Unique & Creative Vegetarian Indian Appetizer Ideas You Need For Your Upcoming Engagement Party
Indian engagement parties are a lot of fun. They're perfect for a small gathering where your family and friends get to meet your future bride or groom and their close circle. Just like any other party, food can elevate your event. The Desi Bride has curated unique and luxurious Indian appetizers that your guests will surely remember.
Ministry of Curry: Jalapeno Corn and Cheese Samosa
The Ministry of Curry was launched in 2016 by Archana Mundhe, a software engineer-turned-food blogger, who spent her childhood devouring her chef mom's scrumptious dishes in Mumbai. As she moved to the USA, her love for her mom's food inspired her to experiment in the kitchen and with her mom's help, she was able to create those exact same flavors. She is not only passionate about eating that ghar ka khana but also trying out new recipes and tweaking the existing ones in her kitchen, and her recipes have found their way in Oprah, People Magazine, The Washington Post, Epicurious and more.
Need a quick but a WOW recipe as you plan other details of your engagement party? The Ministry of Curry's got you covered! Try their Jalapeno Corn and Cheese Samosa, which comes together with just a few ingredients and is sure to leave your guests asking for second servings! Samosa, as you would know, is a potato stuffed deep-fried snack popular in South Asian households. It gets a new and spicier filling with cheese accompanied by sweet corn in this recipe.
- Frozen parathas
- Frozen corn
- Sweet peppers
- Pantry spices
- Shredded cheese
- Chop the peppers and add cheese, chat masala and salt. Mix well.
- Take 2 frozen Parathas and cut the paratha in half with a pizza cutter. You don’t need to wait more than 2 minutes for the parathas to thaw.
- Take one of the 2 halves at a time and fold it in the shape of a triangle. Seal one side of the paratha and create a pocket for the filling.
- Stuff the filling as much as you need (2 spoons may be enough) and seal the paratha. It is easier to leave half an inch of the paratha on the sealing sides for the filling to stay put.
- You can use a fork to seal the paratha which will also leave a neat design on the samosa.
- Lightly brush the samosa with melted butter.
- Follow the same steps for other paratha/samosa and Air Fry at 350 F for 12-14 minutes.
- Bring out your best chutneys to serve this easy and delicious appetizer!
- Make the filling 1-2 days prior to your event and pop them in the Air Fryer before setting up the table. Make sure to keep them refrigerated in an airtight container.
- For the frozen parathas, it’s recommended to take out 1 or 2 parathas at a time. They become difficult to handle when they are softened quickly after taking out from the freezer.
- You can also use thawed puff pastry sheets to make these samosas.
- Reduce the amount of the jalapenos, keep or remove the seeds based on the level of heat you prefer. You can also use serrano peppers if jalapeno is not available.
- Add any cheese you like - Mexican blend or pepper jack cheese can be substituted for mozzarella and cheddar cheese.
The Chutney Life: Veg Masala Puffs
The Chutney Life, like others on this list, is a food blog popular for its Indian-inspired, finger-lickin' fusion recipes. Palak, a.k.a The Chutney Life, started this blog to share her obsession with food and named it after the Indian condiment, chutney. Today, we share one of her appetizer recipes with you which she ate growing up in an Indian family on the east coast, with tiny spins here and there. Veg Masala Puffs, a snack with the crisp-n-flaky outer layer and mixed vegetable stuffing, is similar to what you would see in India as you explore the monuments in Delhi or go shopping in Agra. It is a classic, savory Indian dish and a must-have for your Indian event.
Prep: 15 mins
Cook: 30 mins
Total: 45 mins
Makes: 12-14 puffs
- 2 medium size potatoes, boiled and diced small
- 2 cups frozen mixed vegetables (10 oz bag)
- 1 small onion, diced
- 1 green chili, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, finely minced or grated
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 1/2 tsp chili powder
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 1/2 tsp cumin powder
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- 1/2 lemon squeezed
- 2 tbsp oil
- 1 Package Puff Pastry, thawed
- 1 egg (for egg wash) or a few tablespoons of milk
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Add oil to a large skillet or wide pot on medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, add cumin seeds and green chilis. Let sizzle for a few seconds.
