Ladies Finger Curry | Bhindi Curry

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Ladies Finger Curry also called Bhindi Curry in Hindi is a tangy and spiced recipe of sautéed okra in an onion, tomato, spices, yogurt curry base. The recipe is gluten-free. Serve this tasty Indian okra curry with flatbreads like chapati, roti or naan. It also pairs well with steamed rice or jeera rice.

bhindi masala gravy recipe

About Ladies Finger Curry

This recipe gets its name as Okra is also called Ladies Finger in English. In Hindi, okra is referred to as ‘Bhindi’. This is a really good home cooked delicious curry made with fresh and tender okra pods. 

I have kept the ingredients basic and not added stuff like cashews, poppy seeds, melon seeds, cream etc to thicken the curry. So anyone having Indian spices and ingredients at home can easily make this delicious Bhindi Curry.

Bhindi is a family favorite. Hence there are many recipes posted with okra on the blog. I have already posted a semi-dry North Indian, Punjabi style recipe of Bhindi Masala which is another gem made from okra.

Usually I make a dry or semi dry curry with okra. We have had bhindi curry a couple of times in restaurants. So I tried to make a restaurant version minus the cream or khoya (evaporated milk solids). The recipe was a success and it tasted awesome.

Since okra and tomatoes are two of the hero ingredients, make sure to use tender okra pods and sweet tasting tomatoes that are not very tangy or overly sour.

While writing this post, I still remember the flavors and taste of this Ladies Finger Curry. It was damn good. I love cooking more than being a foodie.

But for a reason, this okra curry was an exception. It reminded me of the flavor and taste of a Ladies Finger Curry I had many years back in Mumbai. The tanginess of the tomatoes complements the light sweetness of okra very well.

This Okra Curry pairs well with soft phulka, chapati or paratha. This mildly spiced okra curry also goes well with steamed rice.

Step-by-Step Guide

How to make Ladies Finger Curry

Preparation

1. First rinse 250 grams okra (ladies finger) very well in running water a few times. Then drain them completely in a strainer or colander.

bhindi, okra, lady finger

2. Wipe each okra with a kitchen napkin. There should be no moisture on them. You can also allow them to dry naturally at room temperature, by spreading them on a large plate or tray.

bhindi for bhindi masala recipe

3. Chop the bhindi into 1 to 1.5 inch pieces. Keep aside. Do check for worms or black spots as you chop them. Discard the okra pieces if you spot any of these.

chopped bhindi for making bhindi masala recipe

4. In a grinder or blender jar, take the following ingredients:

  • ¾ cup roughly chopped ripe red tomatoes
  • 1 inch peeled and chopped ginger
  • 4 to 5 chopped garlic cloves
  • 1 or 2 green chilies, chopped or 1 teaspoon, chopped

Remember to use ripe red tomatoes which are a bit sweet and less sour or tangy.

making bhindi masala paste

5. Add 2 tablespoon fresh full fat curd (yogurt) along with 2 cloves, 1 green cardamom, ½ inch cinnamon and 1 single and thin strand of mace.

Mace is optional and can be omitted.

making bhindi masala paste

6. Without adding water, grind or blend to a fine and smooth paste. Keep aside covered.

bhindi masala paste

Sauté Ladies Finger

7. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a heavy kadai (wok) or frying pan. Add the chopped okra and sauté them on a low heat.

chopped bhindi for bhindi masala recipe

8. Stirring often, sauté them till they are almost cooked, shrunken in size and lightly browned from the sides.

sauting bhindi for bhindi masala recipe

9. When done remove the sautéed okra and place them in  a plate or tray.

sauted bhindi for bhindi masala recipe

Make Ladies Finger Curry

10. In the same kadai or pan, further add 2 tablespoon oil. Add tej patta (Indian bay leaf) and fry for about 5 to 7 seconds on low heat.

