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Tandoori Chicken Drumsticks
Tandoor is a clay oven in which heat is generated from wood or charcoal fire at the base of the oven. Since fire burns inside the tandoor, the temperature in a tandoor can reach upto 900 degrees Fahrenheit/480 degrees Celsius, and the food is directly exposed to radiant heat and hot-air convection.

Tandoor is used to cook a variety of Indian breads and roast meats and vegetables. The word Tandoori is an adjective to describe any food cooked in a tandoor. Tandoori dishes have a distinctive smoky flavor and are extremely popular in northern part of India. Tandoor is also used for cooking in the Middle East, Central Asia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Turkey, and Iran.

The traditional tandoor or clay oven has mostly been a part of restaurant kitchens and community kitchens (a common kitchen for multiple households, also called Sanjha Chulha) in some rural parts of India. Due to its size and complexity, a traditional tandoor is difficult to install in a modern kitchen. Therefore, a convection oven is used as a substitute for tandoor. The taste and aroma of the food cooked in a convection oven is very close to that of a tandoor. Just like a tandoor, food is cooked in a convection oven where heat is trapped in a closed space.

Tandoori Chicken Drumsticks is one of the most delicious and easy to cook tandoori dishes. The chicken drumsticks are marinated in a mixture of yogurt, minced ginger and garlic, and some spices for at least 2 hours. The marinated chicken drumsticks are then roasted in a convection oven. Tandoori chicken is served with naan (a type of Indian bread) and cilantro-mint chutney.

Happy Cooking!
Serves 4
Chicken Drumsticks/Whole Chicken Legs
5 pieces, skinned
1/2 inch, peeled and finely crushed
Turmeric Powder
1/2 teaspoon
Cumin Powder
1/2 teaspoon
Garam Masala Powder
1/4 teaspoon
Lime Juice
1 tablespoon
1 teaspoon or according to taste
1 cup (8 oz cup)
Garlic Cloves
5 pods, peeled and finely crushed
Red Chili Powder
1/2 teaspoon
Black Pepper
A generous pinch, crushed or powdered
Tandoori Masala (Optional)
1 teaspoon
Canola Oil
1 tablespoon
Step 1
First, make a few slits on the chicken drumsticks with a sharp knife.

Then, in a bowl, marinate the chicken drumsticks in a mixture of yogurt, minced ginger and garlic, chili powder, turmeric powder, cumin powder, crushed or powdered black pepper, tandoori masala (if using), lime juice, and canola oil (or another oil of your choice with a high smoke point). Make sure to rub the marinade into the slits of the drumsticks. Cover the bowl and refrigerate it for 2 hours. Refrigerate the marinated chicken drumsticks for 5 hours for best results.

Note: Tandoori masala adds extra kick to the dish and is available in Indian or South Asian grocery stores or gourmet markets. However, the Tandoori Chicken Drumsticks will taste great even without adding tandoori masala.
Step 2
Pre-heat the oven at 450 degrees Fahrenheit/232 degrees Celsius for roasting the marinated chicken drumsticks. Layer a baking tray with a sheet of aluminum foil and place a cooling/roasting rack on top of the baking tray. Put the chicken drumsticks on the cooling/roasting rack.

Note: The cooling/roasting rack will prevent the chicken drumsticks from getting soggy while they cook. The water released from the chicken drumsticks and marinade will drip in the baking tray, leaving the drumsticks nice and juicy, but not soggy in the leftover water.
Step 3
Roast the chicken drumsticks for 15 minutes at 450 degrees Fahrenheit/232 degrees Celsius and then set the oven to broil. When broiling, the food is cooked in an oven at a high temperature with heat coming from the top. Most of the ovens have the option to broil.

Broil the chicken drumsticks for 5 to 7 minutes until the drumsticks are lightly charred. Then flip the drumsticks to broil on the other side for another 5 to 7 minutes.

Note: Every oven heats differently, and your oven may take more or less time to roast and broil the chicken drumsticks.
Step 4
Get the tandoori chicken drumsticks out of the oven and let it rest for another 5 minutes before serving so that the drumsticks are juicy and tasty. Serve with naan and cilantro-mint chutney.

Share your thoughts and questions!

Daniel Lee
I followed this recipe to cook tandoori chicken drumsticks last night, it turned out so well.