When trying to eat healthily, you may find that you miss out on all the great flavours of your favourite foods. Luckily, Indian cuisine is full of naturally delicious, healthy and low calorie dishes. Don’t compromise on taste and try some delightful Indian food without worrying about your calorie intake. Here are just a few ideas and recipes for low-calorie Indian meals.
Simply The Best Low-Calorie Indian Meals
Indian Cusine provides you with the opportunity to combine flavours and natural ingredients to create an explosion of flavour. Go wild with herbs and spices and make your dishes as mild or spicy as you desire. Just because you’re on a diet, doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the amazing cuisine that India has to offer. Try some of our Kakori specials to get a taste of perfection with minimal calories.
When making Indian dishes from scratch, you can choose fresh and healthy ingredients with low calories. Start by making sure that the ingredients that you use are low in calories. For example, coconut milk is the main ingredient used in most Indian dishes, so making it low calorie can create deliciously creamy low-calorie dishes. Although you can use low-calorie coconut milk, make sure that you still have a high nutritional intake by checking the ingredients on the back of the packet. Replacing your ingredients with low-calorie options means that you can still make your favourite homemade Indian dishes.
Although using low-calorie ingredients are good for those on a diet, it does not necessarily mean that it is healthy for you. Studies have proven that ‘low-fat’ ingredients are filled with sugar, flour, salt and thickeners to make up for their lack in taste. So before embarking on a low-fat diet, think about using natural ingredients, so you know exactly what is going into your dish.
Delve into Dal
Dal means a meal made from lentils in Hindi and is a delicious dish bursting with flavour. For a high impact ingredient, lentils are full of protein, fibre, vitamin B6 and folate. This superfood is perfect for thickening any dish, in particular, vegetarian dishes. Dal is traditionally made using cream to give it its pale orange appearance; however, opting for a tomato-based sauce will automatically make it a healthier dish.
Indian dishes are all about incorporating as many herbs and spices together to create the perfect combination of flavour. Use the earth’s amazing natural herbs and spices to add flavour to your dish rather than adding fatty ingredients such as cream. Use the following ingredients for the perfect explosion of flavour:
- 120g Red Lentils
- 600ml Boiled Water
- Low fat cooking spray
- 3 finely chopped garlic cloves
- 1 inch piece of ginger peeled and finely chopped
- 1/2 medium size onion , diced
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp turmeric powder
- 1 tsp green chilli paste
- 1/2 large tomato finely chopped
- 1 tsp tomato puree
- 1/2 large tomato roughly chopped
- Pinch of dried fenugreek leaves
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh coriander
To get started, cover your red lentils in the boiling water and put the pan on medium heat, they should only simmer and not boil. Make sure that the lentils don’t stick to the pan by stirring them now and then. In approximately thirty minutes, when the lentils are soft and mushy, turn off the heat. While the lentils are preparing, chop the rest of your ingredients so that you are ready for the next stage.
Spray some oil on the bottom of a small saucepan and place on high heat until the oil starts to bubble. When the oil is bubbling, turn down the heat and add the ginger and garlic. Stir the garlic and ginger in the saucepan and add small drops of boiling water to prevent them from sticking to the pan and burning for roughly 3 minutes.
Once the garlic and ginger have softened, begin to add the diced onion and cumin seeds along with a small quantity of boiling water and stir for a further 3 minutes. When all the ingredients are soft, add salt, turmeric, chilli paste, chopped tomatoes and tomato puree. Mix everything together and leave for a few minutes.
Now that you have created to the perfect mixture of flavours pour it into the soft lentils and turn on a gentle heat. The final step is to add the roughly chopped tomato, fenugreek leaves and coriander. Stir together until the tomatoes are soft and serve beautifully in a decorative bowl.
Enjoying this dish will make you realise that you can make delicious food that contains little calories. This dish contains around 120 calories when using fresh ingredients, making it the perfect way to enjoy Indian dishes when on a diet. At Kakori’s Indian restaurant in Milton Keynes, our chefs cook this delicious Dal dish from a traditional recipe to give you taste of India. Come in and try our Dal dish before diving into the wonderful world of home cooking.
