Turmeric Cauliflower Curry

Easy vegetarian Cauliflower Curry with lots of anti-inflammatory Turmeric! With cauliflower, potatoes, tomatoes, and peas. 30 minutes.

  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings


  • 1 head cauliflower (about 1 3/4 pounds)
  • 3 medium Yukon gold potatoes (about 1 1/4 pounds)
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 poblano chili pepper, seeded and coarsely chopped
  • 1 2-inch piece fresh ginger, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup frozen green peas
  • 12 cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 cup plain yogurt
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 limes, quartered, for garnish

Special equipment:


1 Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.

2 While waiting for the water to boil, prepare the cauliflower and potatoes: Cut the potatoes into 1 1/2-inch cubes. To prepare the cauliflower, use a chef's knife to cut a deep cross into the base of the cauliflower. Place your thumbs into the crevice and pull the head apart into 4 quarters Stand each quarter upright, and slice off and discard the core and outer leaves. Break or cut the cauliflower into bite-size florets.

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3 Cook the potatoes and cauliflower: Carefully transfer the potatoes into the boiling water and cook for 4 minutes. Add the cauliflower and cook for 10 minutes longer, or until the vegetables are tender. (Total cooking time is 14 to 15 minutes) Drain into a colander.

3 Make the curry sauce: In a blender or food processor, combine the water, onion, chili pepper, ginger, turmeric, garam masala, and salt. Puree until smooth.

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4 Cook the curry sauce: Warm the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the sauce and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the cooked cauliflower and potatoes. Taste and add more salt and garam masala, if you like.

5 Finish the dish: Stir the peas and tomatoes into the pot. Heat for 2 to 3 minutes, or until hot. Just before serving, stir in the yogurt and reheat gently (do not let it boil, or the yogurt may curdle.)

Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle with cilantro. Serve with lime wedges.

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  • Curt Jopling

    Is that 1 and 1/2 cups of water. My sauce was really runny and I too had to add more spice and salt.

    • Summer Miller

      Hi, Curt! I think I’ve identified the problem. You may have missed the last sentence in step 3. The water is used to boil the cauliflower and the potatoes, then you drain it in a colander. If you try this recipe again and drain the water, the flavors should balance and the sauce won’t be runny. Happens to the best of us!

  • Elaine

    Just made this curry. Looked beautiful, but tasted a bit bland. So after a little research I added some cumin and chili powder that I cooked in a little oil. Found in Indian dishes all spices should be cooked first. Will definitely make again, but instead of pureeing spices, I will cook in some olive oil first. After doctoring, this tasted as good as it looked. Also, was a bit watery so I thickened with some flour.


  • Muzingz

    Sadly my curry did not turn out well. I blended the ingredient for the curry but it tasted bitter even after adding more spices. Maybe instead of blending it raw sauteing it first and roasting the poblano pepper will change the taste. Maybe some garlic! I had to improvise a lot after that and even added some chicken opted out of the yogurt and decided to do coconut for a richer taste.

  • Jan

    Love your site, and appreciate the newsletters very much!

    We found this to be extremely bland for our tastes, though it looked just beautiful! To use it up, I created a puréed soup by adding browned onions, toasted cumin, coriander, red Indian pepper, and curry powder, salt and pepper, and chicken stock.

    • Elise Bauer

      Hi Jan, thanks for your feedback! Usually when people tell me something is bland I suggest they need to add more salt. Not enough salt is almost always the culprit. Though sometimes people’s spices aren’t as fresh and strong as they could be. Then again, everyone has a different tolerance to spice levels. Sounds like you found a good solution with turning the dish into a soup. I might suggest if you make it again, to just increase the amounts of spices (and salt).

    • Emma Christensen

      That’s such a good idea for using up the leftovers! Yum!

    • Sally Vargas

      Hi Jan, I agree with what Elise said–perhaps you could bump up the spices to your taste and add salt. In addition, the lime wedges add a kick at the end, so don’t leave them out. I love that you turned this into a soup!

  • Torrey

    This was very good. I used ghee (clarified butter) instead of olive oil, and found that it needed quite a bit of salt. Wonderful curry flavor, will make again.

  • geri

    What a beautifully presented recipe and site. Thank you Sally. Will definitely pick up some cauliflower next trip to grocers specifically to make your recipe (=

  • Gina

    This looks delicious! Do you think it would work to use coconut milk as a substitute for the yogurt?

    • Sally Vargas

      Hi Gina, Absolutely you could use coconut milk instead of yogurt, or even coconut yogurt if you like.
      Happy cooking,

      • Gina

        Thank you! I made this a couple nights ago with coconut milk and it was very tasty!

  • Robert

    Do you peel the ginger? And where does one get the garam masala? I’ve never heard of it. Thanks for cauliflower tip!

    • Sally Vargas

      HI Robert, You don’t have to peel the ginger (unless you want to.) It has thin skin and gets pureed in the blender anyway. Garam masala is a ground spice blend that typically includes ginger, coriander, cumin, black pepper, cardamon, cloves and Cayenne pepper, but combinations vary. You can find it in the spice section of many supermarkets. Sally

  • Jackson

    i’m always looking for tasty recipes using turmeric. thanks sally!

  • Lauren

    Oh what was your restaurant called? I went to IU! Lived there 2001-2005. I miss bloomington.

    • Sally

      It was way before your time, Lauren :) It was called The Tao, and it was a vegetarian restaurant.

  • xeno

    This looks like a great idea for my (so far futile or unwelcome) attempts at Meatless Mondays. Now if only I could find cauliflower for cheap. Maybe it would work with frozen…

    • Sally

      I think it’s worth a try with frozen, with the only caveat being that the cauli might not have quite as good texture than it would if you used fresh.