Vegetable Tikka Masala


Prep time: 10 minutes
Total cook time: Approx. 40 minutes
Serves: 6-8

I love indian food. The flavors are incredible, the texture of the dishes is spot-on, and oh that Naan! If I could eat it all the time, I would. Which could get expensive. So a couple of years ago I started researching recipes and cooking it at home (in addition to frequenting our favorite Indian restaurant. The more Indian food, the merrier!). I have developed a fabulous vegetable tikka masala for this post. As you’ve surely noticed, this recipe is meat-free.  I like to have vegetarian recipes handy, but I do not like tofu or other vegetable substitutes. This recipe is great because it calls for chickpeas instead of some other substitute.

A few months back we had unexpected guests for dinner and a limited quantity of chicken for my tikka masala. I had a head of cauliflower, some new potatoes, and frozen peas – so I threw together what I had with some chickpeas and spices. It was so flavorful and delicious – we eat everything on the table. Despite how tasty it was, it was missing that curry-esque texture, and a result, was a bit dry. This week I set out to recreate that recipe, but in a more authentic curry form. There are a lot of ingredients, and it takes a bit of time, but in the end its worth it. The flavor and texture are just right.


1 head of cauliflower, chopped
2 C new potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 C carrots, diced
1 T butter
Olive oil
1/4 C water
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp paprika
1 T tandoori spice
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp chili powder
3/4 tsp salt
16 oz sodium free tomato sauce
1/2 – 3/4 C lowfat milk
2 C cooked chickpeas
1 C green peas
cilantro for garnish


1. Saute potatoes and carrots with butter and 1 T olive oil on medium heat for 5-8 minutes. Add cauliflower and another 1 T olive oil. Saute on high for one more minute.

Veggies sauteeing

2. Add water, put lid on saute pan, and turn heat to medium. Allow the vegetables to steam for approximately 5 minutes, or until tender.

3. In a dutch oven, heat 1 tsp olive oil on medium. Add the minced garlic and cook until fragrant. Then add all of the spices (the spices will coat the garlic pieces). Whisk in tomato sauce and milk. Turn to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes.

4. Once the vegetable mix is steamed, add peas. Cook until the peas are defrosted. Then mash veggies with a fork to create a fluffy texture. Add to tikka sauce.

Veggies in the pot

5. Add cooked chickpeas to tikka sauce. This is not a spicy dish but you could easily add some cayenne at this stage to make it spicy.


6. Simmer for about 20 minutes so the flavors develop. Upon serving, top dish with dried or fresh cilantro as a (tasty) garnish.


You can serve this dish with bismati rice as its own main course, or you could serve with meat for a larger meal. When I made this earlier in the week I simply plopped an chicken breast on top. It was delicious and the flavors of the vegetable tikka and the lightly spiced chicken complimented one another.

Hungry for more great recipes? Explore more Lawyer in the Kitchen!


  1. Looks wonderful. Where do you get the Marsala spice?

  2. Sorry I meant Tandoori spice

    1. You can get it at any spice store, or in your case healthy living. I’ll take some if you get it 🙂

  3. […] are really handy for dicing vegetables in recipes like Vegetable Tikka Masala or Chinese Stir-Fry Garlic […]

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