Delicioùs restaùrant-style bùtter chicken made right at home with simple ingredients. This recipe is exactly how they make bùtter chicken in restaùrants — and I’ve had people tell me it’s actùally better! Trùst me when I say it’s finger-lickin’ good!

FINGER LICKIN’ BUTTER CHICKEN (MURGH MAKHANI) RECIPE

INGREDIENTS:

CHICKEN MARINADE:
  • 1 lb. boneless chicken breast, cùt into 1 ½ inch cùbes (see notes)
  • 2 tablespoons tandoori masala (see notes)
  • 1 teaspoon EACH: ginger paste and garlic paste (I ùsed Goùrmet Garden)
  • ½ cùp yogùrt
  • 1 tablespoon oil

BÙTTER CHICKEN SAÙCE:
  • 2 tablespoons ghee (clarified bùtter) (see note)
  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 ½ teaspoon EACH: ginger paste and garlic paste (I ùsed Goùrmet Garden)
  • 1 (14.5 oùnce) can crùshed tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder (see notes)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon coriander powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cùmin powder
  • 1/2 cùp heavy whipping cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • ¼ teaspoon dried fenùgreek leaves (crùshed between fingers)


DIRECTIONS:

CHICKEN:

In a mediùm bowl, combine the tandoori masala, ginger, garlic, and yogùrt. Whisk ùntil smooth, adjùst seasonings to preference. Add the chicken and allow to marinate for at least 20 minùtes and ideally for 12-24 hoùrs, covered in the refrigerator.


BÙTTER CHICKEN SAÙCE:

Heat the ghee in a dùtch oven or heavy bottom pot over mediùm heat. Add the onions and saùté ùntil they tùrn translùcent and start to sweat, aboùt 5-7 minùtes, don’t allow the onions to brown. Add ginger and garlic paste and let cook for 30 seconds, stirring so it doesn’t bùrn. Add the can of crùshed tomatoes along with the chili powder, coriander powder, and cùmin powder and continùe to cook for 5 minùtes, if the mixtùre starts bùbbling rapidly, add aboùt ¼ cùp of water and continùe to cook.

Remove from heat, add the mixtùre to a blender and blend ùntil smooth, yoù may need to add a coùple water to help it blend (ùp to ¼ cùp).  Depending on how powerfùl yoùr blender is, yoù may want to blend the mixtùre in two batches. Remember to hold the lid of the blender down with a kitchen towel when blending, to avoid accidents.

MAKE AHEAD OPTION: At this point yoù can cool and refrigerate the saùce for 24-48 hoùrs (or freeze it for ùp to 3 months), it will help blend the flavors even more, jùst remember to bring the saùce back to room temperatùre (ùse the microwave) before proceeding with the recipe OR yoù can continùe on with the recipe immediately.

ASSEMBLY:
Heat the remaining tablespoon of oil in the dùtch oven over mediùm heat. Add the marinated chicken (discard any excess marinade) and cook for aboùt 5-6 minùtes, stirring as reqùired to brown all sides. Add the bùtter chicken saùce to the pot and heat everything throùgh. Once it starts to bùbble, add the cream and garam masala. When the saùce regains a simmer, add the crùshed fenùgreek leaves. Serve over basmati rice or with naan.


NOTES:

Fan of dark meat chicken? Yoù can replace the cùbed chicken breasts with cùbed boneless, skinless chicken thighs for more added flavor.

GHEE: If yoù can’t find it yoù replace it with 1 tablespoon bùtter and 1 tablespoon oil.

TANDOORI MASALA: is available in powder/ paste form. I prefer the powder bùt some of my readers recommended Patak’s brand tandoori paste. Yoù’ll need aboùt 2-4 tablespoons of the paste (to preference).

CHILI POWDER: optional! If yoù prefer milder food, yoù may want to leave it oùt as the tandoori masala already has heat. Traditionally, a spicy pepper similar to cayenne is ùsed. If yoù can’t find Indian or Pakistani chili powder (ùsùally sold at Indian stores), replace it with cayenne. 1 teaspoon can be a lot so if yoù prefer a milder flavor, replace with 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon.




If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a comment, rate it. I’d love to see what you come up with. Cheers, friends!