aloo keema – Indian restaurant potato and beef curry

Restaurant style aloo keema is a delicious, Indian potato and beef or lamb curry that makes a great change to the usual suspects.

Jalfrezi is number one in the UK for a reason. Vindaloo might be the most famous. A well executed madras is a truly wonderful thing. Classics.

But sometimes you should go a different way. Mix things up. Try something new. Something fresh. I love the classics. But I need variety.

Aloo keema fits the bill nicely. Well spiced beef or lamb. Creamy potatoes. A bit of heat from the green chilies. All wrapped up in a restaurant style sauce. Just tasty stuff.

Aloo keema done restaurant style

It’s basically really good samosa filling. Not exactly.  But close. You could use it to make samosas. That would work. Or you could serve it up along side the usual suspects and surprise your guests. Expand their horizons.

This is Indian restaurant style cooking. It uses something called curry base to make that luscious sauce.

The one you get when you go for Indian. And can never replicate at home. Trust me and read on. This is the real deal.

Aloo keema, chana masala and chicken chaat curry in serving bowls from above.

Restaurant style means do your prep up front

Restaurant style goes fast. Really fast. Like 10 minutes from start to finish. So do your prep. Please. This is critical. If you don’t you’re headed for a train wreck. Not good.

Make your curry base and have some heated and ready to go. Pre-cook your keema. Measure out your ingredients.

Have everything ready. And wear old clothes or put on an apron. Indian restaurant cooking is messy stuff. If it doesn’t splatter you aren’t doing it right. You are playing line cook here. Dress the part.

If you have not read the guide to Indian restaurant technique yet, do it now. It has pictures to help you understand the recipe.

There’s also a guide to Indian ingredients in that post. And a master technique video complete with commentary. Worth a quick visit if this is new to you.

Once you’re ready to go, the whole thing comes together in 10 minutes.

Bowl of aloo keema with chicken curry in the background. From the front.

Dare to be different

There’s more to Indian than what you see on restaurant menus. There are literally thousands of dishes. It’s an incredibly diverse, regional cuisine.

So there’s no reason to stick to the same old same old. Those are great dishes. For sure. But there is more. So much more.

If you want to give your tastebuds something new to try, make keema aloo. Just like your local Indian restaurant or takeaway should be making. If only they could just get past the usual.

Aloo keema in an Indian carbon steel bowl from the front.
Print Pin
5 from 7 votes

aloo keema

Aloo keema is a dry potato and minced beef or lamb curry that makes a great change when you want to mix up your curry rotation.
Course Main
Cuisine Indian
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 760kcal
Author romain | glebekitchen


  • 3 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 Tbsp garlic ginger paste
  • 1 tsp kashmiri chili powder
  • 1 tsp kasoor methi – fenugreek leaves
  • 2 tsp Indian restaurant spice mix
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 2 green finger hot chilies – thinly sliced
  • 1 Tbsp tomato paste – diluted with water to the consistency of passata
  • 15 oz curry base
  • 12 oz cooked potatoes – cut in 1/2 inch cubes
  • 12 oz pre-cooked keema
  • juice of 1/6 lemon


  • Combine Indian restaurant spice mix, kasoor methi, chili powder and salt in a small bowl.
  • Dilute the tomato paste with enough water to get to the consistency of passata.
  • Heat your frying pan (don’t use non-stick) briefly over medium heat.
  • Add 2 Tbsp vegetable oil. Use all the oil specified. It’s important.
  • When the oil starts to shimmer in the garlic ginger paste and the green chilies. Cook it, stirring constantly, until it stops sputtering.
  • Turn down the heat and add the spice mix. This is the critical step. Stir it constantly for 30 seconds. If it starts to darken lift the pan off the heat. You want the spice mix to cook in the oil but not burn.
  • Turn the heat up to medium high. Add the diluted tomato paste and stir until bubbles form (the oil will likely separate). This takes around 30 seconds to one minute depending on the heat.
  • Add 3 oz of curry base. Stir until bubbles form (little craters really), around 30 seconds. Watch the edges of the pan. The curry can stick here.
  • Now add 6 oz of curry base and stir briefly. Let it cook until the bubbles form again. This takes 1-2 minutes.
  • Add the rest of the curry base and let cook until the bubbles form. Turn the heat down to low and add the pre-cooked keema.
  • Let the curry simmer for about 3 minutes. If it gets too thick add a bit more curry base. Don't add water.
  • Add the cooked potatoes and cook another 2-3 minutes to warm them through.
  • Stir in the lemon juice, taste and adjust salt and lemon to taste.
  • Garnish with thinly sliced green onions and green chilies if you like.


The recipe for curry base is here.
The recipe for indian restaurant spice mix is here
The recipe for garlic ginger paste is here.
The recipe for beef or lamb keema is here.
If you haven’t read about Indian restaurant technique yet, do that before you start cooking.
Have all your ingredients prepped and ready to go.
If you are making multiple curries, have your curry base warming in a pot on the stove. If you are just making one, microwave it to warm it up right before you start cooking.
Indian restaurants pre-cook their meat so it’s ready for service. This recipe assumes the same. To pre-cook chicken, simply simmer it with a bit of curry powder and salt in chicken stock for about 10-15 minutes – until it’s barely cooked.
To pre-cook lamb or beef, do the same but plan for 1 to 1/2 hours for lamb and 2 hours or more for beef. You are making stew meat so you are braising until tender. You will need to keep an eye on the level of the stock. For beef use beef stock.


Serving: 2servings | Calories: 760kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 33g | Fat: 54g | Saturated Fat: 28g | Cholesterol: 124mg | Sodium: 1090mg | Potassium: 1322mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 120IU | Vitamin C: 26.6mg | Calcium: 88mg | Iron: 9mg

6 thoughts on “aloo keema – Indian restaurant potato and beef curry”

  1. 5 stars
    Hi Roman,
    Glebe Kitchen has upped my game totally! I’ve prepared most of your recipes & tonight I made Aloo Keema. Oh my goodness, so good. The spicing was perfect – though I admit I replaced the finger hots with 2 jalapeno peppers, it’s what I had on hand.

  2. 5 stars
    Romain, thank you for your amazing recipes; my husband would give you a big hug if he were to meet you because you have amped up my Indian food to a whole new level which he loves! I’m wanting to try this recipe but just wondering, what method are you using to pre-cook the potatoes? Boiling or something else? Thanks again!

    • Delighted to hear that! Thank you.

      You are very welcome. Tell your husband that you are the one in the kitchen making the dishes so the credit really goes to you.

      I boil potatoes. The trick is to catch them when there are just done. Underdone and you have crunchy potatoes and overdone you have keema mashed potatoes (which actually sounds amazing to me but not the point of this recipe).

  3. I love creamy soft potatoes in my curry, there’s something mildly sweet and addictive about them when they are loaded with flavours. I love how I can make keema ahead of time – eat it, and then use the leftovers to make a totally new dish! 🙂 Double the deliciousness!

5 from 7 votes (5 ratings without comment)

Leave a Comment

Recipe Rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.