For a vegan or vegetarian, the food of India must seem like an absolute dream. With vegetables being such a large part of Indian food, vegetarians are spoilt for choice with the endless number of dishes they can make.
If you have decided to exclude meat from your diet, you will find that Indian cuisine is your new best friend. There are many meatless options available at Indian restaurants.
Even though lamb and chicken are two of the most prevalent types of meat that are used in Indian meals, the food of this dynamic country nevertheless offers a huge variety of dishes that are appropriate for vegetarians.
Because of the extensive use of aromatic spices in Indian cooking, the food is usually regarded as having some of the most mouthwatering vegetarian meals found elsewhere in the world.
Because of this, if the bulk of your meals consists of boring salads, you should try out a few Indian food recipes to spice things up for your taste buds.
If you don’t know where to start when it comes to making Indian dishes then you have come to the right place!
In this article, we will show you the top 33 delicious and easy-to-make recipes that you can try to begin your Indian food adventure.
This list covers everything you will need to cook a beautiful Indian supper, from tandoori to lassi, and everything in between.
Chana masala is a soup comprised of chickpeas and curry. In addition to the curry, the coconut milk and spices make this meal creamy and spicy.
You can add more or less of each of these ingredients depending on your tastes and how spicy you want the meal to be.
This meal is perfect for cold winter nights. It is a meal that will quickly warm you up on a chilly evening.
Chickpea curry is surprisingly simple to prepare, so beginners to Indian food shouldn’t struggle too much in the kitchen. And the best part is that it’s ready to serve in less than an hour!
This meal will fill your kitchen with delicious and mouth-watering smells, so you won’t be able to wait to try out this dish!
2. Jeera Aloo
Jeera is the Indian word for cumin, which also refers to potatoes. This alone demonstrates how delicious this vegetarian meal is.
Cumin is used to sauté soft, creamy potatoes. Other spices, such as turmeric and chili powder, are also used in the dish but can be customized to your tastes.
A dash of lemon juice balances off the spiciness, giving in pleasant and well-balanced tastes.
The meal may be prepared in less than 30 minutes so is ideal for a quick lunch. It’s also vegan and gluten-free, which may appeal to even more people.
3. Malai Kofta
Malai kofta, which translates to “buttery spicy balls,” is a curry stew stuffed with potato and paneer balls.
Both the curry sauce and the meatballs are great on their own, but when they are combined, you will get a whole new taste sensation.
This recipe features an assortment of delectable flavors and you won’t be able to stop eating this meal!
Salty, savory, spicy, opulent, creamy, and crunchy, each mouthful is divine.
Bhindi masala is an okra, tomato, and onion dish.
Bhindi is the Hindi word for okra, while “masala” refers to a curry sauce made with tomatoes, onions, herbs, and spices. Therefore, Bhindi masala is basically okra curry.
Given its spiciness, bhindi masala is ideally served with rice to counteract this spice and give a cooling effect.
The starchy side dish reduces the heat level and makes it a bit more comfortable to eat for those who are not used to spice. Nann bread and roti also make good side dishes for this reason.
Pakora is a fried potato snack that is very popular in India. This food is addicting and once you start eating it you may find that you can’t stop!
Along with other vegetables, potatoes are sliced into thin strips, seasoned with turmeric, chile, and other spices, and then deep-fried until crisp.
They are the Indian version of French fries, but so much tastier!
However, instead of ketchup, pakora is dipped in sweet chutney, creating a delightfully sweet and salty taste.
6. Matar Paneer
Matar and paneer are simmered in a tomato-based sauce seasoned with fragrant spices.
The contrast between the crunchy and chewy peas and the smooth and creamy cheese is very entertaining and gives a good contrast of flavors. Additionally, the rich gravy is excellent and ties the whole meal together.
The Indian equivalent of the popular Mexican empanada dish is the samosa.
While typically a meat dish, it is very easy to swap this out for more vegetarian fillings, like what you will find in this recipe.
The stuffing for this dish is comprised of potatoes and peas seasoned with Indian spices such as ginger, garlic, and much more.
You may mold the crust into other forms, such as triangles, half-moons, and cones, but the flavor will always be excellent no matter what.
Seasoned with ginger turmeric, ginger, and masala, and with tomatoes infused with cream, this meal is both refreshing and sweet, and not to mention very tasty!
This dish is essentially tomato soup but powered up to taste way better than traditional tomato soup ever could.
This soup is extra-special due to how sweet the tomatoes are, the richness of the butter and cream, and the warmth of the spices.
This dish is incredibly easy to make, and like most of the others on this list, it will be ready in under an hour.
Chutney is a fruit or vegetable condiment that is sweet, spicy, and sour.
