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Butter Chicken (Murgh Makhani)

This recipe is written for an electric pressure cooker such as an Instant Pot. Use 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper for a mild sauce or increase as desired for spice.

  • 1 14-ounce cans diced tomato, undrained
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp minced ginger
  • 1  teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1/2 - 1  teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 2 teaspoons Garam Masala, divided
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1-1.5 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed of excess fat
  • 4 ounces butter, cut into cubes (or 1/2 cup coconut oil)
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream (or full-fat coconut milk)
  1. In the inner cooking pot of the Instant Pot, add the tomatoes, garlic, ginger, turmeric, cayenne, paprika, 1 teaspoon of garam masala, cumin, and salt. Mix thoroughly, then place the chicken pieces on top of the sauce.
  2. Lock the lid in place, then adjust to cook 10 minutes under high pressure.
  3. When the cooking is complete, let the pressure release naturally. Unlock the lid. Carefully remove the chicken and set it aside. Cut chicken into bite-size pieces if desired but don't shred it. Turn the Instant Pot to "keep warm" or "saute".
  4. Using an immersion blender in the pot, blend the ingredients into a smooth sauce. Let the sauce stand for several minutes to thicken.
  5. Add butter cubes, cream, and remaining teaspoon of garam masala. Stir until butter is melted and the ingredients are well incorporated. The sauce should be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon when you're done.
  6. Optional: Remove half of the sauce and freeze it for later or refrigerate for up to 3 days.
  7. Add the chicken back to the sauce and stir to coat in sauce.
  8. Serve over jasmine rice or raw cucumber noodles.
  • Author: Urvashi Pitre
  • Source: Indian Instant Pot Cookbook