Aloo Gobi

Curried cauliflower and potatoes - Aloo Gobi

Aloo Gobi is a Punjabi classic made with potatoes (aloo) and cauliflower (gobi). These humble vegetables may not sound like much, but they happen to be the perfect cavas to paint on the vibrant flavours of ginger, garlic, onions and cumin. The turmeric does it’s part by imparting a golden saffron hue that makes this dish a real head turner.

After going through a phase of steaks, roasts and confits, I was feeling my inner herbivore crying out for some love. These primal urges come and go, especially in winter when there just aren’t many appealing veggies in the markets. It’s probably my body’s way of telling me that I need less protein and more fiber. That said, I’m a carnivore at heart and the thought of having something as prosaic as a salad for dinner puts a real kibosh my appetite. My solution is to turn to the food of my South Asian brothers (and sisters).

Cooked with onions, ginger, turmeric and other Indian spices

I love Indian food because it’s inexpensive and relatively simple to prepare, but more importantly, it never fails to light up my eyes, nose and tastebuds with its piquant flavours and vivid colours — even on the dreariest of days. Aloo Gobi is one of my favourites, because it’s filling, without being a total carb bomb and the leftovers are good for a couple lunches during the week.

It may look like there are a lot of ingredients that go into this dish, but if you cook Indian food with any frequency, you should have most of these ingredients in your pantry already. I’ve given this version of Aloo Gobi my own twist with the addition of some honey, lemon juice, and peas to balance out all the flavors and colours. I like to serve this with some pulao which is essentially an Indian pilaf, but it’s also fantastic with some plain basmati rice or naan.

Aloo Gobi

2 Tbs vegetable oil
1 tsp black mustard seeds
1 tsp whole cumin seeds
1/2 tsp whole cloves
1 Tbs grated garlic (about 3 cloves)
1 Tbs grated ginger (about 1″ knob)
2 medium onions minced
1 chili minced (I used a habanero but if that’s too spicy you can use a Serano chili)
2 tsp garam masala
1/2 tsp turmeric
2 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp honey (or vegan sugar)
1/2 C water
3 yukon gold potatoes cut into 1/2″ cubes
1 small head cauliflower florets cut up
1 Tbs lemon juice
1/2 C green peas
cilantro hand torn (for garnish)

Heat heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat until very hot and add the oil. Add the mustard seeds, cumin and cloves and stir until the spices begin to crackle. Add the ginger and garlic and fry until fragrant then add the onion. Fry this mixture until the onions are soft and just starting to turn brown, then add the chili, garam masala, turmeric, salt, honey, water and potatoes.

Cover and simmer over medium low heat for 10 minutes, add the cauliflower and cook until everything is tender, another 30-40 minutes. Add the lemon juice and peas at the very end and serve the Aloo Gobi garnished with cilantro alongside some basmati rice and raita.

  • MaryMoh

    What a lovely meal! Love all the spices.

  • Mike Pierce

    One of my favorite dishes as well. I like the thought of adding in the peas and will try that variant next time. I think it might work well with edamame or favas too.

    I would make this today but it's so sunny and warm (Bay Area) that my grill is calling!

  • Peter G

    This is one to gobble up with lots of freshly baked naan bread…I love this dish Marc!

  • thedelishdish

    this is one of my fav indian dishes!! ive never had the courage to try making it myself (mainly because i dont really know how to use the spices) but this doesn't look too bad!

  • Stephanie @ Juicy Fresh Bites

    Delicious! Ever tried making this classic dish with sweet potatoes? I imagine that the starchy sweetness will make the spices' flavours shine even more!

  • Girl Japan

    Hey there.. I followed you from my friend Diva's = ) Hope you don't mind. I love spice, anything really. I have to be honest and say I've never tried this before but I love Middle Easter dishes.

  • Terry

    I love dishes with potatoes and cauliflower! Thanks for this yummy recipe!

  • Trissa

    I love Indian food but always feel it is a lot of effort to get all the herbs and spices together – however, if I can make something as delicious as this – then I wouldn't mind at all!

  • Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella

    Ahh love the sound of the complex spice bouquet in this recipe Marc! I bet that's what really makes it sing!

  • my little expat kitchen

    I'm nuts about Indian food. Love all the colors, the aromas, the flavors. I've never heard of this particular dish though. It looks great! I'll hold on to this recipe.

  • lisaiscooking

    I've been craving Indian food a lot lately, and this looks just fantastic! The peas are a great addition, and I want this for lunch.

  • sippitysup

    I am going to make this today. You just check SippitySup in a day or two if you don't believe me. I have everything I need in the pantry so I don't even have to leave the house to start. Well, actually I don't have black mustard seeds, but I do have yellow. I know they are not as pungent… but you gotta jump when the inspiration hits. Thanks for the inspiration. GREG

  • Manggy

    Ah, you must be an omnivore like me. I like a good balance of everything in the span of a day. Nothing humble about cauliflower – it is one of most favorite vegetables since childhood. Thanks so much for this recipe, it looks easy enough to do for lunch tomorrow.

  • Xiaolu @ 6 Bittersweets

    I love Indian food for many of the same reasons. This is hands down one of my favorite dishes from that cuisine. Love to make it at home, too, since the restaurant version tends to be buried under oil.

  • msmeanie

    I grew up eating this and now totally love this dish. I blogged about it a few weeks ago. I like your addition of honey.

  • Heather

    Man, I've been craving Indian food for months, but my husband is leery because of how much baby poop looks like curry (early, breastmilk poo). It's true, though. Looks like Vindaloo. I might settle for kari raisu instead.

    In the meanwhile, I shall just gaze lovingly at your photos and dream.

  • Sook

    Oh wow the color of this dish alone stole my heart! I love Indian food. This is packed with my favorite flavors!

  • Jackie at

    Aloo (with or without cauliflower) is my favorite Indian comfort food. And ginger garlic paste is so healthy for you. I love the addition of green peas; it created Ja great contrast of color.

  • diva

    I love that I’m a herbivore at heart and went carnivorous this week whilst you went the completely opposite! Agree that Indian food is easy to prepare and relatively cheap as well. Strange that I hardly ever cook Indian and only get curry cravings when my kitchen’s completely void of anything edible or fresh. This is saved for dinner on Saturday methinks!

  • vibi

    This looks amazing! I love Indian food… and I have everything in the frisge to make it, I’m soooo having that for supper!

  • The Cooking Ninja

    Ooh..I love this dish very much. My hub loves Indian food too. Great colours.

  • Laura @ Hungry and Frozen

    Look at that tumeric shine! I love Aloo Gobi, should really cook it more because it is all those things you say – filling, inexpensive, but not dull in the slightest.

  • Claudia

    Sounds yummy. Indian food does wake up those bored taste buds. I would probably have it with some fresh chutneys.

  • Sylvia

    Thanks for stop by on my blog and words. Love the vibrant yellow (add by cumin) on this dish
    Sounds delicious, and I also love love cauliflower . Beautiful

  • Michelle

    Mark, I made the dish and it was fantastic! Thanks for the recipe. The half cup of water simmered off really quickly — is the measurement correct? No matter, I went with 1 cup and it was just fine, though I did overcook the cauliflower. Thank you again.

  • norecipes

    Glad you liked it:-) If you keep it covered at a gentle simmer, it
    should be enough (it shouldn't be soupy/saucy), but if it looks like
    it's going to start to burn, by all means add more water.

  • stacey snacks

    I am craving this right now! I don't cook Indian food, but have most of these ingredients and buy cauliflower weekly.
    Can't wait to try this… the cilantro at the end.
    Thanks for posting it.

  • Debi (Table Talk)

    Nice one to throw into the vegetarian mix~so light, colorful and fragrant!

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  • Heidi

    Great dish – healthy and easy! Used ghee in place of the oil and and added buttermilk to the sauce at the very end. Instead of incorporating potatoes with the cauliflower, I served it with indian potato dumplings.