It may be used as a dip, spread, or sauce to enhance the flavor of a range of foods.
This chutney recipe mixes ripe mangoes, garlic, onion, and ginger to provide a delicious taste combination.
10. Aloo Paratha
The Indian word for flatbread is paratha. Similar to naan, it is an Indian staple typically consumed for breakfast.
Classic parathas are delicious, but potatoes improve everything. Aloo paratha is a potato-filled flatbread.
To enhance flavor, the potatoes are seasoned with ginger, coriander, and spices.
If you need to pack on the carbohydrates, this recipe is for you!
11. Dosa (Pancakes)
This is another starch-based food, though compared to other Indian flatbread foods, Dosa is one of the lightest and crispiest, making it appealing to people of all ages.
Dosa batter typically consists of dals, however other types of flour may be incorporated into the dough bases of other varieties. Dosa may always be a terrific complement to chutneys or any of the veggie curries on this list.
Dosa requires little time to prepare and makes an excellent breakfast, side dish, or snack.
12. Rava Pongal
Pongal is the name for rice, an essential ingredient in Indian cuisine. Rava Pongal is a substitute for rice prepared with lentils and sooji (semolina).
This meal does an excellent job of imitating the texture of rice, which is its greatest asset!
Because its components are healthier, the meal will be more nutritious. A filling and refreshing dinner are Rava Pongal served with coconut chutney and ginger tea.
13. Aloo Gobi
Aloo refers to potatoes, but gobi refers to cauliflower. Aloo gobi is a delicious meal consisting of boiled potatoes and cauliflower.
Potatoes and cauliflower aren’t exactly brimming with flavor, but don’t worry, Indian spices are here to save the day!
With seven distinct spices, including cumin, ginger, and turmeric, is anything from boring.
This is a meal that is perfect for both vegans and vegetarians, so cauliflower soup will appeal to a lot of people.
The cornerstone of this colorful and creamy soup is curry and coconut milk. It also contains cauliflower, as you might expect.
In addition to cauliflower, the soup is seasoned with delicious apples. It appears to be an unusual mix, yet it works perfectly and you will be surprised at how good it tastes.
Indian food isn’t just all about main courses, there are plenty of desserts to try too! This rice pudding is a bit of a twist on the typical American version though as while it’s sweet it’s also a bit spicy.
The spice is not too overwhelming though, as the cardamom imparts warmth and spice to the dish.
The pudding is silky and creamy, and walnuts give it a fantastic crunch. An optional dash of rose water gives a subtle flowery taste to the dish.
Phirini (sometimes called firni) is a traditional festive dessert in India.
Phirini is composed mostly of basmati rice. It is flavored with aromatic spices like rose water, cardamom, and saffron.
The secret to creamy and smooth phirini is gradually cooking the dessert rice in milk. Patience is essential, but you will be rewarded with one of the best desserts that you have ever tried.
17. Palak Paneer
This delectable palak paneer is a great starter dish if you have never cooked Indian food before.
In this meal, cubed cottage cheese is suspended in a spinach-puréed cream.
Indian spices, like cumin, garam masala, and cardamom, give it a delicious kick.
Palak paneer pairs well with naan, a buttery, soft flatbread.
18. Jeera Rice
If you’re very hungry, Jeera rice is a perfect side dish for you.
This substantial meal is composed of starchy but fluffy basmati rice that has been seasoned with fragrant spices.
Jeera, which is the Indian word for cumin, imparts an earthy flavor to the rice.
Ghee or butter imparts a creamy flavor, while whole cloves, bay leaves, and cinnamon provide a spicy element to the dish.
This meal can be ready to eat in just 10 minutes, making it one of the fastest dishes to make on this list.
The word for this meal has several spellings, including dahl, daal, and dhal, but they all mean the same things, which are lentils with spices.
Ghee (a type of clarified butter), cayenne peppers, ginger, cloves, cumin, curry, and tomatoes, are just some of the tasty ingredients in this meal.
Pour dal over basmati rice or any other kind for a filling but tasty dinner.
Jalfrezi is comprised of ninety percent veggies and ten percent spices. It is a fantastic dish.
This meal has an assortment of vegetables, including onions, tomatoes, peas, green beans, carrots, corn, and bell peppers.
Among the spices that contribute to the flavor include ginger, garam masala, cumin, and turmeric.
From the brilliant colors to the delicious tastes, jalfrezi is a meal that anyone will love.
21. Roti / Chapati
While these may look like wheat tortillas, they are pretty different. Roti, unlike several other well-known types of bread, is unleavened, resulting in a significantly quicker cooking time.
Since the ingredients for this complimentary Indian breakfast side dish are so simple, you can always make some at home.
Who would have thought that flour, water, and a pinch of salt could produce such a restaurant-quality flatbread?
