Indian Keto Recipes

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Written by Vanessa Roberts, Keto Expert and medically reviewed by Abby Courtenay

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One of the great things about the keto lifestyle is that it encourages you to cook meals from scratch using clean, whole ingredients

But there are lots of flavors we know and love from eating out at restaurants, but aren’t sure how to recreate in our kitchens.

If you love the taste of Indian cuisine and want to learn how to make low-carb versions at home, take a look at these recipe ideas for inspiration and instructions. 

 

List of keto Indian foods

First of all, let’s see what the building blocks of these meals will look like. This will help you stock your fridge and pantry before browsing the recipe options.

Low-carb Indian food list

  • Fats: olive oil, coconut oil, butter, ghee
  • Proteins: all kinds of meat, poultry, fish, seafood, eggs, tofu
  • Dairy and plant milks: paneer and all types of cheese, plain Greek yogurt, cream, coconut milk, almond milk
  • Nuts and seeds: almonds, peanuts, pistachios, pine nuts, walnuts, sesame seeds (cashews are higher in carbs, but small amounts are okay)
  • Non-starchy vegetables, see full list below
  • Lower-carb fruits, in moderation
  • Drinks: coffee, tea (do not add sugar or regular milk; use keto-friendly sweeteners and/or cream or coconut or almond milk)
  • Spices: all types of spices and herbs, see list below

Low-carb Indian vegetables

  • Asparagus
  • Bell pepper
  • Bottle gourd (lauki)
  • Broccoli (read our keto Indian broccoli recipes)
  • Cabbage
  • Carrot (gajar)
  • Cauliflower
  • Cucumber
  • Eggplant (brinjal)
  • Fenugreek (methi)
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Green beans
  • Green chili pepper (hari mirch)
  • Mushrooms
  • Mustard greens (sarson)
  • Okra (bhindi)
  • Onion
  • Spinach (palak)
  • Tomato
  • Zucchini

Also, you can get a complete overview of what foods are compatible with this low-carb eating style on our ‘Is It Keto-Friendly?’ page.

Common high-carb Indian foods to avoid or limit on keto

  • Banana
  • Beets
  • Biryani
  • Chickpeas (chana)
  • Chutneys
  • Corn
  • Lentils and other legumes (daal)
  • Dates
  • Dosa (similar to a crepe)
  • Fruit juice
  • Gulab jamun
  • Mango
  • Naan (bread)
  • Oats
  • Pakora (fritters)
  • Potato (aloo), sweet potato, yam
  • Prunes
  • Raisins
  • Rice (all types)
  • Roti (flatbread)
  • Samosa (triangle pastry)


Vegetarian keto Indian recipes

Vegetarianism is common in India, so there are lots of meat-free recipes where vegetables take center stage. Check our keto diet plan for vegetarians to learn more.

However, even dishes that feature keto-friendly ingredients can have hidden carbs. For example, cornmeal or flour is often used in spinach-based saag to make the sauce thicker.

By learning how to make your favorite Indian recipes at home, you can control what goes in and accurately keep track of your carbs.

Basic cooking tips for vegetarian keto Indian recipes:

  • For an extra protein boost, add tofu, seitan, paneer (Indian cheese), or eggs.
  • Plain Greek yogurt is your friend. You can use it to make curries thicker and creamier, or serve it on the side to balance a spicy dish. 
    • Note: when adding yogurt to a curry, you will want to do this step at the end so you can cool the curry down first. High temperatures can make the yogurt curdle. So, use low heat or remove the dish from the heat altogether, giving it time to cool, and stir in the yogurt one spoonful at a time.
  • Learn how to make a few different types of Indian dishes. Then, you can whip one up at any time and simply add any type of vegetables you have on hand. Some good ones to try are:
    • Bhuna
    • Ceylon
    • Dhansak
    • Do piyaz
    • Jalfrezi
    • Korma
    • Madras
    • Pasanda
    • Rogan josh
    • Saag
    • Tikka masala
    • Vindaloo
  • To stock up your spice rack, you can experiment with some (or all!) of these spices. You may also want to invest in a spice grinder, so you can make your own blends.
    • Black pepper
    • Cardamom (green, black)
    • Carom
    • Cinnamon
    • Cloves
    • Coriander seeds
    • Cumin (seeds, ground)
    • Curry leaves
    • Fennel seeds
    • Fenugreek seeds
    • Garam Masala
    • Ginger
    • Indian red chili powder
    • Mustard seeds
    • Nutmeg
    • Star anise
    • Turmeric

Now, on to the recipes!

 

Indian keto cauliflower recipes

Cauliflower, known as gobi in Hindi, is a frequent favorite on the ketogenic lifestyle. This versatile vegetable serves as a blank canvas for other, more potent flavors. Here are some colorful keto cauliflower recipes to paint your palate!

