5 from 1 vote
Vegan Butter Chicken
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
45 mins
Total Time
1 hr

Vegan curry dish.

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: plant-based protein, tempeh, tempeh meals, vegan, vegan butter chicken, vegan protein
Servings: 3
  • 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked
Dry Spices
  • 2 tsp Garam Masala
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
Other Ingredients
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 200 grams tempeh or extra firm tofu or 2 cups cauliflower florets and/or chickpeas
  • 1 small red onion, sliced thinly
  • 3 garlic cloves, cut in half
  • 2 tbsp fresh ginger, minced
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 2 bay leafs
  • 3 1/2 cups crushed tomatoes (28 oz. can)
  • 2 tbsp vegan butter or olive oil
  1. Bring a small pot of water to a rolling boil. Add the cashews. Allow the cashews to soak for 15 minutes.

  2. While the cashews are soaking, combine all of the dry spices and salt. Stir until well combined. Set aside.

  3. Slice the onion. Set aside

  4. Cut the tempeh into 1/2 inch cubes. Set aside.

  5. Remove the cashews with a slotted spoon. Rinse with fresh water. Set aside.

  6. Add 3 tbsp of olive oil to a large pan (that comes with a lid). Warm the oil on medium heat. Add the tempeh to the pan. Sauté the tempeh for a couple of minutes on each side, or until it's golden brown on all sides. Then sprinkle approximately 1/3 of the dry spice mixture onto the tempeh and stir until it's well coated. Remove the tempeh from the pan.

  7. Add one more tbsp of olive oil to the pan. Lightly sauté the onion slices on low heat until translucent, about 5 minutes. Sprinkle the onions with 1/3 of the dry spice mixture. Add the minced garlic and ginger. Stir everything together and cook for one more minute.

  8. Add the vegetable stock, bay leafs and soaked cashews to the pan and stir. 

  9. Add the crushed tomatoes and the remainder of the dry spice mixture to the pan and stir. Cover the pan with the lid. Allow the sauce to simmer on low heat for 20 minutes. Stir occasionally. 

  10. Turn the burner off. Remove the bay leafs. Allow the sauce to cool down a little. Carefully ladle the sauce into the blender and blend until really smooth, around 3 to 4 minutes. 

  11. Put the blended sauce back into the pan. Add the cooked tempeh back to the pan as well and stir. Turn the burner to low heat.

  12. Add the vegan butter or olive oil to the pan and stir. 

  13. Cover the pan with the lid and allow the sauce to simmer on low heat for 15 minutes or longer. That should be enough time for all of the flavours to meld together and for the sauce to reduce a little. Stir occasionally. 

  14. Taste for salt. Add more if necessary.

  15. Garnish with cilantro and red onion slices.

Recipe Notes