Disney World Copycat Recipes: Butter Chicken From Sanaa (2024)

Animal Kingdom | Disney Recipes | Walt Disney World

Animal Kingdom is home to some pretty amazing things. Food is one of them. We have found a delicious recipe that you can recreate right from home. Take a peek at Copycat Recipes: Butter Chicken and find out why everyone LOVES this dish!Disney World Copycat Recipes: Butter Chicken From Sanaa (1)

In one of my previous blogs I told you all about one of the restaurants at Disney World that I consider a Hidden Gem: Sanaa! In the blog I told you all about the ambiance, as well as the food. Sanaa is a table-service restaurant located at the Animal Kingdom Lodge in the Kidani Village. The cuisine there is an African/Indian inspired, and it is sooo tasty! I also talked about how this restaurant is sitting on the Sunset Savanna, so that you can enjoy the amazing views while you dine. One of the tips I shared was to consider a lunch or an earlier dinner reservation so that you’ll have enough light to be able to see some of the animals while you eat! Oh, and you’ll want to request a Savanna view when you check in. But enough about that. Here’s the real reason of this blog. I enjoyed my meal so much that I came home and found a recipe to recreate their famous Butter Chicken.Disney World Copycat Recipes: Butter Chicken From Sanaa (2)

Butter Chicken from Animal Kingdom’s Sanaa

This Butter Chicken recipe has become one of my favorites to make at home! It’s very simple and easy to follow. I would say the most difficult aspect would be buying all of the ingredients, but once that’s done it’s a piece of cake! In my opinion, if you don’t have a lot of experience with African inspired food then this is a good recipe to start with. It’s a great introduction to the African/Indian spices. And like I mentioned earlier, it’s very simple to prepare and cook.



  1. Grind peppercorn and black cumin till powder.

  2. Add remaining dry ingredients of the marinade, including cloves, and grind again.

  3. In a bowl, add the yogurt,tomato paste and ground powders and mix well.

  4. Add boneless chicken and salt, making sure the marinade coats the chicken completely. Keep in the refrigerator overnight.

  5. An hour before making the curry base, take the bowl outside from the refrigerator to bring to room temperature.

  6. Heat a saucepan and add butter when it is hot.

  7. Once the butter melts completely, add the sliced onions.

  8. Ensure the flame is not too high which would then burn the onions.

  9. Fry the onions till they are reduced to a dark brown color.

  10. Add the chicken and the remaining marination sauce.

  11. Cook the chicken till the sauce reduces and the oil clears (5-10 minutes).

  12. Add boiling water, stirring it well.

  13. Cover the saucepan and allow the chicken to cook completely until it is tender (15-20 minutes).

  14. When chicken is cooked through, stir in the fresh cream and stir gently till it dissolves.

  15. Add slit chili or extra cream on top to garnish.

Once you complete these steps and finish your dish, you can serve it over basmati rice, and sometimes I serve it over white sticky rice. I also serve a small side salad with mine to incorporate some greens into the meal. If you’re not at Disney World enjoying one of your favorite meals, then do the next best thing and recreate the dish at home!

We would love to see your finished dish! Join our Facebook Group, DISNEY EXPRESS LANE, and let us know how it turned out!

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Disney World Copycat Recipes: Butter Chicken From Sanaa (3)

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Paten Williams

Latest posts by Paten Williams (see all)

  • A Guide To Enjoying Disney Magic While Staying At Home - April 21, 2020
  • Disney World Copycat Recipes: Butter Chicken From Sanaa - April 9, 2020
  • Disney World Dining: Sanaa At Animal Kingdom Lodge - May 30, 2019
Disney World Copycat Recipes: Butter Chicken From Sanaa (2024)


What makes butter chicken so red? ›

Cayenne pepper, red chili powder or Kashmiri red chili powder is used to give it a fiery red hue.

Why is butter chicken so tasty? ›

Butter chicken is made with a spiced tomato and butter sauce, which does in fact give it the sweet, creamy and buttery taste.

Who is the chef famous for butter chicken? ›

Saransh Goila (born February 17, 1987) is an Indian chef and a winner of the Food Food Maha Challenge. He founded a Mumbai-based restaurant 'Goila Butter Chicken' and is the author of the food travelogue 'India on my Platter'.

