Keema Recipe (Keema Curry)

Updated: April 28, 2023, By Swasthi

Keema Recipe with 3 different variations! This Keema Curry is a flavorful and hearty dish that comes together in no time! It is perfectly soft, tender, juicy and aromatic, that you will fall in love with it instantly. Keema Curry is a popular dish consisting of minced meat cooked with onions, tomatoes, spices & herbs. Serve this comforting curry with Turmeric Rice, plain steamed rice, Plain Paratha, roti, Chapati or with Garlic Naan. Some sliced veggies like onions, cucumber and carrots or Kachumber Salad alongside Lassi make a comforting and complete meal.

Keema recipe - Keema Curry

About Keema

Keema also spelled as “Qeema” & pronounced as “Kee-Mah” refers to minced meat. It is popular in the Indian sub-continent and used in the preparation of various dishes like Curries, Biryani, Pulao, Parathas, Naans & even Samosa.

Though the terms ground meat and minced meat are used interchangeably in a lot of cuisines. It is important to note that Keema is just minced meat and should not be confused with ground meat.

Minced meat has a texture to it while ground meat is smooth. Though minced meat is used in this recipe, you can always substitute it with ground meat of choice.

In India, largely keema comes from goat, sheep, lamb & chicken. Though other kinds of keema exist, goat is the most preferred as it is believed to be lower in saturated fats and cholesterol, and higher in iron than other red meats.

A lot of people opt for young goat as the adult goat can have a strong gamey flavour compared to lamb.

There are numerous versions of this curried dish. Keema curry, aloo keema, keema matar & keema masala are some variations of this dish. Here are some details:

  • Aloo Keema is made with minced meat and potaotes (aloo).
  • Keema Matar is made with keema and green peas (matar).
  • Keema Masala is the North Indian Version of the dish. Most times this is made with yogurt.

My Recipe

In this post I share a basic Keema Recipe, the way my Mom made for us. Simple, quick and delicious with the use of minimal ingredients. You won’t believe – making this is easier than you thought!

You can add green peas, potatoes, methi leaves or even cashews to this. Yes! a lot of Telugu-speaking people add cashews to their Keema curry. Read my pro-tips & variations section for that.

So reading this post you will be able to learn how to cook keema perfectly with many variations. If you want to use chicken, use this Chicken Keema Recipe.

More Similar Recipes
Lamb Curry
Lamb Vindaloo
Mutton Korma
Rogan Josh
Mutton Curry
Spicy Mutton Fry

keema curry recipe

Photo Guide

How to make Mutton Keema Curry (Stepwise Photos)

1. Heat oil in a pan and fry the whole spices. 1 bay leaf (or 1 sprig of curry leaves, 2 to 3 cloves, 2 to 3 cardamoms and 1 to 2 inch cinnamon piece.

saute spices in oil to make keema

2. Then add the onions and chilies.

frying onions to make keema

3. Next add ginger garlic. Saute for 2 to 3 mins on a low heat.

frying ginger garlic paste

4. Add Keema and saute for 2 to 3 mins. Stir in the red chili powder, masala powder, turmeric, salt and mint.

5. Saute again for 3 to 4 mins.

6. Cover and cook for about 8 to 10 mins on a very low heat. Keema releases moisture at this stage and turns slightly tender.

7. Add tomato puree. Mix and cook for 5 to 6 mins until the raw smell of tomatoes goes away.

adding tomato puree to make keema

8. Add little hot water and mix. Cover and continue to cook until the keema has turned soft and tender, until completely cooked.

Towards the taste test and add more salt and garam masala if you want. Add chopped coriander leaves and mix. We prefer to evaporate all the moisture from keema, you can also turn off a bit early if you prefer little gravy.

Serve keema with rice or paratha. Sprinkle some lemon juice and serve with lemon wedges.

mutton keema recipe

Ingredients & Substitutes

  • Keema: You can use any minced meat/keema of choice. Cook time, quantity of ground spices and water will vary depending on the kind of meat used.
  • Spice blend: You can use garam masala, meat masala, kitchen king masala, Biryani masala or mutton masala blends for this recipe. Due to the different spice combinations each of these impart different flavors to the dish.
  • Whole Spices: All the whole spices are optional but recommended. They infuse better flavors than the ground spices.
  • Tomatoes: I prefer using pureed tomatoes but you can also use them chopped or peeled and chopped.

