Butter Chicken

Butter Chicken or Murgh Makhani is today without doubt one the best known Indian Origin dishes on the International food scene. The dish has its roots in Moti Mahal restaurant at Daryaganj in Delhi, India. Interestingly, Butter Chicken dish was made “By Chance” by mixing the leftover chicken in a tomato gravy, rich in butter and cream. In its purest form, it is yogurt-and-spice-marinated chicken first cooked in a tandoor and then further cooked in a velvety red sauce comprising butter, onions, ginger and tomatoes flavored with garam masala, cumin and turmeric, with hints of cinnamon.


  • Chicken – 800 grams
  • Kashmiri Red Chili Powder – 1 Teaspoon (5 grams)
  • Lemon Juice – 1 Tablespoon (15 ml.)
  • Salt – To taste

Butter Chicken Marinade

  • Yogurt (Curd) – 1 cup. (240 grams)
  • Ginger paste – 2 Tablespoons (30 grams)
  • Garlic paste – 2 Tablespoons (30 grams)
  • Garam Masala Powder – 1/2 Teaspoon (2.5 grams)
  • Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder – 1 Teaspoon (5 grams)
  • Lemon Juice – 2 Tablespoons (30 ml.)
  • Butter – 2 Tablespoons (30 grams)
  • Mustard Oil – 2 Teaspoon (10 ml.)
  • Salt – To taste

Butter Chicken Sauce / Makhani Gravy

  • Whole Garam Masala – 1 Tablespoon (15 grams)
  • Tomato Puree – 400 grams
  • Sugar / Honey – 2 Tablespoons (30 grams/ml.)
  • Ginger paste – 1 Tablespoon (15 grams)
  • Garlic paste – 1 Tablespoon (15 grams)
  • Red Chilli Powder – 1 Tablespoon (15 grams)
  • Garam Masala Powder – 1/2 Teaspoon (2.5 grams)
  • Fresh Cream – 1cup. (240 ml.)
  • Kasoori Methi (Dried Fenugreek Leaves) – 1/2 Teaspoon (2.5 grams)
  • Chopped Green Chillies – 1 Teaspoon (5 grams)
  • Butter – 50 gms
  • Salt – To taste


  1. Clean and cut the chicken, by making incisions with a sharp knife on breast and leg joints in such a way that the pieces can be skewered.
  2. Prepare a mixture of red chili powder, lemon juice and salt. Apply this mixture to the chicken and leave aside for half an hour.
  3. Prepare the chicken marinade by taking a muslin cloth and hanging yogurt in it for 20 minutes to remove extra water. To the yogurt add red chilli powder, salt, ginger-garlic paste, lemon juice, garam masala powder and mustard oil. Apply this marinade to the chicken pieces and refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours.
  4. Put the chicken pieces onto a skewer and cook in a moderately hot tandoor or a preheated oven (200 degrees celsius) for 10-14 minutes or until almost done. Baste the chicken with butter at regular intervals. Remove and keep aside.
  5. Take a cooking pan and heat butter in it. Add whole garam masala. Let it crackle. Then add ginger-garlic paste and chopped green chillies. Saute for 2 minutes. Then add tomato puree, red chilli powder, garam masala powder, salt and one cup of water. Let the gravy come to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
  6. Then add sugar or honey and powdered kasoori methi (dried fenugreek leaves). Finally, add the cooked tandoori chicken pieces. Simmer for 5 minutes and top it up with fresh cream. Serve hot.