Masala Mushroom Curry

This post is dedicated to my lovely friend Margo.
Margo was the first friend I made after moving to the United States 11 years ago. She is one of the warmest, most intelligent and compassionate people I know. Her hubby, Jon, and she are posted overseas a few years at a time, and each time she fearlessly and wholeheartedly immerses herself in these complex new places and cultures.
Margo was the first to introduce Desi and me to Middle Eastern food and its delightful flavors. She is also one pal who always has nice things to say about my cooking, whether or not I deserve it, which always makes it an enjoyable experience to cook for her and Jon when they visit.
Last night, Margo stayed over with us. She loved this mushroom curry that I made for her and told me she has been trying to cook more vegetarian meals. In the past I have promised Margo countless recipes and failed to deliver because of time constraints and my own sieve-like memory. One of the things I hope this blog will do is make me more organized about sharing my recipes with friends and anyone that cares about compassionate cooking.
So here’s Margo’s Masala Mushroom Curry. It takes minutes to throw together yet has many layers of flavor, thanks to the curry leaves and garam masala.
In the recipe I use light coconut milk which I buy from Whole Foods, but you can easily substitute with 2 parts regular coconut milk and 1 part water. While coconut does contain some saturated fat, it is far healthier than the fat found in animal products and is also considered to have anti-carcinogenic properties.
Masala Mushroom Curry
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Indian
Serves: 6
  • 1 tbsp canola or olive oil
  • 2 cups sliced crimini mushrooms (can substitute with button mushrooms)
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 sprigs curry leaves. Chop the leaves into fine shreds.
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp minced ginger
  • 2 tsp garam masala powder (you can use store-bought too)
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 14-oz can of light coconut milk
  • Salt to taste
  1. Heat oil in a saucepan on medium-high heat.
  2. Saute the diced onion with sugar and curry leaves.
  3. When the onions start to brown, add the ginger and garlic and saute for another minute.
  4. Add garam masala and turmeric and stir until spices are coated with oil, about a minute.
  5. Add mushrooms and salt. Stir occasionally until mushrooms soften and the juices begin to ooze out.
  6. When mushrooms are almost tender, add coconut milk and turn heat to low. Let the mixture simmer gently for about 2-5 minutes until mushrooms are cooked through.
  7. Serve hot with rice or rotis.
  8. I didn't have coriander leaves when I made this, but a garnish of 2 tbsp of chopped coriander leaves would further enhance this dish.
If you love mushroom curries, which make great meat substitutes, you might also want to try my Dad’s Not-Mutton Mushroom Curry, a personal favorite, or this really simple but really delicious Mushroom and Spinach Curry that is perfect for weeknights.
(C) All recipes and photographs copyright of Holy Cow! Vegan Recipes.

Get new recipes by email. Sign up below.


  1. Anonymous says

    I’ve made this twice now, and it’s wonderful! I deviated from the recipe as follows: I didn’t have curry leaves, so I substituted 1/2 tsp curry powder. And to make it more filling I added a 1/2 cup of green peas when I added the coconut milk. They add a beautiful sweetness to the dish and compliment the mushrooms wonderfully. Thanks for the garam masala recipe as well.

  2. says

    hello im happy you posted a recipe for garam masala!!! i have a question tho if i dont have seeds can i use the powder version??? if so how many tsps will i need to use of each? thank you so much!

  3. says

    Mazozeh, substitute with 2 tsp of the powders for each tsp of the seeds. I would advise not pre-roasting the ingredients beforehand. Grind them up and then roast them lightly just before you use them– for instance, when adding it to a curry, add it right after you’ve sauteed the onions and before you add any liquid.
    Hope that helps :)

  4. says

    Thanks so much for the garam masala recipe :) it turned out perfect! I used it while making veg. cutlets :) and I loved the spice blend ..smells lovely!

  5. Hasita says

    I just made this curry for dinner tonight and my house smells like heaven! Wonderful recipe, and the coriander does add to the curry’s flavour.

Leave a comment!