Crockpot Indian Butter Chicken Recipe | Homemade Creamy Butter Chicken Recipe

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Butter chicken ! The awesome comfort food your entire family will love ! Make the best flavour -packed, creamy and delicious authentic Indian butter chicken at home with this  easy recipe. Serve it with butter naan, Roti, Chapati, Plain pratha, Steamed basmati rice or vegetable rice for a simple Indian meal.

In this post I share the recipe to make the authentic north indian butter chicken known as Murgh Makhani. A popular Indian dish that originated in the 1950s in Delhi. It is also known as Murgh Makhani in Hindi. The dish is made with boneless chicken that is marinated in a mixture of yogurt, ginger, garlic, and a blend of Indian spices such as cumin, coriander, garam masala, and turmeric. The marinated chicken is then grilled or baked until tender and juicy.

The sauce for the dish is a creamy tomato-based gravy that is made with butter, cream, and a puree of fresh tomatoes, onions, and garlic. The gravy is seasoned with a blend of spices and then simmered until it reaches a rich and velvety consistency.

Once the chicken is cooked, it is added to the gravy and simmered for a few more minutes to allow the flavors to meld together. The dish is typically garnished with fresh cilantro.

 

Butter Chicken also known Chicken Makhani is a classic Indian dish that’s made by simmering marinated &grilled chicken (Tandoori Chicken) in a spicy, aromatic, buttery and creamy tomato gravy. This finger-licking and delicious dish is hugely popular among the indian food lovers across the world.

It is believed that butter chicken was invented during 1930 to 1935, by kundan lal jaggi & kundan lal Gujral, the owners/ partners of a restaurant named Moti Mahal in Delhi, India. The restaurant would usually have large orders of tandoori chicken but sometimes ended up with leftovers which were dry.

Butter chicken was a way to use up the leftover dry tandoori Chicken. The large pieces of grilled chicken were diced and simmered in a rich creamy and buttery tomato gravy. That’s how Murgh Makhani- Chicken Makhani came into existence.

Butter Chicken vs Chicken Tikka Masala

Butter chicken and chicken tikka masala  have a lot of similarities, they both differ in taste, texture and flavor. Chicken tikka masala is spicy, hot and the tikka masala gravy has onions included in it. But the orginal Butter chicken is low on the heat & spice quotient and small quantity onions include in the Gravy.

Most importantly Butter chicken is cooked in butter whereas chicken tikka masala is cooked in oil. Butter Chicken has a smooth, rich and silky gravy/ sauce but tikka masala has a texture from the chopped and caramelized onions.

How is Butter Chicken Made?

The original & authentic Butter chicken, also known as Murgh Makhani, is a dish made with boneless chicken that is marinated in a mixture of yogurt and Indian spices, and then grilled or baked until tender.  This marinade imparts tons of flavors to the meat, tenderizes it naturally & helps to remain succulent after grilling. Later the marinade chicken is grilled in a tandoor, a clay oven which imparts its characterstic smoky aroma. This is then diced and simmered in a spicy buttery and creamy tomato-based gravy.

Since we are not equipped with tandoor at home, the marinated chicken has to be either roasted in pan or in an oven or grilled on open fire (barbeque). For my dish I use Pan. Feel free to grill/bake the chicken in oven or on open fire.

If you are new to Indian cooking, do read the ingredients& substitutes and experts tips sections below. For the old reader- you can also find the original earlier recipe after the recipe card below.

How to make Butter Chicken (Stepwise with Photos)

Marinade

For this recipe you require 1000gm (2.2 lbs) chicken. You can use thighs or breasts like the way I use. A lot of people prefer thighs for the flavor and additonal fats. If using chicken breasts be prepared to leave it in the marinade for a minimum of 12 hours for best results. I’ve bought a full chicken that means breast side as well as thighs side.

  • For marinade, take mixing bowl, add mustard oil and kashmiri red chilli powder, mix well to bleed it’s natural red colour. Further add the remaining marinade ingredients and mix well.
  • Later add ginger garlic paste, garam masala , cumin powder, coriander powder, turmeric and fresh coriander leaves.
  • Mix well and cover.
  • Now add the medium sized pieces chicken.
  • Add yoghurt to chicken for marination.
  • Mix and coat well and keep it marinade for at 20-25 mins, but in case if you have time keep it for as long as you can for more juicy and flavourful chicken, please do not go beyond 20 hours in the fridge or else the chicken may spoil.
  • Smoke the marinade chicken for 4-5 minutes to impart the smoky flavour. you can smoke the chicken at three stage that”ll make difference of smoke flavour in the dish, one is, you can smoke at the marination stage where you”ll get subtle flavour of smoke, second you can smoke after grilling and third you can smoke at final stage just before serving the dominant smoke flavour, the choice is yours. once it’s been marinated and smoked .
  • Grill the chicken on the stove top or bake in the oven

Make sure your chicken is too cold.

