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Butter Chicken Recipe

Butter Chicken - easy and authentic Indian butter chicken recipe that tastes just like your favorite restaurant. The creamy sauce is great with basmati rice and naan bread. 

Course Side Dish
Cuisine Indian
Keyword Butter Chicken
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 506 kcal



  • 2 lbs chicken, preferably thigh meat, boneless and skinless, cut into 2-3 inch pieces
  • 2 teaspoons ginger paste
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons garlic paste
  • 1-2 teaspoons red chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Salt to taste
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 2 teaspoons lime or lemon juice
  • 2 pinches food color, deep orange, (optional)

Creamy Tomato Sauce

  • 4 large tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons garlic paste
  • 2 teaspoons ginger paste
  • 1 jalapeno
  • 1 2- inch cinnamon piece
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 cloves
  • 2 green cardamom
  • 6 whole black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons ketchup
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried fenugreek leaves
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 2 tablespoon butter
  • 1 cup water


  • Chopped cilantro
  • Heavy cream



  1. Wash and pat dry the chicken with paper towels. Transfer to a large bowl. Add all the Chicken ingredients, stir to mix well. Cover and marinate the chicken for 30 minutes or best overnight in the refrigerator.

  2. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large wok or a pan. Transfer the chicken and the marinade to the wok or pan. Cook on medium-high heat until the liquid has dried up and the chicken turns brown on the surface, 10-15 minutes. You can also grill the chicken.

  3. Transfer the chicken to a clean platter. The chicken can be cooked a day in advance.


  1. In a large pan, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil and add the green cardamoms, cloves, black peppercorns, bay leaf and cinnamon. Sauté the spices for 30-40 seconds. Add the ginger and garlic paste; stir fry for a minute. Add the tomatoes and jalapeno with 1/2 cup of the water. Cover the pan and reduce the heat to low, simmer for 5-7 minutes or until the tomatoes are soft and start to break down. Remove the pan from the heat and let cool.

  2. Remove all the whole spices (cardamom, bay leaf, cinnamon stick, cloves and black pepper) and discard. Transfer the tomato mixture to a blender and puree it to become a sauce.

  3. Transfer the sauce to a clean pan, add the ketchup, sugar, red chili powder, salt and dried fenugreek leaves and the remaining water. Let it simmer for 2-3 minutes on low heat. Stirring occasionally. Now add the butter, stir and simmer on the lowest heat for 5-7 minutes, or until the sauce starts to bubble. Add a little bit more water if the sauce is too thick.

  4. Add the cooked chicken and let simmer for another 5 minutes. Remove the butter chicken from the heat, top with chopped cilantro and heavy cream. Serve immediately with naan bread or rice.

Nutrition Facts
Butter Chicken Recipe
Amount Per Serving (4 people)
Calories 506 Calories from Fat 360
% Daily Value*
Fat 40g62%
Saturated Fat 15g94%
Cholesterol 97mg32%
Sodium 220mg10%
Potassium 587mg17%
Carbohydrates 15g5%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 7g8%
Protein 23g46%
Vitamin A 1650IU33%
Vitamin C 27.7mg34%
Calcium 56mg6%
Iron 1.8mg10%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.