Spinach and Potato Curry | Palak Aloo

Spinach and Potato Curry | Palak Aloo

I decided it was finally time to post a somewhat healthy recipe now that we’re in the second week of the new year. Greens are always healthy, and we’re told at every turn that we need to eat more of them.

I like green leafy vegetables, but I cannot seem to eat them all the time and my biggest challenge is trying to fix them in different ways. There has got to be more ways than just sautéed greens with garlic.

Spinach and Potato Curry | Palak Aloo

We eat a lot kale and usually, I like to bake kale chips first and then use them crumbled on top of soups and stews. I find baked kale chips texture more appealing than straight up stewed or sautéed kale.

I like the chard too but can never get creative with them. I’ve curried them before and added them to stews but I’m never inspired. It’s a bit sad really because I see mountains of them in the farmers markets during spring and even the shops have decent bundles. The fresh, young spring greens are easy, because to preserve the flavour of the young tender leaves, we eat them in spring mix salads or toss them gently and stir fry. But then I lose interest. Every year, I promise I’m going to get inspired!

I probably use spinach the most as far as greens go. It’s easy to have a box of baby spinach leaves in the fridge and they get tossed in smoothies, stir fries, salads and stews. One of my children’s favourite spinach dish is the Indian palak paneer; the creamy cheese spinach curry.

One of my favourites is the very simply prepared, lightly spiced, Spinach and Potato Curry, also known as, Palak Aloo. I hadn’t made this for a while and happened to have a box of baby spinach leaves that needed to be used up quickly.

Spinach and Potato Curry | Palak Aloo

I didn’t want it too heavily spiced and wanted the fresh spinach taste to come through. I also love how the potatoes soak up all the slightly bitter and spicy cooking liquid. It had been a long time since I had made it and after enjoying it for dinner, wondered why I had forgotten to make it in so long.

It is really good, and though some people traditionally eat it a lot drier, we like ours a little more runny so the delicious juices soak into the rice. The choice is yours, just let the curry cook longer allowing the juices to evaporate. I don’t like the spinach to cook too long. As soon as it’s wilted and a little bit of the water has evaporated, I pull it off the heat. This a way, the spinach still retains it’s goodness and is a vibrant green. Frozen spinach can be used with great success but this particular curry has a totally different taste with fresh spinach so I recommend using fresh leaves.

Sometimes I add a few dried fenugreek leaves. If you haven’t tried this green, it is widely used in Indian cooking and has a pleasant bitter taste. I absolutely love the fresh leaves but they are not always easily available. Many Indian cooks keep dried leaves to add as a herb or spice. I feel the dried fenugreek leaves enhance spinach’s bitter qualities in a pleasant way. It’s also adds more depth to the dish but on days I just want to taste the fresh spinach, I leave it out. I have it as an optional ingredient if you’d like to try it.

Spinach and Potato Curry | Palak Aloo

Spinach and Potato Curry

Calories: 1339

Fat: 60g

Fresh spinach and potatoes sautéed with onions and warm Indian spices.
  • 1lb/16oz/455g fresh spinach, washed, stemmed and roughly chopped
  • 2 large potatoes, medium dice
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 green chilli
  • 2 teaspoons garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ginger, minced
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric, ground
  • 1 teaspoon cumin, ground
  • 1 teaspoon coriander, ground
  • ½ teaspoon cayenne/red chilli powder
  • 2 tablespoons dried fenugreek leaves (optional)
  • 2 cups/470ml water, enough to cover potatoes to cook
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup/60ml oil, coconut, avocado or other neutral flavoured
  1. In a large pot, heat the oil on medium heat and brown the onions.
  2. Once the onions are lightly browned, add the garlic and ginger paste and cook for a minute until fragrant.
  3. Add the potatoes and toss in the oil and onions.
  4. Add the turmeric powder, ground cumin, ground coriander and red cayenne powder.
  5. Mix through into the potatoes.
  6. Allow the potatoes to sauté for about 5 minutes.
  7. Add enough water to cover the potatoes, cover and let potatoes cook, about 10-15 minutes.
  8. Once the potatoes are just tender, making sure there isn't too much water, add the spinach leaves and cover to allow spinach to wilt.
  9. The spinach leaves will release some water so you don't want too much water in the pan before adding the spinach, about a cup and half of water is acceptable.
  10. Once the spinach has cooked down and beginning to get tender, uncover and evaporate some, of the water.
  11. Add the green chilli and the fenugreek leaves, if using.
  12. Check for salt and adjust.
  13. How dry you want the curry is up to you.
  14. Since my children like rice with theirs, I keep it a bit fluid as you can see in the photos.
  15. If you like the curry drier, then add the spinach leaves when there is barely any water left after the potatoes are done.
  16. Serve as a side with rice or bread.

