Vegetarian Aloo Bharta Indian Style Mashed Potatoes Recipe

Aloo Bharta is our favourite vegetarian Indian side dish to cook when we have leftover mashed potato to use up in the fridge.

This easy homemade Aloo Bharta recipe is a healthy dish featuring big flavour thanks to the addition of fragrant Indian spices and fresh herbs.

Boiled potatoes are mashed until smooth then combined with flavourful Indian spices like cumin, turmeric, chili powder, and curry leaves. We like to add ghee or butter to Aloo Bharta to make it creamy but you can omit if making vegan Indian Mashed Potatoes.

Garnish Aloo Bharta with fresh mint, chopped scallions and amchoor dried mango powder. This starchy comfort food is the perfect side dish for vegetarians and those who follow a gluten free diet.

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Save our Aloo Bharta Indian Mashed Potatoes recipe to Pinterest!
Save our Aloo Bharta Indian Mashed Potatoes recipe to Pinterest!

What Is Aloo Bharta?

Aloo translates to potatoes and bharta means mashed. So Aloo Bharta is simply Indian-style Mashed Potatoes.

Different regional recipes for Aloo Bharta are enjoyed all over India. It is traditionally served as a side dish at lunch or dinner with fresh salads, soups, and curries.

Some regions of India like Bihar and Bengal flavour the dish with mustard oil but we prefer to use a mixture of canola oil and ghee/butter.

Our easy Aloo Bharta recipe features minced garlic, fresh ginger, spicy green chili, diced onion, bright yellow turmeric and fragrant curry leaf.

Traditional Aloo Bharta recipe ingredients.
Traditional Aloo Bharta recipe ingredients.

Travel to India by Cooking Aloo Bharta at Home

I love traveling through Asia.

My first visit to Asia had me living in South Korea for a year as a teacher and it’s where I was first introduced to fermented vegetables like kimchi.

After my contract ended in Seoul I travelled throughout Asia for 6 months, visiting the PhilippinesIndonesiaMalaysiaSingaporeCambodiaLaosMyanmar, ThailandVietnamThe Maldives and India.

I spent over a month traveling through India. I started in the capital, eating my way through the bustling markets and fine dining restaurants in Delhi. I then embarked on a magical weekend getaway to awe-inspiring Taj Mahal in Agra. In India’s north you’ll find plenty of barbecue and wheat based side dishes like scorched naan bread.

For the second half of my Indian adventure I explored the southern state of Kerala. The south is famous for its seafood, coconut, tropical fruits, and rice based side dishes like crispy dosa and Thakkali Biryani. The colonial capital of Cochin was formerly run by the Portuguese. It’s also one of the only places in India you can find beef on a menu.

After enjoying a jaunt to the Maldives my India trip came to a close in the Bollywood capital, bustling and cosmopolitan Mumbai. The city is famous for its specialty street foods and fine dining restaurants at opulent luxury hotels. The Taj Mahal Palace in particular serves one of the world’s most famous Afternoon Teas.

What I found most fascinating is India’s distinct regional food cultures. Much like the regional cuisines found in FranceGermanyItaly or Spain, each city in India had its own local speciality.

After you’ve traveled to India, return home to prepare an authentic and fragrant feast for friends and family featuring this flavourful Indian Mashed Potatoes recipe!

Our easy Aloo Bharta recipe features potatoes, onion, garlic, ginger, scallions and chili.
Our easy Aloo Bharta recipe features potatoes, onion, garlic, ginger, scallions and chili.

Where To Eat Aloo Bharta

If you live in a large city in Canada or America you’ll likely have access to local Indian restaurants that serve traditional Aloo Bharta.

Haven’t traveled to India before? It may be helpful to first sample homemade Aloo Bharta at a local Indian restaurant to better understand how the dish is served. You can assess the ideal smoothness of the mashed potatoes, desired spicy heat level, attractive toppings to garnish the dish.

In Toronto, popular Indian restaurants that may serve Aloo Bharta include Udupi PalaceLahore Tikka House and Kothur Indian Cuisine.

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Strain boiled potatoes and add to the spicy Aloo Bharta mixture.
Strain boiled potatoes and add to the spicy Aloo Bharta mixture.

My Family Loves Healthy Aloo Bharta

My family loves mashed potatoes!

My sister is known as the Mashed Potato Queen in the family and is always responsible for making a large pot of creamy spuds for Thanksgiving and Christmas to serve with our roast turkey. Smothered in gravy!

When I cooked my family this creamy Indian Mashed Potatoes recipe their eyes bulged with glee. I knew they’d enjoy it because they love healthy vegetarian dishes, creamy mashed potatoes and fragrant Indian spices.

I prepared this spicy Indian Mashed Potatoes recipe as a side dish alongside homemade dal and spicy masala curry. It’s the perfect replacement for rice or naan flatbread at an Indian lunch or dinner.

If you’ve traveled to India on holiday there is no better way to share your adventure at home with family and friends then by serving this flavourful Aloo Bharta.

Stir smooth Indian Mashed Potatoes in a pot until combined.
Stir smooth Indian Mashed Potatoes in a pot until combined.

Indian Mashed Potatoes Health Benefits

Our healthy Aloo Bharta recipe is packed full of healthy ingredients!