Keto cauliflower masala

This flavor-packed gobi masala is simmered in a rich red tomato-onion base. You can adjust the spiciness depending on how much heat you can handle.

Low-carb cauliflower korma

Creamy coconut mixes with cloves and cinnamon for a cozy and sweet cauliflower stew. For the lowest carb option, use almonds instead of cashews.

 

Keto Indian cabbage recipes

Just plain cabbage (gobi) can be a bit bland, so let’s give this nutritious vegetable some flair! Whether you choose spicy or slightly sour, these tempting combinations will take your taste buds for a spin.

Cabbage jalfrezi

Easy to whip up in a flash, this spicy stir-fry is a great way to use up cabbage and any other leftover vegetables you’ve got sitting around. Consider adding cubes of paneer for a protein boost.

Indian pickled cabbage

The bright and tangy flavors of this recipe are best enjoyed at least 24 hours after it’s prepared, so plan ahead! It’s quite simple to make, time does most of the work for you. It keeps in the fridge for up to 2 weeks, so you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy the pickled cabbage as a salad or side dish.


Indian mushroom keto recipes

Mushrooms have a delicious umami flavor, perfect for making meat-free dishes rich and satisfying. They are low in calories and carbs and provide protein, fiber, and B vitamins. 

Keto kadai mushrooms

This hot and spicy dish features mushrooms alongside bell peppers. It can be made more saucy or closer to semi-dry, depending on your preferences.

Buttery garlic mushrooms with Indian spices

Put an Indian spin on the classic butter-garlic combo for a new medley of flavors to pair with steak or chicken and a vegetable mash. Or keep it vegetarian and toss the spiced butter mushrooms with zucchini noodles. Rich and flavorful!

 

Indian tofu keto recipes

Tofu is a wonderful plant-based substitute for just about anything! 

For those looking for a lower-carb option, it can often be used instead of potatoes (aloo), chickpeas (chana), or lentils (daal), plus vegans can enjoy it in place of meat, poultry, fish, or paneer. 

Keto Indian marinated tofu

Take your tofu to the next level with this delicious marinade. Then you can use these protein-rich chunks of flavor in salads, wraps, scrambles… the sky’s the limit!

Low-carb Indian tandoori tofu

For an easy sheet pan meal, arrange the tandoori tofu and your choice of vegetables on a baking sheet and pop in the oven. Use vegan yogurt for the tandoori sauce if desired.

 

Keto eggplant Indian recipes

Also known as brinjal or aubergine, eggplant is a high-fiber vegetable that contains several vitamins and minerals. Its luscious purple skin can also add an element of beauty to your dish.

Baingan bharta

Mashed eggplant with tomato, onion, garlic, herbs, and spices. Yum! This makes an excellent vegetable dip or side dish. Bring out the smoky flavor of the eggplant by roasting it over a direct flame, baking it in the oven, or using an air fryer.

Eggplant lababdar

Often made with chicken or paneer, this vegetable version of lababdar is a rich, buttery, and creamy concoction that will make your guests swoon. 

 

Keto Indian pumpkin recipes

Pumpkin has a lower carb count than you might think, just 3.2 g net carbs per 100 g if you cook it from scratch, or 5.2 g per 100 g for the canned variety. 

Make sure you’re not picking up a can of pumpkin pie mix, that’s a completely different story!

Indian keto pumpkin coconut curry

Sweet and savory come together in this healthy comfort food, perfect for when the weather starts to turn colder. 

Spicy pumpkin carrot soup

Fresh ginger, garlic, and spices make this flavor combination pop. This one freezes well, so you may want to make a double batch and stock up the freezer with individual servings you can easily defrost for a light weekday meal.

 

Keto Indian veg salad recipes

Whether you’re short on time or it’s just too hot outside to think about cooking, these fresh and nutritious salads are easy to put together in a hurry.

Indian cucumber keto salad (kachumber)

This quick and easy salad combines diced cucumber, tomato, and onion for a refreshing, crunchy, and colorful treat. No cooking required! The seasonings are what gives it a unique taste.

Carrot salad (gajjara kosambari)

Raw carrots offer a good amount of dietary fiber, which most people need more of in their diet. If chomping on whole sticks makes you feel a little too Bugs Bunny, try this salad made from shredded carrots, lemon juice, spices, and sesame seeds. Scrumptious! 

 

Indian keto chicken recipes

Protein from chicken is a complete protein, meaning it provides all 9 essential amino acids. These help build, maintain, and repair every cell in our bodies. Chicken also pairs well with all sorts of flavors, making it a versatile ingredient in the kitchen.

Keto butter chicken

This creamy delight is an easy crowd-pleaser with a mild mixture of spices that gently add depth without overpowering the palate. You can use chicken breast or thighs, whichever you prefer.

