Instant Pot Butter Chicken


Pressure Cooker Butter Chicken Recipe — Easy Instant Pot Butter Chicken

How Much Butter Chicken per Person

Make a gourmet chef or restaurant-quality Indian butter chicken at home in under 30 minutes!

Using tasty chicken thighs, this recipe builds on the butter chicken spices and takes it to a whole new level.

Jasmine Rice goes well as a side dish with this buttered chicken recipe.

Why This Instant Pot Butter Chicken Recipe Is SO Good

We used to own a food manufacturing business and we made this ROYAL Butter chicken recipe and sold thousands every month to a gourmet supermarket chain. Try it for yourself with some greek yogurt and you’ll see why it is a great butter chicken recipe.

Why is this the Best Butter Chicken Instant Pot Recipe?

There are so many butter chicken recipes out there made with boneless chicken breast or boneless chicken thighs – however, it is well known that a lot of the flavor for the meat comes from the bone – try this recipe and you will love the taste – have it with naan bread, brown rice or papadums. Yes, there are many other types of Indian Chicken curry recipes out there, but instant pot chicken cooked in spices like cardamom pods makes the best Butter Chicken recipe. It is easy, very authentic, creamy, spicy, and delicious. Plus Instant Pot Indian recipes save you a ton of time.

Pressure Cooker Butter Chicken Lemon
Pressure Cooker Butter Chicken

Authentic Tasting Butter Chicken

I’ve seen so many Indian Instant Pot Butter Chicken recipes – even from someone called the instant pot butter chicken lady (which is good also). But there are other recipes that have no butter, no cream but that call for cornstarch and more – some even say make an instant pot butter chicken with pre-made sauce. (That’s is a bit like “uncle Rodger and – Jamie Olivers chili jam!! that uncle Rodger just loves!

And for those of you who are vegetarian, no need to miss out. Vegetarian Butter Chicken with a tempeh recipe gives you all the flavor of the original in one delicious vegetarian dish!

Start by tossing the chicken in a bowl and add the yoghurt and also add the lemon juice, chili and half of the garam masala and ginger.

Garlic Lemon Butter Chicken
Prepare The Chicken

Turn the instant pot onto saute setting and let it heat up – then add the olive oil and half of the butter plus the onion garlic and rest of the ginger and cook for 3-5 minutes.

Add In the yoghurt before the chicken – and mix well.

Add Yoghurt
Add Yoghurt

Add in the Chicken and then cook for 10 minutes on High Pressure. After Cooking stir – and add in the butter and cream.

Why Is It Called Butter Chicken?

Going back in history it is said the owner of a famous Indian restaurant called Moti Mahal started making butter chicken as a way to use any leftover tandoori chicken.

What Is Butter Chicken Called In India

In India or Authentic Indian restaurant you may see Murgh Makhani on the menu. This is butter chicken –  Murgh means chicken, Makhani means buttery.

Instant Pot Butter Chicken

Butter Chicken is one of the most well known and most popular takeaway dishes- now with the Instant Pot you can make it quicker than a trip to the local takeaway score.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Course: Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine: Amercian, Indian
Keyword: Instant Pot butter Chciken
Servings: 5
Calories: 496kcal
Author: Rose
Cost: $10


  • ½ cup Cream heavy cream or whipping cream
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 teaspoon fenugreek
  • 4 cardamom pod small more liquorice smell
  • 4 cloves
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon paprika or smoked paprika
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 3.5 oz Butter ½ for flavor – ½ for cooking 100g
  • 1/2 cup Cream
  • 2/3 cup chicken broth or stock
  • 1 inch Ginger Chop finely
  • ½ teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 onions
  • 3 garlic cloves- finely diced
  • 2 lbs chicken 1kg
  • 1/2 cup Plain yogurt
  • 2 tablespoon Olive Oil or coconut oil
  • 1 cup Tomato Passata Tomato Puree
  • 2 tablespoons Tomato paste


