Butter chicken has become a worldwide favorite and is a staple on many restaurant menus. The dish’s origins can be traced back to the Moti Mahal restaurant in Delhi, India, where it was created in the 1950s. The tender chunks of chicken cooked in a rich and creamy tomato and butter sauce has since become a beloved dish that is enjoyed by millions of people around the world.
When it comes to serving butter chicken, however, it can be a challenge to find the perfect butter chicken side dish that will complement its flavors.
For those who are new to cooking Indian cuisine, the options for side dishes may seem overwhelming. There are so many delicious options to choose from, each with its own unique flavor profile and cooking method.
That’s why we’ve compiled a list of 20 tasty side dishes that will pair perfectly with your butter chicken. Whether you’re looking for traditional Indian breads, rice dishes, or even vegetables, we’ve got you covered.
From crispy naan bread to fragrant basmati rice, these side dishes will add an extra layer of flavor and texture to your meal. They will also help to balance the rich flavors of the butter chicken and provide a complete and satisfying meal.
Whether you’re having a family dinner, entertaining guests, or just cooking for yourself, these side dishes will make your butter chicken experience even more enjoyable. So, let’s take a look at the 20 tasty side dishes that you can serve with your butter chicken in 2023.
Butter chicken side dish ideas
1. Naan Bread
Naan bread is a staple side dish when it comes to serving butter chicken. This soft, fluffy bread is perfect for soaking up the rich and creamy sauce of the dish. To make it extra special, serve it warm straight from the oven or tandoor, and consider brushing it with a little butter for extra flavor.
The texture and taste of the bread perfectly complement the butter chicken, making it a classic pairing that is hard to beat. Whether you prefer plain naan or flavored options like garlic or cilantro, this dish is sure to be a crowd-pleaser.
2. Rice Pilaf
A simple rice pilaf is a classic side dish that pairs well with butter chicken. To make it, start by cooking basmati rice in chicken or vegetable stock, and then stir in your choice of seasonings and herbs, such as cumin, coriander, or turmeric.
This dish is a great way to balance out the rich flavors of the butter chicken, and it provides a filling and satisfying addition to the meal. To add extra flavor and texture, try stirring in some chopped nuts, dried fruit, or saffron threads. Rice pilaf is a versatile side dish that can be adapted to suit your personal tastes and preferences.
3. Garlic Naan
For a twist on the classic naan, try serving garlic naan with your butter chicken. To make it, brush warm naan with melted butter, and sprinkle with minced garlic and fresh cilantro.
The combination of the soft, garlicky bread and the rich butter chicken creates a delicious and unforgettable meal. Garlic naan is a great option for those who love bold, flavorful food, and it adds a unique twist to the classic naan and butter chicken pairing.
Raita is a cooling yogurt-based side dish that helps to balance out the spiciness of the butter chicken. To make it, simply mix together yogurt, grated cucumber, and your choice of seasonings, such as cumin and mint.
This dish is perfect for those who prefer a lighter side with their butter chicken, and it provides a nice contrast to the richness of the dish. Raita is a refreshing option on hot days, and it also helps to soothe the palate between bites of spicy food.
For a fresh and crunchy side dish, serve a simple green salad with your butter chicken. A mix of crisp greens, such as romaine lettuce or spinach, works well, and you can add in other ingredients like cherry tomatoes, cucumber, and red onion for extra flavor and texture.
A simple vinaigrette made with olive oil, lemon juice, and a touch of honey is all you need to dress the salad. A green salad is a great option for those looking for a healthy, flavorful side dish to serve with their butter chicken.
6. Tandoori Rotis
Tandoori rotis are thin, unleavened flatbreads that are traditionally baked in a tandoor oven. They are the perfect side dish for butter chicken as they are soft, warm, and absorbent, allowing you to scoop up every last bite of the flavorful sauce.
To make them even more special, brush them with ghee or butter before serving. Tandoori rotis are a great alternative to naan bread, and they provide a slightly different texture and flavor to the meal.
7. Aloo Gobi
Aloo gobi is a classic Indian dish made with potatoes and cauliflower. It’s a great side dish for butter chicken as it provides a flavorful and filling addition to the meal. To make it, simply sauté diced potatoes and cauliflower with spices like turmeric, cumin, and coriander.
Serve it alongside the butter chicken for a balanced and satisfying meal. Aloo gobi is a vegan-friendly option that is enjoyed by people of all ages.
Samosas are crispy, triangular-shaped pastries filled with a mixture of vegetables or meat. They are a popular snack in India, and they make a great side dish for butter chicken. Serve them warm and crispy, with a side of mint or tamarind chutney for dipping.
Samosas provide a crunchy and savory addition to the meal, and they are sure to be a hit with both kids and adults.
9. Chana Masala
Chana masala is a classic Indian dish made with chickpeas and spices. It’s a great side dish for butter chicken as it provides a filling and flavorful option to the meal. To make it, simply simmer chickpeas in a spicy tomato-based sauce, and serve it over steamed rice or with naan bread.
