This Instant Pot Butter Chicken is tender, juicy, and coated with a velvety Indian-spiced sauce. It pairs perfectly with cauliflower rice for a hearty paleo, keto and whole30 friendly meal.
Ready in an instant pot in just 12 minutes, yet so rich and flavorful, this Instant Pot Butter chicken will taste like you been working in the kitchen all day.
Trying to eat healthy in the new year but you don’t have much time to make healthy meals?
This one-pot Paleo Butter Chicken recipe is quick, easy, healthy, and perfect for meal prep!
Tender, juicy chicken paired with an incredibly flavorful sauce that’s a little sweet, a little spicy and is quickly becoming a household favorite.
While there’s not actually butter in this butter chicken recipe, the use of ghee and coconut cream makes the sauce buttery, silky and smooth.
Ingredients Needed for Paleo Butter Chicken
At first glance it may look like a lot, but really you only need some tomatoes, coconut milk, chicken and spices to throw this recipe in your Instant Pot for a quick and healthy meal!
First, you’re going to want to marinate the chicken using the following ingredients:
Chicken Thighs or breast- skinless and cubed. Chicken thighs have a higher fat content and tend to be more juicy, but either one will work with this recipe.
Masala- a spice blend of toasted cinnamon, mace, peppercorn, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, and cardamom pods that is commonly used in Indian cuisine.
Cumin- a spice that is believed to increase antioxidant uptake, promote digestion, improve blood pressure and provides iron.
Salt- to taste.
Arrowroot flour- gluten free, thickens sauce and helps it stick to the chicken.
Chili powder- did you know chili powder is actually a combination of spices? It has several different spices including chili peppers, cumin, onion and garlic powder. Spicier varieties of chili powder will often contain cayenne as well.
The ingredients for the sauce:
- Minced ginger
- Chili power
- Smoked paprika
- Coconut milk (full fat)
- Crushed tomato (Canned)
- Cilantro (garnish)
If you wanna kick the heat up a notch, feel free to add some cayenne, jalapeños or other spicy peppers that you enjoy!
How to Make Coconut Milk Butter Chicken
First, cut the chicken into 1- 2” cubes.
Then, mix 1 – 2 tbsp of arrowroot flour with 2 – 3 tbsp of water. (You may need extra arrowroot starch if using chicken breast). Mix the chicken in. Coating chicken in a little bit of starch can keep it from drying out in the cooking process.
Heat up 2 Tbsp of ghee butter in the instant pot (using the sauté function) then lightly sauté the garlic for a min or less (without the garlic turning dark brown).
Next, add the spices in, mix it in and let it cook for an additional 30 – 40 seconds.
Then, add the crushed tomatoes, ginger and the cubed chicken.
Now, seal the Instant Pot and cook on high pressure for 8 – 10 minutes.
Once done, quickly release the steam. Stir in coconut milk. Turn instant pot onto saute function and let the sauce cook down for additional 3 – 4 minutes.
Can I Make Whole30 Butter Chicken If I Don’t Have an Instant Pot?
Absolutely! It’s super easy too, it just takes a little longer to cook.
Just follow the same directions above for the Instant Pot but use the stovetop instead.
Bring the sauce to a boil, then simmer for 25 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
The chicken is fully cooked when it hits an internal temperature of 165 F.
How to Serve Keto Butter Chicken
If you’re looking to stay on the Whole30 track, cauliflower rice is a great option.
You could also serve this Indian butter chicken with:
- Naan bread
- Basmati rice
- A mix of veggies like broccoli, pea pods, cauliflower, asparagus
Honestly you can serve this keto butter chicken with anything you love!
How to Store Instant pot Butter Chicken
Keep your leftover paleo butter chicken stored in an air tight container in the fridge for 3 days.
Even better, you can freeze it too! That means this is a great meal prep recipe that you can double (or triple!) so you will always have something healthy on hand.
Seriously, no excuses.
What’s your favorite chicken recipe? Leave a comment below!
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More healthy Instant Pot Recipe You may Like:
- 2 lbs Chicken Thighs or breast boneless; skinless cubed
- 2 tsp masala
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1 - 2 tsp salt (or to taste)
- 1 - 2 tbsp arrowroot flour *
- 3 -4 tbsp ghee or regular butter
- 4 -5 cloves Garlic (minced)
- 1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
- 1 cup coconut milk (full fat) or coconut cream
- 1 14 oz can Crushed Tomato
- First, cut the chicken into 1- 2” cubes.
- Then, mix 1 - 2 tbsp of arrowroot flour with 2 - 3 tbsp of water. (You may need extra arrowroot starch if using chicken breast).
- Heat up 3 - 4 Tbsp of ghee butter in the instant pot (using the sauté function) then lightly sauté the garlic for a min or less (without the garlic turning dark brown).
- Next, add the spices in, and let it cook for an additional 30 - 40 seconds.
- Then, add the crushed tomatoes, ginger, and the cubed chicken.
- Now, seal the Instant Pot and cook on high pressure for 8 - 10 minutes.
- Once done, quickly release the steam. Stir in coconut milk. Turn instant pot onto saute function and let the sauce cook down for additional 3 - 4 minutes.
1. *If using chicken breast, I recommend adding 2 tbsp arrowroot flour in the marinade as it keeps the breast meat more juicy and moist.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 347Total Fat: 20gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 145mgSodium: 480mgCarbohydrates: 15gFiber: 4gSugar: 6gProtein: 29g
The Nutrition Facts above are specific to the ingredients I chose to use for this recipe, which may vary.