Recipe: Slow Cooker Butter Chicken


Slow-Cooker-Butter-Chicken-Recipe-13.jpgSlow-Cooker-Butter-Chicken-Recipe-13.jpg

recipe banner, recipe art, recipe headerYou can find pretty much every kind of food in San Salvador: American, Chinese, Mexican, Vietnamese. Some of it is “good for El Salvador,” and some of it is good, period. There is a new(ish) Indian restaurant in San Salvador, Swagat El Salvador, which has delicious cuisine prepared by Indian chefs. It could compete against any Indian restaurant in DC.Despite this, I’ve been wanting to make butter chicken at home. I’ve already found my favorite homemade chicken curry recipe. So I searched the interwebs and concocted a pretty decent butter chicken if I do say so myself by combining elements of a couple different recipes.slow cooker butter chicken, crock butter chicken, butter chicken recipe, indian food recipeSlow cooker butter chicken.slow cooker butter chicken, crock butter chicken, butter chicken recipe, indian food recipeNaturally, my Crock Pot features prominently in this recipe. A slow cooker is the perfect cooking method for really letting the flavors and spices — curry powder, garam masala and tandoori masala, among others — do their work.slow cooker butter chicken, crock butter chicken, butter chicken recipe, indian food recipe slow cooker butter chicken, crock butter chicken, butter chicken recipe, indian food recipeAnd even though this butter chicken recipe really only needs to cook for 5-6 hours on low, it could be prepared on a weekday morning before work and left on the lowest low setting (10 hours on my Crock Pot) for an easy (and tasty!) weeknight dinner. There is a little bit of stovetop cooking required, but total pre-slow cooker prep and cook time is under 15 minutes.slow cooker butter chicken, crock butter chicken, butter chicken recipe, indian food recipe slow cooker butter chicken, crock butter chicken, butter chicken recipe, indian food recipeI did have to invest in a random spice purchase (tandoori masala), something I generally don’t like to do unless I think I’m going to use it a lot or be able to use it for multiple recipes. Luckily you can buy practically anything online and we are loyal Amazon Prime customers.slow cooker butter chicken, crock butter chicken, butter chicken recipe, indian food recipe slow cooker butter chicken, crock butter chicken, butter chicken recipe, indian food recipeEverything else I had on hand or was able to find at the local supermarket. And I think it’s safe to say that I will be making this recipe at least a few more times before we leave El Salvador.slow cooker butter chicken, crock butter chicken, butter chicken recipe, indian food recipeslow cooker butter chicken, crock butter chicken, butter chicken recipe, indian food recipeSlow Cooker Butter ChickenPrep Time: 15 minutesCook Time: 4-6 hours on lowYield: 6 servingsIngredients

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken thighs or breasts, cut into pieces
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (I used 1 full teaspoon and found it was a bit too spicy)
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp tandoori masala
  • 1 6 oz. can tomato paste
  • 1 8 oz. can tomato sauce
  • 1 14 oz. can coconut milk
  • 1 cup plain yogurt + a couple dollops for garnish
  • salt to taste
  • cilantro to garnish

Directions

  1. Melt butter and vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir in onion, garlic and chicken (I used chicken thighs but I think chicken breast would be healthier and just as good given that it has to stew in the sauce for so long). Cook about 10 minutes, until onion is soft.
  2. Stir in curry powder, cayenne pepper, garam masala, tandoori masala and tomato paste and mix until smooth, just a couple minutes.
  3. Pour into slow cooker and add tomato sauce, coconut milk and yogurt. Stir. Cook on medium-low 4-6 hours or low 6-8 hours. (I originally had mine on the low 8-hour setting but my Crock Pot gets pretty hot so after about two hours I reduced it to the 10-hour setting. In total it cooked for about 5 hours and then I set it to warm while I prepared some rice and a vegetable side dish.)
  4. Serve over rice.

