Quick and Easy Instant Pot Butter Chicken Recipe

Imagine the aromas of tender chicken, rich spices and creamy goodness all simmering as you walk into your kitchen. This is what you’ll experience when making this Instant Pot Butter Chicken Recipe. It is a dish that is sure to become a favorite in your recipe collection for its delicious flavors and ease of preparation.

As a chef specializing in Vietnamese and Asian cuisine, I am happy to share with you my go-to recipe for butter chicken that utilizes the instant pot for a quick and easy meal. With minimal prep time and 30 minutes of cooking time, this dish can be made in under an hour, making it perfect for weeknights that call for comfort food.

This recipe calls for easily accessible ingredients like chicken breasts, diced tomatoes and fragrant spices including turmeric and coriander. The addition of heavy cream and coconut milk make the sauce creamy and decadent, while unsalted butter provides richness and depth of flavor.

Whether you’re an avid cook or just starting out, this recipe is easy to follow and will produce delicious results every time. So grab your instant pot and let’s get started on making a restaurant-worthy Indian butter chicken right at home.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Instant Pot Butter Chicken
Instant Pot Butter Chicken

If you’re anything like me, you love indulging in rich and flavorful Indian dishes. But with our busy schedules, it can be hard to find the time to prepare a traditional chicken curry recipe that satisfies our cravings. That’s why I’m excited to share with you my favorite recipe for Instant Pot Butter Chicken!

Not only is this recipe incredibly easy to follow, it’s also a one-pot wonder that saves time on cleanup. Made with simple ingredients such as chicken breasts, diced tomatoes, garlic, and onion, the addition of heavy cream and coconut milk lends a creamy and luxurious texture to the dish.

Moreover, the aromatic blend of ground turmeric, coriander, garam masala, and fresh ginger will transport your tastebuds straight to the bustling streets of India. And since this recipe relies on the convenience of an Instant Pot pressure cooker, you can enjoy an authentic Indian butter chicken dinner on your table in just 30 minutes!

But what really sets this recipe apart is its versatility. It can easily be adapted to accommodate various dietary preferences such as dairy-free or low-carb diets. You can also experiment with different proteins like tender boneless chicken thighs or even swap in delicious vegetables like cauliflower or bell peppers.

Overall, if you’re looking for a quick and easy way to satisfy your Indian food cravings without sacrificing flavor or quality, give this Instant Pot Butter Chicken recipe a try. You won’t be disappointed!

Ingredient List

 Dive into a flavorful adventure with Instant Pot Butter Chicken.
Dive into a flavorful adventure with Instant Pot Butter Chicken.

Here is a list of ingredients you will need to make this delicious Instant Pot Butter Chicken Recipe.

– 2 lbs chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces

– 2 teaspoons kosher salt
– 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
– 1 teaspoon ground coriander
– 2 tablespoons garam masala

– 1 ½ tablespoon freshly grated ginger
– 5 garlic cloves, minced
– 1 medium sweet onion, chopped

Canned Goods:
– 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes

– 1 cup of heavy cream
– 1 cup of canned full-fat coconut milk
– 1 stick (8 tbsp) of unsalted butter

– 1 tablespoon of olive or vegetable oil

Note that the ingredient list is pretty standard for Indian dishes, so don’t be surprised if most items seem to have been present in your pantry.

The Recipe How-To

 You’re only a few minutes away from a restaurant-quality dish.
You’re only a few minutes away from a restaurant-quality dish.

Once you’ve gathered all the required ingredients, it’s time to start cooking! Follow these simple steps to make your own delicious Instant Pot Butter Chicken.

Step 1: Onion and Garlic

First things first, turn your Instant Pot on sauté mode and add some oil. Once the oil is hot, add diced onion and minced garlic. Sauté for a couple of minutes until the onion gets translucent.

Step 2: Add Spices

Now it’s time to add some flavorful spices! Sprinkle in ground turmeric, ground coriander, and garam masala (a blend of ground spices commonly used in Indian dishes). Give everything a good stir and let them cook for a minute or so, until fragrant.

Step 3: Tomato and Butter

Next up, add a can of diced tomatoes to the pot and stir everything together. Then, throw in some unsalted butter and give it another good mix. The butter will melt into the tomato mixture, creating a rich and creamy base for the chicken.

