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Indian Okra Curry

Okra Masala {Stovetop + Instant Pot}

Stir-fried okra masala lightly tossed in Indian spices and cooked till perfection. A tasty side for an elaborate Indian meal or any dinner.
5 from 12 votes
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Course: curry, Side Dish, sides
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: 30-minute vegan dinner, Mealthy nonstick pan, Okra curry, okra masala
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 4
Calories: 121kcal
Author: Sophie
Cost: $5


  • Mealthy Nonstick Pan


  • 3 teaspoon Cooking oil (Divided)
  • 3 cups Chopped Okra (500 grams or approximately a pound)
  • 3-4 Green chillies (chopped or slit)
  • 1 Medium Red Onion (sliced)
  • 4 Garlic pods (chopped or sliced)
  • 1 Medium Tomato (Diced and seeds removed)


  • ½ teaspoon Turmeric Powder
  • 2 teaspoon Coriander Powder
  • ¼ teaspoon Red Chili Powder (Optional)
  • ½ teaspoon Dried mango powder (Amchur)


  • 1 teaspoon Cumin seeds


  • Lime juice and cilantro

Other Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon Indian Curry Paste (Optional)
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tablespoon roasted chickpea flour (instant pot method only)


Clean and Cut Okras:

  • Select the best okra pods for this step. Clean them thoroughly under the running water and pat they dry until they are dry to touch.
  • You can also leave them on a paper towel till the last droplet on these beautiful, green pod dries out. (It is important to dry your okra pods thoroughly before cooking)Using a clean knife, cut the tips and the bottom of the okras. We don't need these in our Indian okra curry. After cutting a few pods, just wipe clean the knife before cutting a few more.

Chop Other Veggies:

  • We need a medium-sized red onion(not white or yellow) for this recipe. Peel and slice the onion, and set aside. Chop or slice a few garlic pods and green chilies too.
  • Proceed to the next step.

Making Okra Masala:

  • Start by heating the Mealthy frying pan or any pan of your choice. Add 2 teaspoon of oil and add the okras. Give them a good toss and cook them for at least 5-8 minutes under low to medium heat until the pods are 80% cooked.
  • At this point, the okra pieces will have light brown spots on them and yet holding their shape perfectly. At the end of this process, okras will have very minimal to no slime in them. Transfer the sauteed okra pieces to a bowl and reheat the remaining 1 teaspoon oil. To the oil, add cumin seeds and allow the seeds to lightly pop in the hot oil.

Add Other Veggies:

  • Now add garlic and green chilies, and stir continuously till the garlic strands are light brown. Add onion slices and give a good stir. Allow the onions to soften (takes about five minutes) and then add all spices mentioned, followed by salt and mix well. At this point, you may add a tablespoon of pre-cooked Indian curry paste (recipe here) or just proceed to the next step.
  • Add chopped, deseeded tomatoes and cook for about a minute. (Tomatoes still intact and in their shape)Now add the sauteed okras and mix well. Cover and cook for about 5-minutes and allow the juice from the veggies dry out a little before turning the heat off.
  • Add garam masala and cilantro, and some lime juice if needed.
  • Serve with Indian rotis and rice.

Instant Pot Method

  • Set the IP to a saute mode and heat 2 teaspoon of oil.
    Pressure cooking in instant pot
  • Temper cumin seeds, add garlic and onions.
  • Now add okra and cook for a minute till okras start to brown a little.
  • Add spices, tomatoes, and salt and mix well.
  • Allow it to cook for a minute and turn the cooking mode to pressure cook.
  • Close the lid, seal the vent, and set the pressure cooking time for a minute in low pressure. The pressure will build with the liquid released from okra and tomatoes.
  • After the cooking time, QPR immediately and open the lid.
  • If you see some liquid, press the saute button again and cook till the water dries out. Always stir the veggies gently at this point.
  • Add garam masala and cilantro, and lime juice if needed.
  • Gently stir the okras and turn off the instant pot saute mode.
  • Keep the IP open for five minutes and then serve the okra masala. [In the Instant Pot Method, you can also add a tablespoon of roasted gram flour or chickpea flour and ½ teaspoon of more dry mango powder if the okras feel little sticky after cooking.]
  • Enjoy with roti, rice or naan.
    Easy Indian Okra curry


  • Okras do change color when cooked in the spices. If your okras look brownish-green, then it's normal.
  • You may not cover and cook okras after adding to the pan. It's a personal choice. 
  • Store this curry in an air-tight container for 3-days in the refrigerator.
  • In the Instant Pot Method, you can also add a teaspoon of roasted gram flour or chickpea flour and ½ teaspoon of more dry mango powder if the okras feel little sticky after cooking.


Calories: 121kcal | Carbohydrates: 12g | Protein: 2g | Sodium: 450mg | Potassium: 419mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 2g