Chana masala is a vegan-friendly option that is both nutritious and delicious.
11. Mango Chutney
Mango chutney is a sweet and tangy condiment that is popular in Indian cuisine. It’s a great side dish for butter chicken as it provides a sweet and fruity contrast to the rich and creamy sauce of the dish.
To make it, simply simmer chopped mango, sugar, vinegar, and spices until thick and syrupy. Serve it warm or at room temperature, and enjoy the sweet and tangy flavors with each bite of butter chicken.
Papadum is a thin, crispy cracker that is popular in Indian cuisine. It’s a great side dish for butter chicken as it provides a crunchy and savory addition to the meal. Serve it warm and crispy, with a side of mint or tamarind chutney for dipping.
Papadum is a gluten-free option that is enjoyed by people of all ages.
13. Bhindi Masala
Bhindi Masala: Bhindi Masala is a popular Indian dish made with sliced okra that is sautéed with spices and herbs. It’s a great side dish for butter chicken as it provides a flavorful and slightly crunchy option to balance out the richness of the dish.
To make it, simply slice fresh okra and sauté it with spices, herbs, and diced onions and tomatoes until it’s tender and slightly crispy. Serve it hot as a side dish, or as a snack on its own.
The combination of the slightly crunchy okra with the warm and aromatic spices makes for a perfect pairing with the creamy and spicy flavors of butter chicken. Bhindi Masala is a staple in Indian cuisine and is a must-try for those who love okra and want to add a flavorful and healthy side to their meal.
14. Jeera Rice
Jeera rice is a popular Indian dish made with basmati rice and cumin seeds. It’s a great side dish for butter chicken as it provides a simple and flavorful option to balance out the rich and creamy sauce of the dish.
To make it, simply cook basmati rice with cumin seeds and ghee until tender and fluffy. Serve it hot, and enjoy the subtle flavor of cumin with each bite of butter chicken.
15. Masoor Dal
Masoor dal is a popular Indian dish made with red lentils and spices. It’s a great side dish for butter chicken as it provides a flavorful and filling option to the meal.
To make it, simply simmer red lentils in a spicy tomato-based sauce, and serve it over steamed rice. Masoor dal is a vegan-friendly option that is both nutritious and delicious.
16. Onion and Tomato Salad
Onion and tomato salad is a simple and refreshing side dish that is perfect for serving with butter chicken. To make it, simply chop up fresh tomatoes and onions, and toss them with a touch of lemon juice and salt. Serve it chilled to balance out the spiciness of the butter chicken and to refresh the palate between bites.
Onion and tomato salad is a light and healthy option that is enjoyed by people of all ages.
17. Aloo Gobhi
Aloo Gobhi is a popular Indian dish made with potatoes and cauliflower. It’s a great side dish for butter chicken as it provides a flavorful and filling option to the meal. To make it, simply sauté diced potatoes and cauliflower in a spicy tomato-based sauce, and serve it hot.
Aloo Gobhi is a vegan-friendly option that is both nutritious and delicious. The combination of the soft and tender vegetables with the spicy sauce makes for a perfect pairing with the rich and creamy butter chicken.
18. Mango Lassi
Mango Lassi is a popular Indian drink made with mango puree, yogurt, and spices. It’s a great side dish for butter chicken as it provides a light and refreshing option to balance out the spiciness of the dish.
To make it, simply blend together mango puree, yogurt, sugar, and a touch of cardamom or saffron. Serve it chilled, and enjoy the sweet and tangy flavors with each bite of butter chicken. Mango Lassi is a healthy and hydrating option for those who want a break from the traditional rice and bread sides.
19. Baingan Bharta
Baingan Bhartha is a popular Indian dish made with roasted eggplant that is mashed and seasoned with spices. It’s a great side dish for butter chicken as it provides a smoky and flavorful option to balance out the richness of the dish.
To make it, simply roast a large eggplant over an open flame until it’s charred and soft, then mash it with spices and sautéed onions and tomatoes. Serve it hot as a side dish, or as a dip for breads.
The smoky and savory flavors of Baingan Bhartha make it a perfect pairing with the creamy and spicy butter chicken.
20. Kachumber Salad
Kachumber Salad is a popular Indian salad made with diced tomatoes, onions, and cucumbers, seasoned with spices and lemon juice. It’s a great side dish for butter chicken as it provides a fresh and crunchy option to balance out the richness of the dish.
To make it, simply dice up fresh tomatoes, onions, and cucumbers, and toss them with spices, lemon juice, and a touch of salt. Serve it chilled, and enjoy the tangy and refreshing flavors with each bite of butter chicken.
Kachumber Salad is a light and healthy option for those who want a break from the heavier sides, and provides a perfect contrast to the rich and creamy flavors of the dish.
Frequently Asked Questions
Butter chicken is a popular Indian dish that is typically served with rice or naan bread. To eat it traditionally, you can start by scooping some of the butter chicken onto your plate. Then, use a fork and spoon to mix the butter chicken with some of the accompanying rice or naan bread. This will help to absorb all of the delicious flavors and spices in the dish. Finally, enjoy your meal by savoring each bite!
