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Crock Pot or Slow Cooker Butter Chicken

Hope you all had a good Thanksgiving and the weekend after. We had a great time with friends on Thanksgiving. A huge meal was made – fusion food – turkey with all the trimmings plus desi dishes that ranged from lamb roganjosh to kheer. It is always fun to have great conversations over yummy food. Some shopping on Black Friday and some AUsome college football on Saturday followed Thanksgiving. Then I got sick…some throat infection so I could not share much with you people here. I am still not a 100% but I missed my virtual blog family so I am back at it again.

Aah…butter chicken! Irrespective of whichever part of the world you are from or whatever your food likings/dislikings are, I am sure you have heard of butter chicken (also known as chicken makhani). It is one of the most iconic North Indian (Punjabi) Chicken Dishes that has soft, melt in your mouth, chicken pieces cooked in a creamy tomato based sauce. The chicken is marinated in yogurt along with spices and ginger-garlic paste and then cooked in a velvety sauce made of butter, tomatoes, onions, ginger, garlic, and aromatic Indian spices.

Nobody in our home is a fan of bone-in chicken and for the longest time I have struggled with boneless white chicken meat drying out while cooking. However tasty and flavorful the saucy or gravy is, nothing can save a chicken dish that has dry meat in it. After trying several methods and ways of making butter chicken, this slow cooker recipe has become my go to recipe for butter chicken. I would recommend using boneless skinless chicken thighs (dark meat) for this recipe, but if boneless skinless chicken breasts are your thing, go for it. The chicken would still be tender and falling apart by the time you are done cooking it in the slow cooker. So get ready to make this fuss-free recipe and have a party in your mouth with the very first bite.


Boneless skinless chicken thighs (or breasts) – 2lbs/ 1 kg

For marinade:

Garlic – 1 clove, grated

Ginger – ½ inch piece, grated

Thick yogurt – 2 tablespoon

Lime juice – from ½ a lime

Mustard/olive oil – 1 teaspoon

Salt – 1 teaspoon

Red chili powder/Paprika – ½ teaspoon

Garam masala – ½ teaspoon

For sauce:

Butter – 1 tablespoon

Cumin seeds – 1 teaspoon

Green cardamom – 2

Cloves – 2

Cinnamon stick – 1 inch piece

White Onion – ½ big, cut into chunks

Garlic – 3 cloves, smashed

Ginger – 1-inch piece, cut into chunks

Green chili – 1 (optional), cut into fourths

Turmeric powder – ¼ teaspoon

Red chili powder/Parika – ¼ teaspoon

Coriander powder – 2 teaspoons

Tomatoes – 2 cups crushed/pureed (about 4 big tomatoes)

Sugar/honey – 1 tablespoon

Tomato ketchup – 1 tablespoon (trust me – you need this)

Kasuri methi/dried fenugreek leaves – 1 tablespoon

Heavy cream – ¼ cup

Salt – to taste

Cilantro – 4-5 sprigs, chopped


Mix all the marinade ingredients together and marinate chicken for at least 2 hours.

In a wide, heavy bottomed pan, heat some butter on medium heat. Add the marinated chicken pieces and sear them 3-4 minutes per side. Make sure that the chicken thighs are spread out in the pan in one layer. After the chicken has seared, take it out and put in the slow cooker.

In the same pan, add cumin, green cardamoms, cloves and cinnamon. After about 30 seconds, add the chopped onion and smashed garlic cloves. If there were any chicken bits stuck to the pan, do not let them burn, add a drop or two of water and cook that deliciousness along with your masala. Cook the onions until translucent, about 2 minutes and then add ginger and green chili. Mix in and all the spice powders followed by the crushed tomatoes. Add a pinch of salt and cook till the sauce is bubbly, about 5 minutes.

Turn the heat off and blend the sauce to a smooth paste. I use my hand blender for this. If you are using a regular blender, be very careful, as the sauce is hot.

