7 Indian Vegetarian Curry Recipes to Make

Indian cuisine is known for its vegetarian dishes as they are full of intense flavours. Here are seven delicious vegetarian curry recipes to make.

7 Indian Vegetarian Curry Recipes to Make f

aloo gobi is one of the most well-known.

Indian food is renowned for its intense flavours and vibrant colours. This is showcased within a wide array of vegetarian curry recipes.

A lot of the Indian population are vegetarian so they experience these typed of dishes on a daily basis.

However, vegetarian curries do not receive the same attention as meat dishes within Indian restaurants.

Vegetarian curries incorporate rich flavours and are arguably more authentic as they form the basis for traditional Indian cuisine.

One thing to note is that a vegetarian curry is quicker to make than a meat curry as it takes less time to cook. A meat dish needs time for it to become tender whereas vegetarian curries can be made in less than 30 minutes.

We have seven recipes to follow in order to create authentic Indian vegetarian curries.

Aloo Gobi

7 Indian Vegetarian Curry Recipes to Make - aloo

When it comes to a famous Indian vegetarian curry, aloo gobi is one of the most well-known. It is very popular throughout India having originated in the North.

The dish uses potatoes and cauliflower which come together along with the spices for a well balanced vegetarian meal.

The earthy potatoes are an ideal contrast to the hint of sweetness from the cauliflower, but the ginger and garlic add an intense depth of flavour.

It is quite easy to make and promises a plethora of unique flavours combined into one dish.

Ingredients

  • 1 small cauliflower, cut into small florets
  • 2 Potatoes, peeled and diced into small cubes
  • 1 Green chilli, finely chopped
  • 1 Onion, finely chopped
  • ½ tin of chopped tomatoes
  • 2 Garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tbsp ginger, grated
  • 1 tsp dried fenugreek leaves
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • Salt, to taste
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • A small bunch of coriander, chopped

Method

  1. Wash the cauliflower. Leave to drain and make sure that it is completely dry before cooking.
  2. Heat the oil in a pan and add the mustard seeds. When they splutter, add the cumin seeds.
  3. Add the onions and garlic when the cumin seeds begin to sizzle. Fry until they become soft and slightly brown.
  4. Reduce the heat and add the tomatoes, ginger, salt, turmeric, chilli and fenugreek leaves. Cook until the mixture has fully combined and it begins to form a thick masala paste.
  5. Add the potatoes and stir until they have been coated in the paste. Reduce the heat to low and cover. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  6. Add the cauliflower and stir until it is well mixed with the other ingredients. Cover and let it cook for 30 minutes or until the vegetables are cooked through.
  7. Gently stir occasionally to prevent the vegetables from going mushy.
  8. Add some garam masala, mix and garnish with coriander before serving.

This recipe was inspired by Hari Ghotra.

Dal Makhani

7 Indian Vegetarian Curry Recipes to Make - makhani

Dal makhani is known for its creamy consistency and rich texture as it is cooked with butter and sometimes finished with a little cream.

It is a staple in the Indian state of Punjab where it originated. The dish is versatile as it can be served as a main meal or as a side dish.

This vegetarian dish goes well with rice but it also tastes great with roti.

Ingredients

  • ¾ cup whole black lentils
  • ¼ cup red kidney beans
  • 3½ cups water
  • 1 tsp salt

For the Masala

  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp ghee
  • 1 Onion, finely grated
  • 1½ cups water
  • 2 tsp ginger-garlic paste
  • ½ cup tomato puree
  • ½ tsp red chilli powder
  • ¼ tsp garam masala
  • ½ tsp sugar
  • 60ml cream
  • Salt, to taste

Method

  1. Wash and rinse the lentils and kidney beans. Soak in three cups of water overnight.
  2. Drain and transfer to a pot over a stove. Pour in the water and cook for one hour and 15 minutes on medium heat.
  3. Mash some of the lentils and kidney beans before turning on the heat to low and letting it simmer.
  4. In a large pot, heat two tablespoons of butter and ghee. Add the onion once the butter has melted and cook until golden brown.
  5. Add the ginger-garlic paste and cook until the raw smell goes away.
  6. Add the tomato puree and cook until the puree mixes well with the masala.
  7. Mix in the boiled daal then add the garam masala, red chilli powder and salt. Mix well.
  8. Pour in half a cup of water and stir. Let it simmer on low heat for 45 minutes. Stir often to prevent sticking and add water if necessary.
  9. Add the sugar and mix well. Add the remaining butter and quarter cup of cream.
  10. Simmer for 10 minutes then add the remaining cream. Serve with roti and rice.

