Overhead image of large bowl of lamb curry on a rustic wood table
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4.78 from 9 votes

Lamb Bhuna Curry (Bhuna Gosht)

This aromatic spicy Lamb Bhuna is easy to make in your Instant Pot, slow cooker or stovetop. A fairly dry curry that is also quite low in calories. 
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time1 hr 30 mins
Total Time1 hr 40 mins
Course: Main
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Bhuna Gosht, Instant Pot Lamb Curry, Lamb Bhuna, lamb curry, Slow Cooker Lamb Bhuna
Servings: 6
Calories: 300kcal
Author: Lucy Parissi | Supergolden Bakes


Bhuna powder

  • tsp  chilli flakes
  • tsp  cumin seeds
  • tsp  coriander seeds
  • tsp  fennel seeds
  • 2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 2 tsp fenugreek seeds

Lamb Bhuna

  • tbsp  ghee (clarified butter) or rapeseed oil or use low calorie cooking spray
  • large onions , peeled and diced
  • garlic cloves minced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 green chillies
  • 8 cardamom pods , lightly crushed
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 1 1/2  tbsp freshly grated ginger
  • 1.3 kg (3 pounds) diced lamb
  • 400 (14oz) crushed tomatoes or chopped tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 300 ml (1 1/4 cup) vegetable stock or water (Instant Pot / Crockpot require less see method)
  • tsp  salt
  • fresh coriander (cilantro) or mint to garnish
  • Lime wedges to serve
  • red / green chillies, thinly sliced to serve (optional)



  • Dry fry the bhuna spices in your casserole dish over medium heat until they start releasing their aromas. Be careful as they can easily burn! Tip the spice mix into a pestle and mortar or spice grinder and grind to fine powder. Set aside.
  • Heat the ghee (or use a flavourless oil or low calorie cooking spray) and fry the onions over medium low heat while stirring for 5 minutes.
  • Add the garlic, ginger, bay leaves, salt, cardamom pods and cloves. Cook for 2 minutes.
  • Stir in the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste and whole chillies. Add the ground bhuna spices and cook over high heat for 3 minutes until you have a thick paste.
  • Add the lamb and stir to combine and coat in the sauce. Cook for 5 minutes then add the stock and bring to a rolling simmer.
  • Cover with the lid and reduce the heat to lowest setting. Simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally to check the liquid levels.
  • Uncover the pot and increase the heat to high. Cook for another 15 minutes or until the sauce is lovely and thick and all liquid is gone.
  • Check the seasoning and add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste. Discard the bay leaves, whole chillies and cardamom pods.
  • Garnish with coriander or mint leaves and sliced chillies. Serve over basmati rice with a little cooling yoghurt on the side.


  • Fry the powder in a pan – dry frying in an Instant Pot will likely give you a HOT warning. Grind spices as above.
  • Heat the ghee or oil in the Instant Pot (select ‘Sauté’ press ‘Adjust’ and select ‘Less’). Once ghee has melted or oil is simmering add the onions, ginger and garlic and stir for 5 minutes until softened.
  • Add the ground spices, tomato paste, salt, cardamom, cloves, bay leaves and lamb and stir to combine.
  • Pour in 250ml (1 cup) stock and stir. (Note this is slightly less than the amount listed for stovetop method).
  • Add the crushed tomatoes and chillies – do not stir.
  • Cover, set vent to sealing and cook on high pressure for 35 minutes. Release the steam manually.
  • Open the Instant Pot and cook the curry on ‘Sauté’ High setting, stirring, until the sauce thickens.
  • Check the seasoning and adjust if needed. Discard the bay leaves, whole chillies and cardamom pods before serving.



Follow steps 1-5 of the stovetop method and then transfer everything to your slow cooker. Add 125ml (1/2 cup) stock (note this is less than stovetop method) and for 6 hours on high or 8-10 hours on low.
Uncover and check the thickness of the sauce – you might need to reduce it. If that is the case continue to cook on high for another 30 minutes or transfer to a large pan or wok and cook over high heat, stirring, until the sauce thickens to your liking.
  • How to serve: Serve your curry over basmati rice with a little yoghurt to mellow out the spices. Naan bread is great for mopping up the sauce.
  • Cool and store in the fridge for up to three days. Like most curries, this lamb bhuna will only get tastier after a couple of days. You might need to add a little water when reheating as the sauce is very thick and could catch. 
  • Freezing instructions: cool completely after cooking (don’t add any garnishes). Divide into suitable containers. Freeze for up to three months. Defrost overnight in the fridge and heat on the stove, adding a little water if needed. Make sure the curry is piping hot all the way through before serving.


Calories: 300kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 105mg | Sodium: 658mg | Potassium: 808mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 630IU | Vitamin C: 10.4mg | Calcium: 92mg | Iron: 5.8mg