- Add the frozen veggies (thawed) and stir for a few minutes. Add garlic, remaining spices, salt, and mix well. Cook this mixture for a few minutes and then add the potatoes and incorporate well. Continue to cook for 3-4 minutes. If potato pieces are too large- use a potato masher.
- Remove the mixture from heat and let it cool completely.
- Remove the puff pastry from the package and cut each sheet into three long columns, and each column into thirds so you have three square shapes.
- Place a spoonful of the potato filling in the center of each square. Using your finger, spread water along all four outer edges of the pastry. Carefully close the pastry by bringing the top flap to the bottom and using the edges of a fork to seal the perimeter of the puff pastry. Then with a knife, pierce each puff pastry two or three times gently (so air can escape while they are baking). Repeat this step in assembling the pastries until you have used all of the filling.
- Place all the puff pastry on a lightly greased baking sheet. Using a brush, spread egg wash (one whisked egg) lightly over each puff pastry. Place in the middle rack and bake for 15-18 minutes until golden.
Enjoy with a cup of chai or chutney!
Vegan Richa: Quinoa Waffles
Based in Seattle, Richa is an award-winning food blogger, recipe developer, and the creator behind VeganRicha.com, which has been featured in Glamour, BuzzFeed, Oprah, Huffington Post and many others. She started her kitchen experiments back in 2007 and since she could not go back to the corporate world after surgery, she took the opportunity to start blogging about her recipes in 2009. Since then, her recipes are all about finding the right balance between healthy and tasty while at the same time, exploring her Indian roots as well.
Imagine Aloo Tikki but with quinoa, and the result is Richa's brunch, nutritional treat, Potato Quinoa Waffles! It's spicy, tasty, fulfilling, and self-caring, making it a perfect snack to add to your appetizer menu. Let’s dive into the recipe, courtesy of Richa!
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 35 mins
Total Time: 45 mins
- 2 medium potatoes Russett or Yukon gold
- 1/4 cup (43 g) quinoa uncooked, or use 3/4 cup cooked
- 1 hot green chili such as serrano pepper, finely chopped
- 1/3 cup (54 g) finely chopped onion
- 2 tsp minced ginger
- 1/2 cup (8 g) chopped cilantro
- 1/2 tsp cumin seeds or a heaping 1/4 tsp carom seeds
- 1/2 tsp cayenne use less for less heat
- 1/2 tsp ground coriander
- 1/8 tsp baking soda
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 1 tsp oil plus more as needed for making the waffles
- Peel the potatoes and cut them into small pieces. Rinse the quinoa and drain.
- Add the potatoes and quinoa to a pressure cooker with 3 cups of water. Pressure Cook for 3 minutes, then quick release after 5 minutes.
- If cooking in a saucepan, cook over medium heat for 15-20 minutes, or until the potatoes are cooked to preference.
- Once cooked, drain the potatoes and quinoa, let them drain really well, and cool down a bit. Meanwhile, prep the rest of the ingredients. You can also use pre-cooked potatoes and quinoa instead of cooking them together.
- Add the potato and quinoa to a large bowl and mash, add the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Taste and adjust salt if needed. You can add other flavors here as you wish.
- Heat your waffle iron, drizzle a bit of oil on the waffle iron, then place a 1/4 cup or more of the mixture, depending on the size of the waffle iron. Close the iron and cook until the waffles are golden brown on both sides. This can take quite a bit of time depending on the waffle iron, and potatoes.
- If you want these to be sturdier, and more crispy, you can add a 1/4 cup of flour or breadcrumbs into the mixture, and then waffle it.
- Serve with chutneys, ketchup, or topped with chickpea curry or other bean curries or some salsa/Pico de Gallo or gravy(change waffle flavor to Italian seasoning)
- These waffles also taste great and crispier with some vegan cheese shreds added to the waffle batter.
