Aloo Poshto Recipe - Vegetarian Food from India

Aloo poshto

Aloo Poshto Recipe - Vegetarian Food from India
Region / culture: India | Preparation time: 15 minutes | Cooking time: 25 minutes | Servings: 4 | Vegetarian diet


Aloo poshto
Aloo poshto

Aloo Poshto is a classic dish hailing from the rich culinary traditions of Bengal, India. This dish beautifully marries the earthy flavors of potatoes with the nutty essence of poppy seeds, creating a unique and comforting meal. Aloo Poshto is not just a testament to the simplicity of Bengali cuisine but also highlights the region's love for incorporating poppy seeds into their dishes. This recipe is a perfect example of how a few simple ingredients can be transformed into a delightful and hearty dish.


The history of Aloo Poshto dates back to the early 19th century in Bengal, where poppy seeds, known as 'Posto' in Bengali, were extensively cultivated and used in various culinary preparations. Poppy seeds were not only valued for their culinary uses but also for their medicinal properties. Aloo Poshto emerged as a popular dish among the Bengali households for its simplicity, flavor, and the comforting feeling it provided. Over the years, it has become a staple in Bengali cuisine, cherished by generations.


How to prepare

  1. 1. Fry the potatoes in a separate pan and set them aside.
  2. 2. Sauté the poppy seeds over medium heat, then grind them with green chillies.
  3. 3. Heat oil in a deep pan (preferably nonstick) and add the mustard and cumin seeds.
  4. 4. Next, add the ground poppy seed mixture and fry until golden brown.
  5. 5. Stir in the turmeric and chilli powder. Fry with the lid closed over medium heat.
  6. 6. Add the fried potatoes and cook for 5 minutes. Then, add water and salt. Heat until the water completely evaporates.


  • 1. Aloo Poshto with Vegetables: Add vegetables like peas, carrots, or beans for a more nutritious version.
  • 2. Aloo Poshto with Paneer: Include cubes of paneer (Indian cottage cheese) for a protein-packed variant.
  • 3. Aloo Poshto without Onion and Garlic: For a sattvic (pure) version of the dish, omit onion and garlic, focusing on the flavors of poppy seeds and potatoes.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

1. Soaking the poppy seeds in warm water for at least an hour before grinding helps in achieving a smoother paste.

2. Using mustard oil for cooking Aloo Poshto adds an authentic flavor to the dish. However, it can be strong for some palates, so adjust according to taste.

3. Fry the potatoes to a golden brown to add a slight crunch and enhance the texture of the dish.

4. The consistency of the poppy seed paste can greatly influence the dish's final taste. A fine paste is preferable for a creamier texture.

5. Adding a little sugar can balance the flavors, especially if the green chillies make the dish too hot.

Serving Suggestions

Aloo Poshto is traditionally served with steamed rice or rotis (Indian flatbread). It can also be enjoyed with a side of dal (lentil soup) for a protein-rich meal.

Cooking Techniques

The key technique in making Aloo Poshto is preparing the poppy seed paste. Soaking the seeds and grinding them into a fine paste is crucial for the dish's texture and flavor. The cooking process involves tempering spices, frying the potatoes, and then cooking everything together until the flavors meld beautifully.

Ingredient Substitutions

1. Mustard Oil: If mustard oil is too strong, use vegetable oil or ghee for a milder flavor.

2. Poppy Seeds: In regions where poppy seeds are not available, ground cashews or sesame seeds can be used as a substitute, though the taste will differ.

3. Green Chillies: Adjust the quantity or omit them for a less spicy version.

Make Ahead Tips

Aloo Poshto can be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. The flavors tend to meld and enhance over time, making it even more delicious when reheated.

Presentation Ideas

Serve Aloo Poshto in a traditional clay pot or a colorful ceramic bowl to enhance its rustic appeal. Garnish with fresh coriander leaves or fried green chillies for an added touch of color and flavor.

Pairing Recommendations

Aloo Poshto pairs well with plain rice, pulao, or roti. It can also be served alongside other Bengali dishes like Shorshe Ilish (mustard hilsa fish) or Cholar Dal (Bengal gram dal) for a complete meal.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store Aloo Poshto in an airtight container in the refrigerator. To reheat, use a microwave or heat it on the stove with a little water to prevent it from drying out. Stir well before serving.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

A serving of Aloo Poshto contains approximately 300-400 calories, depending on the amount of oil used in cooking. The majority of the calories come from fats and carbohydrates.


