Balti Butter Chicken


I love Indian food as much as I love BBQ, so combining the two is heaven for me.  The combination of marinating and then grilling the chicken adds an extra level of flavour to this already mouth-watering curry.

The base sauce can be made well in advance and frozen if need be.  I use the same base for a few different curries, which I’ll be posting about in the future.  It may initially seem like a lot of work but it really isn’t.  The same spice blends are repeated throughout and there really is nothing better than making your own curry from scratch.

This recipe serves 4-6 people, depending on appetite


4 large chicken breasts, cut into inch cubes

For the marinade

3 heaped dessert spoons of Greek yoghurt (I like the thickness of Greek, but natural yoghurt works well)
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp garam masala
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp turmeric
2 garlic cloves, minced
Thumb sized piece of ginger, grated

Place the cubed chicken and all the marinade ingredients into a large bowl and mix together really well, ensuring that all the chicken is well coated.  Leave to marinate overnight in the ‘fridge, but if you’re pressed for time (like I always seem to be) an hour or so will do.

For the base sauce

2 tbsp sunflower oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
Thumb sized piece of ginger, grated
1 tsp turmeric
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp salt
4 vine ripened tomatoes, chopped
1 cup of water

Heat the oil in a large saucepan over a medium high heat.  Add the onion, garlic and ginger and fry off until softened and beginning to colour.  Add the spices and salt and stir continuously, adding a drop of water if you find it sticking.  After a couple of minutes, add the tomatoes and a cup of water.  Bring to the boil, place the lid on the pan, reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes.  Use a stick blender or food processor to blitz the sauce until smooth.  This is your base sauce.

For the balti butter chicken

Set up your BBQ for direct grilling over a high heat.  I use my Thuros tabletop grill which has a great kebab attachment, but you can use your BBQ and skewers.

For more information or to purchase the Thuros grill contact

Thread the chicken pieces onto the skewers.  Don’t overcrowd them.  You want a nice char on the chicken.


Grill the chicken until cooked through.  This shouldn’t take more than 10 minutes, but keep an eye on them.  You want a nice amount of colour on the chicken which will add to the flavour of the final dish.

To the base sauce add –

50g ground almonds
1/4 tsp chilli powder (I cater for the kids, so adjust the heat to your taste)
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp garam masala
4 cardamom pods, seeds only
4 tsp sugar (we like ours on the sweeter side so adjust this to your taste)

Stir together really well and simmer for 15 minutes.  Finish the sauce by adding

1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped
Salt to taste

Serve the grilled chicken on a bed of rice with plenty of the beautiful sauce.

K x


2 thoughts on “Balti Butter Chicken

  1. Great dish Kel!
    Wifey thought I should’ve put recommended amount of sugar in, but one tsp was good for me.
    I’d recommend she tried the sauce pre mango chutney 😂

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