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A 45 degree angle view of cauliflower tikka masala

Cauliflower Tikka Masala

This rich and creamy Cauliflower Tikka Masala is a comforting Indian cuisine! It’s made with simple ingredients and is a healthier form of the traditional dish since its low in fat and carbohydrate.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Keyword cauliflower tikka masala, cauliflower tikka masala coconut milk, cauliflower tikka masala curry, cauliflower tikka masala recipe
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4
Calories 161kcal
Author Gunjan


For the cauliflower

  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 3 cups cauliflower florets (bite sized)

For the gravy


  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro


  • In a saucepan bring water to boil. Add salt and turmeric powder to it. Give it a quick stir and add cauliflower florets to it.Let it boil for 2-3 minutes. (Make sure its not mushy and firm enough to be held by hand). Turn off the flame and drain the florets using a mesh/strainer. Keep them aside.
  • In a food processor combine red onion, tomato paste, cashew nuts, ginger, garlic and cumin seeds. Grind it until it’s a smooth paste. (you may use a blender for this step and add about 1/8 cup water to make a smooth paste).
  • Heat oil in a nonstick stock pot and spoon out the onion masala. Saute for about 10 minutes at medium-high heat or until it reduces and dried up quite a bit.
  • Add chili powder, coriander powder and garam masala to it and saute again for about 1-2 minutes or until it reduces further and dried up completely.
  • Now, bring the flame to low heat and pour coconut milk, sugar and salt. Stir continuously until there are no lumps and the sauteed masala dissolves well in the coconut milk. This might take up to 5 minutes. Increase the flame to medium heat and bring it to one boil only.
  • Now, again lower the flame. Toss in cooked cauliflower. Cover and cook for another 5-7 minutes.
  • Turn it off. Garnish with cilantro and serve with naan, rice and a side salad.


  • This recipe tastes best when served immediately. However, refrigerate the leftovers for about a week in an air tight container.
  • If you plan to make ahead this recipe then you can make the gravy and freeze it for about a month. When ready to use simply make the cauliflower as per the instructions. Defrost and warm up the gravy at low-medium heat making sure that milk does not curdle. So, stir at equal intervals and toss in cooked cauliflower. Garnish and serve.
  • This recipe can be made in Dutch oven as well.
  • When boiling cauliflower make sure its light yellow in color after you drain it. It should absorb turmeric color so make sure each floret is well soaked in the water.
  • It is possible to make this recipe oil free. Saute the onion masala in about 1/8 cup vegetable broth. However, the consistency and texture along with the flavor might differ a bit from the original recipe.
  • I used the coconut milk from tetra pack/carton to make it lighter. You may use canned unsweetened coconut milk. However the nutritional info may vary.
  • I have provided step wise images above in the post for your reference.


Calories: 161kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 40g | Sodium: 418mg | Potassium: 864mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 222IU | Vitamin C: 44mg | Calcium: 71mg | Iron: 5mg