Add the blended sauce to the slow cooker (that already has the chicken in it), making sure it covers the seared chicken thighs. Add salt, sugar/honey and tomato ketchup, mix and cook on low for 6 hours or high for 4 hours. After that time, finish with kasuri methi and heavy cream. Turn the slow cooker to warm and stir everything. The heat in the cooker will cook the heavy cream. If you want, you could take a fork to shred the chicken at this point. I normally just break it apart a little bit with a wooden spoon. The chicken is so soft that it shreds as you mix. Your call!

Garnish with cilantro and serve hot with naan, chapathi (recipe here) or rice (recipe here). Your taste buds will be forever grateful!

Love – Vaishali.

Tools used:

Slow cooker/crockpot

Hand blender/blender

Mixing bowl

Measuring cups and spoons

Knife and chopping board

Heavy bottomed skillet




  1. AS

    January 29, 2018 at 1:35 pm

    Yummiest butter chicken ever!

  2. Julie

    June 16, 2018 at 7:41 am

    I was digging through your site trying to find some type of curry chicken and potatos/chickpea type recipe, but your site is a little difficult to navigate. Just a suggestion – if you were to do a subpage under this and that, or maybe even create a recipe tab and then do a subpage under that for “Chicken” “Vegetarian” or whatever, what would be super helpful. Sorry, Im not trying to over step my bounds on your site, I just really like it and am trying to provide some constructive feedback. <3

  3. Donna

    July 22, 2018 at 8:43 am

    I was referred to this site from Stumble Upon. I so loved that site, i was hoping this would be a better version of Stumble because they recommended this site and they no longer exist. I do not like this site at all. It seems very unorganized ….i don’t know if i am going to continue. I think your topics should all be in different categories.

    1. Vaishali

      July 22, 2018 at 10:31 am

      Thanks fro your feedback Donna. I will rework the layout.

      1. Stephen

        July 24, 2018 at 1:01 am

        Donna doesn’t seem to reapile that this site is not is Stumbleupons decendant and has been showing this page as a good recipe. Mix is just an aggregator and is not related to it.

  4. Michelle

    August 17, 2018 at 4:13 pm

    You always have such great recipes and I enjoy popping by your blog because of it. I am vegetarian so this one isn’t for me, but you have veggie friendly recipes on the regular and I appreciate that.

    Great post! x


  5. Marinela

    August 17, 2018 at 5:45 pm

    I’ve heard of butter chicken, but I never tried it. I will use this recipe, seem like a really yummy meal and I will tell you my feedback. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Shannon

    August 17, 2018 at 8:14 pm

    I am so excited about this recipe! Butter chicken is literally one of my fav foods and I love crock pot meals! This looks perfect!

  7. Jen @ Jenron Designs

    August 18, 2018 at 10:14 am

    I am pinning this one, Buttered Chicken is one of my favorites!!!! I can not wait to try your recipe 🙂 The only thing I need to hunt down is the green cardamon but I have the other items.

  8. Devyani Ray

    August 28, 2018 at 1:44 pm

    I am going to make this in my instapot! Yum

  9. Arnab Majumdar

    August 28, 2018 at 2:48 pm

    That is a great recipe. Surely going to try it out at my home. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Wendy

    August 29, 2018 at 12:46 am

    I’ve never of this recipe but it loosk delish. I’m saving it for later.

  11. Brittany

    August 29, 2018 at 1:05 am

    OMG this looks and sounds so delicious!!! I love slow cooker recipes. They are so convenient!!

  12. Monidipa Dutta

    August 29, 2018 at 2:26 am

    This butter chicken looks delicious. I love butter chicken. Would definitely try this recipe this weekend. Thanks for sharing.

  13. Tania Villalta

    August 29, 2018 at 3:31 am

    yum!!! im making this for sure! ive tried a million recipes but dont look as good as this one!

  14. Charli Bruce

    August 29, 2018 at 4:00 am

    Thank you for this recipe! I love butter chicken and have actually been looking for a recipe this week so I can make it x

  15. HilLesha

    August 29, 2018 at 8:45 am

    How delicious! While I personally don’t eat meat, my family would enjoy this recipe. Especially, my oldest son. He LOVES chicken.

