Indian-inspired Yogurt and Spice Marinade

This Indian-inspired Yogurt and Spice Marinade recipe is the perfect way to spice up your next meal! With a rich combination of creamy yogurt and aromatic spices, this marinade is popular for its unique and flavorful taste. It’s perfect for marinating meat or vegetables, and it requires minimal effort to prepare. Whether you’re looking for a simple weeknight dinner or a special dish for a dinner party, this recipe is sure to impress. So why not give it a try? Follow the instructions below and enjoy a delicious meal packed with bold and exciting flavors.

Here is why you might love this Indian-inspired Yogurt and Spice Marinade Recipe

1. Rich flavor: The combination of yogurt and Indian spices creates a rich, complex flavor that will satisfy adventurous taste buds.

2. Versatility: This marinade can be used with a variety of proteins, such as chicken, beef, or tofu, allowing for a wide range of dishes to be made using this recipe.

3. Health benefits: Using yogurt as a base for the marinade not only adds flavor but also provides multiple health benefits, including probiotics and calcium.

Indian-inspired Yogurt and Spice Marinade Recipe

This yogurt and spice marinade draws inspiration from the vibrant flavors of Indian cuisine. It combines creamy yogurt, aromatic spices, and a touch of heat for a versatile and delicious seasoning that can be used for everything from meat to vegetables.
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Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Course Dinner, Lunch
Cuisine Indian
Servings10 servings
Calories (per serving)31.04 kcal



  • Gather all ingredients
  • In a bowl, combine Greek yogurt, minced garlic, ground cumin, ground coriander, turmeric, smoked paprika, garam masala, cayenne pepper, and salt
  • Squeeze the juice of one lemon into the bowl and stir well
  • Add chopped fresh cilantro and chopped fresh mint to the mixture and stir again
  • Clean and prepare the meat or vegetables to be marinated
  • Place the meat or vegetables in a resealable plastic bag or covered dish
  • Pour the yogurt and spice mixture over the meat or vegetables and seal/cover the bag or dish
  • Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight
  • When ready to cook, remove the meat or vegetables from the marinade and discard the excess marinade
  • Cook the meat or vegetables as desired, using grill, oven or stovetop methods


1. Begin by using plain, unflavored yogurt as your base. This will serve as a canvas for your desired spices and flavors.
2. Choose a selection of Indian-inspired spices, such as cumin, coriander, turmeric, garam masala, and red chili powder.
3. Toast your spices in a dry pan before adding them to the yogurt. This will help to release their flavors and aroma.
4. Add finely grated ginger and minced garlic to the marinade for an extra burst of flavor.
5. Incorporate fresh herbs, such as cilantro or mint, to brighten up the marinade and give it a fresh aroma.
6. Finish with a splash of lemon juice or vinegar to balance out the richness of the yogurt.
7. Marinate your meats or vegetables in the mixture for at least a few hours, or overnight if possible. This will allow the flavors to fully penetrate the food.
8. Use the marinade to baste your food as it cooks, for an extra layer of flavor.
9. Experiment with different variations of spices and herbs to create your perfect Indian-inspired marinade.
10. Enjoy your flavorful and aromatic dish, and don't forget to garnish with fresh herbs and a squeeze of lemon juice before serving.


Serving: 1servingCalories: 31.04kcalCarbohydrates: 2.59gProtein: 4.45gFat: 0.35gSaturated Fat: 0.07gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.05gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.08gTrans Fat: 0.002gCholesterol: 2.03mgSodium: 132.46mgPotassium: 87.38mgFiber: 0.33gSugar: 1.42gVitamin A: 196.22IUVitamin B1: 0.02mgVitamin B2: 0.12mgVitamin B3: 0.17mgVitamin B5: 0.15mgVitamin B6: 0.05mgVitamin B12: 0.28µgVitamin C: 1.37mgVitamin E: 0.12mgVitamin K: 0.61µgCalcium: 54.02mgCopper: 0.02mgFolate: 4.69µgIron: 0.49mgManganese: 0.07mgMagnesium: 7.97mgPhosphorus: 60.91mgSelenium: 4.2µgZinc: 0.28mgNet Carbohydrates: 2.26g
Read more nutritional information values.

Data source: USDA

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Main Ingredients Explained

Ingredient Description Alternatives
Yogurt A creamy, tangy base that helps tenderize meat and adds flavor Greek yogurt, sour cream, buttermilk
Spices A blend of fragrant Indian-inspired spices, such as cumin, coriander, garam masala, and turmeric Curry powder, chili powder, paprika
Garlic and Ginger Adds an aromatic and slightly spicy kick to the marinade Ground garlic and ginger, fresh minced garlic and ginger

Storage Tips

Yogurt-based marinades usually last for about three to four days in the refrigerator. To store the marinade, transfer it to an airtight container and place it in the fridge. If the marinade includes meat, poultry, or fish, it should be used within two days.

To freeze the marinade, transfer it to an airtight container or a zip-top freezer bag. Label the container with the date, and store it in the freezer for up to two months. Before using the frozen marinade, defrost it in the refrigerator or by placing it in a bowl of cold water. Never defrost marinades at room temperature or in warm water.

When using the marinade, always discard any leftover or unused portion that has been in contact with raw meat, poultry, or fish. Using this as a reference, you can adjust the storage and preparation methods based on the specific recipe of the Indian-inspired Yogurt and Spice Marinade.

Recipe Variations

1. Tandoori-style marinade: Add 1 tablespoon of garam masala and 1 teaspoon of turmeric to the marinade for a more authentic tandoori flavor.

2. Mint-coriander marinade: Blend fresh mint leaves, coriander leaves, garlic, and ginger with the yogurt and spices for an herbal marinade that pairs well with grilled lamb or chicken.

3. Curry powder marinade: Substitute the cumin, coriander, and turmeric with 1-2 tablespoons of curry powder for a bolder Indian flavor.

4. Lemon and honey marinade: Add 1 tablespoon of honey and the juice of 1 lemon to the marinade for a tangy and sweet twist.

5. Coconut milk marinade: Replace the yogurt with coconut milk for a creamy and tropical marinade that is perfect for seafood.

6. Mango chutney marinade: Mix in 1-2 tablespoons of mango chutney for a fruity and spicy marinade that is great for chicken or pork.

7. Cilantro lime marinade: Add chopped cilantro and the juice of 1 lime for a fresh and zesty marinade that goes well with grilled vegetables or tofu.

What To Serve With

1. Rice: Plain or flavored rice such as lemon rice or cumin rice works well with this dish.
2. Naan bread: A popular Indian flatbread that is perfect for soaking up the marinade.
3. Grilled vegetables: A colorful mix of veggies such as bell peppers, onions, and zucchini complement the savory marinade.
4. Salad: A light and refreshing salad with cucumbers, tomatoes, and a lemon dressing adds a nice contrast to the bold flavors of the marinade.
5. Chutney: A sweet and spicy mango or tomato chutney can also be served alongside the dish for an extra burst of flavor.

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