Variations of Keema Recipe

Keema Matar: We make keema matar with ½ to ¾ cup peas/matar included in the same recipe. Young and tender green peas are best for this recipe as they impart sweeter tones. Frozen peas and baby peas too work well.

Aloo Keema: Diced potatoes are used in this variation and you can always add 1 large diced/ cubed potato directly after sautéing the meat. Adding tomatoes early can hinder the potatoes from cooking faster. So add them towards the end only after the potatoes are almost cooked but not fully cooked.

For this version I double the amount of onions, tomatoes and spices to make a slightly gravy dish. You will need to add more water depending on the potatoes and meat.

Kaju Keema: Fry ¼ cup split cashews at the beginning and keep them aside. Add them along with tomatoes to the keema. I have a separate spice blend on this mutton fry post which we use for kaju keema.

South Indian Keema Curry: Use curry leaves in the tempering and add ¼ cup thick coconut milk before finishing the dish.

North Indian Keema Masala has yogurt added to it. Saute the keema first for 4 mins. Follow this Chicken bhuna and make the bhuna masala later add the sautéed keema to it and cook adding little hot water.

Related Recipes

Recipe Card

mutton keema recipe

Keema Recipe (Mutton Keema Curry)

5 from 301 votes
Keema is a dish made of minced meat, onions, tomatoes, spices & herbs. This recipe will yield a delicious dish which be eaten with rice, or can be stuffed in sandwiches, wraps & naan.
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For best results follow the step-by-step photos above the recipe card

Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Total Time30 minutes
Servings3 people

Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )

  • 300 grams keema (minced meat)
  • 2 tablespoons oil or ghee
  • 1 small bay leaf (or 1 sprig curry leaves)
  • 2 to 3 green cardamoms (elaichi)
  • 1 to 2 inch cinnamon (piece, dalchini)
  • 2 to 3 cloves (laung)
  • 1 cup onions finely chopped (2 medium sized)
  • 1 green chili (Optional, deseeded & chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon ginger garlic paste
  • ¼ to ½ cup tomato puree or 1 medium tomato chopped finely
  • ¼ cup hot water (more if required)
  • teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric (haldi)
  • ¾ to 1 teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder (adjust to taste)
  • 1 to 1½ teaspoon garam masala (or mutton masala or kitchen king masala or biryani masala)
  • 2 tablespoons mint leaves (pudina, fine chopped)
  • 2 tablespoons coriander leaves (fine chopped)


How to make Keema Curry

  • Heat a pan with oil and add the whole spices – bay leaf, cinnamon, cloves, cardamoms.
  • When they begin to sizzle, add green chilies and onions. Saute them well on a medium flame until evenly golden.
  • Add ginger garlic paste & saute for a minute or until the raw smell goes away.
  • Add keema and break down any lumps. Saute for 3 to 4 mins on a low to medium heat.
  • Sprinkle salt & all the ground spices – turmeric, red chili powder and garam masala. Also add mint now.
  • Saute for 3 to 4 mins on a low heat.
  • Cover and cook for about 8 to 10 mins on the lowest heat. You will see some moisture being released and the keema is slightly tender.
  • Add tomato and saute until the tomato blends well with keema completely. This takes about 5 to 6 mins. The raw smell of tomatoes should go away by now.
  • Pour hot water, stir and cook covered until the keema is completely tender meaning it's cooked.
  • Taste test and add more salt and garam masala if you want. Open the lid, evaporate any excess liquid left to suit your taste. We personally love the semi-dry keema so I evaporate the excess liquid by sautéing a little longer.
  • Keep mutton keema covered until served. Garnish with coriander leaves.
  • Sprinkle some lemon juice before serving with rice, paratha and fresh cut onions, cucumbers and carrot.


Watch Keema Curry Video

NUTRITION INFO (estimation only)

Nutrition Facts
Keema Recipe (Mutton Keema Curry)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 415 Calories from Fat 297
% Daily Value*
Fat 33g51%
Saturated Fat 10g63%
Cholesterol 73mg24%
Sodium 126mg5%
Potassium 464mg13%
Carbohydrates 10g3%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 18g36%
Vitamin A 250IU5%
Vitamin C 15.5mg19%
Calcium 52mg5%
Iron 2.9mg16%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe?Mention @SwasthisRecipes or tag #swasthisrecipes!

