Elle John | Spice and Life
9 min readFeb 13, 2021


Easy-Peasy Potato Curry Recipe with Coconut | Vegan Potato Curry With Coconut | Aloo Mappas

Another potato curry with Indian spices?

Yes, but not just another one… one of the tastiest, easiest, most satisfying ones you will ever taste!

Potatoes are a ridiculously versatile food! They are a white shirt when you don’t know what to wear for a casual day or that little black dress that makes you feel on top of the world. They are the hot tea in the cold winter or the cold peach ice tea that cools you down in the early afternoons in August.

Potatoes are a universal favorite and we all know why: they can be cooked in infinite ways, they fit and are part of most cuisine, they are cheap, and — everyone likes them!

I must have mentioned a million times how many potatoes Jay and I ate at the beginning of our relationship when we were near broke but we didn’t have the privilege of eating such a delicious dish because where we live coconut is quite expensive (well, that’s what we thought!) and I started preparing this only in the past few years.

Like most of my best South Indian recipes, this is my mother-in-law’s and there’s no point in me trying to make it better as she knows what she is doing.

This recipe is great because the potatoes are in nice wedges the same size as the onions and the whole curry comes together into a delicious mix of flavors that just tempt you into the next bite!


Let’s talk nutrition!

There are three main ingredients in this recipe: potatoes, onions, and coconut.

What can they do for us? Potatoes: what a great source of nutrients!

This vegetable is packed with minerals and vitamins, however, it is important to respect them by cooking the potatoes in a way that the calories ingested do not exceed their benefits. Most of these nutrients are contained in the skin of the potatoes and when possible, this should be eaten rather than thrown away.

Studies show how potatoes are a great source of antioxidants, however, there are no sufficient studies to confirm how much these may help reduce the risk of chronic diseases; as well as antioxidants, they contain resistant starch which is known for reducing insulin resistance, which can improve blood sugar control.

This great vegetable is naturally gluten-free, making it suitable for most diets, while still being incredibly filling.

Potatoes are considered a healthy carbohydrate as they are rich in fiber (when having the skin as well) and are low in calories while being high in minerals and vitamins.

Onions: this love-it-or-hate-it vegetable has multiple beneficial properties that have been recognized since ancient times, when they were used to cure multiple illnesses, like headaches, mouth sores, and heart problems.

This vegetable is nutrient-dense, meaning that although it is low in calories it is a great source of minerals and vitamins. Among these vitamins there is Vitamin C, which the onion is extremely rich in; this vitamin is extremely important in regulating the productions of collagen, repairing tissues, absorbing iron, and, its most famous function, regulating immune health.

Onions are extremely rich in Vitamin B-9 (folate) and B-6 (pyridoxine), which have roles in the metabolism, the productions of red blood cells, and the function of the nerves.

Along with all of these, onions may help fight heart problems, may reduce the risk of some forms of cancer as they contain compounds that fight it and are rich in antioxidants, as well as may increase bone density and may reduce high blood pressure. There is a lot of ‘may-s’ as many studies are still being conducted, and as we are all different, we all work a little bit differently.

Coconut: the fruit of the coconut palm, has been used for over 4500 years in tropical regions but has now become extremely popular globally because of its properties and rich flavor.

From this fruit one can consume the meat, water, oil, and milk, which can be purchased fresh, powdered, frozen, and other ways, because of its versatility.

Coconut is very high in calories in fat, however, it is also very rich in nutrients and vitamins, such as manganese, copper, and iron.

I shared some more information about coconut on this coconut oat biscuits recipe as well as in this egg mappas.

Questions time!

Is this recipe easy to prepare?

Yes, easy-peasy to prepare! Most of the recipes I prepare are easy because it means I can keep a better eye on what I eat and manage to control my calorie intake.

How to prepare this recipe?

You only need a pan and a grinder or blender for the coconut. The process to cook this dish is very straightforward, like most Indian food; you pop the mustard, add the onion, sauté with ginger, garlic, chili, and then the spices, add and cook this with potatoes and then finish off with coconut milk and curry leaves. All in one pot. All in less than 30 minutes!


