Instant Pot Butter Chicken

IngredientsFor Curry Base(Sauce)

  • 1.5 tablespoon butter (For whole 30 – replace butter with diary free butter like coconut butter or almond butter)
  • 1 tablespoon ghee double the butter if not using ghee. (And to make it whole30, use 1 tablespoon almond butter)
  • 2 large white onions chopped fine in food processor
  • 12 ounce tomato puree or canned tomatoes (about 1.5 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • ½ tablespoon ginger paste
  • ½ tablespoon garlic paste
  • 1 ¼ pound chicken thigh boneless skinless – cut into 1-2 inch cubes
  • ½ to 1 cup water depending on the consistency of the curry you want


  • 1 tablespoon red chili powder or use a mix of cayenne pepper and paprika powder
  • 2 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt or sea salt- adjust to taste

To Finish

  • 2 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream fresh cream. (For whole30 complaint use full-fat coconut cream)
  • 2 tablespoon butter (Whole30 alternate , use coconut butter or almond butter or any other diary free butter)


  • 1 teaspoon Chopped coriander leaves
  • 1 tablespoon cream for drizzle (Whole30 option – use full-fat coconut cream)
  • 1 cube butter on top (To make it Whole30 use any diary-free butter)
  • 2 teaspoon kasuri methi (dried fenugreek leaves)


  1. Select “Saute” setting on Instant Pot. When display turns on, Melt butter and ghee.
  2. If using whole spices (cardamom, cinnamon stick and bay leaves) add at this point.
  3. Saute finely chopped white onions until it changes color to pink.
  4. Add ginger and garlic paste. Cook with constant stirring until the raw smell of paste is gone.
  5. Add fresh homemade tomato puree or canned tomato . I did stir the mix, but be carefully of burning. Let the tomato cook without stirring if you are worried of burning.
  6. Add tomato paste and let it cook for some time.
  7. Mix all the spice powder except for garam masala in a bowl. Add spice powders to the pot.
  8. Add chicken pieces and just spread it out evenly on the pot.
  9. Turn off the saute setting.
  10. Pour little water. Stir everything well. There should be enough liquid in the pot covering chicken.
  11. Close the lid, ensure the steam release knob is in “sealing position”.
  12. Turn on the poultry setting on the Instant Pot and select 10 minutes on the timer (I have shown in the video 15 minutes poultry time, But I actually used 10 minutes, was too lazy to shoot the edited time setting)
  13. Once the Instant Pot cycle is complete, wait until the natural release cycle is complete, should take about 10 minutes. Then manually release any pressure if still inside the pot by turning the pressure release know to the “venting position”
  14. Switch in the “saute” setting on the pot.
  15. Open the lid. Add garam masala, little more butter and pour cream into it. Simmer for 3 minutes. Sauce should thicken by then.
  16. Turn off Instant pot.
  17. Garnish with fresh chopped coriander leaves.
  18. Serve warm with instant pot rice or butter naan (Indian flatbread)

Base Recipe adapted from this SITE

Instant Pot Butter Chicken
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