Spinach and Potato Curry | Palak Aloo


How about you all? Do you get inspired by greens or is there anything that challenges you guys? Another one of my challenges is artichokes. I can’t get them right 🙁

Enjoy your weekend everyone!! Happy cooking 🙂

  1. Pingback: Spinach Soufflé » Coffee and Crumpets

  2. I love your photos Nazneen – so clean and colourful. You’ve inspired me with your idea of sprinkling kale chips over food. To be honest I think they are a pain to eat – they always seem to get stuck in your teeth and it looks like you have moss growing in-between!!! Or is that just me? In any case, this is a reminder I don’t have enough curry in my life right now.
    nancy@jamjnr recently posted..January Cookbook Guru: Falling CloudberriesMy Profile

    • Haha! You are so right! They do get stuck in your teeth and make a huge mess on the dining table too! But they’re still tasty, I make sure I have water nearby to keep from having moss teeth 🙂

    • Thanks Charles! This is definitely a good one, simple but filling and total comfort food. It’s easy enough to make so get in there!

  3. Nazarene,
    I can’t wait to try this? It looks so delicious!
    Regarding the Swiss Chard, try sauteing it in garlic and olive oil. It’s really great that way, especially with a poached egg on the side.

  4. THis is one of my comfort foods yet strangely enough I don’t cook it often enough. This post is a reminder that I really need to! Your photos are gorgeous. I have tried and miserably failed at making aloo palak look appetizing in photos :-/
    Needful Things recently posted..VentingMy Profile

  5. This looks beautiful, and refreshing. Love your shots. Methi adds the punch and I always add some, preferably fresh or frozen. I have even tried adding kasoori and that works too. Spinach is by far my fav green too and I am cooking with some tonight.
    Minnie@thelady8home recently posted..Huevos RancherosMy Profile

    • I always have kasoori so i use that. I can’t always get fresh here but I love fresh methi.Thanks Minnie!

    • Paneer is easy to make if you want to try it. Just a matter of souring milk and scooping the curds out. If you want to try an easy version without paneer, just make this! Thanks Peachy!

  6. I posted earlier this is what we were going to have for tea..wow! Am so pleased we did, it was lovely and light but a warmth of spice that didn’t over power. I would be happy to eat this just by itself, but we had it with lamb and rice. Thank you so much for a lovely recipe with history and family connection !!! Xx

  7. LOVE homemade palak, you can’t substitute it- and it’s SO EASY!! This recipe is spot on, very close to my mother’s. The only last thing she adds is a little bit of yoghurt for a touch of creamy and tart dimension. Glad you didn’t put cream-laden/buttery version of this recipe up here, like one might find in a curry house. Thanks for keeping it real. 😉

  8. This is one of my favorite dishes! And I usually make it with chard rather than spinach – I think it works really well, but maybe it’s the way I season it. If you haven’t tried chard in this dish, it’s worth a try IMO. Anyway, great dish. And so pretty!
    John@Kitchen Riffs recently posted..Couscous with Dried FruitMy Profile

    • Thanks John! Yes, I’ve tried it with chard and also the chicken version with chard too. I find that greens tale vey well to Indian flavours and sometimes it’s the best way to jazz em up!

  9. You’ve made me want to rush out and buy spinach. This looks really delicious, perfect for cold weather and so very tasty. I find frozen spinach a bit tasteless, kind of watery. Perhaps it’s the way its frozen here. Anyway I’ll try this with a wonderful bag of baby spinach leaves tomorrow. GG
    Glamorous Glutton recently posted..Silent Sunday 12.01.2014My Profile

    • You know frozen spinach, ugh. My dad would buy hordes of it from Bejam back in the day, I really hated that stuff and went off spinach for years!! Thankfully, I can cook now 🙂

  10. Hey there Nazneen

    Came over to say hello to my blog Neighbor! I live in Broomfield too. Met Lea Ann today and she mentioned your beautiful blog. We all are planning to meet soon. Hope you can make it to the local bloggy meetup !!

    stay in touch

    Ansh | Spiceroots recently posted..Greek Salad #Ina FridaysMy Profile

    • Hi Ansh! Thanks for stopping by and introducing yourself! I am excited to know you! We should def get together soon 🙂

  11. Nazneen – this is so beautiful and comforting, and just the kind of meal we are all craving now. I think I will grate fresh turmeric into this, as I have some on hand. This will be a wonderful treat midweek for supper! Thanks for sharing! Can you share your palak paneer sometime, too? Do you make your own paneer curds? Happy weekend!
    David recently posted..A Wedding CakeMy Profile

  12. Do you have left overs? Can I please come to your house now? This is a huge childhood favourite of mine. Why childhood..me and my kids love this dish so much! My mother adds fenugreek seeds but I use mustard seeds instead. I will stop opening your posts near dinnertime henceforth…makes me enjoy my dinner a little less after looking at these mouth watering pictures:-)
    Sugar et al recently posted..Breakfast Poppy Seed Crepes with Strawberries and YoghurtMy Profile