Aloo Palak AKA Indian Spinach Recipe AKA Sauteed Spinach is made with simple ingredients, comes together quickly (under 30 minutes)! Also this recipe is vegan friendly, can easily be made gluten free and packs a ton of nutrition!
If you love potatoes, you need to mix with it spinach, period. Best way to give an iron boost to your body! Today we are sauteing spinach in onion, garlic, tomatoes and a few spices along with lots of potatoes.
What is Sautéed Spinach?
Sauteed spinach is a side dish that can be cooked in numerous ways. My version involves sauteing garlic and onion in some oil. Adding homemade tomato puree and spices to it. Then adding potatoes and finally chopped spinach.
Sauté on medium-high for a few minutes till all the water from spinach evaporates and the potatoes are well cooked. There you have it!
You can enjoy it in so many ways. Serve it with Indian Flatbreads, along side rice or even as a filling in your wraps.
Add green peas or sweet corns to it (towards the end if those are pre-cooked). Or add some cream/cheese in the end to convert it into a dip. The choices are plenty!
- Spinach: Spinach is definitely the star ingredient of this recipe. You can opt for both regular or baby spinach. I like to use fresh spinach but frozen spinach can be substituted too. Just remember that you might need to cook it for a little longer due to more moister content in the frozen spinach.
- Potatoes: Use your most loved variety. Both russet potatoes and Yukon gold potatoes work well here if you ask me. I like to chop them into ½-3/4 inch dices. If you cut them any bigger, they take more time to cook.
- Onion: Now for onion, you can either use yellow or red onion. Up to you! You can even make this spinach stir fry without any onions if you prefer. You will need around ½ of a large onion here.
- Garlic: Spinach pairs beautifully with garlic. I like to use lots of garlic. After spinach and potatoes the garlic flavor shines through here. You can reduce it to your preference if you aren't a garlic fan (OMG who are you!).
- Tomatoes: I like to puree fresh tomatoes. That way they mix in better with onion and garlic and cook faster too. If you wish you can also skip tomatoes from the recipe. Do squeeze lots of fresh lemon juice to aloo palak before serving if you skip tomatoes though.
- Spices: Basic Indian spices like turmeric powder, garam masala, red chili powder and coriander powder are used in this recipe. But I recommend not to go overboard with spices. Let those flavors of spinach, potatoes and garlic shine through.
How to make Aloo Palak or Potatoes and Spinach?
This one is such a versatile recipe. You can twist it according to your taste preferences. I have added lots of garlic, onion and tomatoes to it and kept it mildly spiced. You may skip tomatoes and/or onions if you prefer.
- STEP 1: Add some oil in a pan over medium heat. Add cumin seeds once the oil is hot. Allow them to crackle and add a pinch of asafoetida. Add in chopped garlic and cook it till it gets golden brown color.
- STEP 2: When garlic is sauteed, add in chopped onions and red chilies.
- STEP 3: I like to add salt at this point. It helps onions release some of its natural moisture. That way you will need less oil to cook onions. Cook onions till they get a golden color on them and are translucent.
- STEP 4: When the onions are cooked, add tomato puree and cook it for a while.
- STEP 5: Add spices like coriander powder, garam masala, red chili powder and turmeric powder. Give it all a quick mix.
- STEP 6: Add diced potatoes and mix it all well. I added 1 large potato, diced to ½ inch thick chunks.
- STEP 7: Cover and cook for 6-8 minutes over medium heat or until the potatoes are almost cooked. Uncover the lid and give potatoes a quick stir so that they don't stick to the pan.
- STEP 8: Now add chopped spinach in 2-3 batches. Allow the spinach to wilt after each addition.
- STEP 9: Cook for 2-3 minutes on medium-high heat or until most of the moisture from spinach gets evaporated.
- Step 10: Serve with hot rotis squeezing fresh lemon juice over spinach.
Tips for recipe success:
Use minimal Spices: Let's not overload this recipe with too many spices. I haven't and I like it that way. If you desire you can increase the spice level to your liking.
Cutting Potatoes: I suggest to dice potatoes small. Under 1 inch thickness should be the goal. Potatoes cook fast and save you a lot of time that way.
Gluten Free Options: This recipe is completely vegan and can be easily made gluten free. To make it gluten free either skip asafoetida or use gluten free asafoetida.
Adding Green Peas/Chickpeas: If you wish to give this recipe a protein boost, add chickpeas or green peas to this stir fry. I like to use pre-cooked chickpeas and frozen peas to save time. Add those when you add chopped spinach to the pan.
Using Frozen Spinach: This is definitely an option, but I strongly suggest to use fresh spinach. Flavor wise and texture wise fresh spinach is an unbeatable option!
If it's absolutely necessary and you opt for frozen spinach, use chopped variety. You might need to cook it longer, till all the moisture gets evaporated from the spinach.
Taking care of a few things ensures the spinach doesn't turn soggy. Chop spinach leaves finely before sautéing. Add spinach to the pan in batches. Stir well and cook on medium-high heat after each addition. Don't over cook spinach.
Aloo to cook spinach over medimd-high heat and stir it constantly like you stir fry for 3-4 minutes. That way the spinach won't turn soggy or bitter and will be cooked perfectly.
Yes, they are the same thing. Spinach is called palak in Hindi language. These are essentially the same plant.
If you liked this recipe, give it a star review. Also, tell me in the comments below, how did this turn out for you! Don’t forget to share your creations with me on Instagram at #greedyeatsblog Lets be friends on Pinterest and Facebook too! 🙂
- 1 Pan with a lid
- 1 Tablespoon Cooking Oil (I use Avocado Oil)
- ¾ teaspoon Cumin Seeds
- a pinch Asafoetida
- 4-5 large Garlic Cloves
- ½ of a large Onion
- 2 dried red chilies
- ¾ teaspoon Salt (or to taste)
- ½ cup Tomato Puree (made out of fresh tomato, I used one large tomato)
- teaspoon Turmeric powder
- teaspoon Coriander Powder
- teaspoon Garam Masala powder
- teaspoon Red Chili Powder
- 1 large Potato (200 gms, Diced into ½-¾ inch thick chunks)
- 8-10 oz Spinach Leaves (Finely Chopped)
- Add oil in a pan over medium heat. Add cumin seeds once the oil is hot. Allow them to crackle and add a pinch of asafoetida. Add in chopped garlic and cook it till it gets golden brown color.
- When garlic is sauteed, add in chopped onions and red chilies. You may slit red chilies if you'd like more heat from them, I didn't.I like to add salt at this point. It helps onion release some of its natural moisture. That way you will need less oil to cook onions. Cook onions till they get a golden color on them and turn translucent.
- Now pour tomato puree in the pan and cook it for a while (around 3-4 minutes) till tomatoes get cooked. The masala will thicken a bit at this point.
- Add all the spices in- coriander powder, garam masala, red chili powder and turmeric powder. Give it all a quick mix.
- Add diced potatoes and mix it all well. I added 1 large potato, diced to ½ inch chunks. Cover and cook for 6-8 minutes over medium heat or until the potatoes are almost cooked.Uncover the lid in between 2-3 times and give potatoes a quick stir so that they don't stick to the pan. If needed you can splash some water around 1 tablespoon or two, to aid softening of potatoes.
- Now add chopped spinach in 2-3 batches. Allow the spinach to wilt after each addition. Cook for 2-3 minutes more after all the spinach is in, over medium-high heat or until most of the moisture from spinach gets evaporated.
- Serve with hot rotis squeezing fresh lemon juice over spinach. Enjoy!