Beef Nihari Special A GUIDE BY OUR EDITOR

Before you Start

  • Nihari is conventionally made from camel, but beef, goat, and chicken can also be used. Whichever meat one uses, however, must be easily tenderized.
  • Make sure to use a deep dish to allow for a thorough cooking of the meat in the curry for maximum flavor.
  • The condiments served with the dish are necessary ingredients to fully appreciate the flavors of nihari.

Spicy curry with a heady aroma!

Beef nihari is an intensely spicy curry with a heady aroma that signifies the decadence of the dish. Served with freshly baked flatbread, ginger, green chilies, coriander, and lemon juice, beef nihari makes for a fulfilling and tasteful meal. Nihari is cooked with tender cuts of beef to create a viscous curry that is infused with herbs and spices. The flavors and textures of this particular dish often leave one drowsy and deeply satisfied with the richness of the dish.


Nihari masala is easily available in the market but to make one at home, free from preservatives is a time-taking task but is worth it. It is a blend of royal cumin seeds, ground turmeric, peppercorn, red chili, mace, nut meg, cloves, cardamoms, bay leaf, Kashmiri red chili, coriander. The ground spices can be stored in an air tight container for weeks.

Caramelized onions are a wonderful accompaniment to create a great base for savory curries. To make the perfect caramelized onions one should make sure to use semi-red onions rather than white. The onions should be pat dried with a kitchen towel completely once washed. The lesser the moisture in onions the better they are caramelized. Make sure to not burn or over cook the onions. Once light brown, onions should be placed on a paper towel immediately and covered with a paper towel as well. In th

Clarified butter is known as GHEE. The fat is extracted from cooking the milk cream that separate the butter solids from the milk. Once the milk is separated, the fatty water is placed in an air tight container in a cool place where it solidifies. The Ghee is commonly used in preparing breakfast i.e. parathas. It can also be used in making barbeque and in gravies to make them richer and bursting with flavors.

Preparing the Meat

Since full chunk of meat from the shank part are used in Nihari along with bong bones, the cut needs to be tender and need to separate easily to ensure a seamless fusion of flavors throughout the meat. The curry is served with flatbread, which makes it easier to break through the meat. Shank is specified as the meat beneath the thigh of an animal i.e. cow, goat, camel. The meat is known to be full of flavors and the texture is tender. This part is also used in making steaks and barbecue.

Preparing the Meat

Consistency of the curry

The curry has to be sufficiently thickened using thickening agents i.e. flour or wheat flour to ensure consistency and the lingering flavor characteristic of Nihari. This is a subtle difference that differentiates the Nihari from other types of curry such as korma, which is equally aromatic and spicy, but less consistent.

Consistency of the curry

Beef Nihari


Beef Nihari is considered one of the most popular dishes of Pakistani cuisine. Though traditionally served as breakfast, it is now usually eaten as a main dish at lunch or dinner, and often makes an appearance at special occasions. It is served with coriander, mint, green chilies and lemon alongside naan and tandoori rotis.

  • Medium
  • 6 person(s)
  • 45 Min


    • Shahi zeera1 teaspoon
    • Red chili powder1 teaspoon
    • Ground turmeric½ teaspoon
    • Peppercorn1/2 teaspoon
    • Cloves1/2 teaspoon
    • Saltto taste
    • Star anise1-2
    • Mace½ teaspoon
    • Nutmeg½ teaspoon
    • Black cardamom2
    • Bay leaf1-2
    • Deghi red chili1 teaspoon
    • Cardamom4-5
    • Coriander powder1 teaspoon
    • Ghee1/2 cup
    • Beef boneless1 kilogram
    • Nihari masala5 tablespoon
    • Ginger garlic paste1 tablespoon
    • Water1 litre
    • Diluted flour5 part water, 1 part flour
    • ½ ginger piece, juliennefor garnish
    • Fresh coriander, choppedfor garnish
    • Green chili, choppedfor garnish
    • Lemon, slicedfor garnish


  • For Nihari Masala: Add the royal cumin, red chili powder, ground turmeric, peppercorn, cloves, salt, star anise, mace and nutmeg, black cardamom, cardamom, bay leaf, deghi red chili, coriander powder in a grinder. Grind into a coarse powder.
  • For Gravy: Heat ghee in a large pot add boneless beef, stir fry until it is not pink anymore. Then add Nihari masala and mix well.
  • Add the ginger garlic paste and mix well for a minute.
  • Add the water, stir. Bring it to a boil, cover the lid, cook on low flame for 15-25 minutes or until the beef is completely cooked.
  • Add diluted flour into the gravy, cover the lid again and cook for 10-15 minutes until the gravy thickens and oil rises to the surface.
  • Serve with condiments i.e ginger, green chilies chopped, coriander and hot tandoori naan.
  • Enjoy! Please give us your feedback in the comments below.

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