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About Swasthi

I’m Swasthi Shreekanth, the recipe developer, food photographer & food writer behind Swasthi’s Recipes. My aim is to help you cook great Indian food with my time-tested recipes. After 2 decades of experience in practical Indian cooking I started this blog to help people cook better & more often at home. Whether you are a novice or an experienced cook I am sure Swasthi’s Recipes will assist you to enhance your cooking skills. More about me

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Recipe Rating

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5 stars
This was so delicious and not complicated! I added peas, and we loved it. I will make again and again. Thank you!

5 stars
Chef Swasthi, you have changed my way of cooking. I have made this dish many times with a box of spices bought at my local International Market. Today, I used your recipe…and will never buy a box of spice mix again! I was a line cook in the early ‘80’s, joined the Army Infantry, went to war in the Middle East, and returned home in 1995. I have been cooking most of my life, and enjoy trying new cuisines and recipies.
This Keema is the best I have ever tasted, and was made with love in my kitchen. My wife enjoyed all of my meals, and this one is no exception. I made this along with your Turmeric rice recipe.
I promise…no more boxed spice mixes! Using whole spices brings out much more flavor. Thank you again, ma’am, for wonderful recipies! I look forward to trying many more.

5 stars
Another winner! I added peas and potatoes as suggested in your variations and it was delicious.

5 stars
Hi Swasthi,
Another gorgeous recipe, Thankyou.
I happened to have about half a dozen Tinda (apple gourd) so I added those with the water. It paired very nicely with your Menthi Kura Pappu and a couple of chapati.
10 stars again!

P.s. I have Long Pepper on order for your Nihari recipe, but haven’t had any luck getting Stoneflower or Vetiver root.

5 stars
I’ve made this Keema curry several times and it’s so easy to cook, and comes out so delicious.

5 stars
Love all the recipes. They are so easy to make

5 stars
I use Swathi’s recepie for all my dishes, clearly explained, easy to cook and most of all delicious ?, thanks Swathi

5 stars
You should add a step in Bold for people with OCD like me…”DONT WASH THE MINCED MEAT”… ..otherwise the end result was nice ?

5 stars
My family loved this delicious recipe and thoroughly enjoyed the flavour. I made a big quantity and added curry leaves with the bay leaves (both fresh from my mum’s trees), diced potato, chick peas and baby peas. Thank you very much and we’ll be sure to check out more of your recipes.

5 stars
Very testy food i taste


Dear Swasthi,

I made this dish last week and it turned out to be delicious, as expected. Instead of having it with rice, I used it as a filling for Samosas. Had them with Cucumber Raita: so yummy!

A practical tip not to have your cucumber too watery: cut it up into your preferred size (I prefer 1/4 inch), sprinkle it with salt, let it stand for a while till the water comes out, then squeeze it tightly in a cloth.

Gonna try out a different recipe every week.

Thank you for sharing,


5 stars
Amazing recipe which gave me goosebumps as it reminded me my mom and aunties curries! I added both potatoes and green peas. This came out great! Thank you so much!

5 stars
thanks i have not made it yet but i think its a cool recipe

5 stars
this is a cool recipe

5 stars
Love the variations section in this recipe. I made the keema matar last night and it turned out delicious. You did not mention when to add peas. I used frozen peas so included them after the keema is cooked well. They were done under 5 mins. Over all a great recipe.

Hi Swasthi,
Great recipe! How long to cook the kheema in the end for it to be fully cooked? Thanks!

5 stars
Great recipe, thank you for sharing. Husband loves it.

This turned out yummy with beef mince, peas and potatoes. Thank you. Will make it again

5 stars
We love this keema curry and it is easy yet turns out delicious every time. My husband is a Hyderabadi and loves your recipes a lot. Anything I make from here is well received by him without much fuss. I’m looking forward to make this with potatoes and peas. Can you please help me out with that? TIA

Yummy! Made this several times. Comes out delicious! Don’t you have a recipe for yakhni pulao? I was looking for it on the website and couldn’t.

5 stars
Made this recipe many times! Taste good! Like the ones bought from Indian cuisine stalls here in Singapore. We like to add small pre-fried cubed potatoes in ours too. Thank you so much for sharing.