Option 1: To use oven, preheat the oven to 240c or 460 f for at least 15 minutes. Skew the chicken on to soaked wooden skewers or place on a greased tray and bake for 20- 22 minutes, depending on the size of chicken pieces. In between you will have to turn to the other side.

Option 2: To pan- fry/ grill chicken on griddle /tawa. Add one tablespoon oil/ butter or ghee and place the chicken pieces spacing them apart. Fry on a medium heat for 2 mins. Ignore the moisture oozing out of the chicken. Turn the chicken pieces to the other side, don’t burn and do not overcook.

  • Cook till the chicken is just done and all the moisture evaporates.

Optional- If you want browned chicken, increase the flame to high and roast until they turn golden or light brown on both the sides.  Be careful as this can easily burn the masala & dry out your chicken. This way roast the chicken pieces in 2 to 3 batches, depending on the size of your skillet. Avoid browning in a non- stick pan.

  • Once the chicken is grilled let them cool for a while and shred them in thin strips. Keep aside for later use.

Make Butter chicken Sauce

  • Set a stock pot on medium heat, add oil, jeera and sliced onions, saute until onions are light golden brown.
  • Further, add garlic, ginger, mix well and cook for a minutes.
  • Now add tomatoes, coriander stems, powdered spices, salt to taste and butter, mix and cook on medium high heat for 5 minutes.
  • Further lower the heat, cover and cook for 25-30 minutes on medium low heat. Stir in intervals to avoid from sticking to the pan and burning.
  • As the tomatoes will leave their water, there is no need to add additional water, let them cook in their own water. If incase it starts to dry please add hot water as required to cook the tomatoes, do not add too much of water.
  • Once the tomatoes are cooked, switch off the flame and let the mixture cool down to room temperature.
  • Getting cooled, transfer the mixture to a grinding jar and grind to a fine puree, if you’re in hurry you can add ice cube and grind it.
  • Afterwards when the entire batch is pureed, strain the puree with a sieve and keep aside for later use.

Make  Butter chicken

  • Set a wok on  medium heat, add oil and butter, onions, ginger, garlic and green chillies, saute until the onions are translucent and fry on a medium heat for 1 to 2 minutes till the raw smell goes away.
  • Lower the heat and add kashmiri red chilli powder, cook for about 1/2 minute to one minute, mix and further add the strained makhani gravy base. You can add some water to adjust the consistency of the gravy.
  • Now add the shredded grilled chicken, stir well, add some water if required to adjust the consistency.
  • Cook further for 5-6 minutes on medium flame.
  • Now add, garam masala , mix well and check for the seasoning, adjust salt as required.
  • Lower the flame and add butter and fresh cream, stir well and cook for a minute, do not overcook.
  • Now put the merinated chicken into the prepared masala.
  • Finish it with some freshly chopped coriander leaves.

Butter chicken is ready, serve hot with butter garlic paratha, tandoori roti or naan or any bread of your choice.

Ingredients & Substitutes

Tomatoes: Fresh ripe& pulpy/ meatly tomatoes are best for this recipe. However you may use 1 cup (8oz ) passata or canned tomato puree. Avoid using sour tangy tomatoes.

Garam masala is a spice blend used in indian cooking. To make a good butter chicken you need a really good garam masala else your dish can end up being bland without any flavors. You can make your own from this garam masala or use store bought. but be sure to use an aromatic masala and adjust the quantity because every brand is different.

Kashmir red chilli powder is pure Indian chilli powder ( ground dried red chillies) . It is medium hot chilli powder which also impart brighter colour to your dish. You may substitute it with byadgi chili powder or a mix of smoked paprika & cayenne pepper (1.1)

If you don’t eat spicy foods, you may reduce the amount of red chilli powder. the sauce will have a lighter colour like see in my old pictures.

Coriander and cumin powder:  My original recipe never had cumin and coriander powders since they are already included in my garam masala. I have added it for extra flavor in the new version.

Yogurt/ Hung curd: Marinade requires thick strained  yogurt like this hung curd or Greek yogurt. Using regular yogurt (with whey) will easily let out too much moisture while grilling the chicken 7all the spice marinade goes over to the pan. This makes your chicken taste bland.

Expert Tips

Marination is the key to get flavorful, tender & succulent pieces of chicken

Yogurt is the marinade tenderizes the chicken so do not skip it.