  • Marinate: Take the chicken in a bowl and add the yoghurt and also add the lemon juice, chili and half of the garam masala and ginger. Leave that for at least 30 minutes – longer is better.
  • Saute: Turn the instant pot onto saute setting and let it heat up – then add the olive oil and half of the butter plus the onion garlic and rest of the ginger and cook for 3-5 minutes until the onions are sweated down and translucent. Turn off the instant pot.
  • Mix: Now add in all the other ingredients EXCEPT the butter and cream. Mix them well so that they are evenly dispersed in the liquid and put back the chicken. Use some of the salt, pepper and sugar for seasoning – keeping some for final seasoning after cooking.
  • Pressure Cook: Set the electric pressure cooker to high pressure for 10 minutes and allow 10 minutes natural release.
  • Final: Take off the lid – checking first there is no steam left by pushing the pressure release valve. Give a gentle stir and taste the sauce. Adjust with salt, pepper and sugar according to your taste. Just add a little by little as you can always add more seasoning but you can not take it out.
  • Plate Up: Now you are ready to serve with your favorite side like basmati rice – how easy was that – a really easy Instant Pot Butter Chicken Recipe.


This dish can be frozen.


Serving: 200g | Calories: 496kcal | Carbohydrates: 18g | Protein: 21g | Fat: 39g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 136mg | Sodium: 536mg | Potassium: 735mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 8g | Vitamin A: 1412IU | Vitamin C: 17mg | Calcium: 152mg | Iron: 4mg

How to make Extra Butter Chicken Sauce?

People just love the butter chicken gravy or sauce – If you like more sauce then double the butter, cream and increase the herbs and spices by 50% and you will get more sauce. 

How To Make Butter Chicken Thicker

The best way is to take out the chicken and set the instant pot to saute and let the sauce boil to reduce until it thickens.  This is much better than using flour, cornstarch or other methods as the flavor intensifies by reducing.  Adding flour will change the taste.

Top Tips & Tricks for Making the Instant Pot Butter Chicken Recipe:

  • Do not skimp on using garam masala – it is key to this recipe.
  • Do not re pressure cook after the butter and cream are added as this will changed the taste and not a good idea

What Can I Serve with the Butter Chicken?

Basmati Rice

Naan Bread


How To make the butter chicken less bland or more spicy?

Here are some ways to spice up this dish if it’s too bland for you.

Add 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper and chopped cilantro

Increase garam masala

Dice a bird’s eye chili and cook it with the garlic and onions.

Add 1 teaspoon of curry powder to make butter chicken curry

Use chicken tikka masala for the chicken

My Butter chicken sauce is split or too thin?

How do you thicken butter chicken gravy? This can happen if you add the butter and cream too soon before the sauce has had a chance to cool down. This can cause the sauce to split.  Let the sauce cool for 3-4 minutes are you finish cooking in the instant pot.

Can I substitute bone-in legs/thighs? How about chicken breast?

Yes, you can substitute chicken breast, or legs – with the chicken breast cut it into medium chunks do not cook it as one big piece. You can also use skinless chicken thighs.

How to make Butter Chicken with frozen chicken in an Instant Pot?

Yes, you can use frozen chicken. You will need to increase the cooking time by 2 minute – However you must have the chicken separated – not as one big frozen chunk – it should be free-flowing chicken pieces.

If your chicken is frozen into one big lump. You can run it under water to separate it or use the pressure cooker cook for 2 minutes under pressure to separate it – take it out and then refollow the recipe.

How Do I Make Lemon butter chicken instant pot?

Take a fresh lemon and squeeze half into the butter chicken gravy – this will make the sauce taste a little tart and lemony. You can also make instant pot lemon garlic chicken.

How To Make Non-Dairy Butter Chicken

Substitute the butter and cream for coconut cream. Add 1 tablespoon more tomato sauce or tomato puree also. Diced tomatoes will also work. You can also use coconut milk.

Can I make this recipe in a slow cooker.

Yes you can just use chicken slow cooker cooking times

Why is chicken rubbery in instant pot?

It is rubbery because the cooking time is too long – decrease your cooking time by one or 2 minutes.

Is butter chicken north or south indian?

It is more a north indian dish – but is eaten all over india and asia.

Can you cook chicken in instant pot without liquid?

No you need some liquid to create pressure and to stop the burn warning in the instant pot.

Can you make rice at the same time as the butter chicken?

Yes – but not in the same instant pot – we suggest making the rice first and then you can warm it up in the microwave.

Does butter chicken taste like curry?

No, it should be nice sweet, and buttery – and will only taste of curry if you add it.

Can you use almonds instead of cashews in butter chicken?

Yes almonds are a great substitution for cashews, they are better if they are lightly toasted.

Which is the best Indian chicken dish?

I say butter chicken 0 itis one of the most popular – but there are many great Indian chicken dishes.