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Butter Chicken Recipe

  • Author: Kannamma - Suguna Vinodh
  • Total Time: 3 hours 30 mins
  • Yield: 4-5 servings 1x


Recipe for butter chicken masala. Recipe adapted from Moti Mahal Cookbook – On the Butter Chicken Trail by Monish Gujral



For the marinade

  • 500 grams chicken (I have used boneless chicken)
  • 1/4 cup yogurt
  • 78 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 inch piece ginger
  • Juice of a small lime
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon kala namak (black salt)
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kasuri methi (dried fenugreek powder)
  • 1 tablespoon butter

For the gravy

  • 2 tablespoon peanut oil
  • 5 tomatoes (deseeded and pureed) (canned tomatoes also works fine)
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/3 cup cream
  • 2 tablespoon butter

For garnish

  • 2 green chillies, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon coriander leaves
  • 1 tablespoon cream


  1. Take a small mixie jar and add in the ginger, garlic and the yogurt. Grind to a fine paste. Set aside.
  2. Take a bowl and add in the chicken pieces. Add in the red chilli powder, salt and the lime juice. Mix well. Add in the yogurt mixture. Add in all the ingredients listed under “marinade”. Mix well and allow the chicken to marinate for 3 hours.
  3. Take a pan and add in a tablespoon of butter. Add in the marinated chicken along with the liquid to the pan. Cook the chicken for about 10-12 minutes. Cook until the chicken is dry and starting to char here and there. Remove from heat and set aside. Now we will deglaze the pan. Remove the chicken to a plate and add in half a cup of water to the pan. Bring to a boil. The bits and pieces sticking in the pan is where all the flavour is. Once the water is boiling and all the masalas sticking to the pan is released, remove from the pan and reserve this liquid. We will use later.
  4. Heat oil in a pan and add in the onions. Saute for a couple of minutes. Add in the tomato puree and the salt.
  5. Add in the red chilli powder, garam masala powder and cumin powder. Cook for about 10-12 minutes till the tomatoes are cooked and streaks of oil starts to appear.
  6. Add in the reserved liquid (deglazed liquid) and the cooked chicken. Simmer the gravy along with the chicken on a low flame for 10 minutes. If the gravy is too thick, add a little water.
  7. Add in the fresh cream and the butter. Let it simmer for a couple of minutes more.
  8. Remove from heat and serve with chopped green chillies, coriander leaves and drizzle a little cream on top.
  9. Butter chicken is ready!!
  • Prep Time: 3 hours
  • Cook Time: 30 mins
  • Category: Curry
  • Cuisine: North Indian