Chicken Tikka Pizzas: Another 20-Minute Meal

I love Indian flavors a lot, a lot, and this twist on pizza with the simplified flavors of chicken tikka warms my soul.

We’ve eaten this probably three or four times over the last couple months and it’s a success each and every time (totally one of those meals, like this one and this one I’ve waxed poetic about, that I just cannot get sick of ever).

No lie, I’ve started keeping flatbread and cooked chicken in my freezer just for this meal. Everything else I usually have on hand and it’s quick enough to even throw together for lunch (and I’m usually a strict no-cook lunch girl).

Speaking of flatbread and cooked chicken, I feel it’s only fair if I’m declaring something a 20-minute meal to forewarn you that there are some components that either need to be bought or prepared ahead of time.

There’s nothing worse than going to make a “20-minute” recipe only to find that it requires you to still get out there and milk the cow, if you know what I mean.

For once, this pizza is less about the cheese and more about the simplified chicken tikka flavors.

There’s a light sprinkling of cheese, thinly sliced red onion and cilantro to pull everything together and the combination is absolutely wonderful.

I’m a simple girl with simple wants and I can’t resist loving a recipe that tastes amazing and makes my life easier.

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Chicken Tikka Pizzas: Another 20-Minute Meal

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Ingredients:

  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained (see note)
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper (more or less to taste, depending on how spicy you want it)
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely minced or pressed through a garlic press
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons cream or milk (the milk will make the sauce a bit thinner)
  • 2-3 cups cooked, diced chicken (a rotisserie chicken works great here)
  • 4-5 6-inch pita or naan breads (see note)
  • Thinly sliced red onion
  • 1 cup (about 4 ounces) shredded mozzarella cheese (more or less, depending on how cheesy you want the pizzas)
  • Chopped fresh cilantro

Directions:

  1. Preheat broiler to high and place an oven rack about 4-6 inches away from broiler.
  2. Blend the diced tomatoes (in a blender or food processor or with an immersion blender) until fairly smooth.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a 2-quart or so saucepan over medium heat. Add the ginger, red pepper, garlic, curry powder, and cumin. Stir constantly for about 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the tomatoes and salt and simmer for 3-4 minutes. Stir in the cream and add additional salt and pepper to taste, if needed. Stir in the chicken and heat through.
  4. Top each pita or naan bread with 1/2 cup or so of the sauce/chicken mixture (the exact amount will depend on the size of your bread), thin slices of red onion and a sprinkle of mozzarella cheese.
  5. Broil until the cheese is melted and starting to brown lightly in spots, 2-3 minutes. Don’t let them burn (they’ll cook quickly!).
  6. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve immediately.

Notes:

So here are a few quick substitutions, you can use a 14.5 ounce can of crushed tomatoes in place of the diced tomatoes (which are blended in the recipe). The sauce will be slightly thicker and the tomato flavor will be a bit stronger. Also, you can omit the curry and cumin and use 1 1/2 teaspoons garam masala. I’ve made it both ways and slightly prefer the curry/cumin mixture probably because I’m super dedicated and loyal to the Penzey’s brand of sweet curry powder.

I generally use this homemade Greek flatbread (ones I’ve baked and frozen in advance) or the oblong-shaped naan breads from Costco for this recipe but any type of flatbread you enjoy will work.

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Recipe Source: adapted from a recipe sent to me by Sheriece M (by way of MyRecipes)