Savor the Zest: Flavorful Lemon Butter Chicken Recipe

Dive into the tantalizing world of lemon butter chicken, a beloved Indian dish renowned for its fusion of tender chicken and zesty lemon goodness. This recipe provides an exhilarating flavor experience, combining the rich creaminess of butter with the citrusy freshness of lemon. Whether it’s a family meal or entertaining guests, this dish promises a symphony of flavors on every plate.

How to Make a Fruit Pizza:

History and Origins of the Recipe:

Lemon butter chicken, originating from Indian cuisine, finds its roots in the rich and diverse culinary traditions of the country. This dish is a manifestation of the elaborate and aromatic spices used in Indian cooking, skillfully combined with a tangy, lemony touch. Known for its vibrant tastes and robust flavors, it’s a popular staple enjoyed across various regions in India and beyond.

Tools Needed, Number of People, Cooking Time:


  • Large skillet or pan
  • Cooking spoon
  • Knife and chopping board

Serving: Ideal for 4 people

Preparation Time: Approximately 15 minutes

Cooking Time: Around 30 minutes


  • 500g chicken, cut into pieces
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons plain yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 tablespoon coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder (optional)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Fresh coriander for garnish (optional)

Ingredient Substitutes:

  • Chicken: Boneless thighs or breast can replace chicken pieces.
  • Butter: Ghee or a mixture of oil and butter can serve as alternatives.
  • Plain Yogurt: Substitute with Greek yogurt or coconut milk for a dairy-free option.
  • Chili Powder: Paprika or cayenne pepper can replace chili powder for varying spice levels.


  1. Sauté the Aromatics: Melt butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add chopped onions and sauté until translucent. Include garlic, ginger, coriander powder, turmeric, garam masala, and chili powder, if preferred. Toast the spices for around a minute.
  2. Brown the Chicken: Introduce the chicken pieces to the skillet and cook until evenly browned on all sides.
  3. Add Flavor and Simmer: Reduce heat to medium-low. Pour in plain yogurt, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Thoroughly coat the chicken in the lemon butter sauce. Cover and simmer for about 20 minutes until the chicken is tender.
  4. Thicken the Sauce: Uncover and slightly increase the heat to condense the sauce to preferred consistency. Gently stir to ensure a harmonious blend of sauce and chicken.
  5. Rest and Garnish: Allow the dish to rest for a few minutes. Garnish with fresh coriander and serve with basmati rice or naan bread.

Common Mistakes and How to Avoid Them:

1. Overcooking the Chicken:

To prevent the chicken from becoming dry, keep a watchful eye and simmer only until the chicken is thoroughly cooked.

2. Inadequate Spices:

Ensure accurate measurement and inclusion of the spices to achieve the authentic flavor profile of the dish.

3. Failing to Balance Lemon and Butter:

Maintain the right balance of lemon and butter. Adjust the proportions to your taste preference to avoid overpowering one flavor over the other.

4. Skipping the Resting Phase:

Allow the dish to rest for a few minutes before serving to lock in flavors and tenderness.


1. Is this dish overly spicy?

The level of spice can be adjusted by altering or omitting the chili powder, ensuring it suits your taste.

2. Can I make this dish with bone-in chicken?

Certainly, adjust the cooking time to ensure bone-in chicken cooks thoroughly and evenly.

3. Is it okay to use bottled lemon juice?

Fresh lemon juice is recommended for optimal flavor, but bottled lemon juice can be used as a substitute.

4. Can I make this dish ahead of time?

Yes, the flavors tend to develop more if made ahead, just reheat gently before serving.

5. Can I freeze leftovers of lemon butter chicken?

Yes, this dish freezes well in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Thaw and reheat thoroughly before consuming.

Note: Always ensure cooking temperatures for chicken for safe consumption. Adjust spices and flavors according to personal taste and dietary preferences.

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