Makhani recipes never uses onion so is this butter chicken recipe. Using onions changes the taste of the dish.

The rich taste in the gravy comes from the fresh cream

You can make the gravy ahead and refrigerate. Just grill the marinated chicken when needed and heat up the gravy .Then add the grilled chicken.

My previous original version was lesser amount of red chilli powder 1 tsp. I upgraded the sauce with double the amount of whole spices 7cumin +coriander powder for depth of flavors. Note that butter chicken is a mild curry and adding too much ground spices will after the flavors. This is a picture of the butter chicken with lesser ground spices.

FAQs

Q. When is the origin of butter chicken?
A. Butter chicken is a popular Indian dish that originated in the Punjab region of India in the mid-20th century. It was invented by a chef named Kundan Lal Gujral, who owned a restaurant called Moti Mahal in Delhi.

Q. Is butter chicken spicy?
A. Butter chicken can be mild or spicy depending on the amount of chili powder or cayenne pepper used in the recipe. Traditionally, it is a mild dish, but some versions may have a bit of heat.

Q. What is the difference between butter chicken and chicken tikka masala?
A. While both dishes are popular Indian curries made with chicken, butter chicken has a smoother and creamier texture, whereas chicken tikka masala has a thicker, tomato-based gravy. The spice blend used in the two dishes may also differ slightly.

A. Can butter chicken be made ahead of time?
A. Yes, butter chicken can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 3 months. To reheat, gently warm the curry in a pan over low heat.

Q. What is the best accompaniment for butter chicken?
A. Butter chicken is traditionally served with naan bread, rice, or roti. A side of cucumber raita or a mixed vegetable salad can also be a refreshing accompaniment.

More Chicken Recipes

Chicken Burger

Chicken Wings

Tandoori Chicken

Please be sure to rate this recipe or leave a comment below if you have made it. For more vegetarian & non – vegetarian inspirations, Sign Up for my emails or follow me on Instagram YoutubeFacebook, Pinterest or Twitter.

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Butter Chicken Recipe Card Butter Chicken is an Indian dish but has gained popularity in whole world. It’s been cooked after a long marination period and when we eat, this dish was awesome and fully absorbed spices and butter. Course: Main Course Cuisine: Indian Keyword: Butter Chicken Prep Time: 15m Cook Time: 30m Total Time: 45m Marination Time: 20m Servings: 6 Author: <a href=”https://northindiankitchen.com” target=”_self”>North Indian Kitchen</a> – Kadai – Sauce Pan For Marination – 2 tablespoon Oil – 1 tablespoon Lemon juice – 2 teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder or paprika – 1 teaspoon Garam masala – 2 tablespoon Ginger garlic paste – 1 tablespoon Coriander powder (optional) – ½ teaspoon Turmeric powder (haldi) – 1 teaspoon Amchur powder – ½ teaspoon Black salt – 1 tablespoon Fresh Coriander – 1 tablespoon Fresh Mint – Salt to taste – ½ cup Hung Curd – Live Charcoal + Ghee – Oil for grilling For Makhni sauce/gravy – 2 tablespoon Oil – 1 teaspoon Jeera – 3-4 Sliced Onions (medium sized) – 10-15 Garlic cloves – 3-4 nos Green chilis Powdered Spices – 2 tablespoon Kashmiri red chili powder – 1 tablespoon Coriander powder – ½ teaspoon Turmeric powder (haldi) – 6-7 Tomatoes (roughly chopped) – Fresh Coriander leaves – 2 tablespoon Butter For Butter Chicken final cooking – 2 tablespoon Butter – 1 teaspoon Oil – 1 Chopped Onion (medium sized) – 3 tablespoon Garlic (chopped) – 1 tablespoon Ginger (chopped) – 1 tablespoon Kashmiri red chili powder – Makhni gravy base – Water as required – Grilled chicken shredded – ½ teaspoon Garam Masala – Salt to taste – 5-6 tablespoon Fresh Cream – Fresh Coriander as required (chopped) 1) Preparation for Butter ChickenFirst marinate chicken with lemon juice, chili powder and salt for 20 minutes.Next marinate again with yogurt, oil, turmeric, ginger garlic paste and garam masala powder.Cover & rest in the refrigerator for atleast 12 hours. You can keep it as long as 48 hours.Add tomatoes to jar and make a smooth puree. Set this aside.2. Grilling or roasting the chickenGrill the chicken in an oven or stove top.For stove top method, add one tsp butter to a pan and add the marinade. Fry on high flame till the moisture evaporates.To grill in oven , preheat the oven to 240C for atleast 20 minutes. Grill it till the chicken is cooked.3. Make Butter Chicken  Heat a pan with butter & add ginger garlic paste fry till it turns fragrant. Next pour the tomato puree. Add red chili powder and salt. Mix and cook until the tomato puree becomes thick. It also begins to leave the side of the pan. Pour 1 cup water. Bring the mix to a boil and simmer for about 5 minutes. Add chicken and simmer for about 5 mins. Add garam masala. Stir and simmer for about 2-3 mins. Pour cream and switch off the stove.Garnish Butter Chicken with fresh coriander leaves and extra cream if desired. Serve with tandoori chapati.     calories 439  

