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A plate of Aloo Keema garnished with mince onions, chilies and cilantro

Pakistani Aloo Keema

Course Main Course
Cuisine Pakistani
Keyword Aaloo Keema, Aaloo Qeema, Keema, Pakistani, Beef
Prep Time 8 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 38 minutes
Author Sarah - Flour & Spice


  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • ¼-1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 small diced onion
  • 1 inch piece cinnamon
  • 2-4 whole cloves
  • 6-8 whole black peppercorns
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 ½ tbsp ginger (see notes)
  • 1 ½ tbsp garlic
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp red chilli powder add more for a spicier qeema
  • ¾ tsp coriander powder
  • ¼ tsp turmeric powder
  • 3 to matoes diced
  • 1 large potato or 2 small - approximately 1 cup cut it into slim 2 cm big pieces
  • 1 tsp of garam masala
  • 3-4 chillies - sliced halved, or left whole
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • a few squeezes of lemon juice
  • julienned or minced ginger (optional)


  1. Take your Keema out of the fridge and open up any packaging

  2. Warm a wok on medium heat and add your oil

  3. When the oil is hot add your whole spices - cumin seeds, black pepper, cloves, cinnamon - cook for about 30 seconds or until you can see the cumin seeds darken

  4. Add your diced onion and cook until the edges are golden brown

  5. Now stir in your ginger and garlic paste, saute for a minute

  6. Turn the heat up and add your keema, stirring it frequently to evenly brown the meat.

  7. Add all your spices except the garam masala and mix well.

  8. Saute your Keema on medium high heat until it becomes nicely browned - this takes a good 7-8 minutes.

  9. Now add your chopped tomatoes and potatoes, about 1.5 cups of water and bring the mix to a boil.

  10. Simmer until your potatoes are almost tender (varies across potatoes but usually 10 minutes is enough here) - I leave a tiny bit of a bite so that they don't overcook and fall apart as I dry mine out.

  11. Adjust the consistency of the Keema to your liking - adding more water for a more gravy like keema or drying it up.

  12. Now add your garam masala, a squeeze of lemon, half the diced chilies, half the cilantro, and additional ginger (if using). Give it a quick mix then adjust seasoning.

  13. Serve topped with remaining chilies and cilantro. I love it with roti/naan/paratha but you can eat it with rice as well.

Recipe Notes

  • in this dish fresh ginger makes a HUGE difference, if you have the time then mince 2 tbsp of ginger by hand. You can then skip adding it at the end since it retains that nice feisty crunch