Potatoes are rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Studies have linked potatoes to a variety of impressive health benefits, including improved blood sugar control, reduced heart disease risk and higher immunity.

A rich source of blood-building iron, cumin may also help balance your blood sugar levels and reduce bad cholesterol. It is also traditionally used as a digestive aid.

The star component of turmeric is curcumin, a potent phytochemical that has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It is often prescribed in Indian Ayurvedic medicine to help relieve arthritis, aid digestion and inhibit the growth of cancers. 

It is only recently that scientists have begun to identify the components responsible for garlic’s myriad health benefits. Rich in phytochemicals and potassium, garlic helps boost your immune system, fight cancer and protect your heart.

Ginger contains at least 14 phytochemicals, many of which have impressive antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It also has a good source of copper, which supports your bones, blood and nervous system. 

Onions are a humble vegetable packed with vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals. Regular consumption of onions can help boost digestive health and reduce the risk of developing heart disease.

Chili has been proven to help reduce the duration of sickness, prevent heart disease, and promote weight loss. 

A good source of bone-strengthening vitamin K, cilantro is also rich in antioxidants that help protect the eyes from damage by free radicals. 

Fresh mint is antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, and can have a calming effect on the digestive system. It is also a good source of folate, which supports blood health. 

Garnish Aloo Bharta with fresh mint and sliced green onions.
Garnish Aloo Bharta with fresh mint and sliced green onions.

Indian Mashed Potatoes Recipe Cooking Tips

If it’s your first time cooking Indian Mashed Potatoes be sure to review our detailed step-by-step recipe below. Here are some helpful tips and tricks to get you started.

  • We often make this Aloo Bharta recipe the day after cooking mashed potatoes. Simply remove the leftover mashed potatoes from the fridge and mix in the sauteed Indian spices and vegetables.
  • We’ve cooked the vegetables in flavourless canola oil but you can substitute for mustard oil or coconut oil for additional flavour.
  • We’ve used one small red onion in this recipe but you can substitute for Spanish cooking onions, white onions or vidalia onion if you prefer.
  • Remove and discard the seeds from the green chili if you don’t like spicy food.
  • Add butter or ghee to make the mashed potatoes creamy. If you want to make vegan aloo bharta simply omit.
Aloo Bharta Indian Mashed Potatoes Recipe Photo Image.
Aloo Bharta Indian Mashed Potatoes Recipe Photo Image.

What To Serve with Vegetarian Aloo Bharta

Aloo Bharta is one of our favourite vegetarian side dishes to serve at an Indian-themed lunch or dinner.

The healthy recipe can be served as a light lunch all on its own or as part of a larger Indian dinner menu. We like to serve Indian Mashed Potatoes with fresh salads, soups, dal and spicy curry masalas.

If you’re hosting a large Indian-themed potluck or buffet you may want to serve Indian Mashed Potatoes alongside some of these popular recipes:

Aloo Bharta is a delicious vegetarian Indian potato side dish.
Aloo Bharta is a delicious vegetarian Indian potato side dish.

You May Also Enjoy These Potato Recipes…

Now you're an expert on how to make the best Aloo Bharta Indian Mashed Potatoes recipe!
Now you’re an expert on how to make the best Aloo Bharta Indian Mashed Potatoes recipe!

How To Make Homemade Aloo Bharta

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5 from 1 vote

Aloo Bharta Indian Mashed Potatoes

How to make traditional Aloo Bharta. Our easy healthy Indian Mashed Potatoes recipe features chili, ginger, garlic, onion, mint & cumin.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Aloo Bharta
Servings: 6
Calories: 141kcal


  • Large pot
  • Wooden spoon or spatula
  • French knife
  • vegetable peeler
  • measuring cups
  • measuring spoons


  • 3 Yukon Gold Potatoes peeled, cut into 4 pieces
  • 1 tbsp Canola Oil
  • 1 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 3 Garlic Cloves minced
  • 2 tsp Minced Ginger
  • 1 Small Red Onion finely chopped
  • 2 Green Chilies deseeded and finely chopped
  • 1/4 tsp Ground Turmeric
  • 5 Curry Leaves
  • Salt
  • 2 tbsp Butter or Ghee
  • 1 tsp Dried Chili Powder
  • 2 tbsp Cilantro finely chopped
  • 10 Mint Leaves finely chopped
  • 1 Scallion finely chopped
  • 1 tsp Amchoor Dried Mango Powder


  • Boil potatoes in a large saucepan until soft, then drain, return to the pan and mash. Cover and set aside.
  • Heat a shallow pan with oil over medium heat. When hot, add the cumin seeds and allow to sputter for 30 seconds. Add the garlic, ginger, onion, green chiles and cook for 7-9 minutes until soft and light brown around the edges.
  • Add the turmeric and stir the onions, then add the curry leaves and allow to sputter. Remove from the heat.
  • Heat the mashed potatoes in a microwave with butter or ghee until steaming hot.
  • Stir the onion mixture into the mashed potatoes until combined. Season with salt then garnish with chili powder, cilantro, mint, scallions and dried mango powder. Serve warm.


Calories: 141kcal | Carbohydrates: 20.1g | Protein: 2.7g | Fat: 6.6g | Saturated Fat: 2.7g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 44mg | Potassium: 489mg | Fiber: 2.3g | Sugar: 2.3g | Calcium: 34mg | Iron: 2mg

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