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butter chicken recipe ~ overhead photo of yellow tumeric indian style rice topped with creamy butter chicken. serve with any rice or naan bread
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Butter Chicken Recipe

Creamy, flavor-loaded curry sauce and tender, juicy bites of chicken. Serve with rice or  naan bread
Total Time30 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: easy indian butter chicken
Servings: 4



  • 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • Juice and zest from half of one lemon
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 1/2 pounds boneless chicken breasts cut in 1” cubes
  • NOTE: boneless thighs may also be used

Curry Sauce:

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 cinnamon stick OR ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • 2 cloves garlic grated
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger finely grated OR ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 15 ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 8 ounce can tomato sauce
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • ¼ cup fresh flat leaf parsley


  • Whisk together the yogurt, lemon juice and zest, garam masala, turmeric and cumin then add the cubed chicken. Marinate 2-4 hours up to overnight.
  • In a deep pan or pot, add the oil over medium high heat.
  • Once the oil is hot add a few pieces of the chicken without overcrowding the pan searing on both sides then remove, continuing to sear the chicken in batches. NOTE: the chicken won’t be fully cooked through at this point.
  • Reduce the heat to medium/medium-low and add onion, cayenne, cinnamon stick and cumin cooking until the onions are tender, stirring frequently.
  • Grate in the garlic and ginger then fold in the remaining 1 teaspoon of garam masala and tomato paste and cook 1-2 minutes over low heat until you begin to smell the tomato paste.
  • Add the diced tomatoes and tomato sauce and once it’s combined, return the the chicken to the sauce, turning to coat it and cook for 5 minutes.
  • Fold in the heavy cream, butter and parsley, simmering for 8-10 minutes. Taste and adjust salt and pepper. Serve hot over rice or with naan or pita bread.


Serving: 0g | Carbohydrates: 0g | Protein: 0g | Fat: 0g | Saturated Fat: 0g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0g | Trans Fat: 0g | Cholesterol: 0mg | Sodium: 0mg | Potassium: 0mg | Fiber: 0g | Sugar: 0g | Vitamin A: 0IU | Vitamin C: 0mg | Calcium: 0mg | Iron: 0mg