Cozy Instant Pot No Cream Butter Chicken

Butter Chicken - Instant PotFall evening like last night, are what I call craving some evenings.  I found myself craving rich and  comforting butter chicken. That soulful, rich and soothing combination of a tomato and fenugreek sauce. As we all know this creamy vibrant siren is often that which brings many of you to your favorite Indian restaurant.

Last night was quite the night! After a long time, I felt compelled to drag myself to the local poll booths. Before, you feel light I take my civic duties lightly, please hear me out. It was a busy evening at work. As I stepped out to the dark streets, I was greeted with rain, the chilly November variety. Cold, persistent and unfriendly!

Just the kind of rain that seduces you to the inviting comfort of your warm kitchen. As I crawled into the train, a small sneaky voice suggested that I should just head home… But, there were a lot of local elections on the ballot. The basic premise of a democracy dragged me to the polls and then I ran home wanting my butter chicken with a greater gusto!

In a little over twenty minutes, dinner was done! Thank you instant pot, for doing this while I got time for a hot shower! In general, this variation was much lighter as I used Greek Yogurt and finished off with a knob of butter.

Butter Chicken_Instant pot

Served over a bed of easy cumin rice and made ahead dal all felt good and calm. I saw a somewhat off beat but watchable movie on Amazon Prime and  treated myself to an early night. I am probably the only person that I know who watches Amazon Prime. However, ever so often, I meander through the selections and once in a while I find myself pleasantly surprised. In fact, Butter Chicken aside, the election results this morning made me quite happy that I had done my civic duty and exercised my right to vote.

Cozy Instant Pot No Cream Butter Chicken

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 35 minutes

An easy healthy and no fuss variation of butter chicken, the kind made for a chilly fall evening.


  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 medium size red onion, finely diced
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
  • 1 tablespoon tandoori masala
  • 1 tablespoon kashmiri mirch or paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon red cayenne powder
  • 2 pounds of boneless, skinless, chicken thighs
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1/2 cup of finely chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 cup Greek Yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon dried fengreek leaves or kasuri methi
  • 1 tablespoon fresh organic butter or ghee


  1. Turn on the instant pot on to start mode. Alternately, you can begin this process in the bottom of a heavy bottom pan. Add in the oil.
  2. Add in the chopped onions, garlic and the grated ginger and saute for about 6 to 8 minutes, stirring well, to allow the onions to gently turn pale golden brown.
  3. Add in the tandoori masala, kashmiri mirch or paprika, and the red cayenne powder and add in the chicken thighs and salt and mix well for another 3 to 4 minutes.
  4. Add in the tomatoes, tomato paste and the sugar and stir well. Add in the Greek Yogurt and mix well.
  5. Cover and turn the instant pot to manual and cook for 10 minutes and let the steam release naturally.
  6. If cooking on the stove top, cover and cook on low for about 40 minutes.
  7. Remove the cover stir well, gently stir in the fenugreek leaves and the butter.
  8. Serve with bread or steamed fresh hot rice.


The tomatoes can be substituted with 1 cup of canned tomato sauce.

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