Before I get to the recipe – I have to share some exciting news!!
What’s better than some creamy dreamy Saag? Saag made in an INSTANT. Like, in an Instant Pot – or any (electronic) pressure cooker, really. Not sure what saag is? It’s kind of like the Indian version of creamed spinach – only, without cream. It’s typically made with ghee and so that’s what I’m using in this recipe. Greens + Ghee are all you need to = Saag. Okay… and some spices too of course.
Don’t have a pressure cooker? Here’s my recipe for making it using your slow cooker.
Get ready for a lesson in all things Saag. Yes, I’m going to school you in saag.
Here’s the deal with saag. “Saag” basically translates to pureed greens so you can make saag with whatever greens you have on hand: kale, spinach, brussels sprouts, etc. If you want to make an authentic Punjabi saag though, then you need “sarson” which just means “mustard greens.” I prefer to use equal parts spinach and mustard greens to make my saag BUT when I can’t find mustard greens, I’ll make a “palak saag,” which just means an all spinach saag (“palak” = spinach). The thing with an all spinach saag is that it comes out pretty thin, so I usually add a little potato starch at the end to thicken it up (see the notes on how to do this properly).
I know this is probably more than you cared to know about saag, but it’s a subject I’m pretty passionate about. If I’m being honest, I’m basically passionate about all things food related. If I’m being REALLY honest, I’m more passionate about EATING food than I am cooking. That’s probably the reason I’m in love with my Instant Pot – because I get to spend more time eating and less time cooking. (And NO, Instant Pot isn’t paying me to say that – though if I’m being SUPER honest… I wish they would ? )
Alright, I’ll stop with all the honesty. This saag isn’t great (LIE). Ah, I’m a terrible liar. Back to being honest: this saag is the best way to eat greens (TRUTH). ?Print
I like to describe saag as the Indian version of creamed spinach, only the creaminess comes from the ghee. Saag translates to “pureed greens” so you can essentially use any green vegetable to make saag. To make authentic Punjabi saag, you will want to use a combination of mustard greens and spinach. This is the version of saag that I grew up eating and it’s the one that I prefer, but if you can’t find mustard greens, don’t worry, spinach will work just fine too. An all spinach saag will have a thinner consistency though. Once the saag is done, you can add cooked meat or paneer to the dish if you want. Just make sure to always top your bowl with extra ghee!
- 2 tablespoons ghee
- 2 onions, diced
- 4 teaspoons minced garlic
- 2 teaspoons minced ginger
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon coriander
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon cayenne, adjust to taste
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- 1 pound spinach, rinsed
- 1 pound mustard leaves, rinsed
- Pinch of kasoori methi (dried fenugreek leaves)
- Ghee or butter, for serving
- Press the “saute” button on the Instant Pot and add the ghee. Once it melts, add the onion, garlic, ginger and spices to the pot and stir-fry for 2-3 minutes.
- Add the spinach, stirring until it wilts and there’s enough room to add the mustard greens.
- Secure the lid, close the pressure valve and cook for 15 minutes at high pressure.
- Naturally release pressure.
- Remove the lid and use an immersion blender to puree the contents of the pot (or pour the contents into a blender and then add the blended mixture back into the pot).
- Stir in the dried fenugreek leaves.
- Serve with ghee.
- I think this tastes even better the next day, once the flavors have had time to marry.
- If you are making this using 2 pounds of spinach then know that the saag will be a bit thinner than if you were to have used saag along with mustard greens. You can thicken the saag by pressing sauté at the end to reduce liquid or you can stir in some type of flour to help thicken it up (corn flour, potato starch, etc).
Looking for more Instant Pot Recipes? Try these:
Instant Pot Shredded Chicken
Instant Pot Carne Guisada
Instant Pot Habanero Chili
Instant Pot Dal Makhani
Goat Curry in a Hurry
Instant Pot Texas Beef Chili
Instant Pot Ground Lamb Curry
Instant Pot Butter Chicken