Special Diet Information

Coumadin® (Warfarin)
This recipe is safe for Coumadin (warfarin) users.

Avoid this recipe if you are lactose intolerant.

This is a low sodium recipe.

GERD / Acid Reflux
This recipe contains GERD triggers and those with GERD may wish to avoid it.

Gluten Sensitivity
This recipe is safe for those who are sensitive to gluten. Make sure the yogurt is gluten-free.


"One should eat cumin every day!" -Joel Robuchon

The refrigerator light goes on...

Butter chicken is something of an invention it appears. The histories reported trace its roots to the 1950s and the three owners of the Moti Mahal restaurant in Delhi, India. It is now a staple of most curry shops and Indian restaurants in London. It is even more common in the U.S., now even showing up in the freezer case.

Recipes vary widely in the amount of butter and cream that they use. Some use as little as a few teaspoons of butter and no cream and others as much as a half a pound and a cup respectively.

For this version I turned to the technique of an Indian chef I met once. His sauces are always silky smooth, rich, and perfectly spiced. He begins with onions – lots of onions – and simmers them slowly. The carbohydrates in the onions break down with the extended cooking to create a thick, creamy, and very rich sauce.

The best part is that the most difficult bit of this dish is dicing the onions. The rest of the sauce is simply dump and stir in a single pot.


Butter Chicken

Servings: 4 | Serving size: about 1 cup sauce with 4 ounces chicken

Cooking time: 90 minutes (does not include marinating time)

This recipe can easily be multiplied and keeps well for about 24 to 48 hours in the refrigerator.

Serve with Brown Rice.

Butter Chicken recipe from Dr. Gourmet


  • 1/2 cup non-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 lime (juiced)
  • 1 tsp. garam masala
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 16 ounces boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 4 tsp. olive oil (divided)
  • 2 tsp. unsalted butter
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 3 large onions (diced)
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh ginger (minced)
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 2 tsp. garam masala
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1 tsp. chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 15-ounce can no salt added diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup light coconut milk
  • 1 tsp. honey

Place the yogurt, lime juice, garam masala, and cumin in a bowl and mix together. Add the chicken thighs and mix until the chicken is well covered with the marinade.

Cover and place in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes (overnight is best).

Place the olive oil and butter in a pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and the ginger and cook, stirring frequently, for about 1 minute.

Add the onions and cook, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes.

Add the cumin, garam masala, coriander, chili powder, salt, tomatoes, and water and stir.

Bring to a simmer and cook, covered, for 60 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Using a blender or a stick blender, puree the sauce until smooth.

Add the coconut milk and honey and stir. Reduce heat to low to keep the sauce warm until serving.

Place 2 teaspoons of olive oil in a large non-stick skillet or grill pan/griddle over medium-high heat.

Add the chicken thighs to the pan and cook for 6-7 minutes, basting the thighs with the marinade.

Adjust the heat so the marinade doesn't burn.

Turn the thighs over and continue cooking and basting for another 6-8 minutes. Discard any unused marinade.

To serve: place 1/2 cup cooked Brown Rice in a bowl and add the sauce. Top with 4 ounces chicken and serve.

Nutrition Facts

Serving size: 4 ounces chicken with 1 cup sauce | Servings: 4

Amount Per Serving

Calories 360 Calories from Fat 126
% Daily Value
Total Fat 14g 18%
    Saturated Fat 4.5g 23%
    Monounsaturated Fat 6g
    Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 115mg 38%
Sodium 470mg 21%
Total Carbohydrates 31g 11%
    Dietary Fiber 6g 22%
    Sugars 14g
Protein 30g
Vitamin A 7% Vitamin C 29%
Calcium 9% Iron 19%
Vitamin K 10mcg Potassium 1100mg