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August 18, 2020

Instant Pot Cauliflower Tikka Masala

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A Lily Love Affair shares a cauliflower tikka masala recipe made in the Instant Pot. Served over basmati rice

Instant Pot Cauliflower Tikka Masala is a family loved vegetarian or vegan recipe packed full of so much flavor!  It’s a must try! This easy dinner recipe is quick and will have your family running to the table!

 

If you love Indian inspired food with a good tikka masala curry sauce this Cauliflower Tikka Masala recipe is for you. 

My husband absolutely loves Indian food and has been asking for me to make a dish for the last few weeks.  I love spicy food, but have yet to try an Indian dish.  I was so amazed by the amount of flavor was packed with each spoonful! It’s absolutely delicious!

This comfort food vegan dish has to be one of my new favorite dishes served up in the Instant Pot!

Like a lot of the other pressure cookder recipes we try to make for you all, this cauliflower tikka masala is incredibly versatile.  For example, if you’re not interested in making the dish with cauliflower, it is also so delicious with chicken.  

Similarly, if you love your veggies, I think this dish would also be simply delicious with the addition of carrots, more crushed tomatoes, bell pepper, peas and more. As a side note, I am also not normally a big fan of cauliflower, but this recipe made me a fan! You can hardly even tell it’s there!  Try it and let me know what you think! 

Now, let’s get to the good stuff – the details on how to make this low carb, crowd pleasing Cauliflower Tikka Masala!

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______ OUR FAVORITE INSTANT POT ACCESSORIES ______

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A Lily Love Affair shares a cauliflower tikka masala recipe made in the Instant Pot. Served over basmati rice

A Lily Love Affair shares a cauliflower tikka masala recipe made in the Instant Pot. Served over basmati rice

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TIPS FOR MAKING CAULIFLOWER TIKKA MASALA 

This vegan tikka masala is already packed with an incredible amount of flavor.  However, if you want it to have just a tad bit more of a kick, add one additional tablespoon of chili powder or smoked paprika.  

Because this was my first time making an Indian inspired dish at home, Shawn and I stopped by our local Spices Bazaar for some authentic seasonings.  It’s not a requirement, but I wanted the ingredients to be as fresh and authentic as possible. And, I’ll say it again, this Cauliflower Tikka Masala has so much flavor! 

As noted above, this recipe is really versatile, as well.  If you prefer to mix this recipe up, feel free to replace the cauliflower with chicken instead.  Want to add a bit of added fiber.  Throw in some chickpeas, too!  

It’s also worth noting we made this cauliflower tikka masala as more of a vegan and/or vegetarian recipe.  However, if you’d prefer you can substitute the ingredients below with heavy cream, cocnut milk, cocnut cream or even sour cream, if needed.  

In order to ensure you do not get the burn notice, you will want to make certain your onions, garlic and/or seasonings are not sticking to the bottom of the pressure cooker.  As mentioned below, when adding the initial ingredients, be sure to add a bit of water or vegetable broth when you add the spices and stir regularly.  

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WOW!  This Instant Pot Cauliflower Tikka Masala recipe is packed full of so much flavor!  It's a must try! This recipe is so quick, easy, vegan friendly and will have your family running to the table! It's the best cauliflower tikka masala we have ever had!

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HOW TO SERVE CAULIFLOWER TIKKA MASALA

There are a number of great ways to serve your tikka masala, but there are just a few of our favorites: 

  • Cauliflower rice 
  • Basmati Rice 
  • Naan 
  • Lettuce wraps 
  • Tofu 
  • Top with roasted cashews

 

INGREDIENTS FOR CAULIFLOWER TIKKA MASALA 

  • 1 head of cauliflower, cut into 1-2 inch pieces 
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil (you can also use avocado oil)
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon garlic minced
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala 
  • 2 teaspoons ginger
  • 1 tablespoon dried fenugreek leaves 
  • 1/2 teaspoon tumeric 
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice 
  • 1 teaspoon ground chili (add an additional 1/2 teaspoon if you want it to have a bit more of a kick – we chose to do so)
  • 1/4 tablespoon ground cumin 
  • 1 28-ounce can dices tomatoes, not drained 
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup 
  • 1/3 cup water or vegetable broth 
  • 1/2 cup cashew cream or vegan/plant based yogurt**
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Serve with: rice, tofu, or naan
  • Top with cilantro, parsley or red pepper flakes (optional)

** It’s also worth noting we made this cauliflower tikka masala as more of a vegan and/or vegetarian recipe.  However, if you’d prefer you can substitute the ingredients below with heavy cream, coconut milk, coconut cream or even sour cream, if needed.  

