Easy Dairy-Free Indian Butter Chicken

KristineDinner in a Dash, Gluten Free, Recipes, Soups & StewsLeave a Comment

Happy New Year guys! Been meaning to get this recipe up for a while, and I know some of you have already made it following my recipe highlight on Instagram. It’s sooooo good and probably the easiest butter chicken you’ll ever make! While it may not be super authentic, the flavors are amazing, and considering there is no marinating or crazy long ingredient list of spices, its a huge win!

I’ve made it multiple times already and served to some family when they were in town, and they were also big fans! You’d never know it was dairy free, and you can’t tell its coconut milk. With the spices, it takes away that coconut flavor.

One must: you definitely have to use full fat canned coconut milk. Non-dairy milk that’s in a carton (like what you’d use in cereal instead of dairy milk), will not work the same and definitely won’t have the same creamy consistency.

Its so delicious with a good basmati rice and naan bread, but if you’re trying to keep it lower carb, it would also go well with cauliflower rice, or a lower carb flat bread.

I’ve also made a double batch and its worked great, and also appears to freeze well!

Easy Dairy-Free Indian Butter Chicken
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Easy and flavorful butter chicken, done in less than 30 minutes! 10 ingredients. No marinating.
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Indian
Yield: 6 servings
  • 3 Tbsp butter - vegan butter or regular butter (not dairy-free)
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 Tbsp fresh garlic, minced
  • 1 15 oz can plain tomato sauce
  • 1 14 oz can full fat coconut milk
  • 2 lbs chicken breasts, diced into bite sized pieces
  • 1 Tbsp fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 Tbsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • ¼ tsp salt & pepper
  • ¼ tsp of cayenne pepper (if you like a bit spicy)
  • Cilantro for garnish
  1. Dice raw chicken into bite sized pieces and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  2. In a larger pot, lightly sprayed with oil, place diced chicken in to saute. You may have to do in 2 batches as you don't want to crowd the pan. Saute the chicken until its golden on the outside, doesn't need to be cooked through.
  3. Remove the chicken from the pot, add in the chopped onion and 3 Tbsp butter and cook until the onions are golden and caramelized.
  4. Once the onions are caramelized add in the garlic, ginger and spices and cook together for about 1 minute.
  5. Next, add in the coconut milk and tomato sauce. Allow to simmer with the lid off for about 10-15 minutes until its reduced a bit and thickens slightly.
  6. Then, add in the chicken and simmer another 5 minutes until the chicken is cooked through and the flavors come together.
  7. Serve with rice and naan bread and garnish with fresh cilantro.
Serving size: ⅙ of recipe Calories: 320 Fat: 12.6 g Saturated fat: 10.6 g Carbs: 9 g Sugar: 3.5 g Sodium: 584 mg Fiber: 1.3 g Protein: 33 g Cholesterol: 85 mg