger
- 1 serrano chile minced
- 1 medium white onion chopped
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- 4 teaspoons coriander powder
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 2-3 tablespoons dried fenugreek leaves see Notes
- 1 ½ cups half-and-half
- ½ cup plain full-fat yogurt
- 1 teaspoon salt
- chopped fresh cilantro to serve
- Preheat oven to 375º Fahrenheit. Combine spices and oil or ghee in a bowl. Place chicken pieces in a large baking dish and coat with oil and spice mixture. Bake for 30 minutes; remove from oven. Preheat broiler then broil chicken for 5 minutes, or until browned in places. Remove from oven and set aside.
- In a food processor or high-speed blender, process steamed spinach until puréed. Set aside.
- Heat 3 tablespoons ghee in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add onions, ginger, garlic, and serrano chiles. Cook slowly, stirring regularly, until the mixture becomes a rich medium brown color. Don't skip this part! Add a little water, 1 tablespoon at a time, as needed, if the mixture is burning or drying out.
- Add the garam masala, coriander powder, and cumin powder. Sprinkle with a little water to moisten. Cook, stirring frequently, until the spices are fragrant, about 3-5 minutes.
- Add the spinach to the skillet and stir well. Add 1 teaspoon salt, half and half, yogurt, and fenugreek leaves. Stir to combine well, then add the chicken and stir gently. Cook about 5 minutes then taste and add more salt as needed.
- Dried Fenugreek Leaves: Dried fenugreek leaves is what makes this chicken saag just as good, if not better, than what you’d order at a restaurant! However, if you can’t find dried fenugreek leaves, you can leave them out.
- Make it Paleo: To make this recipe paleo, replace the half-and-half with full-fat coconut milk and use plain full-fat coconut yogurt in place of the regular yogurt.
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Hi! I’m Sam, a travel, food and fitness enthusiast from the New York metro area. I love creating new and inventive recipes, and my favorite part is sharing them with others. My love of food goes all the way back to my early childhood, I grew up cooking alongside my mom and Nonna – the two best cooks I know! When I’m not in the kitchen, I’m either planning my next vacation, spending time outdoors (preferably on a beach), or bingeing Netflix’s latest docu-series. My passion for eating and living well led me to create the blog and Instagram account, Sam Does Her Best, where I health-ify my favorite comfort foods. I’m a big believer that good-for-you food can still be exploding with flavor and (most importantly) easy to make. I’m thrilled to be here at 40 Aprons doing what I do best – creating, photographing, and sharing delicious recipes with you all!