If you’re wondering what to serve with your butter chicken, you’ve come to the right place.
In this article, I list 39 of the most popular side dishes for butter chicken.
In a rush? Here’s the short answer.
The best side dishes to serve butter chicken are lemon rice, sweet potato samosas, and onion bhajis. You can also serve a side of Peshwari naan, curried potatoes, or Indian cabbage stir fry. For more refreshing options, try a kachumber salad or some cucumber raita.
Ready? Let’s jump right in.
I know what you’re thinking – naan bread is an obvious side dish choice.
And with good reason, it’s soft, fluffy, and great for mopping up any leftover curry sauce.
But don’t serve plain naan. My favorite flavor to serve with butter chicken is a sweet coconut Peshwari naan (yum!!).
(for tips on how to reheat leftover naan, check out my guide)
Why we love this recipe: it tastes so much better than the store-bought stuff.
Since butter chicken can be a very heavy meal, why not pair it with a light salad?
Healthy and bright, this Indian cucumber salad is somewhat like pico de gallo, but with spices like cayenne pepper mixed in.
It’s great for hot summer evenings, or if you’re tired of slaving over a stove.
Why we love this recipe: it’s a no-cook dish that only takes 15 minutes to put together.
You can’t get much more traditional than curry and rice.
But just like with naan, you don’t have to be boring and serve plain white rice.
Instead, I like to pair butter chicken with lemon rice. The acidity from the lemon balances out the rich, creamy sauce.
Why we love this recipe: it’s the most flavorful rice I’ve ever tasted.
Sweet potato samosas
Samosas are the egg rolls of India.
Super crunchy outsides, with a soft inside. They work great as a starter or as a fun side.
I like to serve them with an extra dipping sauce (like a cilantro chutney), but you can also just dunk them in the butter chicken sauce.
Why we love this recipe: they’re mini so won’t fill you up too much.
Butter chicken isn’t spicy – but that doesn’t mean it won’t benefit from a side of cooling cucumber raita.
The fresh flavors from the cucumber and the mint will lift the meal and keep it from becoming too heavy.
I like to mix my raita into the curry, but you can also use it as a dipping sauce for your naan.
Why we love this recipe: it’s clean and simple with no unnecessary extras.
Green goddess salad
Any salad side that you pair with butter chicken needs to have two things.
The first is crunch – to contrast with the smooth sauce and tender chicken. The next is freshness, to balance out the richness of the butter.
And this green goddess salad has both. It’s packed with lemony flavors and has lots of crisp green veggies.
Why we love this recipe: it’s a Tik Tok phenomenon, so your kids will love it!
How about having a thali-style dinner?
A thali is a collection of small servings of different curries.
So alongside your butter chicken, you’d have a second curry – this palak paneer.
It’s soft cheese mixed into a sauce made of pureed spinach. Doesn’t sound that appetizing, but it’s actually super tasty and probably one of my favorite curries.
Why we love this recipe: it’s not super saucy so you won’t be drowning in sauce.
Onion bhajis are a guaranteed crowd pleaser. Ask anyone what their top three Indian foods are and I bet you’ll hear a lot of ‘onion bhajis’.
Why does everyone love them? I think it’s their subtle sweetness and their really satisfying crunchy texture.
Psst… don’t eat too many of them or you won’t have any room for the butter chicken. If you have leftovers, onion bhajis are super easy to reheat.
Why we love this recipe: it uses plain flour, which is much easier to find than traditional gram flour.
Quinoa with mushrooms and scallions
We’ve suggested a lot of Indian-themed dishes so far, but non-Indian sides can work too.
Quinoa has a nutty flavor that I think goes really well with butter chicken, the mushrooms add some earthiness and then you get a pop of brightness from the scallions.
I also like to add some chopped cashews to elevate the dish.
Why we love this recipe: it’s filling, healthy, and great for meal prep.
Aloo sabzi (curried potatoes)
Not feeling the classic rice and naan combo?
Try potatoes instead, but with an Indian twist (of course).
Aloo sabzi flavors the potatoes with bold spices like turmeric, ginger, and chili. So they’ll definitely be able to hold their own against a butter chicken.
Why we love this recipe: it brings some heat to the table.
Looking for something quick and easy?
A simple side of steamed vegetables is perfectly acceptable (and probably the healthiest option).
All you need to do is take a look in your fridge and see what vegetables you have to hand. I always try to slightly under-steam veggies to make sure they don’t become mushy.
Why we love this recipe: it’s perfect for the mid-week rush.
Cabbage stir fry
Complete your butter chicken with this healthy cabbage stir fry.
Also called gobhi ki sabzi, the humble cabbage is elevated by seasoning it with spices including cumin, turmeric, and cilantro.
Want to make it even more nutritious? You can easily add other vegetables like carrots, peas, or corn.
Why we love this recipe: it’s a budget-friendly option.
Baked potato wedges
Fries (or chips) with curry sauce is a big thing in England.
And it’s not hard to understand why – who wouldn’t want to dip some fluffy chips into their butter chicken sauce?
It’s a million times better than ketchup!
Why we love this recipe: wedges are thicker than your usual fries, so they can soak up more of the sauce.
What To Serve With Butter Chicken
- 1 portion butter chicken
- Prepare your butter chicken according to your favorite recipe.
- In the meantime, choose one of the following sides to serve alongside it.
- Side dishes include: Peshwari naan, kachumber salad, lemon rice, sweet potato samosas, cucumber raita, green goddess salad, palak paneer, onion bhajis, quinoa with mushrooms and scallions, aloo sabzi (curried potatoes), steamed veggies, cabbage stir fry, and baked potato wedges.
- Serve immediately and enjoy!