Restaurant style Saag Aloo - Known in the UK as a classic vegetable vegan side dish in most curry houses, Saag Aloo remains a firm favourite. Two quite ordinary ingredients, spinach and potatoes are married together with a blend of fragrant spices to create something so delish!

It was such a treat when my parents said we would be getting to eat takeaway! I always had the same order - cauliflower bhaji, chana masala and saag aloo! These are the recipes we created at home -

There are many different versions of Saag Aloo but since I was little, I have always been partial to the restaurant-style, and in particular, Saag Aloo made by our local Indian takeaway.


Spinach - Saag means spinach. Fresh spinach is quickly blanched in a pot of water with a little added sugar and then the water is squeezed out

Potato - Forms the bulk of the dish. The potato really soaks up the flavours from the masala. They are parboiled then added to the pan

Onion, garlic, ginger and green chilli - all ground to a paste and forms the base for the curry

Crushed tinned tomatoes and fresh tomato - crushed tinned tomatoes are cooked with the onion paste and the fresh tomato is cut and added near to the end of the cooking process

Panch Poran, bay leaf, cinnamon stick and green cardamom - Panch poran is further explained below. This list of whole spices are all added to the hot oil

Blend of spices - red chilli powder, turmeric powder, ground cumin & coriander powder, garam masala and dried fenugreek leaves


Panch means five. Essentially, this is a tempering blend of 5 different seeds such as mustard seeds, cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds, onion seeds and fennel seeds. The panch phoran/puran is added to hot oil before any other ingredients to release the flavour. Panch poran can drastically change the taste of your food, so if a recipe says to add it, it is best not to skip it.

To make our Saag Aloo, we used our Proware Copper Tri-ply 24cm Saute Pan. We needed a saute pan that would have enough space and depth as stirring potato-based curries is never easy, especially when the potato can easily break if you do not give yourself enough room.

We served our Saag Aloo in gorgeous copper mini pans which really complemented the dish.

To see how we used our Proware Stockpot and for a full review of the Copper Tri-ply range, see here.


Start with parboiling the potatoes and meanwhile prepare the base for the saag aloo. Whilst the base is cooking, blanch the spinach then squeeze the excess water. Add the potato and spinach to the saute pan and cook for a little longer. Add the chopped tomato and saute for a minute or two longer than remove from the heat.


This isn’t necessarily how Saag Aloo in Indian households, but for the authentic English Indian curry experience, serve alongside MATAR PANEER,  RESTAURANT STYLE GARLIC AND CORIANDER NAANS, GREEN PEAS PILAU, mint yogurt dips (raita), mango chutney, popadoms and finely chopped onion salad.

Saag Aloo can be served with other Indian bread such, Round and soft Gujarati rotlis, POORI or PARATHA.

In Indian restaurants, you will probably end with an Indian sweet dessert (mithai).

Options in the dessert menu usually are:

Gajar Halwa - carrot halwa

Gulab Jamun (usually served warm with a scoop of vanilla icecream)

Strawberry Kulfi

Make a chilled and creamy rose lassi to serve alongside.

Have you made our Restaurant style saag aloo?

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Restaurant style saag aloo

Yield: 4-6 servings
prep time: 5 Mcook time: 25 Mtotal time: 30 M
Restaurant style Saag Aloo - Known in the UK as a vegetable side dish in most curry houses, Saag Aloo remains a firm favourite. Two quite ordinary ingredients, spinach and potatoes are married together with a blend of fragrant spices to create something so delish!


  • 1kg fresh spinach
  • 500g baby potatoes
  • 5 TBSP oil
  • 1 TBSP panch phoran
  • 1 TBSP whole spices (green cardamom, bay leaf, cinnamon)
  • 1 big  finely chopped onion
  • 2 TSP. ginger-garlic puree 
  • 1 TBSP kasoori methi (dried fenugreek leaves)
  • 1 TSP turmeric powder
  • 1 TSP garam masala
  • 1 TBSP kashmiri red chilli powder
  • 5-6 TBSP blended tinned tomatoes*
  • 2 big fresh tomato roughly chopped into big chunks
  • 1 TSP lemon or lime juice
  • 1 TSP sugar
  • Salt to taste


