Chicken Makhani (Indian Butter Chicken)

Indian Butter Chicken love right here! If you haven’t tried Indian Butter Chicken you are missing out. This classic recipe is so good, so tasty, so ridiculously awesome wherever you have it, that you just need to make it at home too!

Chicken Makhani

A couple months ago, we were served an amazing meal at the Sanaa restaurant at the Animal Kingdom Lodge at Disney. And WOW this meal was so good and so different from anything I’ve ever had – completely not the kind of food we would normally go for and it really made an impression on me. I’ve never ventured into restaurants with exotic cuisine – never ever.

But the naan bread, and the dips for the naan bread, and the African short ribs, and the Indian butter chicken – OHHH So good!!!! A whole new world opened up for me. And, hence, my new recipe here for Indian Butter Chicken.

Chicken Makhani

Chicken Makhani (Indian Butter Chicken)

5 from 1 vote
Servings 4


  • 1 cup basmati rice
  • 2 cup Chicken Stock
  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • kosher salt
  • fresh cracked pepper
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil divided
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • ½ large white onion diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 2 tsp fresh grated ginger
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup crushed tomatoes
  • 1 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 cup nonfat evaporated milk
  • ¼ cup plain Greek yogurt
  • ¼ cup finely ground cashews
  • 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley chopped
  • Whole Wheat Naan Bread


  • For the rice, bring the chicken stock to a boil. Add the rice, reduce heat to low, cover, and cook 18-20 minutes. Fluff rice with a fork and season will with salt. Set aside.
  • Heat oven to 400F.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large nonstick skillet on high heat. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Add the chicken to the skillet and brown on both sides (~2 minutes per side). Move the chicken to a rimmed bake sheet and put in the oven to bake until cooked through (~15 minutes). Alternatively, if your skillet can go in the oven, just put that with the chicken in the oven (I was afraid the handle on my cheap pan would melt). Once cooked, remove from the oven and set aside until cool enough to handle. Chop into bite-sized pieces.
  • Take the same large skillet and, using paper towels, wipe out the chicken fat. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil on medium-high heat, and saute the onion until translucent and lightly browned. Add the butter, garlic, ginger, and spices. Cook briefly (~30 seconds).
  • Reduce the heat to low and add the chicken, tomatoes, evaporated milk, and yogurt. Simmer gently 15 minutes to blend flavors and thicken a bit.
  • To finish, add the cashews and lemon juice. Both are important for the flavor of this dish, but the cashews also act as a thickening agent. Serve over the basmati rice with naan bread and garnish with fresh parsley. Serves 4.

Calorie count is purely an estimate calculated using an online application to serve as a guide and not to be taken as accurate nutritional information. Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Tried this recipe?Leave a comment below and let me know!

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