Where was butter chicken? ›

What is Indian butter chicken? Butter chicken, or murgh makhani, known in India, originates from Punjab. The story goes that a Punjabi chef living in New Delhi was experimenting with butter-fried chicken and came up with something so delicious he decided to give it a name: murgh makhani, or buttery chicken.

How do you reduce the bitterness in butter chicken? ›

The chances are you can rescue your bitter curry by: Add equal parts sugar and salt, a teaspoon at a time, mixing well between each pair of additions and tasting until the curry is no longer bitter. Sugar and salt help to reduce bitterness. You can use any sweetener or salt you like.

What is the sauce in butter chicken made of? ›

It's all about that sauce when it comes to authentic butter chicken. You'll be surprised to find that you only need an onion, a can of crushed tomatoes, garlic and ginger, and some added spices to continue those beautiful flavours in the sauce.

What is the difference between butter chicken and tikka masala? ›

Butter chicken is a traditional Indian dish that is rich and creamy with a subtle smoky flavor. At the same time, tikka masala is a British Indian dish with a more complex flavor profile with tangy and spicy notes. Butter chicken is generally sweeter and milder in spiciness, while tikka masala is tangy and spicy.

What thickens butter chicken? ›

Yoghurt or heavy cream:

To achieve a creamy, tangy curry sauce, incorporate yoghurt or heavy cream. Stir them in gently, as high heat may cause curdling. These ingredients are ideal for creating a luxurious texture in dishes like butter chicken or tikka masala.

Why is restaurant butter chicken sweet? ›

The tomatoes and onion give that sweet note to the dish and the cream and butter make the mixture smooth and creamy. Butter chicken should be served with condiments spiked with citrus-like raita with fresh herbs for cutting through the richness.

What is the most expensive butter chicken in the world? ›

A cup of Evian Natural Spring water, a tablespoon of Fillipo Berrio Olive oil and a pack of Lurpak unsalted butter are just some of the gourmet ingredients that go into making the “classiest Butter Chicken" currently available.

What is the real name for butter chicken? ›

Butter chicken, traditionally known as murgh makhani (pronounced [mʊrɣ ˈməkʰaːni]), is an Indian dish originating in Delhi. It is a type of curry made from chicken with a spiced tomato and butter (makhan) sauce. Its sauce is known for its rich texture.

Is tikka masala British or Indian? ›

Origins. The origin of the dish is not certain, but many sources attribute it to the South Asian community in Great Britain; some sources also cite Glasgow as the city of origin. Chicken tikka masala may derive from butter chicken, a popular dish in the northern Indian subcontinent.

What is the closest dish to butter chicken? ›

Chicken Tikka Masala is similar to Butter Chicken. Both curries are made of grilled chicken, butter, crushed peanut, tomato, onion, garam masala, etc.

What is an interesting fact about butter chicken? ›

Did you know that authentic Butter Chicken is prepared in a tandoor, a traditional Indian clay oven? The chicken is first cooked in the tandoor, giving it a smoky and charred flavor, before being added to the luscious tomato-based curry.

Is butter chicken good for you? ›

Is butter chicken good for the heart? Both butter and cream are high in saturated fat. High intakes of saturated fat increase blood cholesterol levels and the chance of heart disease. Relying on your recipe, one serving of butter chicken may include about 28 grams of whole fat and 12 grams of saturated fat.

Why is Indian butter chicken red? ›

Butter Chicken has a reddish-orange color, while Tikka Masala is brighter red. The color of Butter Chicken comes from the use of tomato paste, cream, and spices.

What gives butter chicken the colour? ›

The red colour comes mostly from the tomato puree. Some restaurants have food colouring but for the most part, you can achieve the colour naturally.

How does butter chicken get its color? ›

Chili Powder - The orangish- red color of Butter Chicken comes from Kashmiri chili powder and Tomato puree. Most restaurants also add red or orange food coloring to help with the look. Tip: Kashmiri chili powder gives the best color when its saluted for a few seconds in the oil or fat.

Why is my butter chicken red and not orange? ›

The deghi mirch is basically a kind of a pseudo paprika powder (and is DIFFERENT from the normal chilli powder) that endows the dish with a bright red color and added flavor.....the amount you need to use would depend on the potency of the brand you buy and the amount of heat you normally enjoy....and do remember that ...


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