- Store them in a warm oven until ready to serve. These waffles are best fresh out of the waffle iron. Refrigerate for up to 3 days. Reheat in the waffle iron or oven.
Piping Pot Curry: Tandoori Aloo Tikka
Finding her inspiration for cooking from 'Ma ka Khana' as well as her beloved city with mouthwatering cuisine, Mumbai, Meeta is the face behind Piping Pot Curry, a food blog inspiring budding chefs and featured in HuffPost, Delish, and more. Meeta started cooking at an early age and her training began with cooking roti. Currently based in California, Meeta shares her love for food with her friends, family, and the world through her blog, and hopes to see her readers' inner chef inspired by her incredible and creative recipes.
Tandoori Aloo Tikka is a tasty dish that may be served as an appetizer or as a side dish. This delectable snack is made with baby potatoes marinated in a scrumptious blend of yogurt and seasonings, strung on skewers, and fried. This tandoori aloo tikka may be made in the oven or in an air fryer. For the full recipe by Piping Pot Curry, read on!
Prep Time: 35 mins
Cook Time: 15 mins
Total Time: 50 mins
Method: Air Fryer, Oven
- 1 lb Baby Potatoes (about 14)
- 2 cups Water
- 1/2 cup Red Bell Pepper cut into 2 inch pieces
- 1/2 cup Yellow Bell Pepper cut into 2 inch pieces
- 1/2 cup Onion cut into 2 inch pieces, layers separated
- 1/2 teaspoon Chaat Masala to garnish
- Lime wedges to garnish
- For marinade
- 1/2 cup Yogurt greek (also called hung curd)
- 1 tablespoon Mustard oil (or another vegetable oil)
- 1/2 tablespoon Ginger paste
- 1/2 tablespoon Garlic paste
- 2 teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon Ground Turmeric (Haldi powder)
- 1 teaspoon Coriander powder (Dhaniya powder)
- 1 teaspoon Garam Masala
- 1 teaspoon Chaat Masala (or dry mango/amchur powder)
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 1/2 tablespoon Dried Fenugreek leaves (Kasoori Methi)
- 1 tablespoon Gram flour (Besan)
- Put potatoes into a steamer basket. Add water to the inner steel pot of the pressure cooker and place the steamer basket inside it.
- Lock the pressure cooker lid in place. Set steam vent to Sealing. Select Pressure Cook (Manual) and cook for 1 minute on High pressure. Set steam vent to Venting to quick-release pressure manually.
- Transfer potatoes to a bowl and peel the skin. Discard the water in the inner steel pot and wipe it dry.
- In a separate large bowl, combine all ingredients for the marinade and mix well. Add the peeled potatoes, onions, red and yellow bell peppers to marinade. Mix well and keep for 30 minutes.
- Thread the potatoes, peppers, and onions on the skewers alternating between each.
- Grease lightly on the insides of the air fryer basket.
- Arrange the sticks and cook at 180 degrees or 360F for 10 minutes.
- Turn the sticks and cook for 7 more minutes.
- Prepare a baking tray lined with parchment paper or foil.
- Place a rack over top and preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Place the skewers on the rack, then bake for 15-18 minutes until potatoes are well cooked.
- Turn on your oven’s broiler and broil the Aloo Tikka for about 3-5 minutes to get the char marks. Keep your eye on the potatoes so that they don’t burn.
- Sprinkle chaat masala and lime juice. Serve warm with mint cilantro chutney. These potatoes are best served immediately for that perfect crispy on the outside and melt-in-the-mouth on the inside taste.