making bhindi masala recipe

11. Add the ½ cup finely chopped onions.

onions for bhindi masala gravy recipe

12. Stir to mix.

onions for bhindi masala gravy recipe

13. Sauté the onions on low to medium heat till they start to turn light golden.

sauting onions for bhindi masala curry recipe

14. Lower the heat and add the ground spices listed below:

  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon red chilli powder or cayenne pepper
  • ½ teaspoon coriander powder
  • ½ teaspoon cumin powder
curry for bhindi masala gravy recipe

15. Stir the spice powders quickly. You can also switch off the stove top while adding and mixing spices powders, so that they don’t get burned.

making bhindi masala gravy recipe

16. Add the prepared ground tomato-yogurt-spices paste that we made before. Be careful while adding the ground paste as it splutters.

paste for bhindi masala gravy recipe

17. Stir and mix thoroughly.

stir bhindi masala gravy

18. On a low to medium-low heat sauté till the masala paste thickens and you see oil leaving the sides. This takes time, so be patient.

Stir often while sautéing. The masala paste will thicken, look glossy and the oil will separate. When you see these signs, then move to the next step.

sauting bhindi masala gravy

19. Add about ¾ cup water and stir very well. You can also add ½ to ⅔ cup water for a thick curry or ¾ cup water for medium consistency.

water for bhindi masala gravy recipe

20. Season with salt as required.

salt for bhindi masala gravy recipe

21. Add the sautéed okra.

preparing bhindi masala recipe

22. Stir again.

stir bhindi masala gravy

23. Bring the Ladies Finger Curry to a simmer on a medium heat. Cook for about 5 to 6 minutes till the curry gets infused with the aroma and flavor of the okra.

Don’t cook okra in the curry for a longer time as then they become mushy.

simmer bhindi masala curry

24. Add ½ teaspoon kasuri methi, crushed (dry fenugreek leaves). If you want, you can also add 1 or 2 tablespoon of low-fat cream or light cream or cooking cream at this step.

making bhindi masala curry recipe

25. Stir and then add 2 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves (cilantro) to the Bhindi Curry.

coriander for bhindi masala curry recipe

26. Stir the curry again and then switch off the stovetop.

bhindi masala curry recipe, bhindi masala gravy recipe, bhindi masala

27. Serve Ladies Finger Curry garnished with a few coriander leaves or straightaway with roti or paratha or steamed rice.

bhindi masala gravy recipe, bhindi masala recipe

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bhindi masala gravy recipe, masala bhindi gravy recipe, ladies finger curry recipe

Ladies Finger Curry | Bhindi Curry

This Ladies Finger Curry also called Bhindi Curry in Hindi, is a delicious recipe of sautéed okra in a tangy onion, tomato curry base. The recipe is also gluten-free.
4.94 from 63 votes
Prep Time 25 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 50 mins
Cuisine North Indian, Punjabi
Course Main Course
Diet Gluten Free, Vegetarian
Difficulty Level Moderate
Servings 4
Units

Ingredients

For tomato paste

  • 3 tomatoes – ripe, red, medium-sized or 150 grams tomatoes or ¾ cup roughly chopped tomatoes
  • 1 inch ginger – peeled and chopped
  • 4 to 5 garlic cloves small to medium-sized, peeled
  • 1 to 2 green chilies or 1 teaspoon chopped
  • 2 tablespoons Curd (yogurt)
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 green cardamom
  • ½ inch cinnamon
  • 1 single thin strand of mace – optional

Other ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons oil – for sautéing okra
  • 250 grams bhindi (okra or lady finger)
  • 2 tablespoons oil for making curry
  • 1 tej patta (Indian bay leaf),small to medium-sized
  • 1 onion – large-sized or 2 medium onions or 100 grams or ½ cup finely chopped onions
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ½ teaspoon red chilli powder or cayenne pepper
  • ½ teaspoon Coriander Powder (ground coriander)
  • ½ teaspoon cumin powder
  • ¾ cup water or add as required
  • salt as required
  • ½ teaspoon dry fenugreek leaves (kasuri methi), crushed
  • 2 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves (cilantro)

