Masala Vegan

Plant based recipes inspired by spices and green living!

Grey bowl with Rajmah Masala garnished with Coriander leaves

Rajma Masala A.K.A. Jammu Rajma refers to a Kashmiri Red Bean Curry made in the North of India. Commonly served at the eateries called “Dhaba” lining the path to one of the most famous shrines dedicated to the Mother Goddess at the foothills of the Himalayas. This delicious red kidney bean curry is slow cooked for long hours in large cauldrons in a tomato, onion, ginger, garlic gravy with warming spices such as cumin seeds, turmeric, red chilli powder and Garam Masala. My version uses a pressure cooker to mimic the deep flavours in a shorter cooking time. Also, this Rajma Masala recipe is whole food plant based (WFPB)compliant using no oil whilst cooking. Gluten free, nut-free, full of fibre, protein and plant based goodness, this budget recipe is my go-to dish to take for potlucks and lunch or dinner parties.

To make our Rajma Masala (WFPB):

We Need,

  • 2 cups Red Kidney Beans (Rajma), soaked overnight or in hot water for at least 4 hours.
  • 4 – 5 cups Hot Water
  • 2 Red Onions
  • 1 Tomato, large
  • 1 inch Ginger, fresh
  • 4 cloves Garlic, peeled
  • 2 teaspoons Garam Masala
  • 1 teaspoon Cumin Seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon Turmeric Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Red Chilli Powder, vary depending on the heat desired
  • ¼  cup Coriander, fresh leaves & stalks, minced finely
  • Salt, to taste


Rinse the soaked kidney beans and set aside.

Heat a deep non stick pressure pan gently (I used my 6 liter Pressure cooker)and add the cumin seeds, until lightly roasted.

Blend the onions, garlic cloves, ginger and tomato until a smooth paste forms.

Add to the roasted cumin seeds in the pan and cook until the raw smell goes off. Add in a teaspoonful of water to prevent sticking if required, I did not add any water as the tomato paste was good enough.

Next add in the turmeric powder and Garam Masala and stir well.

Add in the soaked and rinsed kidney beans next. Coat well in the spice paste.

Mix in the salt, if using.

I used 4.5 cups hot boiled water from my tea kettle and covered the beans.

Stir well, bring to a boil and close the pressure cooker.

Cook for 10 – 15 minutes and take off the heat.

Allow to cool by itself, open the pressure cooker and check if the kidney beans mash easily against the back of the spoon.

Mix in the coriander leaves and stalks.

Add the rest of the hot water to make a nice gravy to pour over rice or eat with Roti.

If preferring a thicker Rajma gravy, mash up some of the beans with a large ladle and mix well.

The Rajma Masala is served hot with fluffy Basmati rice and garnished with fresh red onions. My family loves dolloping some coconut yogurt on top to mix in the bowl 😊



I am an enthusiastic plant based home cook and baker who delights in sharing my creations on unsuspecting non vegans, when they least expect it! When not recipe developing, testing or making, I'm found organising and/ or writing, the two other passions of my life ❤️