Indian Butter Chicken

In my former corporate retail life, I had the opportunity to travel all over Asia visiting factories, vendor showrooms and, most importantly, sample some of the finest cuisine you could possibly imagine. From fresh seafood, a wide variety of Chinese dim sum, to one of my favorite cuisines of all time…Indian food. I absolutely love Indian food. The spices, colors, vegetables, and health benefits are amazing. Turmeric is one of the many spices that they use in their dishes, giving curry its yellow color and deep spiced flavor. It has been used in India for thousands of years as a spice and medicinal herb. It’s a root that is native to the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia. Lucky for us, we can buy turmeric in almost any grocery store!

Indian Butter Chicken was created “by accident” when restaurateurs in Dehli combined a bunch of leftover goodness and created a deliciously decadent chicken dish that explodes with flavor. Our kids are picky eaters and this dish definitely fits the bill. I found a recipe and adapted it to create a more mild finish. They both gobbled it right up!



  •  1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into smaller pieces
  • Sea salt and ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup full fat sour cream or plain Greek style yogurt (both work just great)
  • 1 TBSP fresh lemon juice (bottled is fine if you don’t have fresh lemons)
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder (found mine at Walmart in the spice aisle)
  • 2 tsp Garam Masala (also found at Walmart in the spice aisle)
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 TBSP ginger paste (found in the produce coolers by the fresh herbs)
  • 1 tsp minced garlic (I used the minced garlic from the jar, but fresh works great here too)
  • 1 TBSP vegetable oil
  • 1 cup crushed tomatoes (no added spices, just plain tomatoes)
  • 1 TBSP white granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp salt (I added a bit more for a little more flavor)
  • 1 cup heavy cream


  1. Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces and season with sea salt and freshly ground pepper. Set aside.
  2. Combine sour cream or yogurt with the lemon juice, turmeric, garam masala, cumin, ginger paste, minced garlic and toss with chicken. Either place in a ziploc bag or cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least one hour. I had my sitting in the delicious marinade all day long.
  3. Heat the vegetable oil to high in a large pan. I use my cast iron because that’s what I use the most. Any pan will do!
  4. Add the coated chicken to the pan and cook for about 4 minutes.
  5. Add the crushed tomatoes, sugar and salt.
  6. Turn the heat down to low and cover with the lid. Let this goodness simmer for 20 minutes or longer, until completely done inside.
  7. Add the cream and mix it all together continuing to simmer until thickened up a bit.
  8. You can stop here and serve over jasmine rice, or you can make a quick cornstarch and water paste. I usually throw a couple teaspoons of cornstarch together with a little bit of water to make a thin paste. Once combined, I add it to the pan and continue to simmer until the sauce thickens up a bit. Enjoy with fresh Naan (that recipe up next)!


Adapted from Eazy Peazy

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