Easy Slow Cooker Butter Chicken

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Craving a restaurant-quality curry without the fuss? This slow cooker butter chicken recipe is your answer. Tender chicken in a creamy, flavorful tomato sauce – it’s perfect for a weeknight dinner that the whole family will love. Plus, it requires minimal prep, making it a lifesaver on busy days.


Slow Cooker Butter Chicken
Slow Cooker Butter Chicken

1.5 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp grated ginger
  • 1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 (13.5 oz) can coconut milk
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tbsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • Chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish (optional)

  • Directions:

    1. Sauté the aromatics: Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and ginger, and cook for another minute, stirring constantly, until fragrant.

    2. Combine the spices and tomatoes: Stir in the garam masala, cumin, turmeric, and cayenne pepper (if using) and cook for 30 seconds, allowing the spices to bloom. Add the diced tomatoes, coconut milk, and tomato paste, and bring to a simmer.

    3. Transfer to slow cooker: Pour the simmering sauce into your slow cooker. Add the chicken pieces and stir to coat them evenly.

    4. Slow cook and thicken: Cook on low for 6-8 hours, or on high for 4-5 hours, until the chicken is cooked through and tender. In the last 30 minutes of cooking, stir in the heavy cream. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

    5. Serve and enjoy: Garnish with chopped fresh cilantro (optional) and serve over steamed rice or naan bread.

    Nutrition Facts (per serving)

    Calories: 450

  • Fat: 25g
  • Saturated Fat: 15g
  • Cholesterol: 80mg
  • Sodium: 500mg
  • Carbohydrates: 20g
  • Sugar: 10g
  • Protein: 35g

  • Please note: These nutrition facts are estimates only and may vary depending on the specific ingredients used.


    This slow cooker butter chicken is a delicious and convenient way to enjoy a classic Indian dish at home. The slow cooker does all the hard work, making it a perfect meal for busy weeknights. Plus, it’s easily customizable – adjust the spice level to your preference, or add other vegetables like bell peppers or carrots for extra flavor and nutrition.


    1. Can I use chicken thighs instead of breasts?

    Absolutely! Chicken thighs are a great option for this recipe, as they tend to be more flavorful and stay moist during slow cooking.

    2. What if I don’t have garam masala?

    No problem! You can substitute with a mixture of 1 tsp ground coriander, 1/2 tsp ground cumin, 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon, 1/4 tsp ground cloves, and a pinch of ground nutmeg.

    3. How can I make this recipe vegan?

    For a vegan version, you can use chickpeas or tofu instead of chicken. You’ll also need to substitute the chicken broth with vegetable broth and use a vegan yogurt instead of heavy cream.

    4. Can I freeze the leftover butter chicken?

    Yes, this butter chicken freezes well. Let the leftovers cool completely, then store them in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.

    5. What can I serve with butter chicken?