Slow Cooker Butter Chicken

Slow Cooker Butter Chicken

For food bloggers who claim to love our slow cookers as much as Laura and I do, we really don’t have that many recipes here that use them. Oops. I’m not sure why that is, but it’s definitely going to change. We have so much recipe testing to do for our next book that in order to actually feed our kids we’ve got to have meals that go into the slow cooker and kind of get out of the way so our kitchens are freed up. It’s a strange logic, I realize, but it’s all good for you, my lovelies!

This new addition to the more-slow-cooker-recipes campaign is the bomb-diggity. It’s a killer. It’s been tested by three families and everybody loves it. I sent Laura home with the leftovers from this shot, which is nothing new. When we get to shoot together it’s fun to take the other person’s food home to try something new. But this butter chicken went over so big I had to stand in the middle of the grocery store the next day to text her the recipe because she and her neighbour Anne wanted to make it again. It’s very good. You’ll notice that for a butter chicken it’s missing something: butter. I made it with coconut oil, which is an ingredient I’m using more lately. It helps add to the coconuttiness of this recipe. And lightens it up a bit, too.

And – this is so big – you don’t need to brown the meat first. Maybe I’d use the slow cooker more if I could get over my aversion to browning chicken at 7 a.m.? Probably. Just toss everything in there, stir it and walk away.

I’m going to slide a little pitch for our newsletter in here. It’s just there to your right. We send it out once a week and it’s always full of new recipes, videos, updates and more fun things that are coming soon. Thanks!

butter chicken

photo by Maya Visnyei

Slow Cooker Butter Chicken

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 6 hours

Yield: 8 servings


  • Makes: 6 servings
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 6 to 8 hours
  • 2 lb (900 g) chicken thighs or breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 or 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) minced ginger
  • 1 5 oz (147) ml tube of tomato paste
  • 1 heaping Tbsp (about 15 ml) curry
  • 1 14 oz (400 ml) coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) milk
  • 2 Tbsp (30 ml) coconut oil
  • small handful of cilantro for garnish


Put everything in the slow cooker and stir it all around.

Close the lid.

Set the timer for 6 hours. Don't worry if you need to be away from home for 8 hours or longer - it will be okay.

Serve with a big spoonful of jasmine rice and a sprinkling of cilantro.

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  1. KT
    November 17, 23:09 Reply

    Hi, this looks and sounds great. Is that about 5oz of tomato paste and a 13.5 or 14 oz can of coconut milk? Thanks.

    • Ceri
      November 20, 18:31 Reply

      Yes, you’ve got that exactly right! Let me know if you try it, okay?

  2. Debs
    November 19, 09:05 Reply

    The recipe says 1 tbsp curry, is this normal curry powder? What brand do you use? Thanks

    • Ceri
      November 20, 18:29 Reply

      Yes, it’s just typical curry powder. The brand I most recently bought is called Donne but to be honest, it’s just because it was there at the grocery store. I don’t know enough about curry to recommend one brand over another. Let me know if you try it!

  3. EmTO
    November 19, 19:12 Reply

    This looks really tasty! Quick question – should the slow cooker be on high or low?

    • Ceri
      November 20, 18:26 Reply

      You could do it on low for 6 hours or on high for 4.

    • Laura
      January 15, 10:56 Reply

      Hi, I’m so glad your parents enjoyed it. I’m sorry you found that it needed more time. It worked in both our slow cookers at 4 hours as well as with our recipe testers. Although, you never know, right?! I’m sure there is nothing wrong with your slow cooker. I just find, like ovens, appliances can vary when it comes to cook times. I hope you give it a try again. Thanks so much for visiting SPC. Best, Laura

  4. Quinnie
    December 15, 19:19 Reply

    Hi Ceri and Laura – I want to try your version of the butter chicken as it uses coconut milk. Do you have any nutritional information for per serving (how much is a serving)?. It yields 8 servings, how much of Carbs, Fat and Proteins is there per serving? . Thank you

  5. Sharon
    April 16, 16:32 Reply

    I made this for my family this week and it was delicious. My boys are 6 and 9 and are not very adventurous, so they did not lick their plates, but they did not complain. I consider that a win:) You ladies have inspired me to make a greater effort to have my kids try news things. I have fallen into a bad habit of just making a healthy dinners for myself. LOVE, LOVE your weekly meal plan. Thanks!

    • Laura
      April 21, 09:36 Reply

      Dear Sharon, I wish you knew how much this note makes our day! We are so happy to hear that we’ve helped inspire your family meals. Being a mom is really hard work and if we can help you in any way we consider that a major win. Thank you for taking the time to write. Best, Laura

  6. Lauren
    January 17, 18:42 Reply

    I made your butter chicken and it was delicious. It was just a bit on the sweet side, I was wondering if you have any tips for adding more heat to the dish, maybe some chilies? Thanks for your great recipes.

    • Laura
      February 10, 11:09 Reply

      Hi Lauren, We’re so glad you enjoyed the dish. We love it as well. However, we have heat adverse children so we back off the spiciness. I love the idea of adding chilis or even cayenne pepper (maybe a pinch or two) or chili powder (maybe a teaspoon or two). And now I want Butter Chicken.

      Thanks so much for taking the time to write. Let us know if you give it some heat and how you enjoyed it. Best, Laura

  7. Bcuz
    March 15, 14:21 Reply

    Are suggestions on what can be used in lieu of Geek yoghurt? We can’t do dairy in our house

  8. Echo
    September 03, 13:10 Reply

    Hi. Can’t wait to try this! Have you ever made the recipe using butter instead of coconut oil? Would I need to cut it back a bit or use same measurements?

    • Laura
      September 03, 21:52 Reply

      Hi, we have and you can use the same measurement! Let us know what you think.

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