This veggie-filled curry is mild, delicious, and perfect for kids! Indian spinach curry packs in the spinach in a smooth sauce. Add chickpeas or chicken for protein and serve with brown rice for a wholesome family meal that is anything but boring.
Indian spinach curry is one of my favorite meals of all time! It’s wonderfully rich and creamy but very mild as far as curries go. I’ve even lived in India and I still think this is up there among the tastiest of all Indian dishes. My version may not be perfectly authentic, but it’s tasty.
Time and again when we share Indian food with family and friends their favorite is usually “the spinach one.” You may have heard of it as palak paneer (when served with Indian cheese) or spinach saag. Whatever the name, it’s delicious!
If your family likes spicy, you can always up the spice. But I’ll include the bare minimum and you can go from there.
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Five Reasons to Love Spinach Curry
- This dish is mostly spinach! So it’s perfect for packing in nutrients like iron, magnesium, and folate. A helping of this will also give you lots of vitamins K, A, E, B6, B2, and C.
- This curry gives picky eaters a new way to try veggies. Sometimes all kiddos need is a new way of eating a vegetable to like it. They may not even realize the “green stuff” is pretty much all spinach because the taste and texture is transformed. Give it a go!
- It’s easy to make. You only need one pot and believe it or not, you can find all the ingredients in most American supermarkets!
- It tastes delicious. Savory, gently-spiced veggies with hearty chicken or chickpeas make a crowd-pleasing dish.
- You can freeze it! Make a big batch and serve curry again another night, with no fuss.
What Kind of Spinach to Use
Any kind of fresh spinach will work in this recipe: baby leaf, or large bunch. In India, our cook used the larger bunch spinach. It’s delicious, but the fibrous larger leaves make the texture of the final dish a little less smooth. So if you’re going for a super creamy texture, opt for baby spinach.
I don’t recommend using frozen spinach in this recipe, because it’s a bit too watery. Stick to fresh for this one!
What to Serve with Spinach Curry
We love to serve this curry over brown rice or with whole wheat naan (you can use the naan to sop up the curry.)
You might also like to pair this spinach curry with a protein like cooked chicken or chickpeas. Just mix it right in! It’s also delicious topped with a dollop of whole milk yogurt, which adds some protein as well.
How to Make Indian Spinach Curry
Once you get your ingredients prepped, this dish comes together quickly.
If you’re using a bunch of fresh spinach, chop an inch off the bottom to remove the toughest part of the stems. Then fill a large bowl with water and swish the spinach around to remove any dirt.
Now prep the remaining veggies: chop onion and tomato, mince garlic, and peel and grate ginger. I used red onion here, but I’ve used white and yellow before and they all seem to work.
Heat a large pot over medium-high heat. Pour in oil and then dump in onion, tomato, garlic, and ginger. Saute these aromatics for about five minutes, until they start to turn translucent. Now add your spices. I used garam masala, turmeric, coriander, cumin, and cayenne pepper. If your family can’t handle any heat, omit the cayenne pepper. Otherwise, use up to a 1/2 teaspoon for a fairly good spice (for me at least).
Once spices are added, saute for another 2-3 minutes. Now add in a half cup of water and the fresh spinach. Stir everything around a bit and cover to simmer for about five minutes. Open and stir every minute or so until all the spinach has wilted.
Remove the pot from the stove and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes. Add the spinach mixture to a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. You can use an immersion blender if you have one.
If you’re using a blender and you’re having trouble getting the mixture to catch in the blades, you can add a splash of water.
Pour the spinach mixture back into the pot and put back on the heat. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons of salt. Rinse and drain chickpeas and add to the spinach (or add cooked chicken, if preferred).
Bring to a simmer and allow to simmer for a few minutes. Now add Greek yogurt and mix until well combined.
Serve with plain yogurt or a splash of cream on top for extra richness, if desired. Ladle over rice and eat with naan.
Indian Spinach Curry for Kids
- 1 medium onion
- 1 medium tomato, red
- 5 clove garlic
- 1 tablespoon ginger root, fresh
- 10 ounce spinach
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 teaspoon coriander
- 1 teaspoon cumin, ground
- 1 teaspoon garam masala spice
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric, ground
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne or red pepper
- 1 cup water
- 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 15 ounce chickpeas (garbanzo beans), canned
- 1/2 cup Greek yogurt, plain
- Chop onion and tomato, mince garlic, peel and grate ginger. If using a bunch of large-leaf spinach, chop about an inch off of the end of spinach stems and submerge in a large bowl of cold water and rinse well. Leave in the water until needed.
- Heat a large pot over medium-high heat. Add olive oil and saute onion, tomato, garlic, and ginger for 5 minutes, until translucent.
- Add spices: coriander, cumin, garam masala, turmeric, and cayenne pepper. Alternatively, 2 1/2 teaspoons of curry powder can be substituted for the coriander and turmeric in a pinch. Mix well to evenly coat onion mixture in spices.
- Next, add 1/2 cup of water. Remove spinach from the rinsing bowl and add to the pot. Stir a bit, then cover. Keep covered, stirring every minute or so, until spinach has fully wilted.
- Remove from the heat and allow to cool for 5 – 10 minutes before blending. Blend well, adding up to another 1/2 cup of water to aid with the blending process. Pour back into the pot and place back on the heat and add salt.
- Rinse and drain chickpeas/garbanzo beans and add to spinach mixture. Bring to a boil and simmer for a few minutes. Add 1/2 cup of Greek yogurt and mix well.
I'm a registered dietitian, mom of 4, avid lover of food and strong promoter of healthy habits. Here you will find lots of delicious recipes full of fruits and veggies, tips for getting your kids to eat better and become intuitive eaters and lots of resources for feeding your family.Learn More about Natalie