Vegan Indian Palak Matar

Vegan Indian Palak Matar

Jolinda Hackett

Prep: 5 mins
Cook: 25 mins
Total: 30 mins
Servings: 4 servings
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
100 Calories
4g Fat
13g Carbs
6g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 100
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 4g 5%
Saturated Fat 0g 2%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 166mg 7%
Total Carbohydrate 13g 5%
Dietary Fiber 5g 19%
Protein 6g
Calcium 158mg 12%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Indian palak matar (or matar palak, if you prefer) is a flavorful vegetarian and vegan Indian vegetable dish of spinach and peas in a spicy tomato-based sauce. In this recipe, the palak (spinach) and matar (peas) are spiced with a heavy blend of Indian spices including cumin seeds, coriander, chili, turmeric and a bit of tamarind. You can leave the tamarind out, if you don't have a source for it, without changing the authenticity of the dish too much.

Because this palak matar recipe uses vegetable oil instead of ghee, it is vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free (just be sure your spices are gluten-free).

For a spicier dish, add some sliced green chilies in along with the cumin seeds in the first step, or for a non-vegan dish, you can pan-fry a bit of Indian paneer cheese (or a vegan tofu paneer substitute) to make a palak matar paneer.


  • 3 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1/2 cup tomato purée
  • 4 cups fresh spinach or 1 box frozen spinach, thawed
  • 2 teaspoons coriander powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon. garam masala
  • Pinch turmeric powder
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 teaspoon  tamarind paste
  • 1 cup green peas, either canned or frozen and thawed

Steps to Make It

  1. Over medium-high heat, place the oil in a saucepan and add the cumin seeds. Allow the cumin seeds to "pop", which will take about a minute or two.

  2. After the cumin seeds have popped, reduce the heat to medium, then add the tomato puree, stirring to combine well. Next, add the spinach and heat until spinach has well wilted, about ten to fifteen minutes.

  3. When the spinach has wilted, add the remaining spices–the coriander powder, chili powder, garam masala, turmeric powder, salt, and tamarind paste, stirring well to combine. Once the spices are well combined, add the green peas and cook for 5 minutes or just until heated through, stirring as needed.

  4. Serve your Indian spinach and peas hot with plain steamed rice and naan.