Mom Under Pressure: Samosa Chaat
Mom Under Pressure is the brainchild of Michele Narsinghani, a full-time mom, wife, and pharmacist. She is based in Chicago and due to her hectic schedule, began experimenting with the ingredients she had in her kitchen and the little time that was left after parental, social, and professional duties. Healthy, tasty, quick and easy! That is the dream of every rookie chef and that's what describes the recipes at Mom Under Pressure. For our list, we have selected her recipe for Samosa Chaat, a popular Indian street food (and the love of our lives!) which is also seen at Indian weddings. This recipe includes roasted and smashed potatoes, topped with fresh vegetables, crunchy tandoori chickpeas, and tahini-lime sauce.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
- 2 lbs. yellow potatoes
- 3 tbsp butter
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 can garbanzo beans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1/2 cup tomatoes finely diced
- 1/2 jalapeno finely diced (seeds removed for less heat)
- 1/2 cup onion finely diced
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- 2 tbsp chopped mint
- 2-3 tbsp Sabauce marinade
- 1 tsp tandoori masala spice mix
- Tahini-Lime Sauce
- 1/4 cup tahini
- 1/4 cup Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 small cloves garlic about 1 tsp
- 1/2 lime zested and juiced
- Salt to taste
- First, start out by boiling the potatoes. Place the potatoes in a large pot of water. Let the water come to a boil then turn the heat down so that the potatoes are simmering. Cook until fork tender; it’s okay if the skin starts to crack. This can take 20-25 minutes.
- Then drain the potatoes and let them cool. Once cool, place potatoes on a large baking tray.
- Use either the palm of your hand or the bottom of a glass to smash the potatoes into disks. If you have really large potatoes you can cut them in half widthwise before smashing them.
- Sprinkle each potato with a generous amount of salt and black pepper. Melt the butter in a small bowl and then stir in olive oil. Pour the butter and olive oil mixture over each potato.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes and then increase the temperature to 425 degrees and bake for another 5 minutes until the potatoes are golden and the skins are crispy.
- While the potatoes are boiling, make the chickpeas. Rinse garbanzo beans (chickpeas), pat dry, and place on a large baking tray. Toss them in 2 tablespoons of Sabauce marinade and 1 tsp of tandoori spices.
- Bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes until the chickpeas are crispy.
- Place ingredients for tahini-lime sauce in a small blender and blend together until smooth. If you don’t have a blender, crush or mince the garlic and whisk everything together in a small bowl. Season with salt.
- Assemble the chaat by topping the crispy smashed potatoes with tahini-lime sauce, crunchy chickpeas, chopped onions, tomatoes, jalapeno, fresh herbs, and a small drizzle of Sabauce.
If you do not have Sabauce you can season the chickpeas with 2 teaspoons of tandoori masala (spice mix) and 1 tablespoon of oil and roast until crispy.
The Spice Adventuress: Channa Tikki
The Spice Adventuress is a food blog based in Melbourne, Australia, and the creator of the blog, Dhanya has been on a quest to explore different cuisines of the world since childhood. Born in India and having spent her early years in the Middle East, Dhanya has had a diverse food experience which she shares with her readers. For your engagement party, we have selected Channa Tikki, a chickpea version of the popular street food Aloo Tikki.
- 2 cups chickpeas; cooked in salted boiling water till mushy
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 2-3 medium garlic cloves; grated
- ½ inch ginger; grated
- 1 medium red onion; finely chopped
- 1 tsp chaat masala
- 1 tsp coriander powder
- 1 tsp red chili powder
- A pinch of asafoetida/hing
- 2-3 tbsp bread crumbs more if necessary
- 1-2 tbsp white flour
- Vegetable oil
- 1 tbsp coriander leaves; finely chopped
- Salt to season
- Soak the chickpeas overnight; cook in salted boiling water till soft and mushy. Drain and keep aside.
- Add 2 tbsp oil to a pan, add cumin seeds and allow to crackle. Then add the chopped onions, garlic paste and ginger paste. Sauté till the onions are softened and light brown.
- Next add the cooked chickpeas, coriander powder, red chili powder, chaat masala and asafoetida. Season with salt (remember the chickpeas already have salt) and cook on low heat for about 1-2 minutes.
- Add the chopped coriander leaves and remove from heat. Allow to cool well before grinding.
- Once cooled, grind the chickpea mixture without water. Then add the flour and breadcrumbs and knead to a dough-like consistency. Add more breadcrumbs till you get the desired consistency.
- Slightly grease your palms using oil and shape the chickpea mixture into round patties/tikkis. Refrigerate for about 15 minutes just to firm up but bring back to room temperature before grilling.