Step 4: Chicken

Now it’s time to add the star of the show – the chicken! Cut chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces, season them with kosher salt, then toss them into the Instant Pot. Stir until all the chicken is coated in the tomato-butter-spice mixture.

Step 5: Pressure Cook

Close the lid on your Instant Pot, set it to manual mode, and cook on high pressure for about 8-10 minutes. Make sure that your valve is set to sealing position. Once done, let it release pressure naturally for five minutes.

Step 6: Creamy Coconut Milk

Once the timer goes off, quick-release any remaining pressure by turning the valve to “venting.” Now it’s time to add a little richness to the dish. Add coconut milk and heavy cream to the pot and stir them in gently.

Step 7: Finished Dish

Your Instant Pot Butter Chicken is now ready! Serve it up with some rice, naan bread, or your favorite side dishes. Enjoy the creamy, spicy goodness of this classic Indian dish at home, thanks to your trusty Instant Pot!

Substitutions and Variations

 Feel the aroma of Indian spices fill your kitchen.
Feel the aroma of Indian spices fill your kitchen.

The great thing about cooking is that you can always add your own spin to a recipe. If you’re looking to mix things up with this Instant Pot Butter Chicken recipe, here are some suggestions:

– Swap out chicken breasts for boneless chicken thighs for a juicier and more flavorful dish.

– Use curry powder instead of garam masala if you don’t have it on hand.

– For a dairy-free option, substitute heavy cream with coconut milk or cashew cream.

– Add more vegetables like bell peppers, carrots, and potatoes to make it a heartier meal.

– If you’re watching your carb intake, use cauliflower rice or zucchini noodles as a base instead of traditional rice.

– Replace butter with ghee for a richer and nuttier flavor.

– Want to make it spicier? Add chili flakes or cayenne pepper.

– Experiment with other Indian spices like cardamom, cinnamon, and clove to add a depth of flavors to your dish.

Remember that cooking is all about trial and error. So don’t be afraid to try new things and see what works best for you.

Serving and Pairing

 This dish is perfect for a lazy weekend, but easy and quick enough for a busy weeknight.
This dish is perfect for a lazy weekend, but easy and quick enough for a busy weeknight.

When it comes to serving butter chicken, there are many options to choose from. I personally enjoy pairing this dish with some basmati rice and naan bread. The combination of the soft and fluffy rice with the tender chicken in a creamy sauce is simply divine. The naan bread serves as a perfect vessel for scooping up the last bits of sauce left on your plate.

If you are looking to add some vegetables to this dish, I recommend serving it with a side of steamed broccoli or roasted cauliflower. The roasted cauliflower absorbs the flavors of the butter chicken sauce and adds a nice crispy texture.

For those who crave heat and spice, try topping your butter chicken with sliced jalapeños or chili flakes. This will give your dish an extra kick and take it to the next level.

As for pairing, I love a good glass of red wine like a Shiraz or Malbec to complement the bold and rich flavors of this Indian curry. If you prefer beer, try pairing it with an IPA or Pale Ale that can hold its own against the complex spice combinations.

In conclusion, serving butter chicken with basmati rice and naan bread is always a great option, but don’t be afraid to get creative with your pairings. Whether you prefer adding veggies, heat or experimenting with different beverages, remember to enjoy every bite of this indulgent Indian cuisine.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 Succulent chicken pieces swimming in the rich buttery tomato sauce is a royal treat to your taste buds.
Succulent chicken pieces swimming in the rich buttery tomato sauce is a royal treat to your taste buds.

One great thing about this Instant Pot Butter Chicken recipe is that it can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for later. This recipe will keep well in an airtight container for up to 4 days, so you can enjoy it for a quick and easy weeknight dinner.

To reheat the butter chicken, simply heat it up in a pot over medium heat, stirring occasionally until heated through. Alternatively, you can reheat it in the microwave in a microwave-safe dish, stirring occasionally until heated through.

If you are planning to make this dish ahead of time, I highly recommend that you store the chicken and sauce separately. This will ensure that the chicken stays tender and not overcooked as it sits in the sauce.

For longer storage, you can freeze the butter chicken for up to 3 months. Make sure to let it cool completely before transferring it into an airtight container or freezer-safe bag. When reheating from frozen, simply let it thaw overnight in the refrigerator before heating it up using your preferred method.

