Paleo Butter Chicken

I love Indian food. It’s super flavorful, satisfying and comforting. I am Sri Lankan, so cooking with spices doesn’t scare me but making an Indian butter chicken “paleo” was a little daunting. This paleo butter chicken recipe is relatively easy and goes well with sweet potato mash and a green side salad. When using spices for the first time or making a spicy dish for the first time, try and stick to the recipe. Once you have made the dish once, you can always add more spices and personalize.

(serves 4)

  • 4 tbps coconut oil (I use more sometimes)
  • 1 Kg chicken breast or thighs – with the bone (if I’m making this dish for my weekly meals I prefer to cook on the bone, since this tends to hold flavor better)
  • 2 x large onions chopped finely


  • 2 tbp Garam Masala
  • 3 tsp Paprika
  • 1 tbps  Chili powder ( I like my food spicy so I use about 2 tbps)
  • 1 tsp of Cinnamon powder
  • Salt to taste


  • 1 can of tomato puree
  • 1 cup (full cream) coconut milk


  • Hand full of fresh coriander roughly chopped
  • 3 tbsp Lemon juice
  • Place oil (2 tbps of oil) in the pan and brown the chicken- this can take some time so be patient. You could use more oil if necessary
  • Remove the chicken from the pan.
  • Add the rest of the oil and place the onions. Once the onions are semi caramelized add the spices. In roughly 3 minutes the spices should start cooking, at that point add the chicken. Mix the chicken with the spices, ensuring all pieces are properly coated.
  • Add the tomato puree and stir.
  • Add the coconut milk and stir.
  • Cover with a lid, on a low heat for approximately 30 minutes.
  • Check if the chicken is cooked before taking the pan off the heat (I generally fork a piece out and cut it open)
  • Add salt to taste
  • Before serving add the lemon and Garnish with the fresh coriander leaves.


And there you have it- Butter Chicken – Paleo!

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