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Instant Pot Murg Malai - Creamy Chicken Curry

Murg malai or chicken malai is a creamy chicken curry. It is very flavorful and easy to make. The creamy texture and flavor is achieved by adding yogurt and heavy whipping cream.
This is a perfect dish to serve when you have guests over. I have attempted this recipe in the Instant Pot and it turned out great.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 4


  • Pressure Cooker
  • Instant Pot




  • Wash and chop the chicken into 2 to 3 inch pieces.
  • Wash and finely chop 3/4 of a medium sized onion.
  • Chop the remaining 1/4 onion into long slices.
  • Soak the saffron strands in 1 tablespoon water.
  • Whisk the yogurt with a fork for 30 seconds and keep it in a bowl at room temperature.
  • Wash and finely chop the cilantro.


  • Select sauté on the instant pot and adjust to normal.
  • Add 3 tablespoons of ghee to the pot. Keep 1 tablespoon of ghee aside for garnish later.
  • When the ghee is hot add the cardamom pods and the finely chopped onions. 
  • When the onions turn golden in roughly 2 to 4 minutes add the ginger garlic paste.
  • Then add the chopped chicken and stir. 
  • Sauté the chicken for a few minutes until a white crust forms on the chicken.
  • Then add the red chili powder, water, white pepper, garam masala, coriander, cumin, and salt. Stir and sauté for one minute. Make sure nothing is stuck to the bottom of the pot and scrape the bottom of the pot well.
  • Press cancel.
  • Secure the lid on the pot and close the pressure-release valve.
  • Select manual and cook at high pressure for 7 minutes.
  • Meanwhile in a pan add one tablespoon of ghee and sauté the sliced long onions and serrano peppers until they are golden. Set them aside.
  • When cooking is complete, use quick pressure release to depressurize.
  • Open the lid.
  • Select sauté and add the beaten yogurt slowly (one spoon at a time) to the pot mixing it continuously.
  • Then add the heavy whipping cream and keep mixing.
  • Let the chicken sauté for 5 minutes and let the gravy thicken. Keep stirring every minute. 
  • Add the dried fenugreek leaves, stir, and press cancel.
  • Transfer the cooked chicken in a serving bowl.
  • Garnish with saffron water, sautéed onions, serrano peppers, and fresh cilantro.


  • Serve with roti, naan (Indian flatbread), or steamed rice.


  • This recipe has been tried on a 6-quart instant pot. The proportions may vary depending on the size of the instant pot you choose to use.
  • If you like your food spicy then you can add an extra 1/2 teaspoon of cayenne pepper.
  • Ground cayenne pepper and red chili powder can be used interchangeably as both of them make the dish spicy. So if you don’t have red chili powder you can use cayenne pepper instead.
  • This is a restaurant styled dish and is rich. 
  • Make sure the yogurt is at room temperature to prevent curdling.
  • Additionally you can use half and half if you don't want to use heavy whipping cream.
  • You can also reduce the amount of cream if you prefer.
  • The whole spices (cardamom pods, can be discarded, they don't need to be consumed).
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