Overall, this Instant Pot Butter Chicken is an excellent make-ahead meal that’s easy to store and reheat. Whether you’re meal prepping or just looking to save some time during a busy week, this recipe is perfect for anyone looking for delicious Indian cuisine at home.

Tips for Perfect Results

 The creaminess of the dish will hook you after the first bite.
The creaminess of the dish will hook you after the first bite.

Here are some of my top tips for making this Instant Pot Butter Chicken recipe taste absolutely perfect.

1. Use chicken thighs instead of breasts

For a richer, more tender flavor and texture, try using boneless chicken thighs instead of chicken breasts.

2. Sauté the onions and ginger well

The buttery onions and fragrant ginger are what give this recipe its depth of flavor. Be sure to sauté them long enough for them to start browning, but not so long that they burn or turn bitter.

3. Don’t skip the ghee or butter

This recipe calls for a generous amount of butter, because it’s what gives the dish its signature velvety smoothness and mild sweetness. If you’re looking to make this recipe vegan or dairy-free, try using coconut oil in place of butter.

4. Experiment with different spice blends

If you want to add a little extra kick or depth to your butter chicken, try experimenting with different spice profiles such as hot curry powder or more garam masala. Remember to add spices little by little and keep tasting until you reach your desired heat level.

5. Let it simmer

After adding heavy cream to the pot, let your butter chicken simmer for a few extra minutes before serving. This will allow the flavors to meld together even more and create a richer, thicker sauce.

By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to making delicious Indian-inspired cuisine in no time!

Bottom Line

There you have it, folks! My Instant Pot Butter Chicken Recipe that is sure to turn you into a kitchen rockstar. This recipe is easy and quick to make, but the end result is far from ordinary. You’ll get all the authentic taste of Indian butter chicken in just 30 minutes.

With your instant pot handy, you can cook indian cuisine like butter chicken within minutes without compromising on the flavors. So ditch your slow cooker and try this recipe tonight.

The beauty of this dish is that it can be paired with any side of your choice- whether it is rice, naan bread or grilled vegetables.

If you’re on a low-carb or dairy-free diet, simply substitute heavy cream with coconut milk and use boneless chicken thighs instead of chicken breasts.

So what are you waiting for? Try out my Instant Pot Butter Chicken Recipe and let your tastebuds travel to India right from your own kitchen. I guarantee that you will be amazed by how easy and delicious this recipe is.

Instant Pot Butter Chicken

Instant Pot Butter Chicken Recipe

Butter chicken prepared in the Instant Pot from thekitchn.com
No ratings yet
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Calories 652.2 kcal


  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 1 large onion, coarsely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 2 inches fresh ginger, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 2 lbs chicken breasts, boneless, skinless
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream or 1/2 cup coconut milk


  • Using the sauté function, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a 6-quart or larger pressure cooker.
  • Add the onion, garlic and ginger and sauté, stirring regularly until the onions begin to brown, about 4 minutes. Add the garam masala, coriander, turmeric and salt and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute more.
  • Add the tomatoes and their juices and stir to combine. Add the chicken breasts and make sure they are covered by the sauce. Seal the pressure cooker and make sure the vent is closed. Set the cooker to MANUAL, HIGH Pressure and dial down the time to 10 minutes.
  • The electric pressure cooker should take 10 to 12 minutes to come to pressure, then cook for 10 minutes. Let the cooker naturally release pressure for 10 minutes more.
  • Transfer the chicken breasts to a cutting board to cool slightly. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and cream or coconut milk. Using an immersion blender, purée the sauce until smooth. (At this point, you can remove and reserve some of this incredible sauce for future use.).
  • Cut the chicken into 1-inch pieces, return to the butter sauce, and stir to combine.
  • Butter chicken is typically served over basmati rice, but brown rice, quinoa and cauliflower rice are wonderful alternatives.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 349gCalories: 652.2kcalCarbohydrates: 13.4gProtein: 50.5gFat: 44.1gSaturated Fat: 20.3gCholesterol: 216.6mgSodium: 749.4mgFiber: 3.4gSugar: 6.9g
Keyword < 30 Mins, Chicken, Chicken Breast, Meat, One-Dish Meal, Poultry
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