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Crock Pot Butter Chicken

Crock Pot Butter Chicken

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Soooooooooooooooo, yeah. My Butter Chicken recipe doesn’t call for any butter. I know, I know. I think I might have just created a culinary sin. I really, really love my butter. I love it with fried eggs, I love it on bread, I love it on broccoli…I love it on my finger. HOLLA! But when I decide to cook something in the crock pot, it almost always eliminates the need to use butter (unless I’m baking a cake or something). And why would I unnecessarily “waste” my butter for something in the crock when I could keep it for eggs or some other deliciousness?

So, I did some looking around online to make sure I wouldn’t be excommunicated from the food community and I discovered that a lot of recipes for butter chicken just don’t call for butter. Big relief. My bread is saved! Hallelujah!

Well then why on earth do they call it butter chicken? Because when you’re done cooking, the chicken is smooth and tender – like butter. And the addition of sour cream makes the dish creamy and fantastically delicious…just like butter. See – butter doesn’t always mean BUTTER. No means no, though, you know?

Crock Pot Butter Chicken

This dish calls for Garam Masala. It’s an Indian spice used in a lot of curry recipes. I’ve avoided it for the most part – usually substituting something else when it’s called for. But then I went to The Big City (aka, Knoxville, TN) and I found an Indian store – I racked up on a few things, one of them being Garam Masala – Indian stores are fun…check one out!

If you purchase Garam Masala at the grocery store, it ain’t cheap. It’s something like $8+ for a little bottle. Ain’t nobody got budget for that. But, see what I paid at the Indian store?! $1.09!!! Hip, hip, hooray!

If you don’t have an Indian store, are afraid of the smell of fish or strong spices, or you’re afraid to go into yours because you are afraid they wouldn’t understand your country-hick dialect (they just smiled at me when I talked), you can easily make your own Garam Masala for this dish. :-)

Crock Pot Butter Chicken

The star players of this dish are tomatoes and sour cream. Well, chicken too – otherwise it would just be called Butter…which isn’t a bad thing, as I’ve already clearly established. But, I don’t think my family would be cool with a plate of butter for dinner – Lame.

You’ll cook low and slow for about 6-7 hours…to achieve the tender butter feel for your chicken. When mine was done, I shredded it…most people don’t. But if you haven’t picked up on this yet, I’m not most people. I just used two forks to shred it straight in the crock when it was done…I didn’t do it fine, and left a few chunks. You can just leave your chicken chunks if you like…but don’t say chicken chunks – it sounds kinda gross.

Crock Pot Butter Chicken

When all is done, stir in your sour cream. I loooooooooooooooove sour cream. So does Annie. I can get that girl to eat anything if I let her dip it in sour cream. She would sit down with a tub and a spoon and be perfectly happy if I would let her. Maybe I should – then I could have the butter all to myself.

You could use Greek yogurt in place of sour cream for this recipe – the dairy is going to help cut the heat a little bit…and this is a pretty spicy recipe. My nose was running when dinner was over – PERFECT! That’s the way, uh huh, uh huh, I like it, uh huh, uh huh. If your nose ain’t running, it ain’t hot enough.

Crock Pot Butter Chicken

I like this served over brown rice. It’s also good served over quinoa. To give your meal a little special somethin’-somethin’, try stirring some chopped cilantro into your rice. It takes it to a whole new level. I love cilantro! I buy some every visit to the Farmer’s Market. And yes, I know I could grow my own…but that would require skills – Black Thumb of Death, remember?

Make this soon. Your tongue will thank you – keep a hanky handy.

