Butter Chicken Vs Chicken Tikka Masala: What’s The Difference?

Do you love Indian food? If so, you must have had butter chicken or chicken Tikka Masala.

In this article, we are going to compare these two Indian chicken dishes so that anyone who has tried them or not will have a better understanding of them as well as make an informed decision on which dish works better for you.

Let’s start!

What is butter chicken?

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Butter chicken is one of the most popular Indian dishes and has been introduced to the world by the Mughals.

Butter chicken was used as an idea to save the cooked chicken from drying out.

Chicken pieces, after being marinated in ginger, turmeric, garlic, onion, and other spices, will be simmered in a mixture of tomato paste mixed with butter or ghee (clarified butter) and spices until they become tender and juicy on the inside.

This cooking technique results in some of the most succulent morsels you will ever taste.

Butter chicken has a mildly sweet taste with a curry-like texture.

The best part about this recipe is that it can be served as an appetizer, side dish, or main course.

You can also make it vegetarian by substituting tofu for chicken without sacrificing any flavor or texture! Butter chicken makes a great dinner any night of the week.

What is chicken tikka masala?

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Chicken tikka masala originated in Northern India and has now spread around the world as a favorite dish of all ages.

It consists of chunks of boneless marinated chicken in yogurt with spices like garam masala, cumin, ginger, and garlic and is roasted in an oven.

The chicken is then served in a creamy curry sauce that is usually colored with turmeric, tomato puree, paprika, or food dye.

The term “tikka” is a Persian word, meaning “bits” or “pieces”, while masala is a mixture of ground spices that are commonly used in Indian cooking.

Chicken tikka masala can be served with naan bread or rice.

The best part about this recipe is that not only does it have great flavor but also provides us with many health benefits.

The high amount of lean protein from the chicken along with essential vitamins and minerals like vitamin A from tomatoes and cream makes this dish very delicious and nutritious.

What are the differences between butter chicken vs chicken tikka masala?

Butter chicken and chicken tikka masala might have a similar look, but they are actually two different dishes.

Here are some typical differences between butter chicken and tikka masala:

 Butter chickenChicken tikka masala
Cooking methodChicken chunks are usually pan-friedChicken chunks are usually skewered and cooked in a tandoor
TextureCreamierLess creamy and served with less sauce
ColorUsually lighter (between orange and brown) because more butter will fade the red color from tomato paste awayDarker and red
TasteMilder but buttery andMore intense and spicier

What are the similarities between butter chicken vs chicken tikka masala?

It seems that butter chicken and tikka masala are also very similar.

Let’s take a look at the similarities between these two dishes that are mentioned below:

1. Butter chicken and chicken tikka masala are two popular dishes that originated in Indian cuisine

Butter chicken and tikka masala both originated in the North of India.

Now, these two dishes are well-known all over the world, especially in South Asian cuisine.

Therefore, you can order both dishes when visiting an Indian restaurant in India or other surrounding countries like Pakistan, Nepal, or Bangladesh.

2. The basic ingredients are similar between these two dishes

There is no significant difference between the ingredients of butter chicken or tikka masala.

Basically, these two dishes consist of the same main elements, such as chicken, yogurt, masala spice, tomato paste, butter, and cream.

What makes them different is the amount of each ingredient used in the recipe.

3. Both can be great to serve with rice or naan bread

Another similarity between butter chicken and chicken tikka masala is they can be served the same way.

Both of these chicken dishes are the same as curries and will be great to pair with naan bread, roti, or over rice.

Which one is better?

Product ComparisonPatak's Butter Chicken Curry Sauce 3-Step Kit, Pre-measured...Shan Chicken Tikka Recipe and Seasoning Mix 1.76 oz (50g) - Spice...
Product ImagePatak's Butter Chicken Curry Sauce 3-Step Kit, Pre-measured...Shan Chicken Tikka Recipe and Seasoning Mix 1.76 oz (50g) - Spice...
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In the end, it all boils down to personal preference when deciding which dish seems to be more appealing to you.

Since they are basically made from the same ingredients, they have the same base taste.

However, if you prefer a buttery and creamier dish, butter chicken will be more suitable.

On the other hand, if you are looking for something more challenging with a kick of spiciness, then stick with chicken tikka masala.

Now, go ahead to give both a try and choose your favorite one between butter chicken and tikka masala.

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