Butter Chicken Recipe Card

North Indian Kitchen
Butter Chicken is an Indian dish but has gained popularity in whole world. It's been cooked after a long marination period and when we eat, this dish was awesome and fully absorbed spices and butter.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Marination Time 20 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 6
Calories 439 kcal

Equipments

1 Kadai
1 Sauce Pan

Ingredients

For Marination

  • 2 tablespoon Oil
  • 1 tablespoon Lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder or paprika
  • 1 teaspoon Garam masala
  • 2 tablespoon Ginger garlic paste
  • 1 tablespoon Coriander powder (optional)
  • ½ teaspoon Turmeric powder (haldi)
  • 1 teaspoon Amchur powder
  • ½ teaspoon Black salt
  • 1 tablespoon Fresh Coriander
  • 1 tablespoon Fresh Mint
  • Salt to taste
  • ½ cup Hung Curd
  • Live Charcoal + Ghee
  • Oil for grilling

For Makhni sauce/gravy

  • 2 tablespoon Oil
  • 1 teaspoon Jeera
  • 3-4 Sliced Onions (medium sized)
  • 10-15 Garlic cloves
  • 3-4 nos Green chilis

Powdered Spices

  • 2 tablespoon Kashmiri red chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon Coriander powder
  • ½ teaspoon Turmeric powder (haldi)
  • 6-7 Tomatoes (roughly chopped)
  • Fresh Coriander leaves
  • 2 tablespoon Butter

For Butter Chicken final cooking

  • 2 tablespoon Butter
  • 1 teaspoon Oil
  • 1 Chopped Onion (medium sized)
  • 3 tablespoon Garlic (chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon Ginger (chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon Kashmiri red chili powder
  • Makhni gravy base
  • Water as required
  • Grilled chicken shredded
  • ½ teaspoon Garam Masala
  • Salt to taste
  • 5-6 tablespoon Fresh Cream
  • Fresh Coriander as required (chopped)

Instructions
 

  • Preparation for Butter Chicken
    First marinate chicken with lemon juice, chili powder and salt for 20 minutes.
    Next marinate again with yogurt, oil, turmeric, ginger garlic paste and garam masala powder.
    Cover & rest in the refrigerator for atleast 12 hours. You can keep it as long as 48 hours.
    Add tomatoes to jar and make a smooth puree. Set this aside.
    2. Grilling or roasting the chicken
    Grill the chicken in an oven or stove top.
    For stove top method, add one tsp butter to a pan and add the marinade. Fry on high flame till the moisture evaporates.
    To grill in oven , preheat the oven to 240C for atleast 20 minutes. Grill it till the chicken is cooked.
    3. Make Butter Chicken  
    Heat a pan with butter & add ginger garlic paste fry till it turns fragrant. Next pour the tomato puree. Add red chili powder and salt. Mix and cook until the tomato puree becomes thick. 
    It also begins to leave the side of the pan. Pour 1 cup water. Bring the mix to a boil and simmer for about 5 minutes. 
    Add chicken and simmer for about 5 mins. Add garam masala. Stir and simmer for about 2-3 mins. Pour cream and switch off the stove.
    Garnish Butter Chicken with fresh coriander leaves and extra cream if desired. Serve with tandoori chapati.

Video

Notes

  • You can use bone or boneless chicken, as per your preference.
  • Adjust the spices as your requirement.
  • Always use fresh chicken to get best results.
 
Nutrition Facts
Butter Chicken Recipe Card
Amount per Serving
Calories
439
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
31
g
48
%
Saturated Fat
 
11
g
69
%
Cholesterol
 
172
mg
57
%
Sodium
 
927
mg
40
%
Potassium
 
722
mg
21
%
Carbohydrates
 
12
g
4
%
Sugar
 
6
g
7
%
Fiber
 
4
g
17
%
Protein
 
32
g
64
%
Vitamin A
 
21
IU
0
%
Calcium
 
124
mg
12
%
Iron
 
4
mg
22
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Keyword Butter Chicken
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