For an even more traditional experience, you can also try eating butter chicken with your hands. Start by tearing off a piece of naan bread and using it as a utensil to scoop up some of the butter chicken. Make sure to get some sauce along with it for extra flavor. Then, use your fingers to roll up the naan and butter chicken into a small ball before popping it into your mouth. Eating this way is great for getting all of the flavors in one bite!
Yes, butter chicken typically comes with rice. Rice is a traditional accompaniment to Indian dishes like butter chicken. The combination of the creamy tomato-based sauce from the butter chicken and the fluffy texture of the cooked rice is a classic pairing that adds great flavor and texture to the dish.
Additionally, having both components together on one plate makes for an easy and complete meal. Rice can also be used to soak up any extra sauce left on your plate, so you don’t miss out on any of that delicious flavor!
Absolutely! Butter chicken is one of those dishes that tastes even better the next day. The flavors have more time to meld together and the chicken has a chance to soak up all of the delicious spices and creamy sauce.
It’s also a great dish for meal prepping, as it reheats really well. If you’re looking for maximum flavor, then try making your butter chicken the night before so that it can sit in the fridge overnight. You’ll be amazed at how much richer and more flavorful it is when you eat it the next day!
Butter chicken is traditionally served with naan, which is a type of flatbread. Naan is usually made with flour, yeast, and yogurt, and it’s cooked in a tandoor oven. The combination of rich butter chicken and fluffy naan makes for a delicious meal.
However, some people also enjoy eating butter chicken with rice. Basmati rice is the most common accompaniment, as its light flavor complements the creamy sauce of the butter chicken nicely. Rice can be served alongside the naan or as an alternative to it.
Ultimately, whether you choose to eat your butter chicken with naan or rice is up to personal preference. Both options are delicious and will result in an enjoyable meal.
Butter chicken is a popular Indian dish that is usually served as a main course. On restaurant menus, it is typically referred to as Murgh Makhani or Chicken Makhani.
This dish consists of marinated chicken cooked in a creamy tomato-based sauce that includes spices like ginger, garlic, garam masala, and chili powder. It is often served with naan or rice on the side. The combination of the rich and flavorful sauce with the tender chicken makes it an incredibly popular dish among diners around the world.
India is famous for its butter chicken dish. This popular dish originated in the northern region of India and has since become a staple in Indian cuisine. It is made with marinated chicken cooked in a rich, creamy tomato sauce.
The sauce is flavored with a variety of spices including garam masala, ginger, garlic, and chili powder. Butter chicken is usually served with rice or naan bread, and it can also be enjoyed as an appetizer or main course.
The popularity of butter chicken has spread far beyond India’s borders and it can now be found in restaurants around the world. In the United States, it is often served as an entrée at Indian restaurants, but it can also be found on menus at many other types of eateries. Its rich flavor makes it a favorite among diners and its versatility means that it can be easily adapted to different tastes and diets.
Butter chicken is a popular Indian dish that has become beloved by many around the world. The unique flavor and creamy texture of this dish comes from its main ingredients: butter and tomato-based sauce. The butter adds a richness to the dish, while the tomatoes provide an acidic and sweet balance.
Additionally, spices like cumin, coriander, garam masala, and turmeric add an extra layer of flavor that gives the dish its signature taste. Finally, the marinade of yogurt and cream helps to tenderize the chicken and creates an incredibly smooth texture. All these elements come together to create a truly delicious experience that is both comforting and flavorful.
If you’re looking for a dairy-free alternative to cream in butter chicken, coconut milk is a great option. Not only does it have a creamy texture, but the subtle sweetness of the coconut also adds an interesting flavor to the dish. To make sure your butter chicken isn’t too thin or runny, use full-fat coconut milk and reduce it on the stovetop until it’s thick and creamy.
Another option is cashew cream. Cashews are high in fat and when blended with water they create a smooth, creamy consistency that can be used as a substitute for cream in many dishes. To make cashew cream, simply blend equal parts roasted cashews and water together until completely smooth, then add it to your butter chicken recipe at the end of cooking.
Finally, if you’re looking for an even healthier alternative to cream in butter chicken, consider using pureed vegetables like cauliflower or potatoes.
You can also read this article How To Make Chicken Shawarma At Home
In conclusion, butter chicken is a rich and flavorful dish that is best enjoyed with a variety of side dishes. Whether you’re in the mood for something light and refreshing, like a Kachumber Salad, or something hearty and filling, like a serving of Jeera Rice, there’s a side dish that will complement the flavors of your butter chicken.
The 20 side dishes mentioned in this blog post are just a few of the many options available, and we hope that they have inspired you to try something new and exciting with your next serving of butter chicken.
So next time you sit down to enjoy this classic Indian dish, remember to pair it with one of these delicious and tasty side dishes for a complete and satisfying meal.