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Learn Indian Cooking: Madhur Jaffrey MasterClass Review

If you want to gain new cooking skills, Madhur Jeffrey’s MasterClass will take you on a journey through Indian culinary traditions. Check out our honest review of the class to make sure it’s the right course for you.

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Madhur Jaffrey Teaches Indian Cooking MasterClass: Our Verdict (2024)


4.6 / 5

In Madhur Jaffrey’s MasterClass, an award-winning cookbook author teaches how to make 30 authentic Indian dishes, including main meals, essential embellishments, and street snacks. The course is ideal for beginners and anyone who wants to learn more about Indian culinary tradition and the power of spices.


  • Great instructor
  • Versatile recipes
  • Practical tips
  • Top-notch production quality


  • Lack of quick, easy recipes

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No, Thanks

Thanks to my parents and their love for curry and spices, I’ve been surrounded by diverse, flavorful cuisine since I was a kid. Although I didn’t grow up to be a cook, I still find chopping, stirring, and combining spices very soothing and calming…

I can say that I’m not a beginner, but I do prefer to stick to relatively simple dishes. Also, lately, I’ve been feeling like I need to add a little variety to my cooking. It’s easy to get caught up in a routine of preparing the same beloved dishes over and over again.

When I spotted it on MasterClass, Madhur Jaffrey’s Indian Cooking class seemed like a perfect solution for me. Exploring new spices, deepening the knowledge of making rice and dals… Sign me up!

But did Madhur Jaffrey’s course manage to meet my expectations? Who is it intended for?

I’ll tell you everything about my learning experience and conclusions in this honest review.

Table of Contents

What is the Madhur Jaffrey MasterClass?

Indian Cooking” is an online course offered by MasterClass, a learning platform known for its team of world-leading expert instructors.

The course is taught by Madhur Jaffrey, a seven-time James Beard Award winner and beloved food and travel writer. She is the author of cookbooks on Indian, Asian, and world vegetarian cuisines, many of which have become best sellers.

In her cooking MasterClass, Jaffrey breaks down traditional Indian recipes and teaches how to work with essential spices and ingredients. Most of the dishes prepared in the course take some time to make, but the process is straightforward and beginner-friendly.

Besides preparing the main dishes and embellishments, Jaffrey talks about her connection to food and ways you can add flavor, passion and variety to your everyday cooking.

The course contains 12 video lessons with a duration of 2 hours and 26 minutes.

Madhur Jaffrey speaking in her MasterClass

Who is Madhur Jaffrey?

Madhur Jaffrey is an Indian-born British American food and travel writer, actress, and TV personality.

Throughout her long and rich career, Jaffrey has been recognized for many of her projects, but she is best known for her debut cookbook, an Invitation to Indian Cooking (1973), which helped bring Indian cuisine to the Western hemisphere. The book was inducted into the James Beard Foundation’s Cookbook Hall of Fame in 2006

She also wrote the popular Madhur Jaffrey’s Indian Cookery, along with dozens of other cookbooks, and she was the food consultant at Dawat, a restaurant that was regarded as one of the best Indian restaurants in New York City.

Who is Madhur Jaffrey’s MasterClass for?

Essentially, Madhur’s MasterClass is great for anyone who wants to improve their cooking skills and add new recipes to their usual repertoire.

Since Madhur demonstrates how to prepare essential Indian recipes and provides some basic preparation and cooking tips, the class is ideal for beginners.

Also, the class is focused on Indian cuisine, but some of the lessons can be beneficial regardless of what type of food and spices you prefer.

Madhur provided many practical tips regarding vegetables, potatoes, rice, and other ingredients that are commonly used around the world. These tips might seem simple and basic, but they can be a game-changer, especially if you just started working on your cooking skills.

All in all, Madhur’s MasterClass is geared toward home cooks and beginners, but it also offers cooking secrets that can be helpful to more experienced learners.

What does Madhur Jaffrey's MasterClass cover?

As one of the world’s towering figures in Indian cooking, Madhur has many authentic Indian recipes up her sleeve. And for her MasterClass, she chose crème de la crème; or should I say curry de la curry?

Some of the main dishes she decided to prepare include a Goan shrimp dish, cauliflowers with asafetida, and lamb biryani. Besides the main dishes, she teaches how to prepare condiments such as tamarind chutney.

All of these recipes have one thing in common: they are all flavor-packed dishes that Indians love and that are relatively easy to prepare.

They are not quick, easy dinners you can prep in 10 minutes though; but they don’t require hours of preparation or hard-to-find ingredients either.

Now, here is what you can expect from each lesson in terms of content:

  • Lesson 1 is an introductory lesson where Madhur introduces herself and the course.
  • Lesson 2 covers spices fundamentals. Madhur uses cumin seeds and garam masala to show how spices can be altered to create different flavors and depth.
  • Lesson 3 shows creative ways you can prepare one of the world’s most eaten foods: potatoes.
  • Lesson 4 explains what curry actually means and showcases Madhur’s favorite curry recipes.
  • Lesson 5 deals with South Asian meats.
  • Lesson 6 is focused on essential Indian vegetables and the variety it offers.
  • Lesson 7 is called The Magic of Rice. Madhur demonstrates how to cook and serve basmati rice and how to prepare biryani.
  • Lessons 8-9 are focused on some of India’s most beloved foods: chapati and dals.
  • Lessons 10-11 contain condiment recipes, snacks, and appetizers.
  • Lesson 12 explores what food means to Madhur and how eating with your hands can contribute to your eating experience.