Published by La Vie Overseas

I'm Natasha -- writer, runner and wife to a Foreign Service Officer with USAID. Current location: Frankfurt, Germany.

34 thoughts on “Recipe: Slow Cooker Butter Chicken

  1. This was absolutely the best homemade indian dish I have had. We love indian food and I had almost given up trying to make it at home. This was a huge hit !!!

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  2. I can’t seem to find tandoori masala. Can I just add more garam masala? Or should I substitute it with something else?Thanks.

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    1. Hm, I’m not sure. I’ve only made it with tandoori masala. I think it’s important to the recipe because it’s a different kind of spice and gives it (along with the tomato) that reddish sauce. But I say give it a try! I’m sure it will still be good. Good luck! 🙂

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  3. Does the sauce start off a little sour? I followed the recipe exactly but it has a sour taste, can I add anything to fix it? Thanks!

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  4. This was great!!! It’s so so much like my friend’s family recipe. (I did add two bay leaves)Next time I make it.. (And I definitely will).. I think I might add a few cloves as well.Thanks so much for sharing this recipe!

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  5. Just made this. OMG it’s good. Makes a lot of sauce, which is great, but I think I’ll put a little more chicken in next time. Tastes as good as the best Indian restaurant I’ve had. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

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    1. You could probably just put everything in the crock pot without cooking it in advance, but I’ve never tried it that way. Let me know how it turns out! I guess the only difference might be it has to stay in the pot slightly longer to make sure the chicken is fully cooked.

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    2. When you put raw onions in a slow cooker it never looses that bitter raw onion flavour. If you’re ok with that then go for it.

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    1. I’ve never tried with plain Greek yogurt but I don’t see why it wouldn’t work. I just use plain (unflavored) normal yogurt. Living overseas I don’t always have many yogurt options, so I just use what’s available!

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  6. I added just 1-2 tsp of sugar to the spice mix. I then bloom it for 3-5 minutes with the garlic and onions. The sugar just pops the spices. Then I add the chicken. Thanks for the lovely recipe.

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    1. Hi Emily — It should work in a Crock Pot regardless of size; you might need to adjust the cook time accordingly. My Crock Pot is a 5-quart one and it also gets pretty hot (I almost alway use the “low” settings of 8 or 10 hours). I would say if you’re experimenting with this recipe for the first time, do it on a weekend or a day when you won’t be gone for 8 or 10 hours. I would be OK leaving it unattended for, say, 4-5 hours but anything longer in my slow cooker may cause it to burn.

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  7. I doubled this last night for my crew of eight. It worked perfectly on the stovetop! I just simmered it for a couple of hours on medium-low, stirring occasionally. BTW, Penzey’s has tandoori seasoning and the best garam masala!

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    1. Great! I’m glad it worked out on the stove top. I have frequently adapted stove-top recipes to slow-cooker versions, but never vice versa. Thanks for sharing, and I’ll make a note to try Penzey’s.

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  8. […] Wednesdays meal: using our slow cooker for the first time. And making a 6th or 7th attempt at decent homemade Indian food. This one was a qualified success! Still not perfect but tasty, and not too hard to make. I made some adjustments, original recipe and photo credited to this expat blog. […]

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  9. I am a foreign service “brat” & my dad was with USAID as well. I am an older lady now but it was an incredible way to grow up. I wouldn’t have changed one single thing. We were posted to near east south Asia countries. So nice to find you and the curry was excellent!

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    1. Thanks, Lisa! I’m glad the curry worked out. Four years in, the USAID/Foreign Service experience has been an interesting, life-changing and fulfilling one. Where did you live growing up (what different posts/countries)?

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      1. My father built HUGE hydraulic dams which meant we were able to stay in a country for many years, a definite bonus. Our first country was India in the 1950’s & we were there for 4 tours. We then had tour back in D.C. where I went through extreme culture shock! We were then posted to Turkey for 3 tours. My childhood was India and my teen years were Turkey. I can’t imagine growing up any other way. Thanks for the reply.

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