This recipe was adapted from Cook with Manali.

Matar Paneer

7 Indian Vegetarian Curry Recipes to Make - paneer

Matar paneer is arguably the most well-known paneer recipe and a favourite among vegetarians.

The rich tomato sauce packs heat and hints of sweetness, making it a dish which must be tried.

It is quite quick to make, taking 15 minutes to prepare and only 10 to cook.

This flavourful vegetarian curry recipe is one which can be made at home for a filling meal.

Ingredients

  • Two packets of cubed paneer
  • 200g frozen peas
  • 4 Large tomatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 1½ tsp ginger paste
  • 1½ tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 Green chilli, finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp sunflower oil
  • A small bunch of coriander, roughly chopped
  • Salt, to taste

Method

  1. Heat the oil in a frying pan over high heat. Add the paneer and reduce the heat. Fry until they become golden brown then remove and drain on kitchen paper.
  2. In the same pan, add the ginger, cumin, turmeric, coriander powder and chilli. Fry for one minute.
  3. Add the tomatoes and cook until they start to soften. Use the back of the spoon to mash them to ensure a smoother texture. Cook for five minutes until it becomes fragrant.
  4. Add the peas and season with salt. Simmer for two minutes then stir in the paneer and add the garam masala.
  5. Garnish with coriander and serve with rice or roti.

Punjabi Sarson ka Saag (Greens & Spices)

7 Indian Vegetarian Curry Recipes to Make - saag

Sarson ka saag is a typical North Indian dish, it is especially popular in Punjab and it is made with wilted greens and is usually served over flatbread.

The green chillies add heat to the dish but it is not too overpowering as the ghee mellows down the intense flavour and adds a richness to the dish.

For vegetarians, this saag is an Indian curry to opt for.

Ingredients

  • 225g spinach, washed and finely chopped
  • 225g mustard greens, washed and finely chopped
  • 2 Green chillies
  • 3 tbsp ghee
  • 2 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
  • 1 Large onion, grated
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • 1 tbsp gram flour
  • Salt, to taste

Method

  1. In a pot, add the spinach, mustard greens, green chillies and salt. Pour in one cup of water and boil until fully cooked. Once cooked, mash into a coarse paste.
  2. In another pan, heat the ghee then add the onion and fry until slightly golden.
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients and cook until the oil begins to separate.
  4. Add the greens and stir until all the ingredients have fully combined.
  5. Garnish with some butter and serve.

This recipe was inspired by The Spruce Eats.

Chana Masala

7 Indian Vegetarian Curry Recipes to Make - chana

Chana masala or cholay is a North Indian curry made with chickpeas and can be made according to your preference.

It can be dry or in a thick gravy. This particular vegetarian curry recipe has a deliciously spiced gravy which is rich in flavour.

Every bite is full of flavour and while the chickpeas are tender, they hold their shape for added texture.

The array of spices give it an authentic taste of a North Indian curry.

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1½ Onions, finely diced
  • 3 cups chickpeas, cooked, drained and rinsed
  • 4 Garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp minced ginger
  • 4 Whole dried red chillies
  • 2 Green cardamom pods
  • 2 Whole cloves
  • 1 can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 Cinnamon stick
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 1 tsp dried mango powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • ½ tsp red chilli powder
  • ½ tsp garam masala
  • ¼ tsp turmeric
  • Salt, to taste
  • Black pepper, to taste

Method

  1. Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 10 minutes until they soften.
  2. Add the ginger, garlic, red chillies, cardamom pods, cloves, cinnamon stick and bay leaf. Stir constantly so the garlic does not burn.
  3. Add the coriander powder, chilli powder, garam masala, turmeric, black pepper, salt and mango powder. Mix well and cook for 30 seconds.
  4. Add the tomatoes and chickpeas. Partially cover and let it simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Reduce the heat and remove the whole spices if possible.
  6. Garnish with butter and coriander. Serve with rice and naan.

This recipe was adapted from The Curious Chickpea.

Tarka Dal

7 Indian Vegetarian Curry Recipes to Make - tarka

Tarka dal is a classic vegetarian curry that is simple to make. It is famous for its mild flavours and creamy texture.

