|May 22, 2023


Transforming any dish from bland to tasty depends on the level of Indian spices included in them. This component is so crucial to the dish's flavor that it is impossible to make any meal without them.

India is a land of different regional meals, and the Indian spices used also depend upon the region. Indian spices are now famous worldwide, and people have started creating many non-conventional dishes.

Indian spices were included in age-old recipes as early as the 8th century. These were also discussed in Vedas. Initially, people used the most common Indian spices, such as black pepper, for currency exchange.

A dish from any region of India requires some basic Indian spices, such as cloves, cumin, bay leaf, cinnamon, cardamom, etc. Every spice has its identity and a distinct flavor note, which changes its taste and flavor when added to the dish.

Indian spices can be found in three forms- ground, whole, and spice blends. Some dishes require only whole spices, such as cumin and mustard, and some need only ground spices, such as black cumin powder, curry masala, Kashmiri chilli powder, etc.

Various Indian Dishes and Their Signature Masalas

When preparing biryani, you will require different masalas not used in other recipes. Same as while preparing curries, the set of spices is different.

1. Biryani

Biryani masala

Biryani is a mouth-watering dish of rice and meat/vegetables everyone likes. Biryani is well-known for its aroma and delicious taste—layers of rice and meat in non-vegetarian biryani and vegetables in veg biryani. The spices used in this lip-smacking dish are nutmeg, fennel seeds, mint, ginger, pepper, cloves, etc. These little spices are responsible for making biryani- a beloved dish.

2. Dal Makhani

Dal Makhani

It is a staple food of Punjabi cuisine. It consists of lentils such as urad dal and rajma. It has many spices, such as curry masala, Kashmiri chilli powder, dhaniya powder, etc. It has some whole masalas also, such as cloves, nutmeg, black cardamom, etc.

3. Chana Masala

Chana Masala

Chana masala comes from Punjabi cuisine and is loaded with butter masala with lots of spices. It has a thick gravy with spices included. The signature spices of this ultimate dish are coriander seeds, cumin seeds, black peppercorns, etc. These spices add aroma and an intense flavor to chana masala.

4. Chicken Curry

Chicken Curry

The succulent pieces of chicken coated with red curry powder, black cumin powder, and dhaniya powder gives the chicken a unique spicy touch. It comes first when thinking about non-veg dishes. When added to the curry, Kashmiri chili powder gives a perfect red color and mild spice flavor. 

5. Roghan Josh

Roghan Josh

Roghan josh is mostly mutton pieces with aromatic gravy with lots of spices such as cloves and bay leaf, cardamom, cinnamon, etc. In some versions, onions and yogurt are used in roghan josh. After braising, it is prepared using a slow cooking method.

6. Hot Madras Curry

Hot Madras Curry

Hot Madras curry is a fiery dish with red sauce curry of chilies and paprika. It is a mixture of signature spices from South India. Fenugreek and tamarind are present in this curry to add extra tanginess.

7. Kebabs


Kebabs are a ground form of meat or vegetable. The meat is roasted over a grill. Kebabs have many spices before grilling. An Indian dish is mainly a non-veg dish, but people used to like the veg version too. In both variations, it has cardamom, chat masala, black cumin powder, red curry powder, etc.

8. Mushroom Masala

Mushroom Masala

Mushroom masala is prepared mainly with spices. Ground spices, such as black cumin powder, dhaniya powder, etc. Whole spices, such as bay leaves, cumin, and black cardamom. Using garam masala at the end from the top is the signature spice in Mushroom masala.

9. Papdi Chaat

Papdi Chaat

It is an instant snack that includes spices like chat masala, black cumin, and coriander powder; It also contains whole Masala and ground masala to give extra zing to it. Papdi chat is the most famous street-style snack. 

10. Paneer Tikka Masala

Paneer Tikka Masala

Paneer tikka masala is fully coated with various spices. This dish can be dry or gravy based. The succulent paneer pieces with multiple spices like red chili powder, coriander powder, cumin powder, etc., kick this world-famous dish.

11. Butter Chicken

Butter Chicken

Butter chicken is the most searched chicken dish in restaurants. Buttery and creamy gravy made of tomato, onions, butter chicken masala made of cloves, cardamom, black pepper, cinnamon, red chilies, etc. when chicken pieces with this delicious spicy gravy make this dish superhit.

12. Aloo Gobhi

Aloo Gobhi

The most famous vegetarian dish is aloo gobhi. Fried potatoes and cauliflowers with spices, red chili powder, black cumin powder, sabji Masala, etc., together when slow cooked, create a mesmerizing aroma.

Summing Up On popular Indian Dishes & Their Signature Masalas

As far back as the 8th century, Indian spices were a staple in traditional recipes. The Vedas, the earliest scriptures of Hinduism, even contain mentions of the use of spices. In the early days, the most widely used spice, black pepper, was used as a currency.

Indian spices transform an otherwise bland dish into a flavorful feast. It is impossible to imagine an Indian meal without their presence. Infusing spices makes the taste and flavor a delight.

Alcoeats has all the spice blends and ground spices to meet your requirement at any moment. We offer spice blends and gravy mix for office-goers to make cooking convenient for everybody. From garam and chat Masala to black cumin powder,  Alcoeats has it all.

frequently asked questions

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