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Butter Chicken

The recipe and photography for this post was provided by Carolyn Hodges of The Dinner Shift.

Butter chicken is an Indian curry dish featuring chicken pieces simmered in a creamy, spiced tomato sauce. It’s one of our favorites to order from our local Indian restaurants, but it’s also really simple to prepare at home (and will make your kitchen smell amazing!).

Butter Chicken in Pot

I’m opting for Gerber’s boneless skinless chicken thighs because my family prefers the flavor and texture to chicken breasts, which can dry out quickly. Feel free to swap in boneless skinless chicken breasts if that is your preference. I suggest serving this over rice or cauliflower rice (to incorporate a vegetable) and with plenty of naan bread to soak up the flavorful sauce.

Butter Chicken
Butter Chicken
Cook time:
Prep time:
Total time:



  • 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter
  • 1 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tsp. grated fresh ginger root
  • 1 ½ lb. Gerber’s boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 8 oz. can no-salt-added tomato sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. garam masala seasoning
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • ⅛ tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
  • ⅔ cup canned full fat coconut milk
  • Salt and pepper
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • Cooked basmati rice, cauliflower rice, and/or toasted naan


  1. Heat butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté until soft and lightly golden brown, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and ginger and cook for 30 seconds more.
  2. Add the chicken to the pan and sauté until it begins to brown, about 3 minutes.
  3. Stir in the tomato sauce, spices and coconut milk* and bring to a simmer. Continue to cook until sauce thickens and chicken is cooked through, about 10 minutes more.
  4. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then fold in cilantro. Serve over rice and/or alongside toasted naan.

* Be sure to give the coconut milk a good stir before using as the solids and liquids separate.

Butter Chicken

Interested in making this recipe? Order the ingredients online for Curbside Grocery Pickup or Delivery.

Carolyn Hodges headshot
By Carolyn Hodges
Carolyn is a mom of boys and culinary dietitian in Cleveland, Ohio. The Dinner Shift is dedicated to helping busy moms get dinner on the table after the weekday grind, however that is defined for you and yours.

Recent Reviews

  1. 5

    One of my favorites! Never knew it was so easy. You made my day!

    1. It’s one of our favorites, too! We’re glad you like this recipe, Karen.

  2. 5

    Easy and delicious! Had it with naan and rice.

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