22. Aloo Chaat
This meal is comprised of roasted potatoes. These are cooked in ghee to impart a buttery taste and then seasoned with spices to add fire.
Chaat masala, mango powder, cumin powder, and salt are among the tastes you may expect to find in this delectable snack.
The finest accompaniment for Aloo chaat is tamarind chutney, which provides a syrupy and sweet contrast to the crunchy and spicy food.
23. Onion Bhajis
Onion bhajis are fried fritters that are often eaten as a snack or an appetizer. Consider them similar to onion rings, but better.
These snacks are as crisp as they come. The onions are spiralized, covered in chickpea flour, seasoned with Indian spices, then fried to perfection.
Surprisingly vegan and gluten-free, they are addicting!
24. Gobi 65
Gobi 65 is a cauliflower-based Indian dish.
The origin of this name is a bit unusual. Gobi is the Chinese word for cauliflower for a start. But no one is sure where the “65” came from.
Some claim the meal was created around 1965, while others believe the name alludes to the number of chilies used.
Regardless of what the real answer is, what everyone can agree on is how tasty this meal is.
Herbs and spices are added to battered and deep-fried cauliflower florets to make this a crunchy and tasty snack.
25. Vegetable Kabab
These veggie kebabs are gluten-free, vegan, and tasty. Potatoes, cauliflower, mushrooms, green peas, and carrots are finely diced, seasoned with spices, and formed into balls.
It doesn’t matter if they’re baked or fried, since they are excellent either way.
26. Papdi Chaat
Papdi chaat is a famous street snack in India. It is the Indian equivalent of Mexican tacos.
Crispy papdi crackers made from flour are topped with onions, potatoes, chickpeas, yogurt, and chutney.
This dish is a combo of hues, textures, and tastes! Every bite is sweet, flavorful, spicy, and sour, and leaves the mouth-watering.
27. Naan Bread
Who doesn’t love naan bread? The famous Indian flatbread is very tender and buttery.
It pairs well with stews and curries but is also delicious by itself. Although naan is quite similar to roti and chapati, it is fluffier and more pillowy due to the use of yeast.
28. Aloo Puri
This is a breakfast meal that consists of cooked potatoes and spiced tomato puree. This thick potato sauce is paired with puri, a type of deep-fried bread.
The combination of rich soup and crunchy puff bread will astound your taste buds. The contrast in texture is just incredible.
It is no surprise that this combo is popular in India.
29. Oats Uttapam
This distinctive cuisine is composed of semolina, ground oats, and yogurt.
The batter is pan-fried to make pancakes that are crisp and airy. It makes a filling breakfast when served with coconut chutney.
You may increase the texture, flavor, and color of your uttapam by adding veggies.
30. Paneer Soup
The paneer soup is luscious, creamy, and deliciously spicy.
As you may well know, paneer is Indian cottage cheese. It is created by mixing milk with an acid derived from a vegetable or fruit.
The outcome is a creamy cheese with a pleasant curdled texture.
While paneer is the highlight of the dish, the broth is also quite delicious.
By combining garlic, ginger, curry, and coconut milk, you will have a mouthwatering dish for dinner.
When you mention Puri/Golgappa, you may instantly think of delicious Indian street food. With this recipe, you no longer need to travel to India to sample one.
The flour used to make Puri may vary, but all are readily available. Ideally, your Puri pieces should be uniformly puffed and utterly crispy when you take a mouthful.
This recipe is very simple to make, so you should have your own homemade Puri on your table in no time.
32. Palak Soup
This palak soup is green and delicious due to the spinach purée.
While you may think that spinach is tasteless, in this dish when combined with spices and heavy cream, you will be surprised at just how tasty this meal is.
33. Mango Lassi
Mango lassi resembles a mango shake, but it is a million times superior.
This is a thick shake that is great to drink. It contains both milk and yogurt, resulting in a substantially thicker and creamier beverage.
This dish could not be much simpler to prepare. Simply combine the mangoes, yogurt, milk, cinnamon, and sugar into a blender and you’re ready to go!
Frequently Asked Questions
What Foods Used In Indian Foods Can Vegetarians Eat?
The Indian vegetarian diet consists mostly of grains, pulses, dairy products, and vegetables.
The most prevalent nuts and seeds are sesame seeds, almonds, and cashews. Spices are also a huge part of Indian cuisine, not just their vegetarian meals.
Is A Lot Of Traditional Indian Food Vegetarian?
Vegetarians and vegans throughout the world are increasingly turning to Indian food.
It is without a doubt one of the most vegetarian-friendly worldwide cuisines, with alternatives such as paneer cheese, chickpeas, and a mouth-watering ability to make veggies taste fantastic.