Easy Indian-Inspired Recipes That Are Layered with Flavor
Dal, the name for pulses like lentils that don’t require soaking, is also the title of soups and stews made with this as the starring ingredient. This filling yet surprisingly quick Indian vegetarian recipe tastes as if you simmered it low and slow all day. Hat tips go to ghee (clarified butter used often in Indian cuisine), plus Thai red chiles, turmeric, and red chile powder.
Pressure Cooker Indian-Spiced Chicken
Paleo diet- and Instant Pot-friendly, this is one Indian chicken curry recipe that is incredibly on-trend and incredibly delicious. Start with chicken thighs, as they’re naturally richer than chicken breasts, then bring the heat with curry powder and cayenne. Coconut milk and a bed of cauliflower rice balance things out nicely so even the spice-averse will dig this dinner.
Indian-Spiced Turkey Kabob Pitas
A homemade curry blend featuring cumin, turmeric, and curry powder makes these grilled turkey kabobs stand out from the rest of the grilled recipe crowd. To balance the spice in this Indian-style dish, pair with Greek yogurt and a cooling cucumber slaw. (P.S. Prefer chicken breast to turkey or have that in the fridge instead? That works wonderfully, too.)
Indian-Inspired Butter Chicken
Set and forget. This Indian butter chicken recipe is one of our favorite versatile dinners that can be prepped in your slow cooker or Instant Pot, depending on your schedule and the equipment you have handy. While its name and flavor make this dish seem rich, it’s actually surprisingly light (at just 409 calories and 1 tablespoon of butter per serving).
Indian Cauliflower Fried Rice
Give fried rice a veggie-filled makeover by swapping in cauliflower rice for the usual grain. A healthy dose of Indian spices, including garam masala and turmeric, ensure that this Indian cauliflower recipe is anything but bland. Chicken and chickpeas guarantee it's hearty enough to be a meal in itself.
Turmeric-Ginger Marinated Chicken
Before hitting the grill, this Indian chicken recipe rests in a turmeric, ginger, and Greek yogurt marinade to develop loads of warm, Indian-inspired flavor. To make it a meal, serve with basmati rice and a couple lime wedges (perfect for squeezing a bright finish on top!). Leftovers taste incredible the next day on a bed of leafy greens or tucked inside a flatbread for a wrap sandwich.
BBQ Chicken with Chaatpati Chutney
Take a break from standard barbecue sauce. The chaatpati chutney in this recipe is all you need for a successful, finger-licking cookout. Dates, tamarind concentrate, and standard Indian cuisine spices all play a role in making this better-than-barbecue chicken glaze.
Quick Tandoori-Style Chicken
Be careful: This Indian chicken recipe is (pleasantly) hot! A quick coating of Greek yogurt cools down this dish a little, but Madras curry powder brings the fire to these grilled chicken skewers. Pile ’em over rice or greens, or try one of our Test Kitchen tricks and stuff inside kulcha, which is a homemade bread that’s like a no-yeast twist on naan.
Indian Garbanzo Bean Salad with Pitas
Fresh veggies, garbanzo beans, a quick curry vinaigrette ... what more do you need for a five-star salad? To make this a truly impressive side dish or light entrée, try serving the easy Indian recipe with homemade pitas or naan and yogurt. (We love to make our own yogurt in the Instant Pot, but you can definitely buy instead of DIY-ing.)
Warm Indian-Spiced Acorn Squash Salad
Brighten up that almost-all-beige spread and invite Indian-inspired food to your holiday table. Warm garam masala and tart pomegranate seeds add flavor and color to ordinary side salads. Combine those two with tender, roasted acorn squash and kale for a 30-minute dish that might just steal the show. (Sorry, turkey.)
Roasted Indian Chicken, Vegetables, and Chickpeas
Seeking easy Indian dinner recipes that are full of flavor and protein, but don’t take all day to make (and clean up after)? Thanks to this meat and veggie dish, you can serve a delicious, flavor-packed dinner on one pan. Spread chicken, carrots, cauliflower, and chickpeas across the sheet pan, and season with a blend of Indian spices for a simple, low-stress supper.
Beef with Cucumber Raita
While you might guess the steak is the star of this quick Indian dinner recipe, we think the sauce is what really deserves the spotlight. Yogurt, cucumber, red onion, and fresh mint create a refreshing topping designed for spooning over the sizzling meat. This low-calorie, high-protein recipe is perfect for dinner guests; it's gluten-free and takes just 25 minutes start to finish.
Ginger Curry Chicken with Lentils and Leeks
All by itself, the cooking liquid, which is chicken broth flavored with ginger, oranges, and leeks, would be a great soup. Chicken and lentils make this Indian-style dish a well-balanced meal. It's an Indian chicken recipe that will please the meat and potatoes crowd and more adventurous eaters all at once.
South Indian-Style Macaroni and Cheese
Spiced with turmeric, paprika, and cayenne pepper, this kid-friendly Indian vegetarian recipe is a total crowd-pleaser. Peas sneak in a dose of vitamins, while bread crumbs and two kinds of cheese amp up the decadence factor. Try the family-sized casserole recipe with macaroni, shells, or any small-cut pasta.
“Best cupcake recipe I’ve tried to date,” raves Kat R. of this unexpected yet amazing Indian recipe. (It somehow tastes even better after freezing, thawing, and enjoying, so feel free to make-ahead for the holiday season!) Tart cranberries complement the spicy flavors of chai in the beautifully-decorated cupcakes.
Slow Cooker Indian Chicken Stew
It's tough to believe it takes just 15 minutes of prep to coax this much flavor out of affordable pantry staples. Garbanzo beans, canned tomatoes, and chicken broth star alongside a variety of spices. Toss it all together and delegate the rest of the work to your slow cooker.
Apricot Custard Pie
No roundup of the best Indian recipes would be complete without dessert. And you’ll definitely want to save room for this ginger- and cardamom-spiced cream pie. Those warm spices complement the sweet apricot preserves in the creamy filling of this luxurious dessert.
This chewy Indian flatbread is perfect for sopping up flavorful sauces and juices. (Naan is an especially perfect partner for soups and stews.) Curious about what differentiates this Indian recipe from a pita? Substituting half of the water with yogurt lends a softer texture.