5 Simple Indian Prawn Recipes to Make at Home

When it comes to great seafood, prawns are right up there, especially when combined with the right ingredients. Here are five simple prawn recipes to try.

5 Simple Prawn Recipes to Make at Home f

Every mouthful brings a depth of flavour

There are a plethora of prawn recipes with a range of flavours for the tastebuds to enjoy.

Prawns may seem like a simple ingredient but there are several delicious dishes which can be made. Whether it be a starter or main, there are some great dishes.

While there are a lot of delicious prawn dishes within Indian cooking, some may think that preparing one may take too long.

However, it is possible to make flavourful prawn dishes in under an hour.

We have some Desi prawn recipes that showcase the ingredient in different ways and promise bags of flavour.

Malabar Prawn Biryani

5 Simple Prawn Recipes to Make at Home - biryani

Biryani is a classic within Indian cuisine and a prawn version adds a twist thanks to the taste and texture of the seafood.

This recipe is piled with layers of rice, spices and prawns. Every mouthful brings a depth of flavour which makes it a dish which must be made.

The prawns are a great change from chicken or lamb as there is a slight bite to them as opposed to the tender meat.

It may look like it will take several hours to make but in reality, this biryani recipe takes less than one hour.


  • 500g large prawns, shelled, deveined and washed
  • 20g butter
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper
  • ½ Lemon, juiced
  • Salt, to taste

For the Sauce

  • 3 Small onions, finely chopped
  • 2 Tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 tsp powdered fennel seeds
  • 2 tbsp ginger paste
  • 2 tbsp garlic paste
  • 12 Curry leaves
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp red chilli powder
  • 2 tbsp ghee
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • Coriander leaves, chopped
  • Mint leaves, chopped

For the Rice

  • 2 Small onions, finely sliced
  • 750ml water
  • 400g rice, washed and soaked
  • 10 Black peppercorns
  • 6 Cloves
  • 8 Curry leaves
  • 6 Green cardamom pods
  • 2.5cm cinnamon stick
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp ghee


  1. Marinate the prawns in turmeric, salt, black pepper and chilli powder. Mix well then set aside.
  2. In a large, lidded saucepan, heat the oil and ghee then add the whole spices. Cook for 30 seconds then add the onions and salt. Cook until the onions soften then increase the heat until they become golden.
  3. Drain the rice and add to the pan. Stir to ensure the rice is coated then cook for three minutes. Pour in the water and season well.
  4. Add one teaspoon of the lemon juice and slightly tear the curry leaves before adding them to the pan. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat. Leave to cook for eight minutes.
  5. Once cooked, take off the heat and set aside for 10 minutes. Spoon the rice onto open plates to prevent overcooking and leave to one side.
  6. Make the prawns by heating oil in a saucepan then adding them in and cooking for a minute. Once done, remove from the pan and set aside.
  7. In the same pan, heat ghee then add the onions and cook until they become soft and golden.
  8. Add the curry leaves, garlic and ginger paste. Cook for one minute then add the tomatoes and spices. Cook for a few minutes before seasoning.
  9. Pour in a splash of water and cook for 10 minutes or until the tomatoes have softened and gone darker in colour.
  10. Return the prawns to the pan along with two teaspoons of lemon juice, herbs and a little water. Cook for three minutes then remove from the heat.
  11. Assemble the biryani by placing small chunks of half the butter on the base of the rice pot. Layer half the rice and sprinkle the remaining garam masala and herbs. Spread the prawn mixture over and top with the remaining rice and butter.
  12. Cover with a tea towel and lid. Place into a 150°C oven and cook for 30 minutes. Once done, remove from the oven and allow it to rest for 20 minutes before serving.

This recipe was inspired by Anjum Anand.

Prawn & Red Pepper Tikka Masala

5 Simple Prawn Recipes to Make at Home - tikka masala

Curry is a staple of Indian cooking and comes in many variations with different levels of spice. One of the most well-known is the tikka masala.

This prawn tikka masala is a delicious take on the classic dish as the palette is filled with several extraordinary flavours.

The curry has intense heat from the chillies, but the pepper adds a hint of sweetness as well as texture. The ingredients come together for a tasty meal.


  • 1 bag of frozen prawns, defrosted
  • 1 Onion, chopped
  • 250ml vegetable/fish stock
  • ½ can of chopped tomatoes
  • 1 Red pepper, chopped
  • 1 Red chilli, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 cm piece of ginger, finely chopped
  • 1 Garlic clove, finely chopped
  • Vegetable oil
  • A small handful of coriander, chopped
  • Salt, to taste


  1. Heat oil in a pan and gently fry the ginger, garlic and chilli. Once fragrant, add the onion and cumin seeds. Cook for 10 minutes or until the onion turns golden.
  2. Add the pepper and cook thoroughly but make sure that the pepper still has some crunch to it.
  3. Stir in the chopped tomatoes and cook until the sauce becomes aromatic.
  4. In a separate pan, cook the prawns until they become pink all the way through. Once done, add them to the sauce mixture.
  5. Add the stock and garam masala. Give it a stir then gently cook for 10 minutes or until the liquid has reduced.
  6. Garnish with coriander before serving with rice and chutney.

