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45 mins
Butter Chicken Recipe

Butter Chicken

Rating 5-0 out of 5 - Most cooks definitely will make this recipe again
Mamtha Sunil Kumar

Recipe by  

Butter Chicken originates from the northern state of Punjab. In fact, it is thought that Butter Chicken has been eaten in India for more than a thousand years and can be traced back to a restaurant called Moti Mahal in Delhi. This dish is usually served with naan, roti, parathas, roomali roti or steamed rice

It is an exception to most Indian recipes since, though it uses spices, there are relatively few and the butter gives the predominant taste.

      Preparation Time: 15 Minutes

      Cooking Time: 30 Minutes

Ingredients for Butter Chicken

If you are not familiar with any ingredients, please check our International Cooking Terms page.
If you want to know more about Indian ingredients, check our Indian Spices and our Indian Pulses, Rice and Seeds pages.
US Imperial Measurements  UK Imperial Measurements  Metric Measurements

Currently displaying quantities in US Imperial Measurements
to serve 6 - 8:
2lb 3oz
chicken breasts
4 tablespoons
vegetable oil
1 large
1 tablespoon
ginger-garlic paste
cashew nuts
1 tablespoon
chili powder
2 tablespoons
4 tablespoons
double cream (heavy cream)
1 pod
coriander (for garnish)
1 teaspoon
cumin powder
1 pinch
garam masala
1 tablespoon
lime juice
1 tablespoon
tandoori masala
2 tablespoons
natural yoghurt


How to Cook Butter Chicken

  1. Remove any skin from the chicken and wash the meat thoroughly, cut it into large bite-size pieces. Place all the marinade ingredients into a large mixing bowl and stir in the chicken pieces. Leave in a cool place for for at least one hour for the chicken to marinate.
  2. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large frying pan (skillet), remove the chicken pieces from the marinade and fry them over a medium heat for 5-6 minutes, turning regularly, until golden brown. Set them aside and keep them warm.
  3. While the chicken is cooking, peel and chop the onion, grind the cashew nuts to a thick paste and mash the tomatoes. Add the other 2 tablespoons of oil to the pan and gently fry the chopped onions for about 5 minutes until they are golden. Add in the ginger-garlic paste with 1 tablespoon of water and continue to cook until the oil separates (about 2-3 minutes). Add in the cashew nut paste, chili powder and tomato paste and cook for 10 minutes over a low heat.
  4. Finally, add the butter and cream, stir well and then add back the chicken pieces. Mix well and cook for a few minutes until everything is warm. Serve hot, garnished with coriander.

There's always a risk of over-cooking Butter Chicken, causing it to become dry. To avoid that, don't use any cream - just sauté with butter and serve the dish. It's less original, but it works!
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Reviews of Butter Chicken

Rating 5 out of 5 - Many cooks will make this recipe again February 04 2015
This is the best ever butter chicken I have eaten and, as I am a big fan of Indian food, I have eaten butter chicken many times. So easy to make and totally worth the effort. The instructions are clear and easy to follow. Thank you so much, Mamtha. This is a keeper.
(4 reviews)

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