Rajma masala (Kidney Beans Curry) – The humble kidney beans reach the next level with this incredibly delicious rajma curry. Cooked in a rich sauce flavored with aromatic spices and kasuri methi (dried fenugreek leaves), this curry makes for the ultimate comfort food.
Watch recipe video below:
I have a hand-written recipe book. An ultimate collection of all my favorite recipes from very traditional to modern masterpieces. I made it years ago when there was no Pinterest to save recipes or Instagram to follow your favorite bloggers. Even though my book is turning into a pure antique piece, I occasionally go through the recipes when I run out of ideas for lunch or dinner.
So obviously, this Punjabi style rajma masala comes from my recipe book, and hands down the best rajma curry I have ever made. Super easy to make and incredibly healthy beans curry that you can enjoy with zero guilt. Every single ingredient in this recipe is really good for you.
Alright, here’s the recipe. First, choose your favorite beans. Red, white with red speckles, or small red Kashmiri rajma. I usually cook with the big red kidney beans. Again, you can use either dried or canned beans. You see, all varieties of rajma (kidney beans) taste superb in this curry. With dried rajma, you’ll need to soak overnight and then cook separately before adding to the curry.
Let’s get everything together and make this utterly delicious rajma masala. Start off by spluttering a few cumin seeds in hot oil. Brown some onions and sauté a few green chilies. Fresh ginger and garlic imparts unique aroma to this dish. We’ll also sauté a few ground spices (turmeric, coriander, garam masala and chili powder) lightly in oil.
We are looking for a rich thick sauce for this rajma curry. Sauté tomatoes in the oil until they break down. Now we have the rich sauce for the beans to swim in. Next up, add in kidney beans along with water. While it’s simmering, mash up a few beans to add extra thickness to the sauce.
A final touch of kasuri methi (dried fenugreek leaves) and a dash of fresh cream or coconut milk completes the picture. I love to serve this curry with plain parathas, roti or rice. Hands up if you love rajma chawal (rajma with rice).
Simple ingredients, nothing too fancy, and an incredible way to make your dinner healthier. Are you in?
- 400 g canned kidney beans or 1 cup dried kidney beans (I used canned red kidney beans)
- 2 tbsp oil
- ½ tsp cumin seeds
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 3 green chilies, slit
- 1 tsp minced ginger (ginger paste)
- 1 tsp minced garlic (garlic paste)
- ½ tsp ground turmeric (turmeric powder)
- 2 tsp ground coriander (coriander powder)
- 1 tsp red chili powder
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 2 large tomatoes, chopped
- 1 tsp kasuri methi (dried fenugreek leaves)
- 2 tbsp fresh cream or coconut milk
- If using dried beans, begin this recipe 8 hours ahead.
- Drain and rinse the canned kidney beans (I used red beans). Set aside. If using dried beans, soak overnight or at least 8 hours, drain, and cook. You can either cook them on stovetop until tender, or in a pressure cooker for 2-3 whistles along with enough water.
- To make the rajma masala, heat 2 tbsp oil in a large frypan over medium heat and splutter cumin seeds. Add onions, and sauté, stirring occasionally, for 3-4 minutes or until browned. Add green chilies, and sauté, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Add minced ginger and garlic. Cook, stirring constantly, for 2 mins or until aromatic.
- Add ground turmeric, ground coriander, red chili powder and garam masala. Sauté, stirring constantly, for 1 minute or until fragrant. Add tomatoes, and stir to combine. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 minutes or until the tomatoes break down and oil separates.
- Add rajma or kidney beans. Cover with 1 cup water. Season with salt. Stir to combine. Bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 3-4 minutes. Using a spoon, mash few beans to thicken the curry. Sprinkle with kasuri methi. Pour in fresh cream (or coconut milk). Stir to combine. Heat through.
- Garnish with coriander (cilantro) leaves.
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