Masala Prawns

5 Simple Prawn Recipes to Make at Home - masala

Prawns are a loved ingredient all over India, both as a snack and as a main meal. This masala prawns dish shows why.

It is a quick and deliciously spiced dish which is fresh and light with a hint of tanginess from the freshly squeezed lemon juice.

The prawns are tossed in a selection of spices before they are quickly cooked with garlic, intense chilli and mustard seeds.

It is important that fresh prawns are used to bring out the most flavour.


  • 500g prawns
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds, crushed
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds, crushed
  • Salt, to taste
  • Coriander leaves, chopped

For the Masala

  • 1 Chilli, sliced
  • 1 Garlic clove, sliced
  • ½ tsp brown mustard seeds
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 Lemon, juiced
  • 1 tbsp oil


  1. Devein the prawns then wash them and pat dry with some kitchen roll.
  2. Place the prawns into a bowl. Sprinkle in the turmeric, chilli, coriander, cumin and salt then mix well.
  3. In a wide pan, heat some oil and add the mustard and cumin seeds. When they start sizzling, add the garlic and chilli.
  4. Add the prawns and quickly stir fry before reducing the heat. Allow it to cook for three minutes. Add the lemon juice and toss to coat.
  5. Once the prawns have turned pink and are cooked through, garnish with coriander and serve.

This recipe was inspired by Hari Ghotra.

Goan Prawn Curry

5 Simple Prawn Recipes to Make at Home - goan

This Goan prawn curry is a satisfying meal that is filled with warmth in every mouthful.

Also known as Ambot Tik, this curry also includes coconut which adds a level of creaminess to the whole dish. The grated coconut also elevates its texture.

The chillies add a lot of heat but the coconut milk softens the flavour to create a nice balance of flavours.

It makes for a hearty meal when served alongside steamed rice.


  • 20 Jumbo prawns, cleaned and deveined
  • Enough water to completely soak the prawns

For the Masala

  • 10 Dried red chillies
  • 6 Garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp whole peppercorns
  • 1 tbsp whole coriander seeds
  • 1 tsp tamarind paste
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • A ½ cup of grated coconut
  • 1 cup of coconut milk

For the Curry

  • 10 Curry leaves
  • A ½ cup of onions, finely chopped
  • A ½ cup of tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp ginger, minced
  • 2 tbsp coconut oil
  • Salt, to taste


  1. Soak the prawns for 15 minutes. Wash them before adding to the curry.
  2. Meanwhile, make the masala by grinding all the masala ingredients into a smooth paste and set aside.
  3. In a pan, heat the coconut oil then add the ginger and onions. Cook until the onions become golden then add the tomatoes. Cook for seven minutes until they soften.
  4. Add the ground masala and salt. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat and allow it to simmer for 15 minutes until the colour gets slightly darker.
  5. Drain and wash the prawns the add them to the curry. Cook for eight minutes.
  6. Sprinkle the curry leaves, mix well and turn off the heat. Allow the curry to rest for five minutes before serving with rice.

This recipe was adapted from My Food Story.

Prawn Makhani

5 Simple Prawn Recipes to Make at Home - makhani

Makhani comes in different variations but one thing that is certain is that they have a rich flavour and this prawn makhani lives up to the name.

The sauce has a buttery flavour that is intensified by the red and green chillies.

This recipe also includes cashew nuts for added texture but you can remove them if you prefer.


  • 250g prawns
  • A ½ cup of butter
  • 500g tomatoes
  • 1 Onion, chopped
  • ½ cup cashew nuts
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 tbsp fenugreek seeds
  • 25g green chilli, finely chopped
  • 75g Kashmiri red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • Oil
  • Salt, to taste


  1. Heat the butter in a saucepan then add the onions and cashew nuts. Cook for five minutes.
  2. Add the salt and ginger-garlic paste and cook until the raw flavour has gone. Add both chillies and tomatoes and mix well. Cover with a lid and cook for 20 minutes on low heat.
  3. Turn off the heat and allow it to cool. Blend the mixture into a paste and strain.
  4. Cook the paste for 20 minutes, then add the sugar and salt. Mix well then add the fenugreek seeds. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat.
  5. Add the prawns to the sauce and cook until the prawns become pink and cooked through. Serve with rice.

This recipe was adapted from Vah Reh Vah.

These delicious prawn recipes are filled with flavour and are fairly simple to make. They are perfect as a side dish or as the main meal.

The unique flavour combinations provide a varied choice when it comes to making a prawn dish and because you have control of the ingredients, they are more authentic.

These recipes are just a guide as you can adjust the ingredients to suit the flavours you are going for.

Dhiren is a News & Content Editor who loves all things football. He also has a passion for gaming and watching films. His motto is to "Live life one day at a time".

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