Plated Butter Chicken

keep crockin book

*This post is link at Inspiration Monday at I Should Be Mopping the Floor, at Clever Chicks at The Chicken Chick, at Marvelous Mondays at The Gal Cooks, at Melt in Your Mouth Monday at Make Ahead Meals, at Mix It Up Monday at Flour Me with Love, at A Round Tuit at Creating My Way to Success, at Make Your Own Monday at Nourishing Treasures, at Homemade Mondays at Being Frugal By Choice, at Handmade Tuesdays at Ladybug Blessings, at Show Me What You Got at Our Delightful Home, at Trim Healthy Tuesday, at In & Out of the Kitchen at Feeding Big, at Fat Tuesday at Real Food Forager, at Slightly Indulgent Tuesday at Simply Sugar & Gluten Free, at Hearth & Soul Blog Hop at Premeditated Leftovers, at Domestically Divine Tuesday at Far Above Rubies, at Teach Me Tuesday at Growing Home, at Traditional Tuesdays at Delicious Obsessions, at Share It Link Party at The Winthrop Chronicles, at Wow Me Wednesdays at Ginger Snap Crafts, at Wonderful Wednesdays at Ducks in a Row, at Wednesday Extravaganza at Hungry Little Girl, at Wonderful Food Wednesday at All She Cooks, at Cast Party Wednesday at Lady Behind the Curtain, at Make Bake Create at Hope in Every Season, at Real Food Wednesday at Kelly the Kitchen Kop, at Show & Share Wednesday at Mostly Homemade Mom, at Fresh Foods Link Up at Gastronomical Sovereignty, at Wednesday Whatsits at White Lights on Wednesday, at Welcome Home Wednesday at Raising Arrows, at Allergy Free Wednesdays at Whole New Mom, at Healthy 2Day Wednesday at Authentic Simplicity, at Works for Me Wednesday at We are That Family, at Wellness Wednesday at Intoxicated Life, at Whole Foods Wednesday at This Chick Cooks, at Thank Your Body Thursday at Thank Your Body, at Thursdays Treasures at Chocolate Chocolate and More, at Tasty Thursdays at Mandatory Mooch, at Thriving on Thursdays at Domesblissity, at The Project Stash at Seven Alive, at Full Plate Thursday at Miz Helen’s Country Cottage, at Pin It Thursday at Sweet Bellaroos, at Fantastic Thursday at Five Little Chefs, at Frugal Food Thursday at Frugal Follies, at Proverbs 31 Thursday Linkup at Raising Mighty Arrows, at Simple Lives Thursday at My Humble Kitchen, at Let’s Get Real Link Party at 365ish Pins, at The Weekend Re-Treat at The Best Blog Recipes, at Family Fun Friday at Happy & Blessed Home, at Creative Connection Party at Chase the Star, at TGIF Link Party at A Peek into My Paradise, at Craft Friday at Kitchen Fun with My 3 Sons, at Inspiration Gallery at Craftberry Bush, at Foodtastic Friday at Not Your Ordinary Recipes, at Gluten Free Fridays at Vegetarian Mamma, at Pin Junkie Link Party at The Pin Junkie, at Weekend Wonders at The Thriftiness Miss, at Friday Favorites at Simply Sweet Home, at Freedom Fridays at My Turn For Us, at Foodie Friday at Simply Living Eating, at Pity Party at 30 Handmade Days, at Foodie Fridays at Growing Up Triplets, at Weekend Potluck at Sunflower Supper Club, at Friday Food Frenzy at Mostly Food & Crafts, at Foodie Friday at Rattlebridge Farm, at Shine On Fridays at One Artsy Mama, at Get Him Fed Fridays at Anyonita Nibbles, at From the Farm at Fresh Eggs Daily, at Super Saturday Link Party at Made From Pinterest, at Your Great Idea Link Party at Or So She Says, at Super Saturday Show & Tell at What’s Cooking With Ruthie, at Overflowing With Creativity at It’s Overflowing, at Show & Tell Saturday at Be Different Act Normal, at Sweet & Savory Saturdays at Dessert Now Dinner Later, at Serenity Saturday at Serenity You, at Strut Your Stuff Saturday at Six Sisters Stuff, and at Think Pink Sunday at Flamingo Toes.

Comment Policy: I love hearing your thoughts and input on what I write. Since I write about what works at my house, what pleases my handsome hubby and darling children; I'm sure we'll disagree sometimes. In those cases, do what's right for you and yours. As with any form of communication, please only post comments that move the discussion in a positive direction.

