Keto Butter Chicken

I absolutely love Indian food, it is my favorite type of cuisine.  Unfortunately, I didn’t discover how much I loved Indian food until sometime in late 2015… a quarter of my life, wasted.  I guess you could say now I’m making up for lost time.  During my final semester of student teaching I would each lunch in the teacher’s lounge with some of the other teacher’s in the school.  On the days I packed some sort of Indian dish, they would always stare curiously at my plate for several minutes, before the 7th grade science teacher/baseball coach would finally speak up and ask, “what the hell are you eating?”.

After explaining what it was (and how to pronounce it), I would usually offer a bite to anyone who was willing, but never had any takers.  I will concede that sometimes a saag or even this butter chicken, if not presented well, can look a little gross, but the taste is unrivalled.

One thing a lot of Indian food recipes have in common is their inclusion of turmeric.  My favorite thing about making butter chicken is the fact that it is left out.  I know what your thinking, “turmeric is super good for you though”.  You’re right, it is super anti-inflammatory and good for you, but it’s also super shirt ruining.

I have learned my lesson after too many ruined shirts, so now anytime I’m cooking or eating anything with turmeric I have an old Allman Brothers t-shirt I wear that already has its fair share of cooking stains.

This may be a little of a curve-ball, but if you want to make the most (nutritiously speaking) out of this butter chicken, forgo the butter.  Wait, what?  Yeah you heard me… substitute ghee in its place.

If you haven’t tried ghee before, it is like concentrated butter and it kind of has a nutty more butterier flavor, but with even more nutritional benefits, especially for those following a keto diet.  Since ghee is essentially concentrated butter (without the milk solids), the nutrients and vitamins in regular butter are condensed in ghee, making it a nutritional powerhouse.  Some of the main nutritional benefits of ghee include, but are not limited to; strengthening your immune system, maintaining heart health, boosting energy, improving digestion and reducing inflammation.

For more information on the nutritional benefits of ghee and how to make it, check out the links below.


This Keto Butter Chicken is a spin on a favorite Indian dish of mine. It’s super easy to make, only takes about 30 minutes, and everyone at your table will love it!



    • 1.5 lbs chicken breast
    • 2 tablespoons garam masala
    • 3 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated
    • 3 teaspoons minced garlic
    • 4 oz plain yogurt
    • 1 tablespoon coconut oil


    • 2 tablespoons ghee or butter
    • 1 onion
    • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated
    • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
    • 14.5 oz crushed tomatoes
    • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
    • ½ tablespoon garam masala
    • 2 teaspoons cumin
    • 1 teaspoon chili powder
    • ½ cup heavy cream
    • Salt, to taste


  • cilantro
  • cauliflower rice


  1. Cut chicken into 2 inch pieces and place in a large bowl with 2 tablespoons garam masala, 1 teaspoon grated ginger, and 1 teaspoon minced garlic. Add in the yogurt, stir to combine. Chill at least 30 minutes.
  2. For the sauce, place the onion, ginger, garlic, crushed tomatoes and spices in a blender, and blend until smooth. Set aside.

  3. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large skillet over medium high heat. Place the chicken in the skillet, browning 3 to 4 minutes per side. Once browned pour in the sauce cook 5 to 6 minutes longer.
  4. Stir in the heavy cream and ghee, continue to cook another minute. Taste for salt and add additional if needed. Top with cilantro and serve with cauliflower rice if desired.


Nutritional information does not include cauliflower rice.
  • calories 293
  • fat (grams) 17
  • net carbs  6
  • protein (grams) 25

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