Qeema Matar (Mince meat and peas)

Qeema matar is another family favourite but also a classic Pakistani dish. Now everyone might have their own little twist to the basic recipe but there is very little you could get wrong with this dish. I’m not entirely sure that my recipe is the way my mum used to cook it but it is certainly the simple and easy way I like to get it done. It’s not very time consuming which is another thing I like about it. Super quick dinner whipped up in more or less 30 minutes is a fun way to end a long day! And if you been following my blog you will know that my freezer is always stocked up on peas…my absolute favorite veggie!

Mazhar likes mutton mince meat so that’s what I use but you can use beef if that’s your preference. When I get fresh mince meat, I mix in a tablespoon or two of whipped yogurt through it before freezing it, if I don’t plan on using it right away. I got this tip from my sister, it helps keep the meat tender and not become too dry while cooking. And I usually get the peas out before I start cooking so that they thaw but you don’t need to worry about it too much. Peas are the easiest thing to cook because they don’t take too long to soften up at all. So no worries there. Enough said, let’s get started.


  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 medium red onions, finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp garlic paste
  • 1 tbsp ginger paste
  • 750 gms mince meat
  • 1 tbsp red chilli powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 4-6 whole black peppers
  • 4-6 cloves
  • 1-2 cinnamon sticks
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2-3 medium tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 3-4 round red chillies, whole
  • 1/2 bunch coriander, chopped, for garnish


  1. Place a large pot on a medium flame and heat the oil then add the onions to brown them to a perfect golden color. As soon as the onions turn golden brown, add the garlic and ginger paste. This will sizzle so be careful and use a long handled spoon so you don’t burn yourself. Cook this for about 30 seconds and add in the mince meat. Be sure to work your spoon to break up the meat so that you don’t end up with huge lumps. Lumpy mince meat is a personal peeve for me! You do your thing.
  2. Turn the heat on high to brown the meat all through. The meat will release its liquids keep working your spoon through the mix till the water dries out. Then add all the spices, the seasoning and the water. Cover the pot, turn the flame on low and let it cook for about 20-25 minutes or till the meat is cooked through.
  3. Add the tomatoes and the round red chillies. Cover the pot again and leave it on a low flame for another ten minutes on a low flame. When you uncover the pot the oil will have released from the gravy and you are ready to serve. You can garnish the dish with chopped coriander if you like. Enjoy!

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