A serving of Aloo Poshto primarily provides carbohydrates, primarily from the potatoes. A medium-sized potato contains about 37 grams of carbohydrates, which are a primary source of energy for the body.


The fats in Aloo Poshto come from the poppy seeds and the cooking oil used. Poppy seeds are a good source of healthy fats, including omega-6 fatty acids. Mustard oil, traditionally used in this recipe, is rich in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which are beneficial for heart health.


Poppy seeds are a decent source of plant-based proteins. A 100-gram serving of poppy seeds provides about 18 grams of protein. However, Aloo Poshto is relatively low in proteins, so pairing it with a protein-rich dish is advisable for a balanced meal.

Vitamins and minerals

Poppy seeds are rich in minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and iron, which are essential for bone health and blood formation. Potatoes contribute vitamins, including Vitamin C and B6, which are crucial for immune function and metabolism.


Aloo Poshto is free from common allergens like gluten, nuts, and dairy. However, those with specific allergies to seeds should consume poppy seeds cautiously.


Aloo Poshto is a nutritious dish that provides a good balance of carbohydrates and healthy fats. It is also a source of essential vitamins and minerals, making it a wholesome addition to any meal. However, for a more balanced diet, it should be paired with protein-rich foods.


Aloo Poshto is a beloved Bengali dish that showcases the simplicity and depth of flavors achievable with minimal ingredients. This recipe not only offers a comforting meal but also provides nutritional benefits, making it a worthy addition to your culinary repertoire. Whether you're a fan of Bengali cuisine or looking to try something new, Aloo Poshto is sure to impress with its unique taste and texture.

How did I get this recipe?

The memory of discovering this recipe for the first time is a happy memory that I hold dear to my heart. It was many years ago, when I was just a young girl, eager to learn the art of cooking from my mother and grandmothers. We lived in a small village in India, where the smell of spices filled the air and the sound of sizzling pans could be heard from every kitchen.

One day, I was helping my grandmother in the kitchen as she prepared lunch for our family. She was a masterful cook, and I watched in awe as she deftly chopped vegetables, measured out spices, and stirred pots bubbling with delicious curries. As she worked, she told me stories of how she had learned to cook from her own mother, and how she had passed down her knowledge to me.

On that particular day, as she was making aloo poshto, a traditional Bengali dish of potatoes cooked with poppy seeds, I asked her how she had learned to make it. She smiled and told me the story of how she had discovered the recipe for the first time.

"It was many years ago, when I was just a young bride," she began. "I had moved to a new village with your grandfather, and I was eager to impress him with my cooking. One day, our neighbor, Mrs. Chatterjee, invited us over for dinner. She served us aloo poshto, and it was the most delicious thing I had ever tasted."

Mrs. Chatterjee had graciously shared her recipe with my grandmother, who had then made it for our family. It had become a favorite in our household, and my grandmother had perfected the dish over the years, adding her own special touch to it.

As she shared the story with me, my grandmother taught me how to make aloo poshto from scratch. She showed me how to grind the poppy seeds into a fine paste, how to cook the potatoes until they were tender, and how to season the dish with just the right amount of spices. I watched and listened carefully, eager to learn as much as I could.

After that day, aloo poshto became a regular fixture on our dining table. My grandmother would often make it for special occasions, or simply to enjoy with a bowl of steaming rice. And every time she made it, she would share the story of how she had learned the recipe with me, passing down not just the dish itself, but also the memories and traditions that came with it.

Over the years, I have made aloo poshto countless times, each time recalling that happy memory of learning the recipe from my grandmother. I have shared it with friends and family, who have all marveled at the unique combination of flavors and textures in the dish. And I have added my own twist to the recipe, experimenting with different spices and ingredients to create a version that is truly my own.

As I look back on that day in the kitchen with my grandmother, I am filled with gratitude for the knowledge and love that she passed down to me. Cooking has always been a passion of mine, and I am grateful for the opportunity to carry on the traditions of my family through the food that I prepare.

So, the next time you find yourself in the kitchen, preparing a meal for your loved ones, remember the stories and memories that come with each recipe. Whether it's aloo poshto or any other dish, cherish the moments spent learning and cooking with those who came before you. And above all, savor the flavors of tradition and love that make each meal special.


| Bengali Recipes | Bengali Vegetarian | Indian Recipes |

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