This Instant Pot Butter Chicken recipe features chicken simmered in a mildly spiced, creamy tomato sauce. This delicious Indian dish, served over rice, will be on your dinner table in a flash.
Butter Chicken is definitely one of my favorite Indian dishes. It’s creamy and delicately spiced with just a hint of sweetness.
For years now, I’ve been making butter chicken in the slow cooker. But times have changed. My slow cooker is getting buried deeper and deeper in the pantry and instead I’ve been reaching for the Instant Pot.
It was time to bring a butter chicken instant pot recipe to life.
Just like with my slow cooker butter chicken, I’m lightening up this recipe up (and making it dairy-free) by using coconut milk in place of the heavy cream and butter. And, the traditional spices of curry, garam masala and ginger combine to bring the most beautiful, aromas to your kitchen.
How to Make Butter Chicken in the Instant Pot:
- I needed to use more liquid. You need enough liquid in the pot to allow it to come to pressure.
- I thickened up the sauce at the end with some cornstarch. Make a slurry with cornstarch and water. After the pressure cook is completed, remove the lid, hit the saute button and add the slurry to the pot. Heat it for a few minutes until the sauce thickens up.
Is Butter Chicken Spicy?
- Butter chicken is not a spicy dish. If you would like to add some heat, add in some cayenne pepper or top your butter chicken with some minced jalapenos or serrano peppers.
What to Serve with Butter Chicken
- Homemade Naan
- Rice (I like to make my rice in the Instant Pot too)
- Spinach – sauteed with shallot & ginger
- Green Beans – sauteed with garlic & ginger
- Cucumber Salad
Wine Pairings for Indian Butter Chicken:
- A Riesling or Gewurztraminer are your best bet for pairing with this spicy dish.
Indian Food Recipes:
- Potato Vindaloo
- Homemade Naan with Mint Cilantro Chutney
- Indian Butternut Squash Curry
- Curry Chicken Skewers with Lime
More Instant Pot Recipes:
- Instant Pot Dal with Split Peas
- Instant Pot Lentil Soup with Sausage & Kale
- The Best Instant Pot Mac & Cheese
- Instant Pot Cheesy Southwestern Lentils & Brown Rice
If you loved this Instant Pot Butter Chicken recipe I would appreciate it so much if you would give it a star review! Also, be sure to snap a picture of your finished dish and share it with me onInstagram using the hashtag #platingsandpairings and tagging me @platingsandpairings.
Instant Pot Butter Chicken
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 onion (diced)
- 4 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 6-ounce can tomato paste
- 1 Tablespoon fresh ginger (minced)
- 1 Tablespoon curry powder
- 2 teaspoons garam masala
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs (cut into 2-inch pieces (or breasts))
- 1 ½ cups bone broth (or chicken broth)
- 3 Tablespoons cornstarch
- 3 Tablespoons water
- 1 14-ounce can coconut milk
- 4 Tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves for garnish
- Greek yogurt for topping
- Naan (for serving)
- Set Instant Pot to SAUTE and heat olive oil.
- Add onions and garlic and sauté for 1-2 minutes, until fragrant.
- Add tomato paste, ginger, curry powder, garam masala, chili powder, salt & pepper and saute for 3-5 minutes.
- Pour in the broth and scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the Instant Pot. Add the chicken thighs. There should be enough liquid to cover the chicken, so add additional broth or water, if needed.
- Cover and seal the lid – turn the vent to sealing. Hit CANCEL then press the MANUAL (high pressure) button and set the timer to 10 minutes. It will take about 15 minutes for Instant Pot to come to full pressure, then the display will show a countdown timer.
- Once the 10 minutes are up, allow the pressure to release naturally for 10 minutes, then release any remaining pressure.
- Open the lid, hit CANCEL then press SAUTE. Whisk together cornstarch and water and add to Instant Pot with coconut milk. Simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. The sauce should thicken. Season with salt and pepper.
- Serve garnished with cilantro and greek yogurt.
Want to make this Butter Chicken in the slow cooker. Grab that recipe here.