Simple Butter Chicken

Get ready to savor the goodness of Butter Chicken, a flavorful Indian dish made with chicken and a creamy tomato sauce. No curry powder needed!

butter chicken

If you’ve never heard of Butter chicken before, it’s a popular Indian dish made with chicken cooked in a creamy tomato-based sauce.

I’m sure you are thinking that since this is an Indian dish that it must have curry in it, but guess what? This Butter Chicken recipe does not have curry in it. Surprised?

My research shows that it’s not traditional to include curry powder in butter chicken, but some variations might incorporate it to enhance the flavor profile.

simple butter chicken in a bow

There are many variations of this recipe out there. While all of them have common ingredients, it seems what differentiates all the recipes is what seasonings are used.

Some are spicy and some are not. I was making this butter chicken dish for guests who do not like spicy food so this version is not spicy at all. My taste buds told me the predominant flavor was the cinnamon.

butter chicken and rice
chicken icon

How to Handle Raw Chicken

  • Leave the chicken in the fridge until ready to use.
  • Be careful of dripping juices. Clean up immediately.
  • Do not wash raw chicken (prevents cross-contamination).
  • Wash all utensils and cutting boards.
  • Wash your hands after handling raw chicken.

Butter Chicken is typically served with Basmati rice and Naan bread (Indian flatbread) but feel free to mix and match based on your preferences.

butter chicken in a bowl over rice

You will need the following ingredients to make this Butter Chicken recipe. For ingredient amounts please refer to the printable recipe card at the bottom of this post.

  • Unsalted Butter – you can use salted butter if you prefer
  • Chicken Breasts – Use boneless skinless chicken breasts. Always trim any visible fat
  • Salt – If you are using salted butter you may want to omit or use less for this recipe
  • Ground Cumin – Brings a warm, earthy, and slightly nutty flavor to this recipe
  • Ground Turmeric – Adds a vibrant color and flavor
  • Ground Cinnamon – Adds flavor to this dish
  • Tomato Sauce – One of the main ingredients for this recipe
  • Heavy Whipping Cream – Helps thicken the sauce

How to Make Butter Chicken

  1. In a large skillet, melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat.
  2. Add the chicken and cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Remove chicken from the skillet. Set aside.
    cubed chicken in a skillet
  3. Add the remaining ingredients (except the remaining butter) into the same skillet. Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and let simmer for about 5 minutes.
    sauce mixture for butter chicken
  4. Return the chicken to the skillet and mix till all the chicken is covered in the sauce. Let it simmer for another 5 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.
    butter chicken in a skillet
  5. Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and mix until well blended.
  6. Optionally serve with cooked rice or naan bread.

Printable Recipe Card

butter chicken

Simple Butter Chicken

Get ready to savor the goodness of Butter Chicken, a flavorful Indian dish made with chicken and a creamy tomato sauce. No curry powder needed!
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time10 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time30 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 4
Calories 284 kcal

Equipment

  • Skillet

Ingredients
 

  • 4 Tbsp Unsalted Butter, divided
  • 1 lb Chicken Breasts, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • ¼ Tsp Salt
  • ½ Tsp Ground Cumin
  • ½ Tsp Ground Turmeric
  • 1 Tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 15 oz Tomato Sauce
  • 2 Tbsp Heavy Whipping Cream

Instructions
 

  • In a large skillet, melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat.
  • Add the chicken and cook until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Remove chicken from the skillet. Set aside.
  • Add the remaining ingredients (except the remaining butter) into the same skillet. Bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low let simmer for about 5 minutes.
  • Return the chicken to the skillet and mix till all the chicken is covered in the sauce. Let it simmer for another 5 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
  • Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter and mix until well blended.
  • Optionally serve with cooked rice or naan bread.

Nutrition

Calories: 284kcalCarbohydrates: 7gProtein: 26gFat: 17gSaturated Fat: 10gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0.5gCholesterol: 111mgSodium: 785mgPotassium: 759mgFiber: 2gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 959IUVitamin C: 9mgCalcium: 37mgIron: 2mg

Nutritional information provided for this recipe is based on 1 serving. This information is an estimate and may vary based on several factors. If nutritional information is important to you and your diet, please verify this recipe with a Registered Dietitian.

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5 from 1 vote

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One Comment

  1. Julie says:

    Loved this butter chicken