When you’re following a vegetarian diet, it can sometimes be challenging to think of new and exciting recipes to make, so if you are looking for ideas for some more exciting vegetarian meals, you might want to look towards India for some inspiration. A country that is home to over 500 million vegetarians and which is well known for its delicious and flavoursome cuisine is the ideal starting point for a veg dinner menu that is sure to tantalise your tastebuds. Indian food is well known for its spiciness, flavour and variety so there is sure to be a vegetarian Indian recipe to suit everyone, from those who prefer something mild yet tasty to those who like a bit of fire in their meal.
Popular Vegetarian Indian Foods
There are many excellent Indian foods that you can try if you are following a vegetarian diet. Here are some of the most popular:
This rice dish is flavoured with aromatic spices and forms the centerpiece of your meal when mixed with vegetables such as spinach, tomatoes, peppers and peas. You can serve this dish with a tomato, cucumber and coriander salad and pickles.
Made from stewed lentils, this versatile curry is made with either ghee, coconut oil or mustard oil for extra flavour.
Pulses are a great way to get protein when you are a vegetarian, and this dish is made from sauteed chickpeas mixed with green chilis and fresh coriander to produce a delightful buttery texture.
Sabzi is just another word for cooked vegetables, however there are many ways in which this dish can be made. One of the best South Indian vegetarian recipes for sabzi involves frying mixed vegetables with curry leaves and mustard seeds in hot coconut oil, while one of the most popular North Indian vegetarian recipes involves mixing vegetables with fenugreek leaves, cumin seeds, turmeric, cilantro and chilis for a much spicier flavour.
Pakoras and Bhajis
Both of these tasty dishes are made from vegetables which are covered in gram flour and deep fried. While onion is the most popular ingredient, they can be made with all kinds of vegetables and mixed with turmeric, salt, carom seeds and chili powder for a tasty bite size snack.
The term curry includes a multitude of dishes, from creamy kormas to onion heavy jalfrezis. You can make a range of delightful Indian vegetable curry recipes from a base of tomatoes combined with ginger, garlic and onion and blended with fresh herbs, spinach and green chilis.
Vegetarian Quick And Easy Indian Dinner Recipes
In today’s busy world, the idea of chopping up a lot of vegetables and preparing time consuming spices may deter you from preparing many Indian vegetable curry recipes, however there are a surprising number of quick and easy Indian dinner recipes that take virtually no time to prepare but which taste great. If you are looking for exotic yet instant vegetarian dinner recipes that are sure to impress, we have found a few great choices for you.
This spiced potato dish is very popular in India and is ideal for anyone who loves spicy food. It only takes 10 minutes to prepare and 20 minutes to cook.
Ingredients (for 4):
4 cups of peeled, boiled and cubed potatoes
3 tablespoons of oil
1 teaspoon of salt
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
1 tablespoon thinly sliced ginger
1 tablespoon finely chopped green chili
2 teaspoons of lemon juice
1 tablespoon of Chaat Masala spice mix
Heat oil in a heavy frying pan on a medium high heat and then place the cubed potatoes into the pan and sprinkle with salt. Fry the potatoes, turning occasionally until golden brown on all sides. This will take around 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and add ginger, chilis, cilantro, lemon juice and Chaat Masala spice mix. Mix well to coat the potatoes then serve.
Quick and easy to made, this recipe can be made in just 25 minutes and is a great choice if you have to feed unexpected guests or after a long day at the office.
Ingredients (for 2):
1 large carrot
1 cup of chopped onion
1 finely chopped tomato
1 teaspoon of Sambar powder
1/4 teaspoon of turmeric powder
1/4 teaspoon of pepper powder
Salt to taste
Handful of finely chopped coriander leaves
1 teaspoon of oil
1 teaspoon of mustard seeds
A couple of curry leaves
Cook the carrot in a pressure cooker until soft and then grind in a mixer and set aside. Cook the onions with the oil, turmeric powder and salt in a pan and when half cooked, add the pepper powder and sambar powder, tomato and ground carrot and cook for five more minutes. Add the mustard seeds and curry leaves and then serve, garnished with the chopped coriander leaves, with chapatis.
Chole Palak (Chickpeas With Spinach)
This delicious combination of spinach and chickpeas is rich in protein and is a healthy option when following a vegetarian diet.
Ingredients (for 2 to 4 people):
1 15oz can of chickpeas
3 cups of chopped spinach
2 chopped medium sized tomatoes
1/2 inch piece of chopped ginger
1 green chili
3 tablespoons of oil
1/4 teaspoon of asafetida
1 teaspoon of cumin seeds
1 tablespoon of cilantro powder
1/2 teaspoon of turmeric
1/2 teaspoon of red chili powder
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of garam masala
Drain and rise the chickpeas and set aside. Blend the tomatoes with the chili and ginger to make a puree. Heat the oil in a saucepan and the add the cumin seeds and asafetida. Once the cumin seeds start to crack, add the pureed tomato mix, cilantro powder, turmeric and red chili powder. Cook for 4 minutes over a medium heat. Add the salt, spinach and 1/2 cup of water. Cook with a cover over the pan for 5 minutes on a medium heat. Mash the chickpeas lightly and then add them to the pan. Add more water if necessary to achieve the right consistency. Cook over a low heat for 8 minutes. Add the garam masala then serve with naan or chapatis.