7 Steps to Cook Perfect Butter Chicken Every Time

Butter chicken is a famous Indian dish loved for its yummy creamy sauce. This guide will help you learn how to make it perfectly. Whether you're new to cooking or a pro, keep reading to make butter chicken as good as your favorite restaurant's.

Cook Perfect Butter Chicken
Steps to Cook Perfect Butter Chicken

Gathering Ingredients

  • Ingredients:

  • 500g boneless chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 tsp red chili powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • Salt to taste
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 2 tomatoes, pureed
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • Fresh cilantro leaves for garnish
  1. 7 Steps to Cook Perfect Butter Chicken

Preparing Chicken

  • Marinate the chicken: In a bowl, combine the yogurt, lemon juice, ginger garlic paste, turmeric, chili powder, cumin, coriander, and salt. Put the chicken pieces in the marinade and make sure they're all covered nicely. Then, cover them up and put them in the fridge for at least 1 hour. It's even better if you can leave them overnight.
  • Cook the chicken: In a large skillet or frying pan, melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat.
  • Add the marinated chicken pieces and cook until they are browned and cooked through, about 8-10 minutes and move the chicken from the pan and set it aside.

Making the Sauce

  • Prepare the sauce: In the same skillet, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter. Put the chopped onion in the pan and cook it until it's soft and see-through, which takes about 5 minutes.

  • Mix the tomato paste into the dish and cook it for an additional 2 minutes. Then add the tomato puree and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Finish the dish: Return the cooked chicken pieces to the skillet with the sauce. Mix the heavy cream and garam masala into the mixture.
  • Simmer for an additional 10-15 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld together and the sauce to thicken slightly.

Serving Suggestions

There are numerous ways to serve butter chicken. You can serve it with soft basmati rice, delicious naan bread, or a crisp salad. To make it look even better, top with some fresh cilantro or cream. Garnish with fresh cilantro leaves and serve hot with rice, naan, or your choice of bread.


How spicy is butter chicken?

Butter chicken typically has a mild to moderate level of spiciness, but you can adjust the heat according to your preference by varying the amount of chili powder used.

Can I use boneless chicken for butter chicken?

Yes, boneless chicken works well for butter chicken, ensuring quick and even cooking. However, bone-in chicken can add extra flavor to the dish.

What else can I use instead of cream in butter chicken?

For a lighter option, you can use coconut milk or Greek yogurt instead of cream, but keep in mind that the taste and thickness might be a bit different.

Can I freeze butter chicken?

Yes, butter chicken freezes well. Transfer cooled leftovers to freezer-safe containers or resealable bags, ensuring to remove any excess air before freezing for up to 3 months.

How long can I store leftover butter chicken?

Properly stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, leftover butter chicken can last for up to 2-3 days. Reheat gently on the stovetop or in the microwave before serving.

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