Restaurant style Butter Chicken is popular dish which tops the menu list of any Indian Restaurant. Tandoori Chicken pieces are cooked in an onion-tomato based curry sauce along with fresh cream and spices. Butter chicken is also called as Murgh Makhani.
A Brief History of Butter Chicken
The origin of most popular butter chicken is really interesting. After reading the history I can say this delicious dish was originated accidentally. In pre-partitioned India there was a famous Dhaba of Kundan Lal Gujral. The dhaba was famous for selling tandoori chicken. However, it was difficult to manage the leftover tandoori chicken as the unsold tandoori chicken tends to dry.
As we say necessity is the mother of invention. So those leftover tandoori chicken pieces were cooked with butter-based onion-tomato gravy along with fresh cream and spices. Chicken pieces turns to tender and succulent by regaining the moisture. A new dish butter chicken is originated.Read it more here..
I do not have leftover tandoori chicken at home. Can I prepare butter chicken from scratch?
Of course! You can prepare butter chicken from scratch. Actually, my recipe of restaurant style butter chicken is from scratch. I did not have leftover tandoori chicken. So, I prepared tandoori chicken on stove top without the tandoor oven and later added them in butter chicken sauce.
What is the difference between butter chicken and chicken tikka masala?
Butter Chicken vs Chicken Tikka Masala
People commonly ask the difference between butter chicken and chicken tikka masala. Though both of the chicken curries look similar, but they are different. Butter chicken is cooked mainly in tomato-based gravy along with fresh cream and sweeter in taste.
However, Chicken tikka masala is spicier and cooked with more onions than tomatoes and varieties of spices are used in the gravy. Lot of butter is used in butter chicken compared to chicken tikka masala. The origin of butter chicken is in India whereas the origin of Chicken tikka masala is UK.
How to prepare the butter chicken sauce or gravy at home?
You need basic ingredients like onion, garlic, ginger and tomatoes along with some few spices are used while preparing the butter chicken sauce. Addition of fresh cream is an important step in making the butter chicken sauce.
If you do not prefer rich sauce, then you can add half cream and half milk. This also gives a good creamy taste to the sauce. Another most important ingredient of butter chicken recipe is good amount of butter. Here I am sharing the best butter chicken recipe from scratch. I know you will love this Restaurant style Butter Chicken Recipe.
Is there a make ahead option for butter chicken?
I will tell you an interesting fact about butter chicken recipe. The process of making butter chicken from scratch might look lengthy. However, you can make it as a step wise affair by preparing the gravy/sauce ahead of time. After making the gravy, allow it to cool and store it in an airtight jar and refrigerate it for up to 48 hours. For longer shelf life you can keep it in freezer. However, I would suggest not storing for too long duration.
You can also prepare the tandoori chicken previous night and store it in refrigerator. Next day you can take them and warm it up in micro-oven or in pan on stove top and add in the prepared sauce. Actually, it is an easy butter chicken recipe which you can prepare at your home.
How can I serve butter chicken?
Normally, butter chicken is served as a part of main course. I prefer to have it either with basmati rice or paratha or naan. It is a versatile dish; you can have it with any kind of Indian Flat Bread or Pulao or Jeera rice.
Restaurant style Butter Chicken
- Grilling Pan
- Big Strainer
For Marinating Chicken
- 400 gms Chicken
- ¼ cup Yogurt
- 1 teaspoon Ginger Paste
- 1 teaspoon Garlic Paste
- ½ teaspoon Turmeric Powder
- ½ tablespoon Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder
- 1 teaspoon Refined Oil
- Salt to taste
For Butter Chicken Gravy or Sauce
- 5-6 nos Cashew Nuts
- 2-3 nos Onion, large (sliced)
- 3-4 nos Tomato, chopped
- 1 inch Ginger
- 7-8 pods Garlic
- ½ cup Fresh Cream
- 2-3 tablespoon Butter
- 1 teaspoon Coriander
- 1 tablespoon Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder
- 2-3 teaspoon Refined Oil
- 1 no Bay Leaf
- 2 nos Green Cardamom
- 3-4 nos Cloves
- 5-6 nos Whole Black Peppercorn
- 1 inch Cinnamon
- 2 tablespoon Kasuri Methi (Dried Fenugreek Leaves)
- 1 teaspoon Sugar
- Salt to taste
Making of Tandoori Chicken on Stove Top
- Marinate the chicken pieces with yogurt,ginger-garlic paste, turmeric powder, salt, Kashmiri red chilli powder (1/2 tablespoon)and oil (1 teaspoon) for 1-2 hours.
- Once the chicken is marinated, heat a grill pan and brush with oil.
- Add the marinated chicken pieces into it and cook well both the sides. Brush the chicken pieces with oil in between.
- Once the chicken pieces are cooked keep them aside.
- To give a burnt flavor to the chicken pieces, use a tong to hold the chicken pieces on the flame for few seconds and keep them aside. This step is completely optional.
Making of Butter Chicken Sauce or Gravy
- Soak the cashew nuts in warm water for 10 to 15 minutes and make a smooth paste.
- Now heat 1 tablespoon of butter in a pan and add whole spices like (cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, black peppercorn, bay leaf).
- Next add sliced onions, garlic pods, ginger, and chopped tomatoes. Cook for few minutes.
- Add ½ tablespoon red chilli powder, cashew paste& salt and cook for few more minutes.
- Add water and allow to cook for 10 minutes or until the tomatoes are soft.
- Allow to cool it for some time and blend it in a blender.
- After blending strain the mixture through a strainer.
- Now heat the remaining butter in a pan and add coriander powder and remaining red chilli powder. Stir for few seconds.
- Next add the strained mixture into it.
- Add fresh cream and mix well.
- Now balance the sweetness of the gravy by adding sugar or honey. Also adjust the salt.
- Add already cooked chicken pieces and close the lid of the pan and cook for 7 to 8 minutes
- Finally, add crushed kasuri methi on top and butter chicken is ready to serve.
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Wow I love butter chicken and it looks perfect like restaurant style. The curry looks so rich and creamy. A lovely beautiful color of the chicken. Yumm
Thank you Jolly
The gravy looks so creamy and delicious.. I will try making this with paneer.. Loved the recipe as well as the pics, Amritha.
Thank you dear... do try and let me know
As I'm a vegetarian, have never tasted butter chicken but have tasted butter paneer and butter mushrooms. The creamy and slightly sweetish gravy is finger licking good.
Yes, the taste of the gravy is really delicious
hem lata srivastava
wow, Colour and texture looks perfect . Lovely photography.
Thank you Hema ji