Cauliflower Tikka Masala

Cauliflower, chickpeas and peas make this vegetarian dish a hearty one-pot meal. By using sour cream or yogurt instead of the traditional cream you get a lighter, brighter dish.
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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 55 min (includes marinating time)
  • Active: 25 min
  • Yield: 6 servings
  • Nutrition Info
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1/2 cup sour cream or plain Greek yogurt

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 tablespoon mild or hot curry powder

1 1/2 teaspoons sweet paprika

Kosher salt

1 head cauliflower, broken into florets (about 4 cups)

3 cloves garlic, roughly chopped

One 1/2-inch piece fresh ginger, roughly chopped

1 small yellow onion, roughly chopped

2 teaspoons garam masala

One 28-ounce can no-salt-added tomato puree

One 14-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

1 cup frozen peas, thawed

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for garnish

6 cups cooked brown rice, for serving

Lemon wedges, for serving


  1. Whisk together 2 tablespoons of the sour cream, 1 tablespoon of the oil, 1 tablespoon water, 1 1/2 teaspoons of the curry powder, 1/2 teaspoon of the paprika and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl. Add the cauliflower and toss to evenly coat. Cover the bowl and marinate for 30 minutes at room temperature.
  2. Meanwhile, pulse the garlic, ginger, onion and 2 tablespoons water in a food processor until smooth. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in a 6-quart Dutch oven or large heavy pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion mixture, garam masala, the remaining 2 1/2 teaspoons curry powder, and the remaining 1 teaspoon paprika. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture starts to stick and brown on the bottom of the pan, about 4 minutes. Add the tomato puree, 1 cup water, the chickpeas and 2 teaspoons salt. Cover partially with a lid and simmer gently until the sauce is slightly reduced and the onion mixture is soft, 10 to 15 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, preheat the broiler with a rack positioned about 4 inches from the heat source. Line a baking sheet with foil. Arrange the cauliflower in a single layer and broil, tossing halfway through, until the cauliflower is browned and just cooked through, 8 to 10 minutes.
  4. Stir the cauliflower and peas into the sauce and return to a simmer, then remove from heat. Stir in the remaining 6 tablespoons sour cream, the butter and cilantro. Serve the tikka masala in bowls with brown rice and lemon wedges. Garnish with cilantro.
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