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    Cauliflower Peas Masala (Gobi Matar)

    I am thinking to kick off 2020 with a dish that everyone can eat and enjoy. This is a wholesome, meatless meal that’s completely plant-based, so my vegetarian and vegan friends will want to make it again and again. Gobi Matar, AKA Cauliflower Peas Masala! This dish has been a staple in my life, and now I’m excited to share my easy version with you. It’s a recipe close to my heart, and I hope it becomes a favorite in your kitchen too!

    These cauliflower florets and peas are coated with a delicious masala, or sauce, of onions, tomatoes and other great Indian stuff you can scrounge up in your pantry. Get ready to whip up one of the most popular vegetable entrées from your favorite Indian restaurant!!

    cauliflower peas masala, or gobi matar, in a bowl

    If you ask me, it’s very easy to be vegetarian or vegan in India. We make the most boring vegetables interesting with the mind boggling flavors from our herbs and spices. With every single bite, be it with rotis, naan or some rice and dal, you wouldn’t even miss your meat. There are lots and lots of easy vegetarian meals coming your way this year, just stay tuned and subscribe to GypsyPlate.

    What is Gobi Matar?

    side view of our gobi matar in a metal bowl

    Gobi Matar is a popular vegetarian dish in Indian cuisine that features cauliflower (Gobi) and green peas (Matar) as the main ingredients.

    I simply love these tender cauliflower florets that soak up the dry masala, made in a few very easy steps, sprinkled with the sweetness of peas.

    This is a popular north Indian dish, which uses some basic Indian spices. You can make it dry or saucier, and anywhere from mild to medium to spicy, according to your taste. However you customize it, you will love the tangy sweet sauce created from your onion and tomato base. Eating sauteéd vegetables like these is an everyday affair in any Indian household.

    close up picture of cauliflower peas masala

    Ingredients Needed

    all of our ingredients arranged on a cutting board
    • Cauliflower – I wash and cut into medium sized florets.
    • Peas – Fresh if you can find any. That’s how we eat in India, everything fresh, but frozen works as well.
    • Onion – You need plenty to make the base of the sauce. When it caramelizes, it gives sweet notes to your masala.
    • Tomatoes – For tanginess.
    • Garlic – Lots of it!
    • Ginger – That goes hand in hand with garlic in every Indian dish.
    • Turmeric – Good for you.
    • Red chili powder – Try to find Kashmiri red chili powder, but in a pinch replace it with paprika.
    • Coriander powder – My favorite Indian spice.
    • Green chilies – Either serranos or jalepenõs. Optional, depending on if you like a little heat.
    • Cumin seeds (jeera) – I love cumin seeds in Indian dishes.
    • Whole garam masala spices – Cloves, whole black pepper and a few small cinnamon sticks. You don’t eat them but they add lots of flavor.
    • Cilantro – For garnish,.
    indian spice box

    Gobi Matar Recipe

    You will need one head of cauliflower. I like my florets a little chunkier, so they aren’t just mush after cooking. Cut, wash and set aside.

    chopped cauliflower with peas

    I finely chop onions and tomatoes and chop a green serrano chili, which is optional depending on how spicy you like it. I make a rough paste of garlic and ginger. I use plenty of these two to get that Indian flavor going. I like my mortar and pestle to make this rough paste.

    garlic and ginger crushed in mortar and pestle

    I heat oil in a pan over medium heat, and when it’s hot, I add a few whole black peppercorns, cloves, and small chunks of cinnamon, along with a few cumin seeds (jeera). I sauté these spices for a few seconds just to release the aromas and flavors from the whole spices.

    Remember, we don’t eat these spices, except for the cumin seeds. You might choose to remove them before serving your guests.

    masala cooking in a pot

    I add the chopped onions to the pan and sauté them until they turn golden brown. Then I add the tomatoes, green chilies, and salt to taste. Next, I stir in the spice powders: turmeric, red chili powder, and coriander powder.

    I cook everything for a few minutes, then add the ginger and garlic paste. I keep stirring until everything is well combined and the mixture turns into a nice sauce. I continue cooking until the tomatoes break down and the oil starts to separate a bit from the mixture. This whole process should take no more than 10 minutes.

    the masala is now ready, time to add the veggies

    Now it’s time to add those cauliflower florets and stir well. I turn the stove to medium-low, cover the pan, and let it cook for about 5 minutes. If I notice the mixture starts sticking to the bottom of the pan, I add about ½ cup of water to keep everything moist and prevent burning.

    raw cauliflower in a pot of masala

    When the cauliflower starts getting tender, I add the frozen peas. If I’m using fresh peas, I add them a bit earlier since they need more time to cook.

    now the peas have been added

    And that’s it. When your vegetables are cooked, garnish with chopped cilantro and serve it up.

    the finished product in the pot garnished with cilantro

    Some people like it saucier, and that’s easy achieved by adding more water. I like my cauliflower peas dry, where the sauce is nicely coating all the vegetables.

