Also known as Murgh Makhani, Indian Butter Chicken sounded like a dish I wanted to try. I mean, you had me at “butter!”
Making this dish at home is a fantastic culinary experience, because the smells of all the different spices take you and your family to a place far away–a market in India, where all the spices are on display for the senses to enjoy!
Tools you may need for this recipe are:
Indian Butter Chicken in the Instant Pot
- Pressure Cooker
- Immersion Blender (optional)
- Inner Pot
- 2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken thighs
- 28 ounces diced tomatoes
- 10 cloves garlic
- 3 tablespoons fresh ginger
- 1 jalapeño, diced optional, to taste
- 2 teaspoons garam masala see recipe for homemade version
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne powder optional, depending on your spice level
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt
Add after pressure cooking
- 1 cup heavy cream
- ½ cup butter (1 stick)
- 2 teaspoons garam masala
- ½ cup fresh chopped cilantro
- 2 cups basmati rice or any kind of white rice
- 2 cups water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 2 teaspoons cardamom seeds not pods
- 2 tablespoons coriander seeds
- 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
- 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
- ½ teaspoon whole cloves
- 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 cinnamon stick broken in half
- 2 bay leaves dried
- ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes optional
- Place chicken in pressure cooker insert. Frozen is fine.
- Pour diced tomatoes over chicken. Add garlic, ginger, jalapeño (if using), and spices. Stir spices gently into tomatoes.
- If making Pot-in-Pot rice, place rice pot on top of food at this point. See Instructions below.
- Place lid on Instant Pot or electric pressure cooker.
- Check Steam Release Valve to make sure it is set to [Sealing].
- Choose [Pressure Cook] or [Manual] or [Poultry] program by pressing one of these buttons.
- Set pressure level to [High] pressure if using chicken thighs, [Low] pressure for chicken breasts.
- Adjust pressure cooking time to 10 minutes by pressing [+] or [-].
- Depending on your pressure model, either press [Start] (Ultra, EVO, Max) or simply pause and wait for the Instant Pot to begin cooking (DUO, Lux).
After Pressure Cooking
- Allow pressure to naturally release for 10 minutes before manually releasing remaining pressure and removing lid.
- If you made pot-in-pot rice, carefully remove the rice pot and set it on a plate, hot pad, or trivet.
- Remove cooked chicken pieces with tongs and place on a plate or cutting board.
- Stir together sauce ingredients and blend, either in the pot with an immersion blender or in a regular blender. Be careful, this mixture is HOT. Pour mixture back into pot.
- Add cream and stir to incorporate well. Add butter and stir again.
- Place chicken on a cutting board and dice into bite-sized pieces.
- Place chicken pieces back into pot with sauce and stir well. Garnish with fresh cilantro. Serve over rice or sauteéd veggies for a delightful dinner!
- Add rice, water, salt, and butter to a pot or bowl that fits inside the pressure cooker.
- Use a trivet or sling under inner pot so you can pull the piping hot bowl out when it is done cooking.
- Place inner pot over chicken and tomato mixture. May be placed directly on food or on a trivet on top of the food.
- Proceed with pressure cooking instructions above.
- Place all spice ingredients in a blender or spice grinder. Pulse and blend well until all pieces are ground thoroughly. Allow dust to settle inside blender before opening the lid and smelling the wonder inside!