Mutton Nihari
Mutton Nihari
5 from 66 votes
This easy nihari recipe uses homemade nihari masala to recreate that authentic taste of this spicy stew recipe. Succulent pieces of meat swimming in a thickened spiced soup. Each bite is loaded with layers of flavour.
Mutton Nihari

Mutton Nihari, a dish steeped in history and tradition, yet always ready to surprise your taste buds with its rich flavors and tender meat. Originating from the royal kitchens of the Mughal era, this recipe has stood the test of time, delighting generations with its hearty goodness.

While Nihari may sound exotic, fear not, for I’m here to guide you through each step of this culinary journey.

Despite its regal origins, this recipe doesn’t demand master chef skills. With a bit of patience and love for cooking, you can recreate the magic of Mutton Nihari right in your kitchen.

Prepare yourself to indulge in a dish that blends the warmth of spices with the succulence of slow-cooked meat. Are you ready to elevate your cooking game and savor the irresistible allure of Mutton Nihari?

Expert Tip: To achieve a velvety smooth gravy, make sure to cook the flour mixture thoroughly until it thickens and blends seamlessly with the Nihari. This will ensure a rich and luxurious texture that coats the meat beautifully.


Mutton or Lamb: Mutton brings a depth of flavor and tenderness that is essential for Mutton Nihari. Its rich taste enhances the overall experience, making each bite a savory delight.

Onions: These humble bulbs add a sweet and caramelized flavor to our Nihari, complementing the spices and meat perfectly. They melt into the gravy, adding a luscious texture and richness.

Oil: Acting as the base for our Nihari, oil helps in sautéing the aromatics and browning the meat, ensuring a robust flavor profile and succulent texture.

Ginger Paste and Garlic Paste: These two ingredients form the aromatic foundation of our dish, infusing it with their pungent and earthy flavors. They marry well with the spices, adding depth and complexity to the gravy.

Chilli Powder, Turmeric Powder, and Salt: These spices are the heart and soul of our Nihari, imbuing it with warmth, color, and a balanced seasoning. Together, they create a harmonious blend of flavors that tantalize the taste buds.

Wheat Flour: Used as a thickening agent, wheat flour helps to achieve the desired consistency of the Nihari gravy. It forms a smooth paste when mixed with water, adding body and richness to the dish.

Coriander, Ginger, and Green Chillies: These fresh garnishes add a burst of freshness and heat to our Nihari, elevating its flavor profile and enhancing its visual appeal. They provide a vibrant contrast to the rich and hearty gravy.

Nihari Masala: This special spice blend is the secret behind the distinctive flavor of Mutton Nihari. Made from a combination of aromatic spices like fennel seeds, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, peppercorns, cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves, it imparts a complex and tantalizing aroma to the dish.

Expert Tip: When grinding the spices for the Nihari masala, toast them lightly in a dry pan before grinding to enhance their aroma and flavor.

Serving Suggestions

  • Homemade Naan: The soft and pillowy texture of homemade naan is the perfect accompaniment to Mutton Nihari. Tear off a piece of warm naan and use it to soak up the rich gravy, allowing the flavors to meld together in every mouthful.
  • Steamed Basmati Rice: For a classic pairing, serve Mutton Nihari with steamed basmati rice. The fluffy grains provide a neutral base that allows the flavors of the Nihari to shine, creating a comforting and satisfying meal.
  • Fresh Salad: Balance out the richness of Mutton Nihari with a crisp and refreshing salad. A simple mix of cucumber, tomato, and onion tossed with lemon juice and a pinch of salt adds a burst of freshness and acidity to the meal.
  • Yogurt Raita: Cool down the spice of Mutton Nihari with a side of creamy yogurt raita. Flavored with mint, cilantro, and a hint of cumin, this refreshing condiment complements the bold flavors of the dish while soothing the palate.
  • Pickled Onions: Add a tangy and crunchy element to your Mutton Nihari by serving it with pickled onions. The acidity of the pickles cuts through the richness of the gravy, providing a delightful contrast of flavors and textures.
  • Fresh Herbs: Garnish your Mutton Nihari with a sprinkle of fresh cilantro or mint leaves for a burst of color and herbaceous aroma. These aromatic herbs add a finishing touch to the dish, elevating its presentation and flavor profile.

Experiment with different serving options to find your perfect combination and enjoy the sumptuous flavors of Mutton Nihari to the fullest.

Expert Tip: For best results, marinate the mutton with ginger paste and garlic paste for at least an hour before cooking. This helps to tenderize the meat and infuse it with flavor.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Mutton Nihari?