Tandoori chicken

You’ll want to marinade the chicken for at least an hour, so plan ahead for this one! The irresistible marinade made from keto-friendly yogurt and a tasty combination of spices ensures that the chicken stays tender and flavorful without drying out when cooked on the grill or in the oven. 

 

Keto Indian egg recipes

Eggs are highly nutritious. They provide healthy fats, high-quality protein, and important vitamins and nutrients, including selenium, phosphorus, vitamin B12, and vitamin A. So it’s a great idea to incorporate eggs into your ketogenic diet.

Indian spiced omelet

Quick to whip up and highly adaptable to whatever ingredients you’ve got on hand. Perfect for brunch with friends or even a weekday treat to eat before running out the door (only one pan to clean!) 

Egg curry

Hard boiled eggs have never been so tasty! The decadent curry sauce gives this dish a kick. A budget-friendly option that’s filling and flavorful.

 

Indian keto fish recipes

The American Heart Association recommends eating at least 2 servings of fish a week. Omega-3 fatty acids, here we come!

Goan Fish Curry

Goa is famous for its beaches and spice plantations, and both come together nicely in this zesty fish curry with coconut milk.

Keto Indian pan-fried fish

Coconut flour, lemon juice, and spices are used to coat the fish before being pan-fried to crispy perfection. 


Almond flour Indian keto recipes

Who says you have to give up bread and desserts on a ketogenic diet? Alternative flours make it possible to enjoy new versions of foods that are typically high in carbs.

Keto naan bread with almond flour

The warm and toasty accompaniment to any and all recipes on this list. You’re going to want to try this one! Once you’ve mastered the basic dough, you can experiment with flavors like garlic naan, cheese naan, or butter naan… but it’s also good plain.

Low-carb badam halwa almond pudding

Craving something sweet? This delicious Indian dessert has got your name on it. 3 of the ingredients are made from almonds (flour, milk, and plain nuts), while cardamom and saffron add another layer of flavor.

 

Low-carb Indian snacks

Whether you’re looking for keto party snacks or something light to tide you over till the next meal, it’s good to have something to munch on! Knowing how to make keto-friendly snacks can keep you from reaching for unhealthy options when the mood hits.

Oven baked keto Indian samosas

The triangle pastries are traditionally made with high-carb ingredients: flour for the flaky pastry dough and potatoes in the filling. Thankfully, keto cooks are used to making adjustments and using alternative ingredients to make lower-carb versions of typical recipes. Say hello to your new favorite finger food! Great as a snack or appetizer.

Indian tomato soup

This spicy concoction is much more interesting than your typical tomato soup. And you get the same benefits of eating this juicy red fruit, including nutrients like vitamin C, potassium, and an antioxidant called lycopene, which can benefit your skin, heart, and eyes. 


Indian Keto breakfast recipes

Need a reason to wake up in the morning? Wake up your taste buds and start your day off strong with these yummy treats.

Keto chai tea

Most store-bought chai mixes are high in sugar, making them off limits for the keto crowd. The good news is that it’s not too hard to make yourself! We’ll show you how to make your own chai spice mix (yes, you can make a big batch ahead of time so it’s ready to use when you stumble out of bed) and prepare it with keto-friendly ingredients. Delicious whether you drink it hot or cold.

Low-carb roti

Roti is a circular flatbread traditionally made with a wheat flour called atta, but this ketogenic version switches to coconut flour instead. Once you’ve got it made, the breakfast possibilities are endless! Use it to create a keto breakfast wrap with eggs and avocado, spread cream cheese on it for a fresh morning treat, or even soak it in eggs and add cinnamon to make French toast.


Keto Indian lunch recipes

Enjoying a delicious lunch can improve your mood and shake up a monotonous routine. Here are some tasty ways to brighten up your day.

Indian spiced turkey burger

Spice up your typical turkey burger with new flavors! Complete the meal by adding vegetable toppings and using a lettuce wrap, or make a side spinach salad. Perfectly portable for lunchtime.

Palak paneer

The deep, vivid color of this spinach-based dish will make your coworkers green with envy! If paneer is hard to find in your area, you can substitute it with tofu or any vegetable. This creamy spinach-and-spice sauce goes well with just about anything.

 

Low-carb Indian vegetarian recipes for dinner

An evening meal is an opportunity to gather friends and loved ones around a table to share food and time together. These meals are delicious and nutritious, even for those who aren’t vegetarian or watching their carbs.

Vegetable rogan josh

A popular curry favorite, rogan josh uses spices like cumin, cinnamon, chili, and turmeric for an aromatic and colorful presentation sure to impress any dinner guest. While lamb is the traditional star of this dish, eggplant, cauliflower, bell pepper, or any vegetable combination you choose will do just as well.

Madras vegetable curry

Craving something spicy? This red, tomato-based curry sauce will not disappoint! It’s quick to put together and easy to make at home. A bit of lemon juice adds a slightly sour note that harmonizes well with the deeper rich flavors.