Curries · Entree

Butter Chicken


Hello Folks !!!

The holiday season is here !!!

Before I go into my holiday baking mode , I wanted to make something Indian 😉 . Here I am bringing you all a luscious , creamy , makhanwala (means with butter in hindi) Butter chicken . The mouth watering world famous Punjabi curry which originated in the world famous Moti Mahal , New Delhi during the 1950s.

Oh yes the world famous butter chicken . You ask any one in this world they will all know about this delicious curry , which is also known as Murgh Makhni. The melt in your mouth chicken the tangy but spicy & slightly sweet gravy with an addition of cream into it makes this curry the epitome of Indian curries which are famous outside India. The recipe which I have used to make this curry was given by my sister and friend Urmi Di. I have used her recipe as well as a recipe from NDTV food , made changes according to my taste so this is not a traditional Butter chicken recipe it is my take on it .

Because I grew up in a South Indian household , butter chicken was a major eating out dish , a bowl of butter chicken with some garlic naans , I used to wait for those restaurant dinners always . Another fond memory about butter chicken is during my college days . We used to go to a dhaba which was inside the IIT campus near our college . Oh the food was totally to die for , I still remember the deliciousness . We used to walk 20 minutes to reach there from our home just to relish the amazing food cooked to fresh and served hot from there. Oh I miss those late night dinners , I am talking about a decade back I highly doubt whether that dhaba still exists LOL .

So this recipe is a token to my college days , friends and our restaurant eating experience as a kid.

Let’s see how to make this delicious curry!!!


Marination Time – 7 hours
Prep time- 15 minutes
Cooking Time – 30 minutes
Serves – 8 to 10
Author- Parvathy V Nair



For the marination
Yogurt – 1 cup (use a thick yogurt , if you can get greek yogurt they are the best)
Ginger Garlic paste- 1 1/2 teaspoon (Check notes to make fresh ginger garlic paste at home )
Paprika- 1 teaspoon (I used paprika to make it mild , feel free to use red chilly powder)
Turmeric powder- 1/4 teaspoon
Kasoori methi- 1 teaspoon
Coriander leaves- 1/2 cup chopped

Other Ingredients
Chicken – boneless 1 1/2 kilo, I used thigh part and de boned it feel free to use chicken breast
Onions- 2 to 3 roughly chopped
Tomatoes – 3 to 4
Ginger Garlic paste- 1/2 teaspoon
Bay leaves- 2
Cinnamon – 1 stick
Cloves- 3 to 4
Cardamom – 3 to 4
Paprika- 1 teaspoon
Turmeric powder- 1/4 teaspoon
Coriander powder- 1 teaspoon
MDH butter chicken masala – 1/2 teaspoon (totally optional , if you don’t have it use garam masala instead)
Kasoori Methi- 1/2 teaspoon
Melon seeds/ Cashew nuts/ Poppy Seeds- 1 1/2 tablespoon
Salt- as needed
Unsalted Butter – 1/4 cup
Heavy whipping cream – 2 or 3 tablespoons (I used 35%)
Sugar- 1 teaspoon (Optional)


1. Marinate Chicken pieces with the ingredients listed under marination. Keep it in the fridge for 7 to 8 hours . Do not add salt to the marination it increases the water content in the chicken .

2. Preheat the oven to 350F. Bake the chicken pieces till it’s three fourth cooked . I baked in 3 batches and each batch almost 15 minutes each . Ideally the chicken is grilled on a Tandoor oven , if you have a barbecue at home that will also work instead of baking .

3. While the chicken is cooking let’s make the onion paste and tomato paste . Also soak the nuts/seeds in hot water for 10 minutes .

4. To make the onion paste saute all the onions till it is transparent then cool and grind it to a smooth paste . Now blanch the tomatoes and make a puree out of the tomatoes . Try using roma tomatoes to give good colour and also the use of paprika helps you in giving excellent color. Also grind the nuts/seeds into a smooth paste .

5. In a pan heat butter wait till in melts then reduce the flame to low add bay leaves, cinnamon , cardamom & cloves , saute for a minute. Now add the  onion paste and ginger garlic paste saute till the raw flavour goes away.

6. Now add the spice powder saute it till the oil has released. Now add the tomato paste and half cup water increase the heat to medium , add some salt too . Now wait till the gravy boils .

7. When the gravy is boiling , add the ground nut mixture , kasoori methi and the chicken . Reduce the heat to low and slow cook it till the gravy is thickened and it has come to a boil . This will take atleast 15 to 20 minutes , do not stir it always just stir 2 or 3 times in between .

8. Check if the grave has reached the desired consistency , then turn of heat add whipped cream and sugar  . Check for salt , if required add more and finish by adding butter chicken masala/ garam masala .

9. Garnish with coriander leaves and a spoon of cream and serve hot with rice/ naan

How to make Ginger garlic paste
Chop equal quantities of ginger and garlic and process it in food processor . If you want to store it for sometime then add some oil to it and store . 



2 thoughts on “Butter Chicken

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s