Instructions
 

Preparation

  • First rinse ladies finger (okra, bhindi) very well in running water a few times. Then drain them completely in a strainer or colander.
  • Wipe each bhindi with a kitchen napkin. There should be no moisture on them.
    You can also allow them to dry naturally at room temperature, by spreading them onto a large plate or tray.
  • Chop the okra into 1 to 1.5 inch pieces. Keep aside.
  • In a grinder or blender jar, take the roughly chopped ripe red tomatoes, chopped ginger, garlic and green chillies.
  • Add the fresh full fat curd/yogurt along with cloves, green cardamom, cinnamon and mace.
  • Without adding water, grind or blend to a fine paste. Keep aside covered.

Sautéing okra

  • Heat 2 tablespoon oil in a heavy kadai or pan. Add the chopped okra and sauté them on a low heat stirring often.
  • Stir and sauté them till they are almost cooked, shrunken and lightly browned from the sides.
  • When done remove the sautéed okra and place them in a plate or tray.

Making ladies finger curry

  • In the same kadai or pan, add 2 tablespoon oil. Add tej patta, and fry for about 5 to 7 seconds.
  • Add the finely chopped onions. Stir to mix.
  • Sauté the onions on low to medium heat, stirring often till they start to turn light golden.
  • Lower the heat. Then add turmeric powder, red chilli powder, coriander powder and cumin powder.
  • Mix the spice powders quickly. You can also switch off the stove top while adding and mixing the ground spice powders, so that they don't get burned.
  • Add the ground tomato-curd-spices paste that we made before. Be careful while adding ground paste as it splutters.
  • Stir to mix. On a low to medium-low heat sauté till the masala paste thickens and you see oil leaving the sides.
    The masala paste will become glossy, thick and you will see oil separating the sides.
  • Next add about ¾ cup water and stir to mix. You can also add ½ to ⅔ cup water for a thick curry or ¾ cup water for medium consistency.
  • Season with salt as required.
  • Add the sautéed okra. Stir and mix again.
  • Bring the okra curry to a simmer on a medium heat. Cook for about 5 to 6 minutes till the curry gets infused with the aroma and flavor of the okra.
  • Don't cook okra in the curry for a longer time as then they become mushy.
  • Add the crushed dry fenugreek leaves (kasuri methi). If you want, you can also add 1 or 2 tablespoons of low fat cream or light cream at this step.
  • Stir and then add 2 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves to the curry.
  • Stir again and turn off the stove top.
  • Serve Ladies Finger Curry garnished with a few coriander leaves or as is with chapati or paratha or steamed rice.

Notes

  • Use fresh, tender and green okra pods to make the recipe. 
  • Since tomatoes form the base of this curry, ensure to use tomatoes which are sweet and not very sour. 
  • If in case the curry becomes too tangy, balance the tangy taste, by adding ¼ to ½ teaspoon sugar or add about 1 to 2 tablespoons cream.
  • For a thicker curry, add less water. 
  • To make a vegan version, use plant based yogurt.

Nutrition Info (Approximate Values)

Nutrition Facts
Ladies Finger Curry | Bhindi Curry
Amount Per Serving
Calories 193 Calories from Fat 135
% Daily Value*
Fat 15g23%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 12g
Cholesterol 1mg0%
Sodium 930mg40%
Potassium 503mg14%
Carbohydrates 14g5%
Fiber 4g17%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 1322IU26%
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) 0.2mg13%
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 0.1mg6%
Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 1mg5%
Vitamin B6 0.3mg15%
Vitamin B12 0.04µg1%
Vitamin C 32mg39%
Vitamin D 0.01µg0%
Vitamin E 7mg47%
Vitamin K 29µg28%
Calcium 93mg9%
Vitamin B9 (Folate) 58µg15%
Iron 1mg6%
Magnesium 55mg14%
Phosphorus 87mg9%
Zinc 1mg7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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This Ladies Finger Curry from the archives first published on January 2015 has been republished and updated in January 2023.

