Chicken Nihari
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Chicken Nihari is a classic dish that has been savoured for generations in Pakistan and beyond. Its name, “Nihari,” originates from the Arabic word “Nihar,” which means “morning.” Traditionally, Nihari was slow-cooked overnight and enjoyed as a hearty breakfast after the early morning prayers. Today, it has evolved into a cherished meal served during special occasions and gatherings. The combination of succulent chicken pieces, robust spices, and the patient cooking process makes Chicken-Nihari a culinary masterpiece.

Origin and History

Delve into the historical tapestry of Chicken-Nihari, and you’ll find yourself traversing the vibrant streets of Old Delhi. Originating from the Mughal era, Nihari was a favorite among emperors for its robust flavors and slow-cooked perfection. As it found its way to the streets of Lahore and Karachi, it became a symbol of communal feasting and familial bonds.

Special Traditional Tools: Crafting Chicken Nihari with Precision

To replicate the authenticity of Chicken Nihari, embrace the traditional tools that elevate it to culinary excellence.

  • Deg: The Soulful Cauldron of Flavor
    The deg, a deep, slow-cooking vessel, is the heart of Chicken Nihari preparation. Its ability to maintain low, consistent heat is crucial for infusing the spices into the chicken, creating a symphony of flavors.

Tips and Tricks

Crafting Nihari Mastery

Crafting a culinary masterpiece out of your Chicken-Nihari demands meticulous attention to the finer points and a dash of artistic finesse. Let’s delve into a myriad of tips and tricks, unraveling the secrets that transform your Nihari into a harmonious tapestry of flavors:

  • Slow Cook Serenity: Patience is the secret ingredient. Let the chicken simmer on low heat, allowing the spices to meld and create a tender, flavorful concoction.
  • Spice Symphony: The key lies in the spice blend. Invest in quality whole spices, toast and grind them for an aromatic spice mix that defines the essence of Nihari.
  • Bone Marrow Magic: If possible, include bone marrow in your cuts of chicken. It adds a velvety richness to the broth.

Chicken Nihari Recipe Mix

A Shortcut to Authenticity

Introducing the magic wand for your Chicken Nihari journey – the Chicken Nihari Recipe Mix. This pre-blended spice mix encapsulates the traditional flavors, ensuring your Nihari is a true homage to its heritage.

How to make Chicken Nihari

Chicken Nihari

Recipe by ImamCourse: Main CourseCuisine: Pakistani, Indian


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Cooking time




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Imagine a steaming bowl filled with succulent chicken, bathing in a rich, spiced broth that whispers tales of tradition. Our Chicken Nihari is a celebration on your palate, a culinary odyssey that pays homage to the centuries-old legacy of Pakistani cuisine.


  • 1 kg chicken, cut into pieces

  • 3 tablespoons oil or ghee

  • 2 onions, finely sliced

  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced

  • 2-inch piece of ginger, minced

  • 2 tablespoons Nihari masala (a blend of aromatic spices)

  • 1 teaspoon red chilli powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder

  • Salt to taste

  • 6 cups water

  • 2 tablespoons wheat flour (optional, for thickening)


  • In a generously sized pot, gently warm up a drizzle of oil or a dollop of fragrant ghee on a medium flame. Slide in those finely sliced onions, and let them dance in the sizzling embrace until they transform into a mesmerizing shade of golden brown, releasing their savoury symphony into the air.
  • Introduce the minced garlic and ginger into the aromatic concoction, infusing it with their tantalizing essence. Allow them to perform their fragrant duet for a fleeting minute, filling the air with their irresistible allure.
  • Add chicken pieces to the pot and cook until they are no longer pink on the outside.
  • Sprinkle Nihari masala, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, and salt over the chicken. Mix well to coat the chicken with the spices.
  • Gently pour the water into the concoction, and coax it into a lively dance as you raise the temperature to a bubbling boil. Once it’s reached its crescendo, take the heat down a notch to a gentle murmur, enshroud the pot in a cosy lid, and grant it the serene privilege of a 2-3 hour simmer. This patient act bestows upon the Nihari an ever-deepening symphony of flavours, each minute of simmering contributing to its opulent taste.
  • Should you opt for the embrace of wheat flour, join a small amount of water in harmonious union, crafting a velvety paste that flows like poetry. Introduce this potion gradually to the cauldron, its purpose to weave a cloak of thickness around the gravy. Stir with intention, ensuring a seamless blending that shuns the presence of any unwelcome lumps.
  • Continue simmering for another 30 minutes to allow the flavours to meld and the chicken to become tender.
  • Your Chicken Nihari is ready to be served! Garnish with fresh coriander, ginger slices, green chillies, and fried onions.


  • As you lift the lid of your simmering pot, be prepared for the aromatic cloud that envelops you. Chicken Nihari is not just a dish; it’s a connection to the soul of Pakistani heritage, inviting you to partake in a sensory feast.

Nutrition Facts

1 servings per container


  • Amount Per Serving% Daily Value *
  • Total Fat 25g 39%
    • Saturated Fat 6g 30%
  • Cholesterol 110mg 37%
  • Sodium 600mg 25%
  • Amount Per Serving% Daily Value *
  • Total Carbohydrate 15g 5%
    • Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
    • Sugars 3g
  • Protein 30g 60%
  • Vitamin A 20%
  • Vitamin C 15%
  • Calcium 6%
  • Iron 20%

* The % Daily Value tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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