About Stacy

Stacy is the author of Crock On: A Semi-Whole Foods Slow Cooker Cookbook and Keep Crockin': A Poorganic Slow Cooker Cookbook, and a stay-at-home and homeschooling mom to her three children, Annie (June 2009), Andy (August 2012) and Eli (September 2014). After an “awakening” in March 2011, her family switched to a more natural, whole foods diet. She likes to blog about how to live on less than you make and how to eat good food while doing it. Her passion is teaching others how to save money and she tag teams with her husband in this endeavor. At Stacy Makes Cents you’ll find information on how to save money in the kitchen, how to have fun with your kids, and how to be thrifty in all areas of life. Her passion is teaching others how to live debt free. Make sure to follow her on Facebook, Youtube, Pinterest and more to keep up with her daily antics.


  1. Julie Mobley says:

    My 3 year old loves sour cream too…will eat it by the spoonful. Glad to know she is in good company :)

  2. Stacey Bass McPherson says:

    Hey there, Stacy! Wondering if you think this would work with crushed tomatoes instead of diced. My hubby is stubborn, and while he’ll eat ketchup, tomato sauce, pizza sauce, etc., if the tomatoes are in chunks AT ALL, he will pick them out. I can’t even keep chunky salsa in the house – has to be pureed picante! But I digress…This sounds fabulous, and if you think it would work with crushed tomatoes, I’m on it!

  3. AmandaEspinoza says:

    Dinner tonight! Thank you lady :) Also, LOVE that you linked us to making the spicy mixture ourselves… that’s my style 😉

  4. Kacey Regina Bostrom says:

    I should know this by now but I forget…Don’t do oil pulling ( while reading your posts as you Always make me laugh. A computer screen does not need to be oiled to keep the squeaks out…#sprayingthecoconutoilnotpulling

  5. Stacy, I just found your blog. After reading this recipe, I’m a fan! Couldn’t agree more – if your nose ain’t runnin’, it ain’t hot enough! Thanks for a great recipe – I’ll be trying it out this weekend!

  6. Cindy B. Atya says:

    Heya! question about the garam masala… I actually have a jar I got a while ago (on sale lol), so am wondering is the quantity the same as your Indian-store pouched one? Also, bear with me, not an experienced cook… when you say chicken do you mean raw or pre-cooked? ps: I love how the tomatoes disappear and become rosee… my daughter HATES tomatoes but I can trick her when it’s a rosee sauce 😀 Thanks!

    • I’d say it’s very close.
      If I say “chicken” I mean raw chicken. If it’s cooked I always say “cooked, diced chicken.” :-)

  7. Katherine says:

    Kefir cheese makes a good sub for sour cream, too. We make our kefir cheese as thick as cream cheese, so we add a little kefir to make it the right consistency. Sooo good.

  8. Sounds good Stacy !!

  9. Question for ya….if I don’t want my nose to run and tongue to burn, can I just reduce the amount of spice? I actually have some Garam Masala (I got it for cheap at World Market) but have never used it. We don’t like spicy-hot at my house. Thanks so much!

  10. Stacy, for those who might be getting scared by the Garam Masala they can make their own mix. has a quick blend of most spices people do have at home except for maybe the cardamom. I bet this would be awesome even without it.
    Ladies – I bet this would be awesome even if you are missing a spice or 2. Don’t let a strange ingredient throw you off. Give it a go anyway!
    BTW – I need an E meal tonight….but I’ve done chicken the last 3 nights. UGH! Going on the list for right AFTER another meat meal. lol

  11. I’ve got this in the crock pot now! I don’t have any tomato paste. Do you think it will be ok?

    • It helps with the thickness and flavor – so it won’t be exactly the same…you might have to add a thickener.

  12. Dana Bates Price says:

    I made this last night – looked just like yours. I missed the note at the bottom about tweaking it to make it THM friendly. It was a cross-over, oh well. I made it just like the recipe, but didn’t measure the pepper – I just added pepper like I normally would. It wasn’t spicy at all with just the garam marsala. Everyone liked it except my 13-yr old son who detected the tomato flavor and refused to eat another bite. I’ll try it with yogurt next time to keep it an E.