  • Keka De

    hi, came across your blog today and loved the recipes and pictures!
    just wanted to say that aloo gobi (ie potatoes and cauliflower) is cooked in different ways all over india. in bengal, we do a very simple savoury dish with the bengali five spice mix (or panch phoran). In this one, the potatoes are sliced lengthwise and the cauliflower florets are separated individually. In a recipe for 2 ppl, heat a lug of mustard oil (for a distinct flavour or any vegetable oil will do). Add in about a tsp of panch phoran. Then toss in the potatoes and cauliflowers. Add in about a handful of chopped tomatoes and toss the veggies well on high for abt 5 mins. Add abt 1/2 tsp salt. Next, add abt a cup of water. Cover and cook for around 10-15 mins or till done. You can also add in a few green chillies (slit lenghwise so that they release a bit of heat into the oil but does not overpower the flavours) along with the tomatoes. Check the seasoning and serve hot.
    This is a very light summery sort of dish and can be had with hot rotis or even rice.
    Hope you enjoy it!!

    • 9dognight

      I love aloo gobi and both recipes sound great.  What are the 5 spices (or more) for that bengali mix of panch phoran? 

  • Monicajha1987

    when do we put the aloo

    • Anonymous

      Hi Monica, “aloo” means potato, so it gets added in with the spices as
      per the recipe.

  • Hercindership

    Good recipe–excellent flavors. The honey made it a little sweet. Next time I’ll leave it out. Added red chili flakes to up the heat. Yum!

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  • Asdf

    kinda good

  • Tara Finlay

    This was very good, but it was *way* too clovey for my taste. Next time, I’ll leave out the cloves, use less garam masala and maybe more chili and some ground mustard. Very good overall and I enjoyed the process. I couldn’t get black mustard seeds and I mentioned it to the wife of my local indian restaurant’s owner and she went in the back and came out with little packets of  black mustard seed, whole cumin and garam masala for me! She rocks!

  • Meguano

    a little tweaking .. and .. amaaaaaaaaaazing 😀

  • Gtfo

    just keep in mind that honey never should be cooked, i.e. boiled. The act of boiling turns it into poison, no matter how healthy it is in a raw form. 😉

  • Pitchtwit

    Loved this. The cloves did make it quite sweet, but I didn’t notice them too much other than that – which I liked anyway. Cauliflower got a bit too soft for me, but overall really nice and very morish!

  • Indian Food

    I was searching for the same information and my search ends here after reviewing this post..Thanks for this great share!!

  • Chandan

    I am from Punjab, and to be very frank…I prefer to cook without using any water. Keeps it non soggy! Follow these simple steps and let me know how it turned out!

    3 potatoes diced and one medium sized cauliflower florets cut – serves 3 people easy!

    1. Just take a little ghee(instead of oil…better flavour to the potatoes)

    2. add half a tsp of cumin seeds after the oil has heated up, they will crackle almost instantly…add the chopped onions at this time.

    3. soon as the onions lose their colour, throw in some finely chopped ginger and garlic. some finely chopped green chillies are always a good addon at this step.

    4. let the onions become golden brown(dont burn them!), add the spices. turmeric, coriander powder, little bit of red chilli powder. turmeric always goes into oil, never add in a gravy cuz it wont cook properly and gives a raw taste which is not exactly a palate’s dream.

    5. add the potatoes and mix them well. add little salt. cover and cook for 3 minutes on low heat(medium heat would also burn it, to be more confident, try adding 20 ml milk before you put the lid on). now add the cauliflower, add some more salt, mix well and cover with lid…low heat again.

    6. adding tomatoes is optional…but always a good idea. tomatoes can be added before the potatoes or after the cauliflower. if added before the potatoes…do add some salt after the tomatoes and let it cook till the ghee separates out.

    7. 12 minutes after the cauliflower should get it done to near perfection(depending on the variety of potatoes used).

    8. sprinkle some garam masala on top and cover it to let the steam impart the flavour to the dish. garnish with freshly chopped coriander or cream…excellent with nan or roti!

  • Mascher

    It’s funny that of all the recipes for aloo gobi that I have used, this one tastes the best….and I am Indian!! Made it for a couple of dinners and had people licking their fingers :)


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