My favorite parts of Madhur Jaffrey’s MasterClass

Honestly, taking Madhur’s MasterClass was such a relaxing, immersive experience.

I learned some new things, but I also had a chance to just sit back and enjoy Madhur’s demonstrations. I just wished my computer screen can release scents as well…

Each lesson provided me with useful tips and recipe ideas, and here are some of the chapters that I particularly liked.

Spice fundamentals: Roasted cumin and garam masala

Madhur Jaffrey cooking
Madhur Jaffrey preparing her favorite spices

We use spices like a painter uses colors, Madhur says.

In this useful chapter, Madhur roasted cumin and prepared garam masala to show how different ways of treating spices can affect the taste of your dish.

And once you learn how spices work, you can start improvising.


Madhur Jaffrey cooking potatoes four different ways
There are many ways you can turn simple potatoes into a creative, mouth-watering dish

Potatoes are one of the most common foods in the world, yet so many people see them as a simple and basic side dish. This lesson showed that potatoes have so much potential to become an interesting, creative meal – you just need to learn how to prepare them.

Madhur demonstrated how potatoes are prepared in different parts of India and showed how seasoning changes everything.


Madhur Jaffrey cooking
Madhur preparing cauliflowers and potatoes with asafetida

This is another lesson that shows that vegetables can be prepared as a delicious main dish.

Here, Madhur talked about the variety of ancient Indian vegetables. She demonstrated how to make cauliflowers with asafetida and introduced an okra dish and eggplant bharta.

I wish more people in the West understood the level of taste and fullness plant-based dishes can provide.

How much does the MasterClass cost?

MasterClass is a subscription-based learning platform, so it’s not possible to purchase courses individually. If you want to take this MasterClass, you have to become a subscriber.

The standard annual plan has been renamed "Plus" and is available at $120 a year (which makes it $10 per month, billed annually), and now provides access to all MasterClass courses on two devices instead of one. The Premium plan, providing access for up to six devices costs $240 per year.

A MasterClass subscription gives you unlimited access to a catalog of 200+ classes, so if you want to take multiple classes throughout the year, the subscription is definitely worth it, and there are pleny of interesting courses on related topics to explore.

Also, the platform offers a 30-day satisfaction guarantee, so if you’re not happy with your learning experience, you can request a full refund.

Note that the "Standard" membership, priced at $72 per year, only gives you access to their short-form learning content – none of their full MasterClasses are included.

What I liked about Madhur Jaffrey’s MasterClass

I found Madhur’s class very insightful and enjoyable.

I was actually surprised by how much I learned about some ingredients I use very often, such as rice and potatoes.

Madhur also reminded me of some spices I haven’t used in a while, and she inspired me to explore new ways to prepare some of my favorite dishes.

If you want to learn more about Indian cuisine and upgrade some of your dishes, I’m sure you would enjoy this class too, and here are some of the main reasons.

Great instructor

Eating is such an important part of our lives, said Madhur at the beginning of the course. That was the moment I knew we were on the same page.

As the course progressed, I realized that she really is a great teacher – relaxed, fun, and spontaneous yet engaging and insightful.

Versatile recipes

Although I would personally prefer more veggie options, I liked the choice of recipes in the course. Madhur prepared traditional main dishes, comfort food dinner recipes, savory street snacks…

She also showed me how to work with basic foods such as rice and potatoes and prepare delicious meals with only one spice.

Practical tips

While demonstrating how to make authentic Indian dishes that seemed more complex, Madhur explained every step in detail.

She also provided many practical tips that can be used in any type of cuisine. For instance, she showed how to rinse and cook rice so it doesn’t stick and how to cut cauliflower properly.

Top-notch production quality

I’m always amazed by how stunning MasterClass videos look, but this one was particularly beautiful to watch. All of those colors, close-ups, the music… Everything was incorporated so well.

Drawbacks of Madhur Jaffrey’s MasterClass

There are, however, some minor things that could be improved.

Lack of quick, easy recipes

I did say the recipes in Madhur’s course are quite versatile, but it would actually be even better if she included more quick, easy meals.

Many of us don’t have time to cook every day, so it would be cool if she included some suggestions for quick dinners or batch cooking.

Review conclusion: Is Madhur Jaffrey’s MasterClass worth it?

In my opinion, Madhur Jaffrey’s Indian Cooking MasterClass provides a ton of inspiration and practical advice for home cooks and beginners.

Madhur is a great teacher, engaging and friendly, and her knowledge and passion for Indian culinary traditions are undeniable.

Most of the dishes covered in her course are not difficult to make, although they do require some time and preparation. But Madhur walks you through every step of the process, providing helpful tips and suggestions that make all the difference.

And if you want to learn how to make more simple but flavorful dishes, you can also check out Yotam Ottolenghi’s MasterClass. Yotam will introduce you to modern Middle Eastern cuisine and the world of platters, hummus, and mezze spreads.

And now, if you excuse me, I’m going to the kitchen to roast some cumin seeds.