The Humble Origins of the Hugely Popular Butter Chicken

Butter Chicken- The Iconic dish, which is also known as Murg Makhni in Hindi.

There are three types of Peoples across the world. Those who affection of Murg Makhni, those who think Murg Makhni is over hyped and those who have never eat or tasted Murg Makhni. 

India is more than Murg Makhni, So let’s start. Every region in the country has its own flavour’s and ingredients that add hints to different micro-cuisines, and each cuisine has its own History and Heritage. 

With that Confirmed, let’s know about one of the dishes that has crossed all boundaries to become a staple in Indian cuisine restaurants all over the world: tomato-based, Saffron Orange, Buttery & Creamy Murg Makhni.

Who Invented Butter Chicken(Murg Makhni)?

This is where the debate starts. There are two Family unit that claim that it’s their Legacy, and it’s hard to regulate who has the right version.

So, Earlier the diving wall of India and Pakistan, Kundan Lal Gujral made tandoori murg in a dhaba in Peshawar in the early 20th century. After partition, he came to Delhi and opened a restaurant, Moti Mahal, Darya Ganj. Back in those days, the leftovers couldn’t be stored in a fridge. Gujral did not want to be excessive, so he tried with dried chunks of murg, added tomato paste, butter, and some spices to the gravy and thus, they invented the famous butter chicken. 

Recipe of Butter Chicken


1 ½ tbsp butter

5 green cardamom pods

1 inch cinnamon stick

4 cloves

1 small onion finely chopped

1 heaped tbsp grated ginger

2 green chillies slit lengthwise

1 tbsp Deggi mirch powder 

½ tsp garam masala powder

3 tbsp tomato puree

150mls double cream

2 tbsp honey

1 tbsp Kasoori methi/ fenugreek leaf powder

Salt to taste

Chopped coriander for garnish


  1. Make tandoori murg or chicken. Once the murg or chicken is ready set aside and proceed to make the makhni gravy.
  2. Heat a heavy bottom wok or sauce pan and add the butter. Add green cardamom, cinnamon stick and cloves. Fry for 20-30 seconds, add the onions and stir for 5-6 minutes on medium to low heat until they take on a golden brown colour.
  3. Add the ginger and green chillies. Fry for a few minute and add the deggi mirch powder, garam masala along with the tomato puree. Stir well and cook for 1-2 minutes. Now gradually add the double cream stirring continuously to mix all the spices with the cream. Simmer and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Now, add a dash of water if the gravy is too thick. Stir in the honey and the fenugreek powder. Season to taste. Now add the tandoori chicken pieces and simmer the curry on a medium to low heat for 7-10 minutes. Garnish with chopped green coriander and serve with boiled or jeera rice, chapati or paratha.