Mutton Nihari is a traditional Indian and Pakistani dish known for its rich and aromatic gravy, slow-cooked with tender mutton or lamb and a blend of spices. It is often enjoyed as a hearty meal, especially during special occasions or festive gatherings.

Is Mutton Nihari spicy?

While Mutton Nihari does contain spices, the level of spiciness can be adjusted according to personal preference. You can control the heat by adjusting the amount of chili powder and green chilies used in the recipe.

Can I make Mutton Nihari ahead of time?

Yes, Mutton Nihari can be made ahead of time and actually tastes even better the next day as the flavors have more time to develop. Simply store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator and reheat gently before serving.

Can I use beef instead of mutton?

Yes, you can substitute beef for mutton in this recipe if you prefer. Keep in mind that the cooking time may vary slightly depending on the cut of beef used, so adjust accordingly to ensure the meat is tender.

Can I freeze leftover Mutton Nihari?

Yes, you can freeze leftover Mutton Nihari for future use. Allow it to cool completely, then transfer it to a freezer-safe container or resealable bag. When ready to enjoy, thaw overnight in the refrigerator and reheat gently on the stove or in the microwave until heated through.

How do I serve Mutton Nihari?

Mutton Nihari is traditionally served with naan bread or steamed rice, along with fresh garnishes such as chopped coriander, julienned ginger, and sliced green chilies. You can also pair it with yogurt raita or pickled onions for added flavor and texture.

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Mutton Nihari

Mutton Nihari

by Nabeela Kauser
This easy nihari recipe uses homemade nihari masala to recreate that authentic taste of this spicy stew recipe. Succulent pieces of meat swimming in a thickened spiced soup.
5 from 66 votes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 15 minutes
Course Dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Pakistani
Servings 6
Calories 677 kcal



  • 1 kg Mutton Or Lamb
  • 1 Onions
  • 100 ml Oil
  • 1 tsp Ginger Paste
  • 1 tsp Garlic Paste
  • 1 tsp Chilli Powder
  • 1 tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 50 g Wheat Flour
  • 100 ml Water
  • Coriander
  • Ginger
  • 2 Green Chillies

Nihari Masala

  • 1 tbsp Fennel Seeds Saunf
  • 1 tbsp Cumin Seeds Jeera
  • 1 tbsp Coriander Seeds
  • 1 tsp Peppercorn
  • 1 inch Cinnamon Dalchini
  • 2 Black Cardamom Bari Elaichi
  • 5 Green Cardamoms Elaichi
  • 7 Cloves
  • 2 Bay Leaf


  • In a pan heat up the oil on medium heat until hot
  • Add the ginger paste and garlic paste then sauté for a few minutes on medium heat
  • Add the lamb or mutton and cook until the colour changes
  • While the lamb/mutton is cooking, grind the fennel seeds, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, black peppercorns, cinnamon, black cardamom pods, green cardamom pods, cloves and bay leaves until a fine powder is formed
  • Add the nihari masala powder, chilli powder, turmeric powder, and salt then cook the spices for 5 minutes
  • Add the water and cook for a further 2 hours on low heat until the meat is tender
  • In a separate bowl, mix the wheat flour and 100ml of water to form a smooth paste – this flour mixture acts as a thickening agent, if you want to thicken it more then add more flour
  • Add the flour mixture into the pan then cover with a lid and cook for 30 minutes on a low heat
  • In another pan, heat up the olive oil on medium heat until hot
  • Add the sliced onions and fry the sliced onions until browned and caramelised
  • Add the browned onions to the lamb along with the chopped coriander, julienned ginger, and finely diced chillies
  • Serve with homemade naan and enjoy!



Nutritional facts:
The provision of nutritional information is done merely as a courtesy and should not be taken as a guarantee.


Calories: 677kcalCarbohydrates: 14gProtein: 30gFat: 56gSaturated Fat: 18gTrans Fat: 0.1gCholesterol: 122mgSodium: 548mgPotassium: 521mgFibre: 3gSugar: 1gVitamin A: 125IUVitamin C: 4mgVitamin D: 0.2µgCalcium: 83mgIron: 5mg
Keyword Cooking, Curry, Food, Mutton, Nihari, Pakistani, Ramadan, Recipe, Spicy
Tried this recipe?Mention @CookwithNabeela or tag #CookwithNabeela!



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Latest comments (20)

Nabeela Kauser

It might seem like a lot, but the full quantity of the masala spice mix really brings out the flavors in this dish. Feel free to adjust to your taste preferences. 🙂

Cook with Nabeela

Hi, I'm Nabeela!

I love to cook! I want to share with you my favourite, delicious family-friendly recipes. I want to inspire you to create fantastic food for your family every day.

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