Slow Cooker Butter Chicken is flavorful dish with warm spices that the whole family loves. This crockpot butter chicken recipe is a creamy chicken dish served over Basmati rice with warm Naan bread.

slow cooker butter chicken

CROCKPOT BUTTER CHICKEN

I am the first to admit that Indian food isn’t the first thing my family wants to eat. They love this Indian butter chicken though. Creamy, saucy, warm Naan…hello.  Who could say no to that? 

I’m always looking for a slow cooker chicken recipe I can throw into the regular rotation. 

I tried many versions of this chicken dish before getting the best flavors that we all liked. I’ve tried a skillet version but this crockpot recipe is hard to surpass.

The key to this version I believe is blending the spices and onion before cooking. This results in a velvety sauce that is to die for. If this is your first time trying Indian food, this is for you.

WHAT IS BUTTER CHICKEN

Butter chicken is traditionally known as murgh makhani. It is made with chicken, tomato sauce, butter and spices. 

INGREDIENTS

  • BONELESS SKINLESS CHICKEN THIGHS – Thighs are great for slow cooker dishes because they stay moist through the long cooking. You can use chicken breasts if you want.
  • YELLOW ONION – You can use any white or yellow onion but yellow onions tend to be sweeter which compliment the acidity of the tomatoes.
  • MINCED GARLIC
  • FRESH GINGER – You must use fresh ginger. You can buy it preminced in jars or bottles but I prefer it over dry ground ginger.
  • TOMATOES – This version uses diced tomatoes and tomato sauce which resulted in the the warmest tone of sauce. I really like San Marzano tomatoes if you can find them. If you want to amp the tomato flavor even more you can use tomato paste.
  • SPICES – Garam masala, coriander, tumeric, cumin, chili powder, and salt make for a flavorful sauce.
  • BUTTER – It wouldn’t be butter chicken without butter. It adds a silkiness to the dish.
  • SUGAR – Just a tiny pinch balances the acidity of the tomatoes.
  • HEAVY WHIPPING CREAM – This is added at the end of the dish to give it a creamy sauce. You can definitely use full-fat coconut milk as a substitute. A traditional butter chicken recipe will sometimes use a cashew sauce at the end.

HOW TO MAKE BUTTER CHICKENspices in a food processor

  1. In a food processor or blender, blend together the tomatoes, onion, garlic, spices, and sugar until as smooth as possible.food processor with tomato sauceThis helps make the butter chicken sauce smooth!

    chicken with butter

  2. Transfer mixture into the Crock Pot and place chicken pieces and butter in as well. Give it a stir and cook on high for 3-4 hours or on low for 6-8 hours or until chicken is done.

    tomato sauce with cream

  3. Stir in cream and let it cook over warm heat. Serve over rice and with fresh Naan bread.

 

WHAT TO SERVE WITH BUTTER CHICKEN

Traditionally it is served over Basmati rice and with warm Naan bread.

slow cooker butter chicken

WHAT DOES BUTTER CHICKEN TASTE LIKE?

It tastes like a creamy tomato based sauce with curry tones. It is similar to Tikka Masala but a little less spicy.

IS THIS KETO-FRIENDLY?

Yes. If you use Monkfruit to sweeten the sauce and serve over cauliflower rice it is Keto.

TROUBLESHOOTING

  • Tastes too acidic – add more sugar or monkfruit to balance the acidity.
  • Want it spicier – add more garam masala.
  • Tastes empty – add more fat like cream.
  • Too thin – the thickness really depends on how much onion you add but you can also thicken it up with a cornstarch slurry or xanthan gum. 

OTHER SLOW COOKER RECIPES

slow cooker butter chicken

Slow Cooker Butter Chicken Recipe

4.18 from 29 votes
Slow Cooker Butter Chicken is an easy dinner that the whole family loves. Throw it in a crockpot and enjoy creamy chicken over rice with warm naan bread.
 
Prep Time: 15 mins
Cook Time: 4 hrs
Servings: 6 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 (15 ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • ½ large yellow onion, quartered
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 1 tablespoon garam masala
  • 1 tablespoon sugar, (use Monkfruit for Keto version)
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground tumeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt (coarse salt)
  • 1 (16 ounce) can tomato sauce, undrained
  • 2 ½ - 3 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs, trimmed of fat and cut into bite sized pieces, (chicken breasts can be used as well)
  • 4 tablespoons butter, cut into cubes
  • 1 cup heavy cream, (or sub full fat coconut milk)

Instructions
 

  • In a food processor or blender, blend together the diced tomatoes, onion, garlic, spices, and sugar until as smooth as possible.
  • Pour mixture into the slow cooker, add the tomato sauce and place chicken pieces and butter in as well. Give it a stir and cook on high for 3-4 hours or on low for 6-8 hours or until chicken is done.
  • Stir in cream and cook for 30 minutes on low to thicken. Serve over white rice and with warm naan. Garnish with fresh cilantro if desired.

Notes

TROUBLESHOOTING

  • Tastes too acidic - add more sugar or monkfruit to balance the acidity.
  • Want it spicier - add more garam masala.
  • Tastes empty - add more fat like cream.
  • Too thin - the thickness really depends on how much onion you add but you can also thicken it up with a cornstarch slurry or xanthan gum. 
Cuisine: indian
Course: All Recipes, Main Course
slow cooker butter chicken