Recipes

Butter Chicken

May 22, 2020

Creamy and comforting butter chicken curry recipe that’s quick and easy to make at home! So delicious served with fresh naan or rice.

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Disclaimer: This is not an authentic Indian recipe by any means. However, I have made this many times to make sure it’s a very yummy, great tasting curry. I try to change some up the sauce ratios each time I make it and will update the recipe accordingly if I make one that’s better!

It took me a while to attempt making Indian curry at home, but once I started, I couldn’t stop! I was honestly afraid because I didn’t recognize a lot of the spices at first, but once you learn them it’s much easier. The trick is to really learn what the spices taste like separately so you know which to adjust to achieve your desired flavor profile. This is true for any recipe with ingredients you’re unfamiliar with.

Ingredients:

  • Spices: Garam masala, turmeric, fenugreek, chili powder, and cayenne pepper.
    • Garam masala is a blend of spices meant to be “warming”. I’ve noticed that depending on the brand, that actual components may differ slightly, but the taste is usually similar.
    • I suggest buying garam masala, turmeric, and fenugreek at Sprouts or an Indian grocery store if you have one near you! Sprouts is great because you can buy exactly how much you need by weight from their spice racks. The prices are definitely a lot cheaper for a larger quantity.
  • Chicken: Any cut of chicken works for this recipe. I prefer boneless, skinless chicken thighs. Boneless makes it easier to cut into bite-sized chunks and thighs mean it’ll be hard to overcook and have the chicken too dry. If you use chicken breast, I suggest marinating the chicken overnight as this will help with tenderness.
  • Onions, garlic & ginger: These are the fresh aromatics for the curry. I definitely use A LOT of garlic and ginger in this recipe as it really does help brighten up the dish.
  • Butter: It’s called butter chicken for a reason! I do believe that restaurants probably use a lot more butter…but I also feel less heavy when I make it at home myself with less butter. That’s why I’ve put a range of 4-8 tbsp. When I make it, I usually use 4 tbsp, but if you taste the curry at the end and miss the richer, buttery flavor, then go ahead and melt in the other 4 tbsp of butter before serving!
  • Tomato paste: Sugar is added to help balance and cut the acidity of the tomato paste. I’ve noticed different cans/brands of tomato paste can be more sour to others, so after the 2 tbsp of sugar, feel free to add sugar to taste.

If possible, I try to marinate the chicken in the yogurt mixture a day ahead. The longer you’re able to marinate the chicken in the yogurt, the juicier and more tender the chicken will be. However, if you just don’t have the time, it’s totally fine. I’ve marinated as I’m cooking and it’s tasted great too! If marinating right before, I let the chicken and yogurt mixture marinate as I’m prepping and cooking the onions, garlic, and ginger (~15-20 minutes).

This is what the chicken and yogurt marinade should look like:

Butter Chicken

 


Tiffany AngelaAuthorTiffany AngelaCategoryIndianDifficultyBeginner


Quick and easy recipe for the ultimate creamy and comforting Indian takeout dish!

Yields8 Servings
Prep Time30 minsCook Time45 minsTotal Time1 hr 15 mins


Ingredients
 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs, bite-sized pieces
 1 cup plain whole milk yogurt
 3 tbsp garam masala
 1 tbsp chili powder
 4 tsp turmeric
 4 tsp cumin
 2 tsp ground fenugreek
 1 tsp ground coriander
 1 tsp cayenne pepper
 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil (or other mild flavored oil)
 1 large onion, finely diced
 3 tbsp (1 head) garlic, minced
 3 tbsp ginger, grated
 2 tsp salt
 1 tsp black pepper
 6 oz (1 can) tomato paste
 28 oz (1 large can) crushed tomatoes
 4-8 tbsp unsalted butter
 1 cup chicken broth (1 tsp chicken base + 1 cup water)
 1 ½ cups heavy cream
 2 tbsp white granulated sugar
 salt & pepper to taste
 cilantro for serving (optional)
 freshly cooked rice or naan for serving

Directions
1

In a medium-sized bowl, add in the yogurt, garam masala, turmeric, cumin, fenugreek, coriander, chili powder, and cayenne pepper. Stir to combine until yogurt and spice mixture is mixed through. Add in the bite-sized chicken thighs and stir until all chicken pieces are coated with the yogurt mixture. Let marinate in the refrigerator overnight if possible, up to 24 hours ahead. If cooking right away, set aside.

