Butter chicken or Murgh Makhani: All time favorite

posted in: Diet and Recipes | 0

“Chunks of grilled chicken (Tandoori  chicken) cooked in a smooth buttery & creamy tomato gravy was invented by Kundan lal Gujral, who was the owner of a popular restaurant  named Moti Mahal in Delhi.”It is being served in India and various countries across the globe.


To make an authentic butter chicken, we need to grill the chicken either in a pan or in oven first and then cook it up in the rich gravy.


Total Preparation Time: 4 Hours

Cooking time: 30 Minutes

Total Time: 4hrs 30mins

Ingredients Required:

  • 450 grams to 1/2 kg chicken (bone in or boneless).
  • 3/4 tbsp. Lemon juice.
  • 1/4tsp. Salt.
  • 1/2 tsp. Red chili powder/paprika.
  • 3/4 tsp. Kasuri methi crushed or powered dried fenugreek leaves.
  • 1/8 tsp ground turmeric.
  • 1/2 to 3/4 tsp garam masala powder.
  • 3/4 tbsp ginger garlic paste.
  • 1/2 cup thick curd / yogurt.
  • Makhaani masala(gravy).
  • 2 tablespoons butter.
  • One thin 2 inch cinnamon stick.
  • 2 green cardamoms.
  • 2 cloves.
  • Generous pinch of methi powder(fenugreek seed powder) (optional)
  • 1to 2 green chilies.
  • 4 large tomatoes (purred in the blender and filtered to remove skin and seeds) or tinned puree as needed.
  • 1 tsp red chili powder/paprika (adjust to suit your taste and color).
  • 10 cashew nuts or blanched soaked almonds.
  • 1/2 to 3/4 tsp. garam masala powder.
  • 1/4 tbsp sugar.
  • 80 to 100 ml chilled cream.
  • Coriander leaves for garnishing.

Extra: ginger garlic paste, kasuri methi, garam masala at different stages.



  1. Wash chicken under running water and pat dry. Marinate with lemon juice, chili powder and salt for 20min.
  2. Marinate chicken with yogurt , kasuri methi ,oil, turmeric.ginger garlic paste, and garam masala powder .Refrigerate for at least 3 to 4 hours, overnight work best.
  3. Grill the chicken in an oven or stove top.

For stove top method: Add one tsp. butter to the marinade. Then fry on high flame till all the moisture evaporates. Keep stirring constantly to prevent it from burning. Cook till it is cooked. Transfer this to a plate and set aside.

Oven Method: To grill it in oven, preheat the oven to 240C for at least 20 minutes. Grill it until the meat is cooked well .It may take about 20 to 30 minutes depending on the size of your chicken chunks.

4.Heat  a  pan with butter ,add dry spices and fry for a minute or two  .Add  ginger garlic paste ,green chilies and fry till it turns fragrant.

  1. To the pan, add the tomato puree, red chili powder, sugar and salt. Mix and cook until the tomato puree becomes thick and begin to leave the sides of pan.
  2. Pour 1 cup water and add methi powder, cashew or almonds paste or almond milk, Adjust the water to suit yogurt desired consistency.
  3. Bring the mix to a boil and simmer it for 3 to 5 min. Add kasuri methi and garam masala now or add at a later step for the best aroma.
  4. Add chicken and simmer for about 5 to 7 min till it becomes soft and tender.

9.Again add garam masala ,kasuri methi ,stir and simmer for about 2 to 3 min .Pour chilled cream and switch off the stove.

10.Garnish “Punjabi Murgh Makkhani”  with coriander leaves and extra cream if desired.

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