- Heat oil in a nonstick pan, just enough to coat the surface as we need to lightly grill the patties and not shallow fry. Place the tikkis on the pan and cook well on one side before flipping over. Take care as you flip over as the tikkis have a crumbly texture or it will break.
- Serve warm with mint coriander chutney.
- Another way of enjoying these tikkis or patties is by crushing it between a pav; add a dollop of chutney and you have another version of your favorite vada pav. Or go Western by crushing it lightly between a slider bun and adding some greens and your favorite mayo for a vegetarian slider.
Culinary Nirvana: Vegetarian Malai Kebab
Gayatri Singh is a professional chef and the creator of Culinary Nirvana, where she shares the knowledge she gained from The Culinary Institute of America and experience of working at The Taj Boston, The Peninsula Tokyo, and several top restaurants in New York. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle and creating new recipes from Indian flavors is Gayatri's forte. One of her gluten-free appetizers is Kale Kebabs, made from kale and chickpea flour, which was a hit with her family and friends, and is sure to be the final touch to your engagement party!
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
- 200 g Curly Kale or Cavolo Nero chopped
- 300 g boiled potato mashed
- 80 g chickpea flour toasted
- 50 g almonds chopped
- 1 tbsp rice flour
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- 1 inch ginger grated
- 3 cloves garlic finely chopped or crushed
- 1 nos red and green chili to taste
- 4 tbsp coriander leaves and stalks chopped
- 1 tsp or to taste salt
- 1 tsp chaat masala
- 1 tsp or to taste black pepper crushed
- 1/2 tsp garam masala
- 1/4 cup gluten-free breadcrumbs optional
- vegetable oil for frying
- Heat oil in a pan, and add the finely chopped kale, ginger, and garlic. On low medium heat cook for 5 minutes. Now place the kale in a colander so the water drips, squeeze out all the water from the kale.
- In a mixing bowl, place the kale, crushed potatoes, and all the spices mentioned above with salt. Add all the flour, and mix well. You might need to add more chickpea flour if the kale is too watery.
- Make firm small bite-size kebabs, and coat them in gluten-free breadcrumbs. Shallow fry them in hot oil till they are brown in color.
- Serve with your choice of chutney.
Love Laugh Mirch: Paneer Bhurji Puffs
Meet Nisha Vedi Pawar, the creator, and editor of Love, Laugh, Mirch, an Indian blog about food, lifestyle and culture. To stay connected to her roots and explore her passion for food, Nisha started blogging her recipes, and Love, Laugh, Mirch was born. It's 'Desi-Modern' at its peak! For your engagement party, we present Paneer Bhurji Puffs, a crunchy, flakey, and perfect appetizer for any desi event. Let's take a look at the recipe.
Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 20 mins
Total time: 30 mins
- 6-8 puff pastry squares
- 2 cups paneer bhurji
- 2 tablespoons whole milk or heavy cream
- ⅛ teaspoon nigella seeds
- Remove the frozen puff pastry sheets from the freezer and let them thaw while you prepare the paneer bhurji filling.
- Preheat the oven to 425 F and grease a cupcake/muffin tin with butter or cooking spray.
- Place the puff pastry squares into the cups. The corners will come up a little. Lightly poke the bottom with a fork, being careful not to poke all the way through.
- Add the paneer filling to each cup until full.
- Fold the points of the dough over the top of the filling and pinch together.
- Lightly whisk whole milk or heavy cream and brush it over the pastry.
- Top with nigella seeds and bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown!
- mins / 20 minutes
- Serve alongside cilantro chutney or ketchup and a cup of hot chai.
If you're looking for exciting and unique appetizers for your Indian engagement party or wedding, look no further. We've compiled a list of eight unique appetizers that you can serve at your celebration. These dishes are likely to be a hit with both your friends and family, creating a memorable first impression for the couple getting hitched. And as icing on the cake, most of these recipes are quite easy to make.
Hosting an Indian event? You can find everything you need to know at The Desi Bride, from vendors to planning tips and tricks.