31 Indian-Inspired Dinner Recipe Ideas

Meat loaf? Boring. Spaghetti and meatballs? Yawn. If you’re in a dinner rut, it’s time to expand your horizons. (And no, we don’t mean ordering takeout.) Presenting 31 Indian-inspired dinner recipe ideas to try. Pass the naan.

26 Asian-Inspired Recipes You Can Make at Home

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Photo: Liz Andrew/Styling: Erin McDowell

1. Slow-cooker Chicken Tikka Masala

Let your Crock-Pot do the heavy lifting. Pureed tomatoes, yogurt, garam masala and spices come together over six hours into a creamy, savory sauce that just won't quit.

2. Chicken In A Creamy Cashew Sauce

It’s all about that creamy sauce. Scratch your itch for takeout all on your own with this rendition of chicken korma, which calls for coconut oil, turmeric and raw cashews.

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The Endless Meal

3. Coconut Vegetarian Korma

Rich, creamy and totally meat-free. Not only that, but it's paleo and gluten-free too. The sauce is aromatic and indulgent, thanks to cloves, fennel, chili flakes and coconut milk.

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Half Baked Harvest

4. Indian-style Beef Satay With Curried Cashew Sauce

No forks allowed. All you need are a few trusty skewers, which make popping these on the grill a total breeze. Serve with basmati rice or couscous.

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The Endless Meal

5. Creamy Coconut Lentil Curry

New to cooking Indian food? Try this deceptively simple dish that's great for beginners. There's only a few minutes of prep time and it'll be ready to eat in less than an hour.

6. Baked Coconut-curry Meatballs

Lamb curry sounds super complicated. But using ground meat cuts the cooking time down big time. Save even more time by baking the meatballs instead of pan-frying them.

7. Roasted Indian-spiced Vegetables With Lime-cilantro Butter

Beets, carrots, parsnips, oh my. Get your nutrition up for the day with this pretty dish that proves a side of vegetables doesn't need to be boring. Serve with plain yogurt and chutney.

8. Instant Pot Keto Indian Butter Chicken

The ultimate Indian comfort food. Butter does the trick (obviously, it's in the name), but ghee will take it over the edge. Swap naan and basmati for sautéed cauliflower rice to make it keto.

9. Vegan Keto Coconut Curry

Here's one meal you can totally brag to your yoga friends about. Think coconut milk, red curry paste, natural peanut butter, lots of veggies and diced extra-firm tofu. We're feeling healthier already.

10. Easy Indian-inspired Kitchari Bowls

Never heard of kitchari? It's a restorative Indian stew and popular Ayurvedic dish that combats inflammation. It all starts with red lentils and whatever veggies you have in your fridge. Top it off with cilantro and coconut yogurt.

11. Indian Salad Bowl With Crunchy Chickpeas

Meet your new favorite lunch. This vibrant plate stars smoked paprika-curry chickpeas and fresh mango chutney finished with ginger and cayenne. See ya, turkey sandwich.

12. Sheet Pan Indian-spiced Chicken

Maximum flavor, minimal mess. With only 10 minutes of prep, this dish is just the ticket for lazy nights. Throw the ingredients on a baking sheet and roast until the potatoes are tender and the chicken is crispy.

13. 40-minute Saag Paneer

This take on spinach paneer stays true to tradition. You'll need Kashmiri red chili and asafetida powders to get its signature flavor. Trust us, it's worth the investment.

14. Whole Coconut Curry Chicken

Your dinner guests are going to be blown away by this one-pot beauty. The chicken is poached in the coconut milk-curry paste broth, so by the time it's done, it'll have a ton of flavor.

15. Indian Coconut Butter Cauliflower

Soccer practice, homework, baths...and you still need to get dinner on the table. Enter this 30-minute wonder that trades chicken for cauliflower, butter for coconut oil and heavy cream for coconut milk.

16. Anything-you-have Coconut Curry Soup

We know, you planned on making salad with those sad veggies in your crisper drawer, but it just didn't happen. Toss in anything from broccoli to carrots to snap peas and you'll have dinner in half an hour.

17. Homemade Naan Indian Veggie Wrap

Be the belle of the break room with from-scratch naan sweetened with honey and brushed with garlic butter. Fill it with spicy soy patties, raw or roasted vegetables and yogurt sauce.

18. Aloo Gobi (indian-spiced Potatoes And Cauliflower)

It's no surprise that Indian food is so popular with vegetarians. This recipe turns cubed russets and cauliflower florets from basic to bae with a mix of ground turmeric, garam masala, fresh ginger and cumin. You won't miss the meat.

19. Chicken Biryani

This ridiculously easy rendition only uses 10 ingredients and one pot. Dig into layers of crispy rice, tender chicken and creamy yogurt topped with cilantro and fried onions.

20. Aloo Tikki

Once you try this Indian street food, you'll be making it on the regular. Think fried mashed potatoes packed with peas, onions, bread crumbs and spices. We'll take extra spicy yogurt for dipping.

21. Palak Paneer

Paneer is an Indian cheese made from curdled milk. Pan-fried and dressed in a creamy spinach sauce? Sign us up. Make a pot of basmati rice to serve it with and dinner is done.

22. Garlic Naan Grilled Cheese

Picky kids to feed? They'll have no complaints about this Indian-inspired comfort food. Sink your teeth into ooey-gooey sharp cheddar and havarti grilled on homemade garlic butter naan. Drizzle with honey and devour.

23. Easy Raita

If you pile a shocking amount of tzatziki on gyros, you need this cucumber-yogurt condiment in your life. Serve it over spiced chicken or use it as a dip for veggie samosas.

24. Mixed Vegetable Pakoras

The tastiest kind of veggies: battered and pan-fried. Potato, onion and cauliflower are coated in chickpea breading, then fried and dressed in fresh cilantro chutney.

25. Easy Chana Masala

We'll never get sick of chickpeas. The same goes for tomato-coriander masala. And 30-minute dinners.

26. Butter Chicken Meatballs

Spaghetti and meatballs who? This will be the kids' new go-to. They can even help you shape the meatballs made with ground chicken, Panko and yellow curry powder.

27. Yellow Chicken Coconut Curry

Also called chicken korma, this dish will only take you 25 minutes to pull together. Use full-fat coconut milk for an extra rich broth and lots of cashews for extra crunch.

28. Sheet-pan Curry Chicken And Vegetables

Sheet-pan meals will never go out of style. Potatoes, bell peppers, peas and chicken breasts get generously seasoned before heading into the oven for 30 minutes. The recipe calls for Madras curry powder, but feel free to use whatever you have or prefer.

29. Potato Chickpea Coconut Curry

Fresh ginger. Coconut milk. Red curry paste. Lime juice. It's a Thai-Indian fusion dish that's impressive without leaving you with a full sink. All you need is a large skillet.

30. Baked Samosas 2 Ways

We don't trust ourselves around these savory, fried handhelds. Try these mashed potato-filled pockets wrapped in phyllo dough and baked. The kids are sure to ask for seconds.

31. Easy Masala Chai

Once dinner's over, bring a pitcher of whole-spice tea lattes to the table. It's made with cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, ginger and dairy-free milk (though you could easily use dairy milk). We'll take ours iced.

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Freelance Editor

From 2015-2020 Lindsay Champion held the role of Food and Wellness Director. She continues to write for PureWow as a Freelance Editor.

taryn pire

Food Editor

Taryn Pire is PureWow’s food editor and has been writing about all things delicious since 2016. She’s developed recipes, reviewed restaurants and investigated food trends at...