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Welcome to Dassana's Veg Recipes. I share vegetarian recipes from India & around the World. Having been cooking for decades and with a professional background in cooking & baking, I help you to make your cooking journey easier with my tried and tested recipes showcased with step by step photos & plenty of tips & suggestions.

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154 Comments

  1. another old favourite of mine from india – thanks for guiding me how to make it for myself love – keep up the good work!5 stars

  2. Awesome taste..im a beginner don’t knw much cooking but the recipes that you share are super easy to follow and the step by step photo idea is the best part. 🙂5 stars

  3. Hi Dassana
    This bhindi curry is awesome ..Thankyou for the recipe. .I have tried many of your recepies which came out so well .
    One question can i add baingan instead of bhindi in this masala curry?5 stars

  4. Hello from Berlin! Thanks for all you work and inspiring recipes. I am a newbie to indian cuisine and everything i tried so far following your suggestions just works perfect! This bhindi curry is so well balanced, goes smoothly and is absolutely mouthwatering!!!5 stars

  5. Gosh! This dish looks really yum in the pics and the comments below make me want to try it right after I finish writing this comment. My family doesn’t seem to like the bhindi dishes I make so I need to try out something new. I am certain that, like all your other recipes this one will be super as well!5 stars

    1. Thanks Sonia for this positive feedback. Yes this bhindi curry taste very good and it is one of our favorite recipe with okra.

    1. sour taste is due to the kind of tomatoes used. for tomato based gravies, it better to use ripe and red tomatoes which are not too tangy. also its best to use fresh curd. the curd should not be sour. addition of some sugar or cream will balance the sour taste.

  6. Awesome recipe. I made this last night for dinner and for the first time feel like I cooked something that really tasted like a dish I could have eaten in an Indian restaurant! I’m so proud of myself. I substituted a few tiny pinches of freshly ground nutmeg for the mace since I don’t have any. I will try more of your recipes for sure. Thank you so much!5 stars

  7. Hi Amit. I tried this reCipe And it was suppppper yummmy. I never thought, okra can be turned into such a nice dish.thnx a ton.5 stars

  8. I don’t care for whole spice pieces in gravy, even if they are blended because I always end up getting pieces of whole spice in bites of food. Can I temper the clove and cardamom in oil with tej patta? what do you suggest? many thanks!

  9. Hi,

    I am from London, and a big fan of lady finger. Yesterday I tried this recipe and it was a big success. Enjoying in today’s lunch box as well5 stars

  10. Just got done making this for the first time about 20 minutes ago. This is a phenomenal recipe! Definitely one of the best I have tried!5 stars

  11. Excellent bhindi masala, superb , restaurant style dish. Everyone in my family just loved it. Thank u for thinking and trying out various marvelous recipes.5 stars

    1. pleased to know this uma thanks for positive feedback 🙂 glad your family liked the bhindi masala gravy recipe.

  12. Hi,
    Thank u so……………. much! for this simple tasty recipe.My family loves to eat Okra now.My daughter’s favourite dish for lunch box with roti.My Best wishes to u.5 stars

  13. Hi

    The bhindi Masala is just fantastic / marvelous / super /fenomenal / top notch . I cooked it and enjoyed . all the very best …!

    Regards

    SD Sharma
    Palam
    New Delhi – 110045.4 stars

  14. How do you overcome the harshness of the raw garlic in the masala? I tried to slightly roast the garlic since I have the same problem when I try doing the same with other gravies. I followed this recipe but the garlic -Inness is overpowering. Would appreciate your feedback.

    1. some folks are sensitive to garlic aroma and flavor. what you can do is add less of garlic in any recipe than what is mentioned. usually sauteing the garlic does reduce its pungency. you can even skip garlic, if still you feel it to be too much in the gravy.

    2. Garlic bulbs available in India are tinier than the ones available outside. Hence, if 5-6 garlic cloves is mentioned, I’d probably use 2 big cloves at the most.

      Cheers!

