Butter Chicken and Spiced Basmati Rice


  • 3 tablespoons (45 ml) butter, divided
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely diced
  • 1-inch (2.5 cm) ginger, finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon (15 ml) curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon (0.5 ml) chili flakes (more if you like it spicy)
  • 1/8 teaspoon (0.5 ml) salt
  • 8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 cup (240 ml) tomato sauce
  • 1 cup (240 ml) heavy cream
  • Chopped cilantro, to garnish

For the rice

  • 2 tablespoons (30 ml) vegetable oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 small stick of cinnamon, split in half
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) cumin powder
  • 1 star anise
  • 3 cups (720 ml) vegetable stock
  • 2 cups (480 ml) basmati rice
  • ½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) salt
  • 1 cup (240 ml) frozen mixed peas and carrots


  1. Heat 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of butter in large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add onions to pan and stir to coat in butter. Add garlic, ginger, curry powder, garam masala, cumin, chili flakes, and salt. Cook, stirring until fragrant and onions are translucent.
  2. Dice chicken into 1-inch (2.5 cm) pieces. Add chicken to frying pan and stir to coat in spices, cook for 3-5 minutes or until no longer pink.
  3. Pour in tomato sauce and stir to combine. Bring to a simmer. Cook for 12-15 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.
  4. Stir in heavy cream and remaining butter. Cover and cook for 5-8 minutes.
  5. Serve over Spiced Basmati Rice with Cucumber Raita (see recipe) and garnish with chopped cilantro.

For the rice

  1. Heat vegetable oil in an oven-safe pot or casserole dish on medium-high heat on the stovetop. Add onion, cinnamon, cumin powder, and star anise. Stir to combine. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until spices are fragrant and onions are translucent. Add stock, rice, and salt to pot. Bring to a boil. Add peas and carrots. Turn down to medium-low heat. Cover and simmer for 12-15 minutes.
  2. Remove from heat and let stand for 2 minutes. Fluff and serve.