Kids love curry it's the ultimate family dinner! This healthier butter chicken with vegetables means you don't need a separate dish of veggies at curry night! Cook it all together in one pot, whether it's the slow cooker, dutch oven or instant pot! Make this rich, creamy, delicious curry in next to no time, packed with flavour, and low on spice, it's the perfect curry for all of the family to enjoy. You can get it made in 30 minutes in the instant pot!
Why you're going to love this recipe
Made from scratch, and with the perfect amount of flavour, this butter chicken is designed with families in mind, kids will love the mild spice and it makes for a delicious dinner.
Here's why you're going to love this recipe
- easy to make, using chicken thighs for extra flavour
- the perfect spice blend that adds heaps of flavour
- loads of options for cooking- slow cooker, dutch oven or instant pot
- made all in one pot, so less washing up
- kids love the mild spice flavour
- the sauce is thick and creamy, perfect for dipping (try our flatbreads!)
- freezer friendly
- want help convincing the kids? I've got loads of ideas for how to make curry night fun in this post about curry for kids
- no packet mixes needed, and yoghurt replaces the usual cream in the recipe to make it better for you
What goes into the recipe
don't forget to scroll to the recipe card for amounts and full method
- veggies- broccoli, carrots and onion feature, here but don't let that stop you! This recipe works with beans, cauliflower, sweet potato, you name it, it can go in this curry!
- chicken thighs- chicken thighs are your best friend for curry dishes, not only are they good because they can cook for longer, but the darker meat of thighs means they have more flavour. Don't chop all the fat off, as it melts away in the curry and helps to make it amazing.
- butter/ghee- I've used butter here, but only because I didn't have any ghee! Either will work really well, and ghee is a more authentic flavour for this recipe. Ghee is clarified butter.
- spices- this is a simplified curry recipe, without the need for heaps of spices. I use: ground coriander, garam masala, ginger, cardamon pods, cinnamon stick and paprika to make the flavour of this recipe. If your kids like spice, you can also add in a teaspoon of chilli powder.
How to make this recipe
Let's make butter chicken together!
- Chop the chicken thighs into 4 pieces (Image 1)
- Dice the onion (Image 2)
- Chop the carrots (Image 3)
- Chop the broccoli into florets (image 4)
- Heat oil in your instant pot (saute' mode), dutch oven or frypan. (Image 5)
- Fry the chicken thighs until browned, then remove. (Image 6)
- Add the butter/ghee and melt. (Image 7)
- Fry the onions until softened (Image 8)
- Add the spices and ginger and cook for 1-2 minutes- the smell will fill your kitchen! (Image 9)
- Add the passata and brown sugar to the pot, and mix through. (Image 10)
- Return the chicken to the oan and add the carrots. (Image 11)
- Set to cook! (Image 12)
- Add the broccoli florets (Image 13).
- And the yoghurt (Image 14)
- Squeeze in the juice of a lemon (Image 15)
- cook for 5 minutes or until the sauce thickens. (Image 16)
Slowcooker, instant pot or dutch oven
Whichever you choose to cook this curry in, it will be absolutely delicious!
slow cooker- this can cook for 8 hours on low or 4 hours on high. I open the lid for the last 5 minutes and put it on high to allow the sauce to thicken.
instant pot- this can be done start to finish in the instant pot. I cooked it for 20 minutes on high, manual pressure release and then returned it to saute to complete the cook down of the sauce.
dutch oven-after the initial frying and sauteing, you can pop this dish in the oven at 120 degrees for 4 hours. You can also continue it on the stove for about 40 minutes until the chicken is cooked through. Open the lid for 5 minutes at the end to thicken the sauce.
Expert Tips and FAQs
This recipe is super simple, and can be cooked in so many ways! It is the perfect family weeknight meal!
Yes! It's perfect for freezing. If you freeze it in portions on a bed of rice, you have quick and easy dinners ready to defrost and eat! Perfect for busy nights.
Sure! I have made it with beans instead of broccoli, with sweet potatoes, cauliflower- use whatever your kids like and what is in the fridge!
More curry recipes for the family
There are so many curry recipes on the blog! All of them are family friendly, and delicious.
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Healthier Butter Chicken Curry with Vegetables
- 2 tbsps vegetable oil
- 1 kg chicken thighs
- 60 g ghee or butter
- 1 onion diced
- 2 teaspoons garam masala
- 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
- 2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger finely chopped/grated
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 6 cardamon pods slightly crushed
- 700 grams passata pureed tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- ¾ cup plain yoghurt
- 1 lemon juice only
- 1 head broccoli chopped into florets
- 2 carrots
- Heat a large pan (instant pot, dutch oven or searing pan) until hot with the oil. Add the chicken thighs in batches and stir fry until browned (add extra oil as required). Remove.
- Reduce the heat to medium and add the ghee/butter, stirring until melted.Add the onion, and cook until softened.
- Add the garam masala, sweet paprika, coriander, ginger, chilli powder,
cinnamon stick and cardamom pods and stir fry until the kitchen smells amazing (about 2 minutes).
- Add the passata, sugar, chicken and carrots.
Instant Pot Instructions
- Put on the lid, and set to pressure cook, high pressure, 20 minutes, manual pressure release.
- Open your instant pot, add the yoghurt, broccoli and lemon juice and saute' for 5 minutes or until the sauce has thickened slightly. Serve with rice or naan breads.
Slocew cooker instructions
- Pop the lid on and cook for 4 hours on high or 8 hours on low.
- At the end of cooking, open the slow cooker and add the yoghurt, broccoli and lemon juice and turn to high for 5 minutes without the lid or until the sauce has thickened slightly. Serve with rice or naan breads.
Stove/ dutch oven instructions
- Pop a lid on it and cook for 40 minutes on the stove or 4 hours in the oven at 120 degrees celsius (248f).
- At the end of cooking, add the yoghurt, broccoli and lemon juice and cook for 5 minutes without the lid or until the sauce has thickened slightly. Serve with rice or naan breads.