Easy Indian Recipes for Lazy Bachelors

Come on, Chop Chop.

Photo by Zhang Kenny on Unsplash

Growing up in Mumbai, India, my Mum would cook for us — my dad, my younger brother and me, everyday. If it weren't for Mum, we’d just live on pizzas, instant noodles, potato chips and yeah takeout's. For real.

And it so happened that when I was 25, I moved to the US of A to pursue my Master’s Degree. While fastening my seat-belt enroute to the United States, it got me thinking — Mum’s not gonna be around to cook for me anymore? How am I gonna survive?

I literally had no experience cooking. I did not have the faintest idea of how to make coffee or tea or for that matter how do I even make an omelet. I knew I was screwed royally. Luckily, I just knew how to make the famous Indian instant noodles — Maggi and I had stashed up 3–4 large packets of these noodles. But the question still remains — for how long am I gonna survive on this unhealthy — junk stuff?

Like most young single people, the first thought that came to my head was, I will have to eat out or probably get a takeout for every meal. But I also knew strongly that I could not afford that lifestyle knowing the INR to $$ exchange rate and furthermore knowing that eating out regularly is definitely not healthy at all.

So that's when it began — my search for easy, healthy and tasty recipes. I first began with Indian recipes. Recipes that required few, limited and common ingredients, cooking instructions that were understandable and manageable by a noob, and most importantly the cleanup being extremely minimal.

With the demands of the 21st century bachelor life — university, projects, travel and part-time-jobs — leading to increasingly busy lives that require constant attention and energy, home cooking is an extremely difficult skill to master. Over the last two years, I have managed to not only learn the basics of cooking but also discovered this list of a few quick-and-easy-and-affordable meals that I keep coming back to. It is my hope that these recipes will encourage first-timers to give up the Ramen or Maggi or the Indomie and cook up something more nutritious and delicious.

P.S: All the ingredients in the below recipes can be found at your neighborhood grocery store.

Indian Scrambled Eggs

Indian Styled Scrambled Eggs, popularly known as Anda (Egg) Bhurji (Scramble) is packed with the right amount of flavor and spice and are perfect for any meal of the day. It is the easiest you can make anytime and takes less than 30 minutes. It goes very well with bread, roti, paratha, tortillas, or even plain steamed rice.

Preparation Time: 20–25 Minutes

Ingredients: Onions, Tomatoes, Green chilies, Ginger, Cooking Oil, Salt, Red chilly powder, Turmeric powder, Coriander leaves, Eggs

Lemon Rice

Lemon Rice is a staple comfort food in the Southern states of India. It has a rich flavor of fresh lemon juice along with the aroma of tempered spices. It is a versatile dish and it can eaten as a main with yoghurt or as a side with Chicken, fish, pickle or any other curries.

Preparation Time: 20–25 Minutes

Ingredients: Cooking Oil, Mustard seeds, Chopped ginger, Asafetida, Cashews / Lentils (Optional), Red ghillies, Turmeric, Salt, Curry leaves, Bowl of cooked rice, Lemon juice

Dal Tadka

Dal (Lentils) Tadka (Tempered) is the most basic, popular and healthy Indian dish. It can be made thick or thin with any kind of lentil, with a simple tempering of spices. It can be served with some steamed rice or even Roti or Paratha.

Preparation Time: 30 Minutes

Ingredients: Lentils, Cooking Oil, Turmeric Powder, Salt, Garlic, Asafetida, Cumin Seeds, Chilli Powder, Green Chillies, Chopped Coriander Leaves, Onion, Mustard Seeds, Coriander Powder, Garam Masala Powder

Potato Stir Fry

Potato Stir Fry is a simple and quick recipe of chunky potato cubes stir fried with few basic spices. The crunchiness of onions, spicy flavor of potatoes and the aroma of spices is what you get with every single spoon of this dish. You can have it with a bowl of rice topped with dollop of ghee or with bread, roti, paratha, tortillas.

Preparation Time: 20–25 Minutes

Ingredients: Potato cubed, Onions, Green chillies, Coriander leaves, Cumin seeds, Turmeric powder, Red Chilli powder, Salt, Cooking Oil

Easy Tomato Saar

Tomato Saar is a super flavorful, healthy and versatile recipe which can be either served as a warm soup or had along with steamed white rice.

Preparation Time: 20–25 Minutes

Ingredients: Tomatoes, Onions, Green chillies, Curry leaves, Ginger, Garlic, Mustard seeds, Turmeric powder, Salt, Cooking Oil, Chopped coriander leaves

Quick Indian Pasta

A delicious Indian Style Pasta that can be served as a lunch/dinner recipe or as a quick evening snack. Sautéed vegetables such as carrots, broccoli and bell peppers can also be added and cooked with Indian spices. This pasta can be eaten with soup or garlic bread.

Preparation Time: 20–25 Minutes

Ingredients: Pasta, Cooking Oil, Salt, Onions, Garlic, Ginger, Butter, Vegetables, Flour, Milk, Pepper, Red Chilli Flakes, Cheese, Lemon Juice, Garam Masala Powder

Lemon Pepper Chicken

Lemon Pepper Chicken is a tasty, tangy, delicious and quick single-serving meal made using two versatile ingredients — Lemon and Pepper. When you combine them with chicken and other spices, the result is truly fresh and flavorful. This is a perfect one-pot chicken dish that you can make super quick.

Preparation Time: 20–25 Minutes

Ingredients: Lemon Juice, Yoghurt, Crushed Pepper, Ginger Garlic Paste, Salt, Cooking Oil, Green Chillies, Green Cardamom, Cloves, Cinnamon, Peppercorns, Garam Masala Powder, Chopped coriander leaves

Paneer Stir Fry

Paneer Stir Fry is a quick recipe where Paneer or Indian cottage cheese cubes are quickly sautéed with assorted vegetables. The seasoning used here can be either mild or spicy, depending on your choice. It is a quick colorful and wholesome recipe.

Preparation Time: 25 Minutes

Ingredients: Paneer, Curd , Red Chill Powder, Garam Masala Powder, Salt, Cooking Oil, Onion , Tomato, Green Chili, Ginger Garlic Paste ,Capsicum, Turmeric Powder, Coriander Powder, Cumin ,Chat Masala

Cheese Toast Recipe

The Cheese Toast Recipe is a favorite among all cheese lovers. This recipe is quick to make and utilizes simple ingredients off your pantry. This toast recipe can be served for either breakfast or as a snack.

Preparation Time: 10–15 Minutes

Ingredients: Sandwich Bread, Butter, Red Chili Powder, Salt, Grated or Processed Cheese, Garlic, Red Chili Flakes, Coriander Leaves

Curd Rice

Curd or Yogurt rice is a popular and delicious South Indian comfort meal made with simple ingredients such as cooked rice, yogurt and tempered with spices. This recipe needs only a few ingredients and can be easily prepared by a novice.

Preparation Time: 20–25 Minutes

Ingredients: Rice, Curd, Sugar, Black Pepper, Roasted Peanuts, Salt , Cooking Oil, Mustard Seeds, Peanuts, Curry Leaves, Onion, Carrot, Beans, Coriander Leaves, Ghee, Mustard Seeds, Chana Dal ,Urad Dal, Asafoetida, Green Chillies

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