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A Lily Love Affair shares a cauliflower tikka masala recipe made in the Instant Pot. Served over basmati rice

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HOW TO MAKE INSTANT POT CAULIFLOWER TIKKA MASALA 

  1. Turn the Instant Pot on and select the ‘Saute’ mode on high.  
  2. Add oil, onions, garlic and ginger.  Saute until onions are soft and slightly caramelized, about 3 minutes.  
  3. Add in garam masala, tumeric, cumin, dried fenugreek leaves and 1/3 cup of water or vegetable broth and saute for an additional 2 minutes.  Be sure to stir regularly to ensure spices do not stick to the bottom of the pan. 
  4. Add maple syrup, diced tomatoes and stir to combine all ingredients.  
  5. Add cauliflower florets. 
  6. Secure the lip on your Instant Pot and close the vent to ‘Sealing’.  
  7. Select the ‘Pressure Cook’ or ‘Manual’ function high and set timer to 3 minutes. NOTE: You will want to add an additional minute or two if your caluiflower pieces are larger.  
  8. Once the timer has beeped, allow Instant Pot to sit for 1 minute then quick release all remaining pressure.
  9. Stir in cashew cream and stir to fully combine all ingredients.  
  10. Serve with rice, tofu or naan and enjoy!!  You can also top with roasted cashews!

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A Lily Love Affair shares a cauliflower tikka masala recipe made in the Instant Pot. Served over basmati rice

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LOOKING FOR OTHER DELICIOUS CAULIFLOWER RECIPES?  HERE ARE JUST A FEW OF OUR FAVORITES: 

 

OTHER EASY DINNER RECIPES WE LOVE: 

 

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Instant Pot Cauliflower Tikka Masala

5 from 1 vote
SERVES/MAKES: 6 people
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 head cauliflower, cut into 1-2 inch pieces
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (you can also use avocado oil)
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon garlic minced
  • 2 teaspoons ginger
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala
  • 1 tablespoon dried fenugreek leaves 
  • 1/2 teaspoon tumeric
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground chili (add an additional 1/2 teaspoon if you want it to have a bit more of a kick - we chose to do so)
  • 1/4 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 28-ounce can dices tomatoes, not drained
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup 
  • 1/3 cup water or vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup cashew cream or vegan/plant based yogurt**
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Serve with: rice, tofu, or naan
  • Top with cilantro, parsley or red pepper flakes (optional)

Instructions:

  • Turn the Instant Pot on and select the 'Saute' mode on high.  
  • Add oil, onions, garlic and ginger.  Saute until onions are soft and slightly caramelized, about 3 minutes. 
  • Add in garam masala, tumeric, cumin, dried fenugreek leaves and 1/3 cup of water or vegetable broth and saute for an additional 2 minutes.  Be sure to stir regularly to ensure spices do not stick to the bottom of the pan. 
  • Add maple syrup, diced tomatoes and stir to combine all ingredients. 
  • Add cauliflower florets. 
  • Secure the lip on your Instant Pot and close the vent to 'Sealing'.
  • Select the 'Pressure Cook' or 'Manual' function high and set timer to 3 minutes. NOTE: You will want to add an additional minute or two if your caluiflower pieces are larger.  
  • Once the timer has beeped, allow Instant Pot to sit for 1 minute then quick release all remaining pressure.
  • Stir in cashew cream and stir to fully combine all ingredients.  
  • Serve with rice, tofu or naan and enjoy!!  You can also top with roasted cashews!

Tips / Notes:

** It's also worth noting we made this cauliflower tikka masala as more of a vegan and/or vegetarian recipe.  However, if you'd prefer you can substitute the ingredients below with heavy cream, coconut milk, coconut cream or even sour cream, if needed.  

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  1. Hello! This recipe is delish and a staple over the last month or two in my home! A couple of questions: how much/ in what form should we be adding of the ginger? Also how big is a portion? I know it says for 6 servings, and have the nutritional info but I’m not sure if it’s a cup, or what. Thanks for your help and guidance!

    • Hi Hara! Om my goodness! Thank you so much for catching that! I have no idea how I missed that! I just updated the recipe with the ginger count. So sorry abou that! I hope oyu enjoy the recipe!

      • Of course- I thought I was going crazy the first time I made it haha.

        Any idea as to the serving size? Thanks again!