Chetna Makan's Cauliflower Butter Masala

April 25, 2021
2 Ratings
Photo by Food52
Author Notes

Butter chicken is a very popular curry, and not just in India—you'll find many variations of this beloved dish on Indian menus around the world. You'll rarely find cauliflower in the starring role, though it really comes to life in this creamy, buttery recipe inspired by the classic. Roasting the cauliflower thoroughly tenderizes it, adding sweetness and complexity. After roasting, it's ready to absorb all the flavors from the curry.

Enjoy it hot, and serve with naan or steamed rice. —Chetna Makan

Watch This Recipe
Chetna Makan's Cauliflower Butter Masala
  • Prep time 20 minutes
  • Cook time 45 minutes
  • Serves 4
  • Curry
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower oil
  • 4 tablespoons salted butter, divided
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 cardamom pods
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 (1-inch) piece ginger, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 (14-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon kasuri methi (dried fenugreek leaves)
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • Cauliflower
  • 1 large cauliflower, cut into small florets
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower oil
In This Recipe
  1. Heat the oil and 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat, then add the cinnamon, bay leaves, cardamom, and cumin. Let sizzle for a few seconds, then add the onions and cook over medium heat for 8 to 10 minutes, until the onions turn golden brown.
  2. Add the garlic and ginger and cook for another minute. Next, add the tomatoes, salt, and 1 cup of water. Cover and cook on low heat for 20 to 25 minutes.
  3. In the meantime, heat the oven to 400°F. Place the cauliflower florets on a baking sheet with the salt, ground spices, and sunflower oil, and mix well to coat. Roast for 20 minutes, until they start to turn golden brown at the tips.
  4. Add the turmeric, garam masala, coriander, fenugreek, honey, and 1 cup of water to the simmering tomato mixture and stir well.
  5. Add the roasted cauliflower, stir again to coat, then cover with a lid and cook for 10 minutes, until the cauliflower is cooked through.
  6. Add in the heavy cream and remaining 2 tablespoons of butter, stir well to combine, and serve with naan or steamed rice.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Janelle Albrecht
    Janelle Albrecht
  • Jim Brown
    Jim Brown
  • Tina Read
    Tina Read
  • Louise

5 Reviews

Janelle A. April 26, 2021
This sounds really great! Unfortunately it can't be saved to pinterest, although there is a pin button to do so. Pinterest keeps telling me that this website doesn't allow pins.
Jim B. April 23, 2021
Great flavor! Next time I'll start by roasting the cauliflower. Doing that as step 3 and waiting for the oven to heat up and the cauliflower to roast, I had to stop everything for 10+ minutes before moving on to step 4. But either way, the result is delicious.
Tina R. April 22, 2021
Absolutely delish can't wait to make AGAIN
Louise April 19, 2021
Watched the video.
Made it.
Loved it!
Recommend it 🙌🏻
ashleychugh April 17, 2021
WOW!! First time making Indian food in an Indian household and this was a HIT. So easy to follow and SOOO delicious. I recommend this to anyone! Doesn't require lots of skill, love it. Definitely adding this to the rotation. Can't wait to try other Chetna recipes.