From Naan to Chapatis
One of the most common side dishes ordered at our restaurant in Milton Keynes is the naan bread, from garlic naans to kemaan naans, its a classic. Unfortunately, people often forget about the simple yet delicious taste of chapatis. The thin layer of soft bread can be dunked into a curry or wrapped around flavoursome prawns, vegetables or chicken. What you may not realise is that although naan and chapatis are both forms of Indian bread, when it comes to eating low calories, your best option is the chapati. This way, you are able to enjoy the full range of foods that India has to off without pilling on the calories.
Naan bread is heavy and contains fats that are not necessarily good for – that’s what makes it taste so yummy – whereas, chapatis are light and contain fewer oils. For those wanting a lighter alternative to naan bread but don’t want to compromise on flavour and enjoyment, chapatis can fulfil your Indian cuisine cravings. To make a low-calorie chapati, you will need the following ingredients:
- 1 piece of Lo-Dough
- 1 clove of garlic, crushed
- A pinch of cumin
- A little coriander
- turmeric, to tastes
- chilli flakes to taste
- Sliced chilli pepper, how much you dare to have
- Small bunch of chopped coriander
- 2 teaspoons of butter
After cooking up your low-calorie Dal curry, making a Chapati will seem a breeze, so let’s get started. Begin by heating up your butter on medium heat in a frying pan. Add the Lo-Dough to the pan and stir it in the butter until the dough is fully coated. Once it is coated, continue to fry the dough for a couple of minutes until it begins to go brown.
When your dough has browned, add the garlic and your chosen amount of spices. Make sure to keep turning the Lo-Dough over in the pan for a few more minutes so that it is fully coated in spices. Once you have finished cooking, make sure to serve it with a sprinkle of chilli and coriander.
It’s really as easy as that, so no need to buy fatty and oily Indian ready meals from your local supermarket. If you want to know how a chapati should taste, then try our delicious version of the chapati for a sensational Indian takeaway in Milton Keynes.
Low Aloo Gobi
Another traditional Indian dish that naturally has low calories is the Aloo Gob. Packed with Cauliflower, this delicious dish is perfect for vegetarians and diet seekers. Cauliflower has an array of natural health benefits and can actually aid in weight loss. The only issue with Allo Gob is that it is often cooked with too much oil. However, this is easy to get around with new low-calorie oils or simply just not using as much as the recipe may tell you to. To make sure that your ingredients don’t stick to the pan due to you not using as much oil, add a little boiling water every now and then. To make the perfect low-calorie Aloo Gob, you will need the following ingredients:
- 250 gms/ 1 Medium Cauliflower
- 1 Potato
- 1 tsp finley chopper ginger
- 1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds
- 1 tsp Turmeric Powder
- 1/4 tsp Ajwain (Optional)
- 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
- 1 tbsp Green Coriander Chopped
- 1 tsp Oil
- Salt to taste
To make a healthy Aloo Gob, peel and chop your potatoes into any size cubes depending on your preference. While you are preparing, cut and wash the cauliflower to your prefered size. Add some oil to a pan and heat it up, once it is heated, add the cumin. When the cumin begins to cook, add the ginger and fry it for approximately one minute.
Once you have fried the ginger, add the turmeric powder and potato, making sure that you stir it continuously, so it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan. Add the salt and let the potatoes soften, if the potatoes stick to the bottom at any point then add a little bit of boiling water. Once the potatoes are half done, add the cauliflower to the pan along with the Ajwain, covering the pan and occasional checking the texture of the cauliflower.
When the cauliflower has reached your desired tenderness, remove the pan from the heat and gently stir in the coriander and black pepper. Finish the dish by serving it with a few pieces of ginger sprinkled over the top and enjoy your creation.
This healthy and flavoursome dish is a classic example of delicious vegetarian food that has a big impact. Aloo Gobi is one of our customers favourite here at Kakori, and its no wonder. It’s low calorie and natural ingredients make it the perfect dish for all to enjoy.
Low-Calorie And Healthy Eating
Try these delicious low-calorie dishes to see how you can still create the great taste of India with reduced fat, oil and calories. There is a wide range of different dishes that you can choose from whether its a side dish, main meal or even a dessert. Stick to lentil and chickpea dishes as they tend to have a lot of flavour with little calories. Indian dishes are great for vegetarians as Indian is known for its large vegetarian community. Try going vegetarian when trying Indian dishes as they are packed with nutritional vegetables meaning you don’t have to feel bad when enjoying your Indian treat. If all else fails and you don’t know where to start, why not try a variety of dishes from our delicious menu.