Almost effortless, One Pan Spicy Sesame Butter Chicken – incredibly delicious and nutritious comfort food. Indian-inspired butter chicken made with plenty of spice, creamy coconut milk, and even some sesame seeds for a unique little twist. Finish each bowl off with steamed rice, then serve with spicy chili butter. You’ll have the perfect dinner that can be enjoyed any night of the week. This meal is quickly made all in one dish. Then simply bake and serve, easy peasy!
Without a doubt, this is my favorite recipe I’ve been able to share in quite a while. It’s not that it’s anything incredibly creative or different. It’s more that I was able to take a recipe we all LOVE and make it in such a simple, almost effortless, way.
And the outcome is just as delicious (if not more so) than the traditional way of making butter chicken on the stovetop. I’m so happy to share this recipe with you all! I know this is going to be a staple for many of you!
Often, when my brothers are here in Colorado, they request recipes I’ve already shared with you all: tacos, ramen, and the very popular butter chicken.
I love making my brothers new recipes, but I also love making them their favorites too. So when the boys asked for butter chicken, I started thinking of a few ways to reinvent the recipe.
Unfortunately, I made a variation of this dish twice before calling it quits. So I put aside the idea for a sesame butter chicken and decided I was done with it. But after about a week, something gave me the idea to try baking the dish instead. To my surprise, the baked variation turned out INCREDIBLE. The flavors are perfect, the sauce is creamy, and what’s possibly even more exciting – it’s the easiest recipe!
Step 1: season the chicken
Start with the chicken. For this dish, I use boneless, skinless chicken thighs. Sometimes, I use chicken breasts, too, but since the chicken is baked, I didn’t want the breasts to dry out in the oven. Small chicken thighs work perfectly.
In a baking dish, toss the chicken with yogurt and add plenty of garlic and fresh ginger. Then, add all of the spices: garam masala, cumin, turmeric, and cayenne.
If time allows, you can marinate the chicken for 30 minutes or overnight. If you’re in a time crunch, just start cooking. I’ve now made this both ways, and there’s not a huge difference.
Step 2: everything else
Now, top the chicken with a chopped onion. Pour over a can of coconut milk, add the tomato paste, and mix it all together until you have a very creamy sauce. Make sure you season with salt too.
Add pats of cold butter over the chicken, then sprinkle the entire dish with sesame seeds.
Step 3: bake
And now you bake. In about 30 to 40 minutes, you’ll have perfectly cooked butter chicken in a very creamy, very delicious sauce.
All you have to add to this is steamed rice. Well, ideally some warm, buttery naan too. Oh, and fresh cilantro, can’t forget that! And if you’re up for going over the top, I did a quick chili butter using butter, chili flakes, and paprika. It makes the dish just a touch more special. We love the extra sauce and spice!
How are the leftovers?
They taste even better the following day. The flavors have time to mend, and the sauce is just that much more intense.
I can’t tell you how much I love this recipe. I’m already looking forward to remaking it for my parents and Asher now that they’re back. This dish is so flavorful, so full of color, and even though they’re small, the sesame seeds are such a nice addition. I really think you’ll love this!
Looking for other Indian-inspired dinners? Here are my favorites:
Lastly, if you make this One Pan Spicy Sesame Butter Chicken, be sure to leave a comment and/or give this recipe a rating! Above all, I love to hear from you guys and always do my best to respond to each and every comment. And, of course, if you do make this recipe, don’t forget to tag me on Instagram! Looking through the photos of recipes you all have made is my favorite!
Easy Baked Spicy Sesame Butter Chicken
Calories Per Serving: 529 kcal
Nutritional information is only an estimate. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.
- 2 pounds small boneless chicken breasts or thighs
- 1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 6 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh grated ginger
- 2 tablespoons garam masala
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1-2 teaspoons cayenne pepper, use to your taste
- salt and black pepper
- 4 tablespoons salted butter
- 1 large yellow onion, chopped
- 1 can (14 ounce) full-fat coconut milk
- 1/2 cup tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons cold, salted butter, sliced
- 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- steamed rice and naan, for serving
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- 1. In a baking dish, toss together the chicken, yogurt, garlic, ginger, garam masala, cumin, turmeric, cayenne pepper, and 1 teaspoon salt. Let sit 5 minutes. 2. Preheat the oven to 400°.3. To the chicken, add the onion, then pour over the coconut milk. Add the tomato paste. Stir until creamy and well-mixed. Arrange the butter slices over the chicken. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake 30-40 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Top with cilantro. 4. Meanwhile, melt the butter, chili flakes, and paprika together. Cook until the butter is browning. Remove from the heat.5. Serve the chicken and sauce over bowls of rice with chili butter and naan. Enjoy!