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Aloo Keema (Ground Beef and Potato Curry)

Aloo KeemaOur one-pot, homestyle aloo keema is a made with ground beef and potatoes sautéed in tomato, onion, garlic, ginger, and warm spices. We serve ours with naan, roti, or Basmati Rice.

WHAT IS ALOO KEEMA?

Aloo Keema or Qeema is a traditional Pakistani and North Indian dish and a staple for most families, including ours. If you’re new to cooking Indian food, this recipe is a great place to start! Keema means minced or ground in English, and that’s exactly how we prepare the beef. Ground beef (keema) and potatoes (aloo) cook together for our easy-to-make aloo keema recipe; this simple yet mouthwatering meal is ready in less than an hour!

WHAT YOU NEED TO MAKE THIS RECIPE

  • Ghee: Ghee is a staple used to cook Indian and Pakistani cuisine, and it develops a deep, nutty flavor. I use ghee to fry the potatoes and flavor the dish.
  • Potato: I use small potatoes like red, Yukon gold, or fingerling to make this recipe, but diced russet potatoes works as well.
  • Onion: Onion cooks with ground beef, garlic, ginger tomato, and keema seasoning for maximum flavor.
  • Ginger: Ginger is my favorite ingredient; there’s something about the freshly minced ginger cooked alongside the beef. I also garnish with fresh ginger for textural variation and a bit of a kick.
  • Green Chilis: Slit lengthwise, green chilies add heat that doesn’t overwhelm.
  • Roma Tomato: Puree fresh tomatoes beforehand in a blender or food processor. In a pinch, add a 1/2 can of diced tomatoes. You can also chop the tomatoes and sweat them down over low heat; this results in a thicker gravy; however, the process may increase the cooking time.
  • Keema Masala: Season the meat with coriander powder, cumin powder, turmeric, Kashmiri chili powder, black pepper, kosher salt, and Garam Masala. Keema is one of those meals we make on the fly in our home, so I often replace the fresh spices with Laziza Keema Masala simply out of ease. You can find this spice mix at your local Indian market; some Asian markets may also carry it.
  • Ground Beef: We use ground beef, but you can replace it with chicken, lamb, or mutton. If you’re vegetarian, go ahead and use ground beyond meat.
  • Cilantro: Brightens and flavor the dish with fresh cilantro.

WHAT IS KEEMA MADE OUT OF?

Aloo Keema is a versatile meal with interchangeable ingredients, so get creative. Let’s start with the protein. Ground beef (beef keema) is the most popular meat option in Pakistan and North India. Other variations include ground chicken (chicken keema), ground goat (mutton keema), and ground lamb (lamb keema); you can also use ground turkey. The most common vegetable additions are potato (aloo keema) and peas (matar keema), or a combination of the two (aloo matar keema).

HOW TO MAKE ALOO KEEMA

Warm ghee in a heavy-bottomed pan and cook the potatoes until they turn golden brown for about 15 minutes. Set them aside.

In the same pan, fry onions, garlic, ginger, and chilies until the onions become translucent and soften for about 5 minutes.

Stir in the coriander powder, cumin powder, turmeric, Kashmiri chili powder, black pepper, kosher salt, and Garam Masala. Continue cooking for another minute.

Increase the heat and add the ground beef. Cook until brown and heated through for about 10 minutes.

Pour in the tomato puree and increase to high heat until the mixture comes to a boil. Then, reduce the heat and simmer for another 10 minutes.

Stir in the reserved potatoes and add cilantro.

Garnish with fresh ginger and serve with Basmati Rice, roti, or naan.

COOKING TIPS

  • If using lean ground beef, consider adding more ghee during the cooking process if the mixture looks dry. The desired texture for keema is a nice glaze, so a ton of liquid is not necessary. A teaspoon or two should be fine. If using fatty ground beef, you will likely need to drain some of the liquid as the mixture cooks down to achieve the desired consistency.
  • We rely heavily on a cooking technique called “bhunnai.” During this process, the beef cooks over high heat and fry alongside tomatoes and spices rather than adding water or yogurt. Gasp, I know! The result is highly concentrated and flavorful curried meat. Other recipes that use this cooking technique are Bhuna Gosht or Chicken Karahi.
  • Use a wok, heavy-bottomed pan, or karahi for cooking the ground beef; this will help regulate the high as the meal cooks.

SEARCHING FOR MORE LIKE THIS? 

If you love this recipe, try one of our other Indian-inspired meals!  

SERVING SUGGESTIONS 

WHAT TO DO WITH THE LEFTOVERS 

  • FRIDGE – Store leftovers in an airtight container; they will keep for 3-5 days.
  • FREEZER – Allow the dish to cool, then add it to a freezer-safe container or bag. Aloo keema will keep 2 months. When you’re ready to eat, defrost it in the fridge overnight.
  • REHEAT –  Warm leftovers on the stovetop and prepare your sides.

WHAT DISHES CAN BE MADE FROM KEEMA?

  • Add boiled or scrambled eggs to the leftovers and serve it with paratha and mango achar; this is a go-to breakfast or brunch in our family.
  • Make keema samosas by adding the keema mixture to an egg roll wrapper. Wrap it in a triangular shape and bake for 20 minutes, flipping halfway through.
  • Serve the keema on sandwich bread or in a tortilla for a quick lunch.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

How can I make keema vegetarian? Can I make it vegan?

This recipe isn’t traditionally vegetarian or vegan, but you can easily make it that way.

1. Follow the instructions using a meat substitute like Beyond Meat to make soya keema.
2. Make vegetable keema using cauliflower, broccoli, or a combination of the two. Pulse the vegetables in a food processor to give them a rice-like texture, similar to ground beef, and follow the recipe instructions, adjusting the cooking time for the vegetables.

