15 Essential North Indian Recipes
If you love Indian food, chances are you're already familiar with the cuisine of North India. We love the creamy curries, butter chicken, saag paneer, kofta, and chicken tikka masala that are staples of many Indian restaurants. And in this Indian recipe collection, we feature them all, plus feature a few more North India-inspired recipes that you might not know yet, but which will soon become favorites as well.
Vegetable Biryani (Tehri)
Vegetables and long-grain rice cook with fragrant Indian spices in this vegetarian biryani. "Tehri was originally concocted by kings in northern India as a vegetarian equivalent to the Mughals' mutton or chicken biryani," says thesiamesecat, who submitted the recipe. "Serve with chilled yogurt and spicy curry on the side."
Spiced Turnips (Shalgam Masala)
With this vegan dish, you'll simply simmer turnips in a spicy tomato-based sauce and then coarsely mash them up and enjoy with basmati rice or naan bread. "This Northern Indian dish is great way to spice up traditional mashed turnips," says Kathleen Woods Rubino. "This dish is great garnished with fresh cilantro or parsley."
Indian Butter Chicken (Chicken Makhani)
Chicken, cashews, and Indian spices simmer in an aromatic tomato-based sauce. "Make delicious Indian butter chicken at home," says RFalgout. "It is so flavorful and easy to prepare. Add your favorite veggies to make it a complete meal. Serve over warm basmati rice along with some naan bread."
Authentic Saag Paneer
In this version of the classic creamed spinach dish, cubes of fried paneer cheese and spinach cook with rich cream or coconut milk. filling vegetarian meal.
With North Indian dishes, naan is essential on the side for sopping up all the delicious sauces. To make this simple bread, you'll start with a yogurt- and garlic-butter-enriched dough. The secret is to fry it up in a super-hot cast iron skillet until beautifully charred. "Though restaurant naan is usually cooked in the intense heat of the tandoor oven, you can pull off this homemade version using a hot cast iron skillet," says Chef John. "When cooked at the proper temperature, the naan will develop blistered bubbles with a lovely golden-black char."
Indian Chicken Tikka Masala
For this tikka masala, pieces of boneless, skinless chicken, garlic, and ginger combine with yogurt, tomatoes, and curry paste for "an easy but flavorful version of everyone's favorite mild-medium curry!" says Keri. "Serve with naan bread and mango chutney. Garnish with additional cilantro leaves."
Chicken Korma II
"In this mild Northern Indian dish, chicken is simmered in a creamy fragrant sauce with onion, garlic, ginger and cashews," says Trina. Serve over basmati or sticky rice. Add more chili or cayenne for more heat."
Dal Makhani (Indian Lentils)
Lentils are simmered in a spicy tomato sauce and finished with a little cream. "This version is very rich, but you can leave out the cream to make it lighter," says SOGOLONDJATA. "Kasuri methi (fenugreek leaves) are difficult to find in the U.S. but give this dish something very special."
Best Homemade Paneer
Milk, lemon juice, salt, and a thermometer are all you need to make homemade paneer. "It's easy to make your very own paneer to use in your favorite Indian recipes," says ChefJackie.
Palak Paneer Curry
"Palak paneer is an Indian curry with soft cubes of cheese simmered in a mildly spiced spinach gravy," says Andreia. "All of the spinach benefits in an easy-to-make and absolutely delicious Indian curry. Serve with hot naan or roti."
Indian Style Sheekh Kabab
Ground lamb kebabs are a specialty in Lucknow, a town in Uttar Pradesh in Northern India. Ground lamb is seasoned with fresh mint and cilantro, and ginger and green chili paste, and made into delicious shish kabobs. Serve with lime wedges, mint chutney, and sliced, sweet Vidalia onions. "This is a spicy and extremely flavorful recipe which will surely be a hit at any BBQ party," says Yakuta Rasheed.
Indian Eggplant - Bhurtha
This eggplant stew (bhurtha) features roasted chopped eggplant, tomatoes, onions, garlic, and ginger stir-fried with fragrant spices. "This is a traditional North Indian (Punjabi) Bhurtha made with eggplant and tomato, and seasoned with cumin, turmeric, garlic, and ginger," says Simmi G. "Serve with fresh roti or naan."
Raghavan's Garam Masala
Season your favorite Indian recipes with your own garam masala spice mix. "I use a little of this spicy and smoky blend in any dish that calls for garam masala," says Nicholio. "It's great on roasted eggplant, in stews, and even in scrambled eggs."
Kheema Malai Kofta
North Indian Nepali Curry Dumplings
These delicate and versatile dumplings can be filled with ground pork, beef, turkey, chicken, or your favorite vegetables. "These were easy and SO delicious," says bananas360. "I spent some time in Northern India and Nepal over the spring/summer and ate A LOT of these puppies."