2

In a large dutch oven or pot (minimum 4.5+ qt capacity), heat up the olive oil on low-medium heat. Add in the onion, garlic, and ginger. Turn up to medium heat and saute until onions are mostly clear (~5-10 minutes).

3

Add in the chicken and yogurt mixture, salt, and pepper. Stirring occasionally, cook until chicken is mostly cooked through (~5-10 minutes).

4

Stir in the tomato paste, crushed tomatoes, chicken broth, heavy cream, and sugar. Bring to a slow boil and turn down to a simmer for 15-20 minutes to let flavors combine. At this point, salt and pepper to taste. If needed, can add more sugar or cayenne pepper as well. Make sure to stir so nothing burns or sticks to the bottom of the pot!

5

Add in the butter a few minute before serving. For a richer and more traditional flavor, add the full 8 tbsp of butter. If a healthier curry is desired, still use at least 4 tbsp of butter for flavor. Stir the butter until completely melted and evenly distributed.

6

Serve over fresh naan or rice!

Ingredients

Ingredients
 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs, bite-sized pieces
 1 cup plain whole milk yogurt
 3 tbsp garam masala
 1 tbsp chili powder
 4 tsp turmeric
 4 tsp cumin
 2 tsp ground fenugreek
 1 tsp ground coriander
 1 tsp cayenne pepper
 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil (or other mild flavored oil)
 1 large onion, finely diced
 3 tbsp (1 head) garlic, minced
 3 tbsp ginger, grated
 2 tsp salt
 1 tsp black pepper
 6 oz (1 can) tomato paste
 28 oz (1 large can) crushed tomatoes
 4-8 tbsp unsalted butter
 1 cup chicken broth (1 tsp chicken base + 1 cup water)
 1 ½ cups heavy cream
 2 tbsp white granulated sugar
 salt & pepper to taste
 cilantro for serving (optional)
 freshly cooked rice or naan for serving

Directions

Directions
1

In a medium-sized bowl, add in the yogurt, garam masala, turmeric, cumin, fenugreek, coriander, chili powder, and cayenne pepper. Stir to combine until yogurt and spice mixture is mixed through. Add in the bite-sized chicken thighs and stir until all chicken pieces are coated with the yogurt mixture. Let marinate in the refrigerator overnight if possible, up to 24 hours ahead. If cooking right away, set aside.

2

In a large dutch oven or pot (minimum 4.5+ qt capacity), heat up the olive oil on low-medium heat. Add in the onion, garlic, and ginger. Turn up to medium heat and saute until onions are mostly clear (~5-10 minutes).

3

Add in the chicken and yogurt mixture, salt, and pepper. Stirring occasionally, cook until chicken is mostly cooked through (~5-10 minutes).

4

Stir in the tomato paste, crushed tomatoes, chicken broth, heavy cream, and sugar. Bring to a slow boil and turn down to a simmer for 15-20 minutes to let flavors combine. At this point, salt and pepper to taste. If needed, can add more sugar or cayenne pepper as well. Make sure to stir so nothing burns or sticks to the bottom of the pot!

5

Add in the butter a few minute before serving. For a richer and more traditional flavor, add the full 8 tbsp of butter. If a healthier curry is desired, still use at least 4 tbsp of butter for flavor. Stir the butter until completely melted and evenly distributed.

6

Serve over fresh naan or rice!

Butter Chicken

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