Indian Butter Chicken is the ultimate luxurious curry dish. Chicken thighs are bathed in a rich yogurt sauce brimming with bold spices, then simmered in a thick sauce until it reaches flavor nirvana.
I find Indian cuisine absolutely mesmerizing – the masterful use of seasoning and spices is second to none in the world of cooking. I can only assume modern Indian cooking techniques were first discovered when someone accidentally dropped an entire spice cabinet into their cooking pot. The resulting flavors are assertive, luxurious, yet perfectly well balanced.
The list of ingredients for many Indian dishes may be fairly long, but they typically are not overly difficult to cook. This Indian butter chicken recipe is no different.
What is Indian Butter Chicken
Butter chicken, also known as murgh makhani, is referred to as the General Tso’s of Indian cuisine, a highly recognizable dish that spans continents. If you are only going to make one curry dish in your life, this would be the one! Butter chicken is a luxurious dish featuring marinated chicken simmering in a curry sauce that includes butter and cream.
Is Butter Chicken Authentic Indian Food
Butter chicken originated in India and is still a popular dish in India’s capital, Delhi. It is however not a historically old dish, having only been invented in the 1950s. It is said to have been invented by a restauranteur combining leftover chicken in a tomato gravy.
How to Make Indian Butter Chicken
I recommend simmering this Indian Butter Chicken in a dutch oven (affiliate link) with a wide mouth. The wide mouth allows for faster evaporation while the heavy cast iron retains heat better during long simmers.
When marinating the chicken, you can throw it all in a large bowl, or if you wish to conserve space in your refrigerator I like using gallon Ziploc storage bags (affiliate link) for marinating.
What to Serve with Butter Chicken
I recommend serving your butter chicken with basmati rice and warm naan bread. Gently heating your naan bread in the oven, or in a skillet will create better flavor and texture.
Butter Chicken Leftovers
This dish makes fantastic leftovers, as the flavors continue to meld when resting in the refrigerator. Simply store in an airtight container until you are ready to serve again. You can reheat everything in a microwave or on the stovetop.
- ½ cup Greek yogurt
- 2 tbsp Lemon Juice
- ½ tablespoons Ground Turmeric
- 2 tbsp Garam Masala
- 2 tbsp Ground Cumin
- 3 lbs Chicken Thighs (on the bone)
- ¼ lb Butter
- 1 tbsp Vegetable Oil
- 2 medium Onions (chopped)
- 4 cloves Garlic (minced)
- 3 tbsp fresh Ginger (peeled and minced)
- 1 tbsp Cumin Seeds
- 1 Cinnamon stick
- 2 Tomatoes (chopped)
- 1 Jalapeño pepper (seeded and chopped)
- ⅔ cup Low Sodium Chicken Stock
- ½ cups Milk (Or cream)
- 2 teaspoons Tomato Paste
- 3 tablespoons chopped Almonds Slivers
- Kosher salt to taste
- ½ bunch Cilantro Leaves chopped
Combine Greek yogurt, lemon juice, turmeric, garam masala, and cumin in a large bowl and mix together.
Add chicken thighs to the bowl and toss to coat.
Cover, and place in the refrigerator to marinate for a few hours, or overnight.
In a large pot heat butter and oil and add onions, sauteing till golden brown. Stir frequently.
Add garlic, ginger, and cumin seeds, cook for a few minutes longer, until fragrant.
Add tomatoes, cinnamon stick, and jalapeno and cook till jalapeno softens. ~10 minutes
Add chicken and marinade to the pot, let cook for 5 minutes.
Add stock, bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer and cook uncovered for 30 minutes.
Stir in milk and tomato paste and simmer for an additional 15 minutes.
Add almonds, cook for additional five minutes then remove from heat.
Taste for salt, adding salt as needed.
Garnish with cilantro leaves and serve.
This recipe was originally published on FoxValleyFoodie.com August 18, 2106.
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