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vegan butter chicken recipe using tofu, served with rice and naan

Tofu Makhani Curry

Prep: 2 hr
Cook: 40 min
Total: 2 hr 40 min
Servings: 4

Savory, buttery, and a little tangy, this vegan version of Indian butter chicken uses tofu, fresh spices, and vegan yogurt.

Author Embody Nourish
by Embody Nourish
Recipe Ingredients

Ingredients & Directions

Recipe Ingredients


Yield: Curry (4 Servings)
Needed Kitchenware: 1 Large mixing bowl, baking dish, parchment paper, large pot.
  • 1 pack firm/extra firm tofu
  • 1 cup coconut yogurt
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp turmeric powder
  • ¼ tsp cayenne powder
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp ginger, freshly grated
  • 2 tbsp vegan butter
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1 cup tomato purée
  • ¾ cup coconut milk
  • 1-2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp salt
  • fresh cilantro (coriander) leaves for garnish (optional)
Recipe Directions


  • Drain and press the liquid out of the tofu block. Cut into 3cm cubes.
  • Combine the tofu and marinade ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix thoroughly with your hands until combined. Marinade for at least 2 hours.
  • Preheat oven to 350° F (180° C).
  • Line a baking dish with parchment paper. Place the tofu with the mixture into the dish and bake for 15-20 minutes.
  • In a large pot, add the 2 tbsp vegan butter and melt over medium heat constantly stirring.
  • Add the curry power to the pot while mixing for a couple minutes.
  • Now add the tomato purée, coconut milk, maple syrup, and salt.
  • Once the tofu is done, transfer the baked tofu and mixture to the pot and mix together. Turn down the heat to a low simmer and cook for another 15-20 minutes.
  • Serve immediately and garnish with leaves of fresh cilantro. Consider serving with basmati rice and naan bread. Enjoy!

You can omit the butter or substitute with high quality olive oil. You can omit or substitute the maple syrup for your favorite sweetener.

Don't eat tofu? Consider using chickpeas instead.

Adjust the cayenne pepper powder to make it as spicy as you'd like.

Recipe video

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Recipe nutrition

Nutritional Information

Yield: Curry
Servings: 4
Information per serving:
Energy: 315 kcal
Carbohydrate: 25 g
Protein: 14 g
Fiber: 4 g
Sugar: 15 g
Fat: 19 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 4.3 g
Polyunsatured Fat: 4.4 g
Omega-3: 0.5 g
Omega-6: 2.7 g
Saturated Fat: 9.3 g
Trans Fat: 0 g
Cholesterol: 0 mg
Choline: 52.7 mg 12% DV
Folate: 22.2 µg 5% DV
A: 376.5 IU 16% DV
B1: 0.1 mg 8% DV
B2: 0.2 mg 22% DV
B3: 1.4 mg 9% DV
B5: 1.3 mg 26% DV
B6: 0.2 mg 17% DV
B12: 0.2 mg 24% DV
C: 12.4 mg 16% DV
D: 40 IU 6% DV
E: 2.3 mg 15% DV
K: 7.1 µg 7% DV
Calcium: 463.9 mg 46% DV
Copper: 0.5 mg 54% DV
Iron: 5.5 mg 30% DV
Magnesium: 69.7 mg 21% DV
Manganese: 1.8 mg 98% DV
Phosphorus: 177.2 mg 25% DV
Potassium: 551.4 mg 11% DV
Selenium: 16.3 µg 29% DV
Sodium: 800.9 mg 53% DV
Zinc: 1.8 mg 23% DV

Please note nutritional information varies dependent on agricultural conditions, consistency in manufacturing processes, and honesty in reporting. We cannot accurately report on the amount of harmful chemicals or beneficial plant constituents that might be present in these ingredients. We cannot report on the content of material added during the cooking process. We cannot guarantee if the vitamins present are natural or synthetic. We make no guarantees to the accuracy of this information and continue to suggest purchasing organic, high-quality, fresh ingredients from local, trusted sources. Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet and values come regulated from the FDA. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your needs.

Tips, Suggestions, Photos, & More Information

vegan butter chicken or tofu mikhani, served with naan bread and basmati rice

What is Tofu Mikhani?

Mikhani means "with butter," meaning that it's a curry sauce that has butter. You can make mikhani with any type of protein of your choice and this recipe was based on butter chicken, a very popular Indian version of mikhani in restaurants.

Butter chicken prepared in restaurants are notorious for using too much butter, oil, and/or cream, which might make you feel quite ill from so much grease in one serving.

This recipe uses the same flavors without the copious amounts of oils. In fact, you can omit the butter if you wish to help reduce the amount of oils in your diet if you wish. This recipe is very close to a whole foods recipe actually!

Butter chicken, or any mikhani, is also known for being a tomato-based curry. Select the highest quality tomato purée or consider making your own purée with freshly picked, ripe, organic tomatoes.

vegan butter chicken or tofu mikhani, served with naan bread and basmati rice

Does This Vegan Butter Chicken Taste the Same as Regular Butter Chicken?

YES! It's so good. Using the vegan yogurt and butter really replicates the same dairy taste. The extra firm tofu adds that texture contrast to the sauce that you're looking for to replace the chicken. It's really good, very nutritious, and filling!

vegan butter chicken or tofu mikhani, served with naan bread and basmati rice

What Do I Serve Curry With?

Curry is traditionally served with rice and bread. Naan is the bread of choice and basmatic rice cooked with seasoning is traditional. You can always serve with brown rice, a different bread, or go completely untraditional – try serving with steamed broccoli, collard greens, or next to a salad!


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