The word tarka refers to the few ingredients fried up and stirred in at the end which is how this dish is made.

Ingredients such as garlic and ginger give it unique flavour combinations to create a hearty meal.

Ingredients

  • 100g split chickpeas
  • 50g red lentils
  • 3 Garlic cloves, grated
  • 10g ginger, grated
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 4 Dried red chillies
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 Small onion, finely chopped
  • 2 Small tomatoes, chopped
  • ¾ tsp garam masala
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • Salt, to taste
  • A handful of coriander leaves, chopped

Method

  1. Wash both lentils then place in one litre of water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, removing any impurities. Add the turmeric, garlic, ginger and salt. Cover and simmer for 40 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the oil and butter. Add the whole dried chillies and cumin seeds. When they have browned, add the onion and cook until golden.
  3. Pour some of the lentils into the pan and scrape the base to extract all the flavours the pour everything back into the lentils.
  4. Cook for 10 minutes, mashing some of the lentils on the side of the pan. Add a little water if it becomes too thick.
  5. Remove from the heat, garnish with chopped coriander and serve.

This recipe was adapted from Red Online.

Mixed Vegetable Curry

7 Indian Vegetarian Curry Recipes to Make - mixed veg

This dish is one which can be made using any vegetables you like. Any vegetables in the fridge or freezer would be perfect for this dish.

Whatever vegetables are used, they come together to create a hearty and filling meal.

The addition of intense spices only enhances the dish as the flavours absorb into the various textures of each vegetable.

Ingredients

  • 3 tsp oil
  • 12 cubes paneer
  • 1 Potato, chopped
  • ½ Carrot, chopped
  • ½ cup cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 2 tbsp almonds, blanched
  • 4 Beans, chopped
  • ¼ cup peas
  • ¼ Bell pepper, chopped

For the Tomato Puree

  • 2 Tomatoes, chopped
  • 1-inch cinnamon stick
  • 5 Cloves
  • 2 Cardamom pods
  • 12 Almonds, blanched

For the Curry

  • 4 tsp oil
  • 1 Onion, finely chopped
  • 1 Green chilli, slit lengthways
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 2 tsp fenugreek leaves
  • 1 tsp ginger-garlic paste
  • ¼ tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • ½ tsp garam masala
  • ½ cup yoghurt, whisked
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 tbsp cream
  • 2 tbsp coriander leaves, finely chopped
  • Salt, to taste

Method

  1. Fry the paneer in three teaspoons of oil until golden then set aside. In the same pan, add two tablespoons of almonds and cook until they turn golden.
  2. Add the potato and carrot. Cook for three minutes. Add the cauliflower, beans and peas and cook for a further three minutes. Add the pepper and cook for one minute.
  3. Once done, remove from the pan and set aside.
  4.  Make the curry by heating four teaspoons of oil in a frying pan. Add the bay leaf, cumin seeds, fenugreek leaves and green chilli.
  5. Add the onion and ginger-garlic paste. Cook until they turn slightly golden.
  6. Add the turmeric, red chilli powder, coriander powder, garam masala and salt. Mix well and let it completely cook.
  7. Place the tomatoes into a blender and add the cinnamon, cloves, cardamom and almonds. Blend into a smooth paste.
  8. Transfer the tomato puree to the spice pan and mix well. Cover and cook for five minutes. Reduce the heat and add the yoghurt, stirring continuously.
  9. Add the vegetables and mix well until everything is fully combined. Add a little water if the mixture becomes too thick.
  10. Cover and cook for 10 minutes or until the vegetables have cooked completely.
  11. Remove from the heat and garnish with cream, fenugreek leaves and coriander leaves. Mix well and serve.

This recipe was inspired by Hebbar’s Kitchen.

For vegetarians, these are seven delectable dishes that you should make. Even if you are not a vegetarian, these curries are highly enjoyable.

The vegetables provide unique textures that cannot be achieved with meat dishes.

The versatility of these dishes means you can have them as a side dish or as a main meal.

These recipes will hopefully be a helpful guide the next time you are thinking of making a vegetarian curry.

Dhiren is a journalism graduate with a passion for gaming, watching films and sports. He also enjoys cooking from time to time. His motto is to “Live life one day at a time.”

Images courtesy of Jonathan Gregson, The Spruce Eats, The Curious Chickpea and Hebbar's Kitchen.