Chasing 201 points to win at Headingley, the Pakistani openers got off to a good start with the bat but lost their way after England fast pitcher Saqib Mahmood fired captain Babar Azam (22) in the sixth round.
England tightened their grip in the middle as leg spinner Adil Rashid knocked out Mohammad Rizwan and Sohaib Maqsood on his second stint.
Off-spinner Moeen Ali knocked out Mohammad Hafeez and Fakhar Zaman on the cheap as Pakistan faltered at 95-5.
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Azam Khan was baffled by Matt Parkinson’s leg breakage, before Mahmood returned to tear up the lower order and restrict Tourists to 155-9 in 20 overs.
Earlier, Buttler marked his return to the national team with his 14th T20I fifty as England were eliminated for 200 with a ball to spare.
Buttler was declared fit after a calf injury and took over as captain as Eoin Morgan opted to rest in a bid to spin his squad ahead of this year’s T20 World Cup.
After the hosts lost Jason Roy and Dawid Malan in the first three overs, Buttler and Ali restored order with a quick 67-point partnership.
Ali eventually fell for 36, recovering fast pitcher Mohammad Hasnain halfway through, but Buttler stepped up England’s running pace alongside last-game hero Liam Livingstone.
Buttler picked midway through Hasnain’s second wicket inning, but Livingstone, just after scoring England’s fastest cent, continued to produce another entertaining end for home fans.
Livingstone pulled off the biggest hit of the day, hitting Haris Rauf’s delivery straight over the new football stand.
The right-handed batsman missed 38 of 23 balls before the lower order added another 35 over the last four overs to bring England’s score to 200 for the second game in a row – this time to secure the win.
Both teams are now heading to Manchester for the decisive series fixture on Tuesday.