How to cook Restaurant style saag aloo

  1. In a large pot add water, salt, and little turmeric powder. 
  2. Add potatoes and cook it till 70% done.
  3. Remove it and let it cool a little, peel the skin and leave it aside. 
  4. Discard the water, rinse the pan and add more water to it.
  5. Add a pinch of sugar and bring it to boil, add spinach.
  6. Blanch the spinach for a couple of minutes. 
  7. Remove the spinach and add it to the ice-cold water. 
  8. Squeeze out all the water and keep the spinach aside. 
  9. In a saute pan, heat oil.
  10. Add whole spices and panch phoran.
  11. Once they crackle add chopped onion.
  12. Saute the onion till it's translucent.
  13. Add the ginger-garlic paste and keep cooking and stirring the mixture. 
  14. Now add kasoori methi, and ground masala (turmeric, red chilli powder and garam masala) along with salt. 
  15. If masala sticks to the pan, add a couple of spoons of water.
  16. Add blended tomatoes and keep cooking the mixture.
  17. Turn the heat to high and keep stirring the mixture, until you see oil separating the pan.  
  18. Add squeezed spinach and parboiled potatoes, mix everything but make sure not to break the potatoes. 
  19. Sprinkle some water and let the curry cook. 
  20. Turn the heat to medium and add fresh tomatoes.
  21. Let the curry cook for another 3-4 minutes, add lemon juice and mix well.
  22. Sprinkle some water to prevent sticking the curry to the pan.
  23. Cook another 4-5 minutes on high heat.
  24. Add sugar, mix and turn off the heat.
  25. Serve hot.  


If you are using a concentrated tomato puree instead of tinned tomatoes, use ONLY 2 TBSP and add 5 TBSP water to it.

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The nutritional information provided is an approximation calculated by an online calculator. Please consult a professional dietitian for nutritional advice.
saag aloo, side dish, british curry house, vegan, indian curry
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  1. Love this simple saag aloo, would be delicious to mop up with some parathas. My parents are also very similar, they like to order dishes that they are comfortable with... :)

  2. Saag aloo is my favourite. Your clicks are so inviting, I felt like grabbing it from screen. The tempering of paanch foran is adding awesome flavours to this.

    1. Thanks Lata, yes panch phoran makes a lot of difference to this dish.

  3. I know the ingredients are too simple but together they create magic...this can be paired either with roti or rice

  4. Saag aloo is our family favourite! Especially aloo is the favourite part for my kids in this! Drooling over your pics...

  5. Every time, I come across your post, I always awestruck with your photography skills. I get inspired every single time. Saag aloo looks so delicious. I usually make the puree out of spinach and prepare the curry. But this way, it looks better. Next time, will try it out like you mentioned.

  6. Saag aloo is a go to side dish whenever we go to restaurant. Panch poran in saag aloo sounds like it adds a unique and amazing flavour to the dish. Definitely a must try Recipe.

  7. This Saag aloo looks so delicious. I have not had it with panch phoran. Will try it soon! Yum!

  8. Saag Aloo looks so tempting . Panch Poran must give unique and great flavour to the curry. Must be amazing with roti , paratha. Beautiful clicks

  9. That is such a tempting subzi! Made with such basic ingredients, but so flavorful. Love each and every picture of yours! It makes the recipe even more flavorful. I love the flavor of panch phoran and use it often. I will make saag aloo with panch phoran soon.

  10. I love saag aloo and the addition of panch phoran must have given nice flavours. It pairs well with hot phulkas.

  11. So flavorful and healthy saag aloo. I always love your photography skills and props. Can't take my eyes off the pics

  12. The dish looks really delicious. Loved the way you have used chopped spinach in the recipe because, many a times I have seen people pureeing it, which takes away all the texture.

  13. Great !!! with so minimal ingredients, the dish comes out so tempting :) The addition of panch phoron must be adding an awesome flavor to the whole dish ..

  14. The flavor of panch phoran is so unique in a dish! this saag aloo looks fab! the first click wants me to grab the dish straight from the pic, lovely styling jagruti!!! Thsoe copper bowls look gorgeous!!!


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