    Alpana’s Tips

    1. Prep ahead: I start by cutting the cauliflower into even-sized florets and washing them thoroughly. I also chop the onions, tomatoes, and green chili, and make a rough paste of the ginger and garlic. Once everything is ready, then its easier to cook Indian food.

    2. Make the Masala well: I add the chopped onions and cook them until golden brown, then follow with the tomatoes and spices. I cook these until they start breaking down a bit and oil starts to septette from the mixture.

    3. Cooking the cauliflower: After adding cauliflower, I check every few minutes to stir and make sure nothing sticks to the bottom. If it looks dry, I add about ½ cup of water to prevent burning, but I keep it minimal to avoid making the dish too watery.

    4. Season well: I add salt, Kashmiri red chili powder (or paprika), turmeric, and coriander powder. I make sure to mix everything well so the spices evenly coat the vegetables. Kashmiri red chili powder is not spicy, if you want it spicer, add serrano pepper or hotter variety of Indian chili powder.

    5. Timing the peas: When the cauliflower is nearly tender, that’s when I add the peas. If they’re fresh, they might need a bit longer to cook, so I add them little earlier.

    Serving Suggestions

    a heaping portion of this gobi matar in a metal bowl
    1. Grab some naan bread, pitas or wraps from the grocery store and wrap it up. Stay tuned to GypsyPlate, I just might teach you how to cook your very own homemade rotis one of these days!
    2. I love white or brown rice, or or even any of your favorite grains or pearled couscous with this curry. Then top with a heap of these vegetables and my Tomato Cucumber Raita… yum!
    3. Going low carb? No problem! I recommend serving it up over over cauliflower rice… yup, cauliflower over cauliflower… or even just on its own. You can  polish it off just like that.

    Just writing all this makes me want to make it again. Try it, my friends, this New Year and I bet you are gonna get hooked to the Indian style of eating veggies. There is a whole new world of flavors waiting for you!!

    Cauliflower Peas Masala (Gobi Matar), on our Gypsy Plate… Enjoy!!!

    cauliflower peas masala on the gypsy plate with rotis

    Make it an Indian feast with some of my other specialties
    Alpana’s Chicken Masala
    Tomato Cucumber Raita
    Chicken Tikkas
    Cilantro Mint Chutney
    Aloo Palak
    Vindaloo Paste
    Pork Vindaloo

    Gobi matar.

    Cauliflower Peas Masala (Gobi Matar)

    Yield: 4 servings
    Prep Time: 15 minutes
    Cook Time: 30 minutes
    Total Time: 45 minutes

    My Cauliflower Peas Masala, or Gobi Matar, is a classic example of homestyle Indian vegetables. Simple, tasty and healthy. Try this dish and experience the flavors of an everyday Indian household!


    • 1 medium sized cauliflower
    • 1.5 cups peas, fresh or frozen
    • 3 Tbsp cooking oil
    • 3 medium onions
    • 3 medium tomatoes
    • 7-8 garlic cloves
    • 1 inch ginger
    • 3-4 cloves
    • 5-6 whole peppercorns
    • 1-2 small cinnamon sticks
    • ½ tsp cumin seeds
    • 1 jalapeno or serrano (optional)
    • ¼ tsp turmeric powder
    • 1 tsp Kashmiri red chili powder or paprika
    • 2 tsp coriander powder
    • Salt, to taste
    • 2 Tbsp cilantro, to garnish


    1. Cut the cauliflower into florets and wash .Chop onions, tomatoes and green chili. Make a rough paste of ginger and garlic.
    2. Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat and add whole spices like cloves, peppercorns and cinnamon, along with cumin seeds and sauté for a few seconds. When the aromas starts coming out of spices, add chopped onions and sauté until golden brown. Add tomatoes and sauté for few minutes. Add salt to taste, along with Kashimri red chili powder (or paprika), turmeric powder and coriander powder. Mix well. Stir in ginger garlic paste and sauté until you get nice homogenous mixture. Continue stirring until you see the oil separating from this mixture.
    3. Add the cauliflower florets and cook covered, checking every few minutes. Make sure it doesn't burn on the bottom. To avoid burning, you can add some water. I like minimum water, about ½ cup just to avoid burning. Some prefer a saucier vegetable. In that case you can add more water.
    4. When cauliflower is getting tender, add peas and cook until they are cooked to your desired tenderness.
    5. Garnish with cilantro and serve it with rotis, naan bread or rice. Goes great with my Tomato Cucumber Raita!
    Nutrition Information
    Yield 4 Serving Size 1
    Amount Per Serving Calories 232Total Fat 12gSaturated Fat 1gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 10gCholesterol 0mgSodium 196mgCarbohydrates 28gFiber 10gSugar 13gProtein 8g

    Nutrition information calculated by Nutritionix.

    Did you make this recipe?

    Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest

    Picture of Alpana, blogger and recipe developer at GypsyPlate

    Welcome to GypsyPlate! I'm Alpana, former wordwide tour manager and professional caterer, now full time blogger. I love exploring cuisines from around the world, and my recipes have been featured on sites such as MSN, Parade, Brit + Co, CNET and AOL. You can explore my entire collection of sortable recipes in my Recipe Index or learn more about me here.

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