Butter No Chicken

By Hayley Tia

This plant-based version of an Indian staple might just trick even the carnivores on board. Using the fibrous texture of young jackfruit this mild curry carries all the flavors of a traditional butter chicken dish without the use of any animal products.
Butter no chicken Indian food with naan bread


300g young green jackfruit

400ml can coconut milk

3 tablespoons tomato paste

1 large brown onion diced

3 cloves fresh garlic minced

1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger

1 tablespoon coconut oil

2 teaspoon ground turmeric

1 teaspoon garam masala

1/2 teaspoon chilli flakes (or more if you like it hot)

1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon coconut sugar


  1. Heat the coconut oil over low-medium heat and add the diced onion, stirring occasionally for 3-4 minutes.

  2. Add the garlic, ginger and spices and cook a further 2 minutes.

  3. Add the jackfruit, tomato puree, coconut sugar and coconut milk. Increase heat slightly to bring the curry to a gentle simmer for 5-10 minutes.

  4. Turn the heat off and add your fresh lemon juice to give it a slight acidity to help balance the flavors.

  5. Serve with the rice and/or your favorite Indian sides and condiments, see our garlic naan bread recipe HERE for a real treat.

Serves 4

From the Jack Tree, Jackfruit is from the breadfruit family and is a highly versatile ingredient. Young Jackfruit is becoming an increasingly popular meat substitute in the west due to its fantastic 'pulled meat' like texture and ability to absorb all the best flavors found in savory dishes like curries, strews, and stir fries. Once ripe, the flesh is distinctively sweet smelling and has a taste similar to sweet chewing gum. Cruising South-East Asia, Jackfruit is readily available at fresh food markets, both freshly sliced as young or ripe fruit. For those cruising in the west young Jackfruit has risen in popularity and can be purchased at many health food stores, Asian grocers and even at many leading supermarkets, canned in brine.

Both the young and the ripe fruit is a staple in our household since it travels well and as a canned ingredient can be stored almost indefinitely. This vegan spin on the Indian favorite always gets a run when we are nearing the end of our provisions. None of the ingredients requires refrigeration and it can be easily whipped together to make this tasty dish that is suitable for the whole family.

​​​​Hayley Tia

A liveaboard sailor and professional copywriter, creating content from the cabin of her floating home. Prior to life on the water, Hayley owned and operated a seaside cafe for over 7 years whilst starting a degree in marine biology. She now enjoys the space and time the liveaboard life has given her and enjoys preparing nutritious meals in the galley as well as utilising her qualifications as a yoga instructor to lead morning yoga sessions on the beach at each new anchorage.

See her on Instagram


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