  13. Stacy – Indian food stores are indeed fun. You should try their clothes stores some time! They have very, um, I hesitate to say cheap, but inexpensive tunic topics and mumu’s. If you do a lot of sewing, they also have great deals and a variety of fabrics to choose from. As someone of Indian heritage, I bought an Indian outfit for my wedding reception, and I like it better than my wedding dress :)

  14. Oh, another suggestion in terms of Indian food – paneer. It is a fresh, pressed cheese that would be delightful in place of chicken in this recipe for vegetarians.

  15. One TIPsy Chick says:

    This looks alot like Tikka Masala, which I LOVE! I’ll be making this very soon!

  16. Anne @ Authentic Simplicity says:

    I love buying my spices at Asian stores. SOOO much cheaper!

  17. You had me at butter Stacy. 😉 I love butter and I love sour cream. We could be butter soulmates haha. That chicken looks delicious and in our household, nothing is ever too spicy. Thanks for sharing. :)

  18. I love butter chicken and am glad you were able to eliminate the butter and save it to be enjoyed elsewhere! I’m all for enjoying butter where you can really enjoy and notice it.

  19. Melanie Nisbet- Riley says:

    Looks and sounds absolutely delicious! I’ll definitely be making this. Believe it or not, I have garam masala on-hand. :-)

  20. Sounds like your health subsitutes didn’t subsitute flavor. Thanks for sharing your chicken with us on foodie friday.

  21. Julia Klimek says:

    So glad to find this recipe – pinning! I loved reading your blog – funny. Hilarious – I like it! :-) Julia

  22. Please stop. I seriously cannot keep up with all of the awesome recipes you share! But this one is jumping to the top of the list.

  23. Hi Stacy,
    do you think this will work with whole bone in chicken breasts?

    • Sure! Although, I would remove the chicken to shred and take all the bones out. :-) But that’s probably a “duh” comment. Ha!

      • Thank you Stacy, my butter chx was good, probably BETTER with sour cream and the onions! I did use the chx that I had just got in my brand new meat CSA which I picked up on Saturday. I weighed the bag they gave me and it was almost 16 lbs. So I paid $160 for $16 lbs of organic grass fed beef, lamb, chicken and pork. Below is what we got, I had to paste in from Excel, not sure if you can see, but the columns are all wonky the way I can see, but there should be a column for pounds, ounces and the meat. So we decided that having the CSA was not affordable for us because it had cuts of meat that where way out of our budget, so I emailed the farmer, explained and he said, ok, no prob – you are out. So it was a good learning experience for us and God blessed us! As we were driving home from the farm, which was over 40 miles from our house, I know I know, crazy! We passed another farm. I wrote down the phone number and called this new farmer. We talked on the phone this week and he was so nice to answer all my crazy questions. So he is our new farmer and we can buy any cuts of meat we like from him. Thank you LORD for blessing us. And thank you Stacy for ALL YOU DO!!!


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  24. Jennifer (@GrowingUpTriplets) says:

    Ohhhh yum! :) Thanks for sharing on Foodie Fridays!

  25. Congratulations!
    Your recipe is featured on Full Plate Thursday this week! Hope you are having a great weekend and enjoy your new Red Plate!
    Miz Helen

  26. queeniehuff says:

    Woe is me… garam masala jar was empty. (AND….I just cannot bring myself to throw away those little glass Spice Island spice jars with the pretty label.) But you came through & there was the link for making my own. I didn’t have ground coriander but I did have whole coriander….and a mortar & pestle. A few minutes later I had lovely fresh smelling SALT-FREE garam masala! (The first ingredient on the jar label was salt—shame on them!) Butter chicken in the crock & thinking supper will be such a loooong wait. Thanks for the recipe. Now, time to make some Naan, I may have just enough Greek yogurt in the fridge to make it to go with the chicken.

  27. Thank you, instant family hit, I put 0 Greek yoghurt and had Caulie rice for myself, family had it with sour cream, and rice, ( taking them slowly to brown rice) thanks again

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