  16. Casey

    August 29, 2018 at 10:58 am

    Slow cooking thing is one of the best ways I like to cook. Butter chicken is something we also cook for my kids on Monday night (not sure why we always eat it on Monday). Will try out your recipe next Monday. thx!

  17. Sundeep

    August 31, 2018 at 2:03 am

    This chicken dish looks mouth watering. Recipe looks doable and easy. We need to try this weekend. Thanks for sharing. Basically we are not fan of butter but for this we try.

  18. Roshani Tasker

    October 13, 2018 at 7:00 pm

    I tried this recipe today and it is fabulous! The chicken turned out so tender and well cooked. It fell apart at the touch of the fork and the gravy was yummy too.

    1. Vaishali

      October 14, 2018 at 7:58 am

      Thanks a lot Roshani for trying the recipe. I am glad that you liked it..<3

  19. Yonnah M

    February 8, 2019 at 9:45 am

    It sounds like this would be very good. Unfortunately for me, I gave up meat a month ago.

  20. Monet Hardaway

    February 8, 2019 at 10:39 am

    I love that chicken thighs are used instead of chicken breasts. This looks like the perfect, comfort meal for this cold weather. I’ll have to give this recipe a try as one of my “cheat meals”!

  21. Renee

    February 8, 2019 at 12:41 pm

    I was just thinking I needed a new crockpot recipe. can’t wait to try this one!

  22. Rupal Srivastava

    February 8, 2019 at 2:54 pm

    Butter chicken is my favorite dish. Will definitely give this a try

  23. Kelly

    February 8, 2019 at 5:19 pm

    This looks so delicious! Definitely going to try to make it something soon.

  24. ALEX

    February 8, 2019 at 8:50 pm

    Chicken is Love!!!
    My mom liked this post and found some great recipes.

    If you like motivational blog checkout

  25. Luna S

    February 8, 2019 at 9:35 pm

    I love dishes with garlic, this sounds pretty good!

  26. siennylovesdrawing

    February 9, 2019 at 7:52 am

    thanks for this lovely sharing with delicious recipe info. All these definitely be useful for me to try out soon. cheers, siennylovesdrawing

  27. Keshia Richmond

    February 9, 2019 at 9:40 am

    I think traditional Thanksgiving dishes with the fusion that you described here would be awesome.

  28. Matija Antonić

    February 9, 2019 at 12:22 pm

    This looks amazing, slow cooked food is usually best, because you just let it cook on low or high for a few hours, and this recipe you gave us is easy to follow, I will certainly try it out 😀

  29. Liza Perry

    February 9, 2019 at 3:11 pm

    Oh yum! It sounds so delicious ! I will try it asap thank you!

  30. Justice Eziefule

    February 9, 2019 at 4:55 pm

    I’m not the “cooking type” but I’m so tempted to try this out. I really hope I get it right.

  31. Neil Alvin Nicerio

    February 9, 2019 at 10:07 pm

    Oh great! Another delish food from my favorite food blogger. I really do wanna try that out. 🙂

  32. Adharsh

    February 10, 2019 at 3:03 am

    Butter chicken…. Really yummy. Nice recipe with great pictures. Thanks for sharing and I will try it out.

  33. Samar

    February 10, 2019 at 11:39 am

    Thanks for sharing.
    Tonight we are trying this recipe 🙂

  34. Chantelle Hadden

    February 10, 2019 at 3:00 pm

    I might cook this for my boyfriend. Looks delicious.

  35. JK Darling

    February 11, 2019 at 2:09 am

    Butter chicken … my fav. with butter naan or tandoori rotis. Thanks for the recipe. I will try this soon. 🤗

  36. Elizabeth O

    February 12, 2019 at 4:45 am

    thanks for sharing this recipe but i will pass it because i am vegetarian.

  37. T

    February 12, 2019 at 2:15 pm

    This will be my weekend project. Always order Butter Chicken when out but never thought about trying it at home.

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