To make this recipe vegan, replace the ghee; I recommend using grapeseed oil.

Can I make aloo keema in the Instant Pot?

1. Warm ghee in an Instant Pot on saute mode.
2. Add potatoes and cook until they become golden brown for about 15 minutes. Set them aside.
3. The the same Instant Pot, fry the onions, garlic, ginger, and chilies until the onions become translucent and soften for about 8 minutes.
4. Stir in the coriander powder, cumin powder, turmeric, Kashmiri chili powder, black pepper, kosher salt, and Garam Masala. Continue cooking for another minute.
5. Add the ground beef, breaking it up with a meat chopper until finely minced. Cook until brown and heated through for about 10 minutes.
6. Pour in the tomato puree and give it a quick stir. Secure the lid, and set the Instant Pot to manual low pressure for 8 minutes, then release the pressure.
7. Stir in the reserved potatoes and cilantro.
8. Garnish with ginger and serve with naan, roti, or Basmati Rice.

Can I make this recipe in a slow cooker or Crockpot?

1. Combine the ingredients in a Crockpot.
2. Set the Crockpot on low, and let it cook for 6 hours. 
3. Garnish with ginger and serve it with naan, roti, or Basmati Rice.

How to get rid of the Keema smell?

Use lean ground beef, which has less smell than beef with higher fat content. Don’t skip cooking the keema over medium-high heat and stirring until the water that naturally releases from the ground beef and onions completely evaporates. This process is called bhun, and not only does it remove the smell, but it also deeply flavors the ground beef.

YOU SHOULD ALSO TRY:

A serving dish of aloo keema garnished with cilantro and ginger.

Aloo Keema (Ground Beef and Potato Curry)

Tressa Jamil
Our authentic, one-pot aloo keema is a delicious combination of seasoned ground meat and potatoes sautéed in tomato, onion, garlic, ginger and warm spices.
5 from 5 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian, Pakistani
Servings 6 Servings
Calories 331 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • ½ tablespoon ghee
  • 3-4 small red or yukon gold potatoes, ¼- inch cubes
  • ½ medium yellow onion, finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2- inch ginger, peeled and finely minced, plus thin batons to garnish
  • 1-2 Thai green chilies, slit lengthwise
  • 2 medium Roma tomatoes, pureed
  • 2 teaspoons coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon Kashmiri chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper, coarse ground
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 pound ground beef, finely minced
  • ½ cup cilantro, chopped, plus more to garnish

Instructions
 

  • Warm ghee in a heavy-bottomed pan over medium heat. Then, add potatoes and cook until they turn golden brown for about 15 minutes. Set them aside.
  • In the same pan, fry onions, garlic, ginger, and chilies until the onions become translucent and soften for about 5 minutes.
  • Stir in the coriander powder, cumin powder, turmeric, Kashmiri chili powder, black pepper, kosher salt, and Garam Masala. Continue cooking for another minute.
  • Increase the heat and add the ground beef, breaking it up with a meat chopper until finely minced. Cook until brown and heated through for about 10 minutes.
  • Pour in the tomato puree and increase to high heat until the mixture comes to a boil. Then, reduce the heat and simmer for another 10 minutes.
  • Stir in the reserved potatoes and add cilantro.
  • Garnish with fresh ginger and serve with naan, roti, or Basmati Rice.

Notes

Cooking Tips: 
  • If using lean ground beef, consider adding more ghee during the cooking process if the mixture looks dry. The desired texture for keema is a nice glaze, so a ton of liquid is not needed. A teaspoon or two should be fine. Oppositely, if using high-fat ground beef, you will likely need to drain off some of the liquid as the mixture cooks down to achieve the desired consistency.
  • We rely heavily on a cooking technique called “bhunnai.” During this process, the beef cooks down in its own juices over high heat, then fry’s alongside tomatoes and spices, rather than adding water. Gasp, I know! The result is highly concentrated and flavorful curried meat. For other recipes that use this technique, check out our Bhuna Gosht or Chicken Karahi.
 
Nutrition Disclosure:
  • The nutritional information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for professional advice.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 servingCalories: 331kcalCarbohydrates: 21gProtein: 24gFat: 13gSodium: 210mgFiber: 3gSugar: 2g
Keyword aloo keema, aloo keema recipe
Did you make this recipe? Let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and follow @thejamilghar or tag #thejamilghar on Instagram!
Recipe Rating




Roma

Saturday 4th of June 2022

Love keema matter aloo. This is a fantastic recipe.

Tressa Jamil

Tuesday 7th of June 2022

Yes, keema matar is amazing also.

Bianca

Friday 3rd of June 2022

This is pure comfort food! Absolutely loved it.

Tressa Jamil

Friday 3rd of June 2022

It's one of those meals that make you feel at home, for sure.

Giangi

Tuesday 31st of May 2022

Thank you for the very easy instructions to follow. We all loved this dish and my family wanted more.

Tressa Jamil

Friday 3rd of June 2022

Keema is one of our family's go-to meals; I am glad they enjoyed it.

Olga Veiga Gonzalez

Monday 30th of May 2022

Seems delicious and easy to make! I will try this for sure

Tressa Jamil

Friday 3rd of June 2022

Be sure to let us know what you think when you've made it!

fede

Monday 30th of May 2022

I and my family were looking for a good Indian recipe and we decided to make this one. It was so good and super easy to follow. We will make it again!

Tressa Jamil

Friday 3rd of June 2022

I hope it becomes a family favorite for you like it is in our home.