Instant Pot Butter Chicken


Butter chicken, or "murgh makhani", is one of the most internationally popular Indian dishes. It has been recreated around the world, with each region adding its own touches and variations, adapting to the culture of the land.

Prep Time:
15 mins
Cook Time:
25 mins
Additional Time:
1 hrs 5 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 45 mins



  • ½ cup plain yogurt

  • 1 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste

  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1 teaspoon ground red chile pepper

  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • ½ teaspoon garam masala

  • 1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into bite-sized pieces

Butter Chicken Sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon oil, or as needed

  • 1 onion, finely chopped

  • 4 green chile peppers, sliced

  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped

  • 1 (1 inch) piece fresh ginger, finely chopped

  • 1 fresh tomato, chopped

  • 2 pods cardamom, crushed

  • 1 teaspoon ground red chile pepper

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander

  • ¼ teaspoon ground turmeric

  • 5 cashews, or to taste

  • 1 cup half-and-half

  • 1 tablespoon butter

  • 1 cup water (Optional)

  • 1 pinch salt to taste

  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped cilantro

  • 1 teaspoon dried fenugreek leaves (kasoori methi)


  1. Mix yogurt, ginger-garlic paste, lemon juice, salt, red chile, turmeric, cumin, and garam masala together in a container. Mix in chicken until coated. Marinate in the refrigerator for 1 hour.

  2. Turn on a multi-functional pressure cooker (such as Instant Pot) and select Saute function. Heat oil and add onion, green chiles, garlic, and ginger. Saute until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add tomato. Stir cardamom, red chile, cumin, coriander, and turmeric in one at a time. Saute until onion is soft and well coated in spices, 2 to 3 minutes. Add cashews. Turn off pressure cooker if pot gets too hot. Let mixture cool.

  3. Grind onion mixture in a blender, pouring half-and-half in gradually, until a smooth paste is achieved.

  4. Clean the inside of the pot and return it to Saute mode. Melt butter and add the chicken and marinade. Saute until marinade dries up, 2 to 3 minutes. Turn pressure cooker off if it becomes too hot. Add the onion paste and water as needed. Stir well. Taste and season with salt.

  5. Close and lock lid. Switch to Meat mode over high pressure according to manufacturer's instructions; set timer for 8 to 10 minutes. Allow 10 to 15 minutes for pressure to build.

  6. Release pressure carefully using the quick-release method according to manufacturer's instructions, about 5 minutes. Unlock and remove the lid. Garnish with cilantro and kasoori methi.


Substitute chicken thighs for the breasts if desired.

Use any type of low-fat cream you prefer.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

350 Calories
18g Fat
19g Carbs
28g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 4
Calories 350
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 18g 23%
Saturated Fat 8g 40%
Cholesterol 90mg 30%
Sodium 887mg 39%
Total Carbohydrate 19g 7%
Dietary Fiber 3g 10%
Total Sugars 8g
Protein 28g
Vitamin C 121mg 606%
Calcium 181mg 14%
Iron 3mg 15%
Potassium 688mg 15%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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