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Instant Pot Butter Chicken delivers restaurant quality butter chicken in the comfort of your own home. Ready in only 30 minutes, this Butter Chicken is extraordinary with a rich and creamy sauce and a fantastic blend of spices.
Easy Instant Pot Butter Chicken Recipe
As promised, here’s my super easy butter chicken recipe that’s done in 30 minutes start to finish in an Instant Pot. If you’re wondering if your Instant Pot can develop flavors as rich and complex as other traditional methods, this Butter Chicken recipe is the perfect dish to deliver the answer. And the answer is yes.
This butter chicken is super creamy and full of beautiful spices. It delivers all the flavor of an incredibly popular restaurant dish, all in the comfort of your own home.
Why You’ll Love This Butter Chicken
- This Instant Pot Butter Chicken is so fast and easy to make.
- You’re going to be able to develop tons of flavor in your magic little Instant Pot.
- There’s no need to marinate your chicken as the intense pressure and heat will allow all that flavor to be absorbed by the chicken as it cooks.
- No need to brown your chicken first, as lots of butter chicken recipes call for. It will cook and become so tender just in the sauce itself.
- Spices – Coriander, cumin, smoked paprika, turmeric, and garam masala. I also used a Kashmiri chili powder which is optional, but if you have it I strongly recommend to use it.
- Chicken – I used boneless skinless chicken thighs in this recipe today because we want juicy and tender chicken. Chicken breast can also be substituted for thighs.
- Aromatics – Fresh ginger and garlic.
- Liquids – You’ll need water and whipping cream for the rich curry portion of this dish and also for liquid in our Instant Pot. The cream can be substituted for heavy cream or coconut milk or cream. We’re looking for something with a high fat content.
- Tomato – Tomato paste and passata, or tomato puree, are both needed for the sauce base of this dish.
- Butter – Unsalted because we want to control our sodium intake.
- Seasoning – Salt to taste so adjust as needed.
- Parsley – Garnish to be sprinkled liberally on top.
This is the easiest way to make a no-fuss Indian curry that is bursting with flavor! The Instant Pot sautes and pressure cooks the dish perfectly in just 3 simple steps!
Sauté The Garlic And Ginger In The Butter
To begin, check out your manufacturer’s guide for more details on how to use your Instant Pot. While they all pressure cook, the instructions on how to use different models can vary.
Then turn your IP on to the sauté setting. Then add the butter and cook it just until it has melted. Now, add the garlic and ginger to the pot and sauté it for about a minute or until aromatic. It’s very important in this step that you add the ginger and garlic to the pot right when the butter melts and also that you don’t burn the garlic.
Make The Curry
To start, add the tomato puree and tomato paste to the Instant Pot and combine well with the garlic and ginger. Next, stir in the garam masala, coriander, cumin, paprika, turmeric, and salt. Then cook the mixture for about 3 to 5 minutes before adding the chicken thighs and water. All the ingredients should be mixed together well and the chicken should be fully immersed in liquid. So if the chicken isn’t fully covered, you’ll need to add a bit more water.
Now, the magic part of pressure cooking! Put the lid on the Instant Pot and set the timer to 5 minutes on the poultry setting. Then just sit back and let the curry cook!
Release The Steam And Add The Cream
When the IP is done cooking the chicken, you need to very carefully set the value to the releasing position to let the steam naturally release. This normally takes about 10 minutes. Then you can safely remove the lid.
Next, with the lid off, switch the Instant Pot back to the sauté setting. Then mix in the whipping cream and let it simmer for 5 minutes while stirring occasionally. As the curry cooks it will reduce and thicken a bit, which is what you want. However, not too much. If it does thicken up too much you can add a tiny bit of water to thin it out. But it’s better just to watch it closely.
Garnish And Serve
Once the Instant Pot butter chicken is done, transfer it to your favorite dish and garnish with fresh chopped parsley. Then serve it hot with steamed basmati rice and warm naan.
What Is Butter Chicken?
This is a modern Indian curry dish. It’s made up of chicken cooked till tender in a mildly spiced tomato based sauce. This dish traditionally takes some time to make, definitely over an hour especially when prepared at home because so much flavor has to develop. But as I’ve always said, homemade is better and I wanted to deliver to you guys a way to make this fantastic dish with as much ease as possible!
What Is Garam Masala?
Garam masala is a staple spice which when translated means “warm spice”. This is because it includes cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, cumin, coriander, nutmeg and peppercorns. You can make your own garam masala spice blend if you’d like. Follow this guide for instructions how.
- Always follow your Instant Pot manufacturer instructions for best and safest use of your Instant Pot.
- If you’re looking to cut calories from fat in this dish feel free to substitute half and half or evaporated milk.
- Spoon this dish over fluffy jasmine rice, serve alongside warm naan, serve it over fries, substitute it for pizza sauce, drizzle it over pasta. This sauce goes on anything!
This recipe will store for up to 7 days stored in a shallow airtight container. It also freezes well. Store again in an airtight shallow container and place in the freezer for up to 3 months. Allow to thaw in the fridge and reheat on the stove when ready to eat!
Other Great Instant Pot Recipes To Try
- Chicken Shawarma
- Tikka Masala
- BBQ Pork Ribs
- Chicken Noodle Soup
- Teriyaki Chicken
- Beef Stroganoff
- General Tso’s Chicken
- Mac and Cheese
- 3 tablespoons butter (unsalted)
- 8 cloves garlic (minced)
- 2 teaspoons fresh ginger (minced (or paste))
- 1 cup tomato puree (or passata)
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 3 teaspoons garam masala
- 1 tablespoon coriander (ground)
- 1 teaspoon cumin (ground)
- 1 teaspoon Kashmiri chili powder (optional)
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 pounds chicken thighs (boneless and skinless, cut into pieces)
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup whipping cream
- 2 tablespoons parsley (chopped)
- Turn your Instant Pot to the saute setting. (See your manufacturer’s guide for detailed instructions on how to use your instant pot.)
- Add the butter and cook until the butter has melted. Add the garlic and ginger and saute for another minute or until the garlic becomes aromatic. Do not cook too long because you don’t want to burn it.
- Add the tomato puree and tomato paste to the Instant Pot and stir. Add the garam masala, coriander, cumin, paprika, Kashmiri chili powder, turmeric and salt to the Instant Pot, stir and cook for about 3 to 5 minutes.
- Add the chicken thighs, water and stir everything together. There should be enough liquid in the pot to cover the chicken, so add more water if needed.
- Close the lid (follow the manufacturer’s guide for instructions on how to close the instant pot lid). Set the Instant Pot to the Poultry setting and set the timer to 5 minutes.
- Once the Instant Pot cycle is complete, wait until the natural release cycle is complete, should take about 10 minutes. Follow the manufacturer’s guide for quick release, if in a rush. Carefully unlock and remove the lid from the instant pot.
- Switch the Instant Pot to the saute setting (do not put the lid on). Add the whipping cream and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. The sauce should thicken and reduce a bit. You don’t want it to reduce too much.
- Turn off the Instant Pot and garnish with fresh parsley. Serve warm over rice and with naan.
- I strongly recommend reading the manufacturer’s guide for instructions on how to use your Instant Pot before attempting this recipe.
- Chicken breasts can also be used.
- This recipe will store for up to 7 days stored in a shallow airtight container. It also freezes well. Store again in an airtight shallow container and place in the freezer for up to 3 months. Allow to thaw in the fridge and reheat on the stove when ready to eat!
Notice: Nutrition is auto-calculated for your convenience. Where relevant, we recommend using your own nutrition calculations.
Recipe originally shared September 2017.