We can smell it in the air: BBQ season is here. And we’re celebrating. How? With a nice cold Pinot Grigio in hand, we’re on the hunt for superstar dishes to add to our BBQ repertoire. Get Grilling: Best BBQ Butter Chicken or Shrimp

Forget scanning the shelves of BBQ sauces and marinades on the market. They’re loaded with unhealthy amounts of salt, sugar and even fillers like maltodextrin, silicon dioxide and more stuff we can’t pronounce. So, what next? Read on and we’ll show you how to whip up a 2-minute marinade at home and use it to create an impossibly easy (read: 15 minutes or less) and delicious meal.

Grilled butter chicken is one dish that pescatarians, vegetarians and vegans are pretty much excluded from enjoying. Well, we’ve got the perfect recipe to help you master this Indian classic by applying butter chicken basics to to a marinade so versatile, it doesn’t matter which protein you use. So ditch the poultry and get creative by substituting shrimp or veggies. This recipe is exquisite! And bonus: There’s zero butter in it (or gluten, FYI)!

BBQ (No Butter) Indian Butter Shrimp

Serves 2


  • 10-12 raw shrimp, shelled and deveined (or use veggies like peppers, zucchini, eggplant, etc.)
  • 3 tbsp Grapeseed Oil 2 tsp Spice Sanctuary Butter Chicken Spice
  • Blend 1/2 tsp Spice Sanctuary Ajwain Seeds Spice Sanctuary Butter Chicken Spice


  • 1 tbsp Coconut Oil 1 tsp Spice Sanctuary Brown Mustard Seeds
  • 1 tsp Spice Sanctuary Cumin Seeds 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 6 Tomatoes from a can of whole tomatoes, pureed in a blender
  • 1/4 tsp Spice Sanctuary Asafoetida (Hing)

Insider Tip: Asafoetida is a wonderful digestive spice with subtle onion and garlic undertones and lends a beautiful depth to most curries, dishes with heavy sauces and lentil and legumes. You only need a little, though!

  • 1/4 tsp Spice Sanctuary Red Chili Ground (optional)
  • 80 ml or 1/3 cup whipping cream (or use coconut or almond milk for a vegan substitute)
  • Sea salt to season


  • 1/4 onion, cut into chunks for skewers
  • 4  Romaine lettuce leaves
  • Some cooked rice or quinoa (optional) Indian Butter Shrimp with Rice


1. For the marinade, put all the ingredients into a Ziploc bag and secure. Then gently massage the shrimp so it gets properly covered with the marinade. Let it marinate in the fridge for at least an hour or even better, overnight.

2. Heat the oil in a saucepan on medium-high heat. Add the mustard seeds and cumin seeds and allow them to sizzle and release their volatile oils into the oil before adding the garlic.

3. Stir frequently to ensure the garlic does not burn.

Insider Tip: The more garlic is cooked, the milder it becomes so it is important not to let the garlic overcook.

4. After a couple of minutes, add the pureed tomatoes and asafoetida and chili. Stir to combine well and cover with a lid, allowing the tomatoes to cook down further—about another 5-10 minutes so that the water in the puree is reduced.

5. Add the cream and combine well. Season with salt to taste and cook for another couple of minutes.

6. Grease metal skewers with a little coconut oil (always use a high smoked point oil) or pre-soak wooden skewers in hot water. When you are ready to grill the shrimp, take one shrimp at a time and load it one on the skewer followed by a piece of onion, and alternate, equally dividing the ingredients between your skewers. Grill on a medium-high heat for about five minutes, turning halfway through until the shrimp is cooked but still tender.

7. Meanwhile, take any remaining marinade from the Ziploc bag and stir it into the sauce. To serve, lay the skewers on a bed of the romaine lettuce with a side serving of butter chicken sauce in a separate small bowl for dipping. Add rice and quinoa to the plate.

Insider Tip: Make sure you really dip every shrimp and onion piece into the sauce for a modern yet authentic butter chicken experience that will definitely raise the bar at any BBQ! To learn more about the quality and benefit of spices or for more new recipe ideas, check out spicesanctuary

About the author

Trusha Patel

Trusha Patel is an investment banking lawyer turned Canada’s Spice Queen™ and owner of Canada's most premium organic spice company, Spice Sanctuary. A regular featured expert on CTV Morning Live and Global Morning, Trusha is also a travel addict and a foodie who loves developing her own recipes, reads cookbooks like novels and is always snapping food photos when no one is looking.

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