Pav Bhaji Recipe | Keto Vegetarian

pav bhaji

This Pav Bhaji recipe is a low carb version of a popular dish from India that consists of a thick vegetable curry served with a soft bread roll. It’s basically a thick spicy vegetable soup cooked with tomato, garlic, onion, and mixed vegetables. It’s ideal for the Vegetarian Keto Diet.

The Indian word ‘pav’ translates to bread roll in English and ‘bhaji’ means a vegetable dish. The dish has become a popular street food in India. Some refer to it as junk food but this recipe from none other than Sahil Makhija of Headbangers Kitchen is for a healthy low carb version.

Loads of butter in the original dish is said to be the secret of its flavor as well as the unhealthiness of it but we know now that butter is not the enemy. In fact on the keto diet grass-fed butter is very healthy.

For this keto Pav Bhaji recipe all ingredients are low in carbs. The original version is made from high carb mashed potato but that has been changed for caulflower in this tasty low carb version. Sahil serves it with keto bread instead of wheat based bread.

Related redipe: Low Carb Cauliflower Potato Mash Recipe

Each serving contains only 8 grams of net carbs, perfect for any low carb diet. You can eat the soup on its own or serve it with any low carb bread of your choice. In India it’s often eaten for breakfast.

For an alternative spciy keto vegetarian dish try this Keto Spicy Mixed Vegetables Recipe. Another spicy keto dish from Sahil is this tasty Cauliflower Makhani Bites recipe.

Related reading: Low Carb Bread Recipes

Recipe notes

If you can’t fit the vegetable mixture in your frying pan you may have to cook it in two batches or use two pans.

For the traditional dish a special pav bhaji masher is used but you can use an ordinary potato masher which does the job just as well.

The Pav Bhaji Masala is an important ingredient which gives the dish its authentic flavor conains a variety of herbs and spices. You should be able to order it from Amazon.

I have, as usual, slightly tweaked the ingredients to specify organic foods. The majority of people who follow the keto or low carb way of eating do it to improve their health. It’s better therefore to have organic foods where possible as they contain more nutrients than conventially produced ones.

Pav Bhaji Recipe


  • 500 grams organic cauliflower
  • 150 grams organic bell pepper
  • 100 grams organic onions
  • 200 grams organic tomatoes
  • 150 grams grass-fed butter butter
  • 2 tsp Pav Bhaji Masala
  • 1 tsp dried fenugreek leaves (methi)
  • 10 grams ginger garlic paste
  • 1 tsp Kashmiri red chili powder
  • 1 tbsp cilantro (coriander)
  • natural red food coloring (optional)
  • juice of half of an organic lime
  • Redmond Real Sea Salt to taste


1. Chop the cauliflower into small pieces and put it in a frying pan along with a cup of water. Bring to a simmer, cover and cook gently for 10 minutes until the cauliflower is tender. Do not the pan cook dry.
2. Add the green bell peppers, tomatoes, a teaspoon of the pav bhaji masala, ginger garlic paste, 50 grams of butter, and some sea salt to taste. Mix well and cook for 5 to 10 min.
3. Mash everything with a potato masher to a nice mushy paste. Continue to cook until the water dries out. Remove the mixture from the pan and set aside.
4. Using the same pan, heat the remaining butter and add the onions, fenugreek leaves,  coriander, and a teaspoon of the pav bhaji masala. Cook until the onions become translucent, then add the food coloring if using.
5. Add the mashed cauliflower mixture, mix well and and cook for 3 – 4 minutes.
6. Add some water and give the ingredients a final mash. Depending on how thick or thin you like the bhaji add more water or cook out the liquid. Add the lime juice.
7. Once the soup is ready, top with a knob of butter, some chopped onions, and chopped cilantro.
8. serve and enjoy!

Here’s Sahil’s video demo of how to prepare this Pav Bhaji recipe.


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