  15. If you want to me this for a party can you keep the gravy and fried behind separately and mix them just before serving3 stars

  16. Hi Dassana,

    I have been following your website for almost all new recipes which I have very little or no experience with and I want to give you a big congratulations and hug for doing such a brilliant job with the posts. The instructions are super easy to follow and the excellent quality pictures makes the reader want to cook at home. Every post shows the amount of hard work and passion you put into it. Keep up the good work.

    Lots of good wishes! More power to you! 🙂

    Regards,
    Khushboo5 stars

    1. firstly a big thankyou khushboo for your kind, positive and encouraging words. we are very pleased to know this and god bless you 🙂

  17. Awesome.. simple way of narrating the procedure.. thank u so much for ur receipes.. expecting more such.. yummmmmmyyyyy receipes.. 🙂

  18. No words to describe… Its awesome..Am a beginner… Its very useful for me.. Step by step photographys are make me too easy to cook… Thank u so much dassana ji…..

    1. glad to know this yuva you liked the step by step photographs and its helping you in cooking 🙂

  19. Made this tonight for dinner. It was superb. I didn’t have the methi leaves on hand, but decided to go and buy some; I am really glad I did. The aroma of the methi leaves with gravy was outstanding. My husband and I both loved this. Thanks for the recipe!5 stars

  20. I’m a south Indian and I don’t know much of north Indian dishes. Just got to know this website and I tried this dish for the first time and it came very good. my family members really loved it.
    There are many great recipes in this website that I’m going to try later. Thank you.5 stars

  21. Hi Dassana! I have tried this recipe yesterday, it came out so well. My family loved this bindi masala. Thank you for sharing these awesome recipes:)

  22. I just love your website….Its excellent.I visited it today and share it with many of my friends….I will defiantly try this bhindi and will share the experience with you

    The way you respond to every comment..It killed me

    1. thanks a lot saima for your sweet feedback. glad to know that you shared the website with your friends.

  23. I cooked dis receipe for the first time n it has turned out awsum… Your website is really a boon…I hv tried mixed veg restaurant style also many times and each time it’s yummy…i used to hate okra but now I just love it…Thanks to you……5 stars

  24. Love it! Made it just now and turned out great! I think next time I will buy juicier tomatoes and add more yogurt because I like the gravy a lot! Forgot to rate…this is my rating5 stars

  25. Hello Dassana!

    You are the saviour!! I have just started trying my hands on cooking. Everyday I woke up and think what should I try to make today, I just look into your website and things always turned out more than I expect…my girlfriend loves all the recipe I have made so far and even her mother visited once and I made chhole that day, I was managed to impress her

    Again thanks so much!!! Keep posting!!

    1. welcome mohit. glad to know this. thanks for sharing your experience and positive feedback. happy cooking.

  26. This turned out really good!… I was tired of eating dry bhindi and decided to make this version… I still didn’t make it this liquidy but it was nice!.. The masala was tasty..5 stars

    1. thanks reema for sharing your feedback. there is a dry bhindi masala recipe also posted in the blog.

  27. Hi Dasana, I tried your Chole masala recipe and wanted to comment but the page does not allow me to comment. I wanted to ask you if I can use the Chole masala to cook other vegetables…I love the masala! If yes, which vegetables is recommended to go well with that masala? My next attempt will be this bhindi masala!

    1. thank you vanysa. we have closed comments on some posts. you can use the chole masala to cook other vegetables. just use it like the way we use garam masala. 1/4 to 1/2 tsp for a serving of 4 should be fine. you can use it for any veggie or even a combination of potato with any veggie. in this bhindi masala, don’t add garam masala. just add the chole masala powder. i thing 1/4 tsp should be fine in this recipe.

  28. Dear Amit, loved this recipe, thank you so much for sharing. Look forward to try some more recipes.5 stars

  29. Thank you very much for this recipe.
    Initially I wasn’t too sure of the outcome, but it was delicious!
    we were scraping the bottom of the pan!
    Thank you!