How to chop the onions and potatoes


Brown Mustard Seeds — black are fine as well

Mustard seeds and onions cooking


Ginger, garlic and green chilies


Adding the masalas

Cooking the Indian Spices


Adding the potatoes

Cooking the potatoes


Coconut and Almond Paste


Adding the coconut-almond paste and curry leaves

The last simmer for this Aloo Mappas

Easy-Peasy Potato Curry with Coconut: Ready!

Can I freeze this curry?

Yes, you sure can! Make sure the curry has thoroughly cooled down before doing so.

Can I use coconut milk instead of freshly grated coconut? Or frozen coconut?

Yes, you can, although the consistency will change a bit, as you won’t have the body that the meat of the coconut gives. I would start by adding a quarter of a tin of good quality coconut milk and add more if you think it is necessary.

Should you find it, you can use (as I do) fresh frozen grated coconut, which maintains the original flavor and is excellent for cooking and is found in many Indian shops.

How many portions is this recipe for?

I prepare this for four portions of a main curry, but if serving as a side to something else, then it may be sufficient for six to eight portions.

I don’t have/like almonds, can I use something else or skip them?

Yes, you sure can! Almond in this case offers some additional richness to the gravy, however, you can skip this as the coconut meat is blended and offers some extra consistency. If you do not have almonds, you can substitute these with cashew nuts.

Is this recipe vegan?

Yes, this recipe is vegan.

How can I make this curry spicier? This recipe uses little red chili powder on purpose: to maintain the traditional color of Mappas, however heat can be increased by adding more green chilies, so to preserve the color. Should you like the curry to look darker and be spicier, then you can increase the red chili powder to taste as well.


You will love this recipe as it offers a delicious, flavorful Indian curry in less than half an hour and elevates the humble potato to one of the best South Indian curries you’ll have!

Serve it with some parathas or a couple of whole wheat chapattis… and enjoy!

~~ Love vegan food? Have a look at our Cook: Vegan section!

Easy-Peasy Potato Curry Recipe with Coconut | Vegan Potato Curry With Coconut | Aloo Mappas

You will love this recipe as it offers a delicious, flavorful Indian curry in less than half an hour and elevates the humble potato to one of the best South Indian curries you’ll have!

  • 2 tbsp Sunflower Oil (or another flavorless vegetable oil)
  • ½ tsp Mustard Seeds (I used brown, however black are also perfect)
  • 250 g Onions (Red, Peeled and Chopped in Wedges)
  • 2 Green Chilies (Slit on the Side)
  • 5 g Fresh Garlic (Finely Chopped)
  • 5 g Fresh Ginger (Finely Chopped)
  • 1 ½ tsp Coriander Powder
  • ½ tsp Turmeric Powder
  • ½ tsp Garam Masala Powder
  • ¼ tsp Red Chili Powder
  • 300 g White Potatoes (Peeled and Chopped in Wedges)
  • 2 Almonds
  • 50 g Fresh Coconut (Grated)
  • 15–20 Curry Leaves
  • Water as Needed
  • Salt to Taste
  1. In a saucepan, add the sunflower oil and warm it up on medium heat; once this is warm add the mustard seeds and allow them to pop, which should take about 30 seconds.
  2. Once the mustard seeds have popped add the onions and mix well and allow to cook for 1 minute, then add the ginger, garlic, and fresh green chilies, mix well again and cook for about 3–4 minutes until the onion starts to become translucent and the rawness of the garlic has gone.
  3. At this point add the masalas (coriander powder, turmeric powder, garam masala powder, and red chili powder) and mix well; allow the spices to cook, which should take about one minute.
  4. Once the spices separate from the oil, add the potatoes and a bit of salt; mix well and add water. This should be enough to just cover the potatoes (I used about 300ml) and bring them to a boil.
  5. Once the water is bubbling, bring the flame to low and put a lid to the pan; allow the potatoes to cook thoroughly, which should take about 10 minutes.
  6. In the meantime in an upside-down grinder (or blender), blend the coconut and almonds using as little water as possible and making the paste as creamy as possible.
  7. Once the potatoes are cooked, add the coconut-almond paste to the curry together with the curry leaves; mix everything well together and adjust the water level. Should you feel the curry is too dry for your taste, feel free to add some more water and adjust the salt. Reapply the lid to the pan and once the curry simmers again, allow the coconut to cook for a further 2–3 minutes on a low flame.
  8. Remove from the heat and allow the curry to sit for at least five minutes and serve! Enjoy!

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Elle John | Spice and Life

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