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Vegan Butter Chicken in white bowl on top of fresh rice with a side of naan bread.

Vegan Butter Chicken Recipe

  • Author: Maria Koutsogiannis
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 4-5 1x
  • Category: Main Dishes
  • Cuisine: Vegan


This super easy one pot creamy vegan butter chicken recipe is the Indian vegan curry recipe you’ve been waiting for going into the fall.



For the Sauce:

2 tbsp. coconut oil or vegan butter

1 large white onion, small dice

2 large cloves of garlic, pressed

1 tbsp. fresh ginger, grated

1 1/2 tbsp. garam masala

1 tsp curry powder

1 tsp coriander powder

1/2 tsp paprika

1/4 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp chili flakes or just a dash

1 tsp vegetable stock paste (optional)

1 400ml no-salt-added canned tomatoes

1 tsp sugar

1 400 ml can coconut milk

season to taste

For serving:

cooked rice




In a large skillet or pot heat coconut oil or vegan butter on medium-low heat till melted.  Add your white onion and sweat for around 6 minutes or until translucent.  Stir often to avoid burning, scraping the browned bottom bits for extra flavour.
Add garlic and ginger and sauté for 1 minute until fragrant, then add garam masala, curry powder, coriander, paprika and cinnamon. Let cook for about 20 seconds until fragrant, while stirring occasionally.
To the skillet or pot add the chili flakes, vegetable stock paste and canned tomatoes.  Let the mixture simmer for about 10-15 minutes until sauce thickens and becomes a deep, rich red-brown in colour.
Remove mixture from heat and scoop into a blender and blend until smooth. If the sauce is too thick to blend, then add up to 1/4 cup water to blend.  If you have a smaller blender, blend in batches.
Pour the sauce back into the pan. Stir in the coconut milk, sugar and season to taste.  At this point you would add your cooked lentils, potatoes, chickpeas, vegan chicken etc. and simmer for 10-15 minutes.  Simmer for 15 minutes even if you’re not adding a protein or root of choice. Serve with rice, cilantro and naan.


We had a little mishap in our kitchen with the coconut milk, that is why the images are looking more tomato-based.  Had we added coconut milk, the colour would be more orange and creamy like.

The sauce will last up to 1 week in the fridge and 3 months in the freezer.  Be sure to cool completely before placing it in a tightly sealed container in fridge or freezer.

When you go to re-heat, you may need to add more water to loosen sauce slightly.  Then add your protein or root veg of choice.

Keywords: best, butter chicken, coconut, creamy, curry, easy, garlic, Indian, pot, recipe, rice, sauce, vegan