  30. Hi Dassana,

    I Tried this recipe yest night and it went very delicious with chapathi. Thanks to you for sharing new recipe on bhindi. Hope to see further simple recipes like this…..!4 stars

  31. I made this yesterday and it was very delicious ! So nice to find a new recipe for Okra other than my mothers dry version which is also yummy too. I will be making this again very soon.5 stars

  32. I tried making this yesterday and it came out really nice! I am surprised that more people have tried and reviewed the dry bhindi masala recipe, compared to this gravy one. It tasted great with basmati rice 🙂5 stars

    1. thanks sushant for sharing positive feedback in bhindi masala. since bhindi masala dry version was posted much earlier than the gravy version thats why more reviews for dry version. but both taste good.

  33. Loved this recipe my mom loves Okra so much that i keep trying new things with it.
    It is the best one i have found without cream, thank you so much.
    My mom loved it so did my dad who hates Okra though, yet he enjoyed it.5 stars

  34. Hi Dassana, i tried this receipe today. It came out very well. Thanks for sharing such tasty receipy.

  35. Oh my…. how did I miss this website so long. Just adorable. I am new to cooking and almost every day I get annoyed searching for tasty yet easy recipes… and your place is the best for it. Just great job….

  36. I’m a bachelor in city like Chennai and I got tired of eating Restaurant food for 6 long years, came across this website to try something new.

    Wow, I’m glad I found this simple recipe where I could make tasty food without breaking a sweat. Thank you very much for the lovely recipe.

    PS: You made me love this one, despite being a hardcore non-vegetarian.5 stars

    1. welcome antony. thanks for writing this positive feedback. glad to know that you liked the blog.

  37. This recipe was simply amazing. So simple to make and delicious. I can’t wait to substitute other veggies or tofu even. Love your website,

  38. Hi Dassana,

    Big fan of your website and recipes. I tried your vegan christmas rum cake twice recently and it was a huge hit both times.

    For this recipe, since am a vegan- is there any way to make this vegan? Any substitute for the yoghurt or I simply omit it and just add water instead when pulsing the tomatoes with the spices? I love bindi as well and would be thrilled if I can make it vegan and hopefully it tastes just as good 🙂

    Thanks!
    Vidhya

    1. welcome vidhya. thanks for sharing positive feedback. yes omit the yogurt. no need to add water while pulsing the tomatoes. because the juices of the tomatoes will be enough.

  39. I love bhendis, but they are quite expensive and not of good quality here (I live in a small city in Germany) . Could you suggest some other veggie as substitute? (though it might not be as tasty as bhendi)

    1. okay dhanya. the gravy recipe here is versatile and can go with veggies like cauliflower, peas, potatoes, carrots, beans. but just add some cream towards the end if using cauliflower or mix vegetables.

  40. Hey Dassana.. I have been following your recipes oflet and all of them turn out very well. Today I tried Bhindi Masala and that too is tasting yummy. Thanks for sharing.4 stars

        1. when i was in Malad, Mumbai there was a restaurant named Shridevi, we used to go there very often, there for the 1st time i tasted bhindi masala. Whenever i go there i order only bhindi masala. Later we shifted to Kerala since then i tried so many restaurants but failed to get that taste. Now yesterday i saw your site and tried your recipe, My God! the same taste and i am very happy. Thanks Dassana for sharing this recipe5 stars

        2. i remember sridevi restaurant. my office bus would have a pick up from here. its on sv road. even though at times i would get down here or take the bus, i have never been to this restaurant. thanks for the feedback and its a pleasant one. i think now i should have tasted bhindi masala from here 🙂

        3. Yes its in SV road Dassana, good to hear that u had seen that restaurant. I don’t know whether that same person will be there who cooked bhindi masala just like yours but you pls try and tell me.5 stars

        4. thanks anuradha for replying. i don’t stay there any longer. if i get the opportunity to go there again then i will surely try.

        5. i liked it very much. Really we can make it fast if we have a little time and our friends or relatives waiting for food .5 stars