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It is the holiday season, and cookies, pies and desserts are all over my social media feeds! But equally important are those holiday appetizers and party conversation openers! I mean come on if I could have a party with JUST holiday appetizers, now that would be one fun party! I love how easy and versatile the appetizers are, and how they can be so communal and bring people around a table to enjoy them with their cocktails or wine. 

Cheesy tikka masala bean bake


I am super excited to partner again with S&W Beans, to bring to you an easy and very tasty holiday appetizer that is fun, delicious and serves more than 15 people! It is my Cheesy Tikka Masala Bean Bake, served with crostini or olive oil toasted sourdough slices. 


S&W Beans has been delivering the perfect, simple bean for 120 years. At S&W Beans, every bean is graded and evaluated with the highest standards in the industry. 

Cheesy tikka masala bean bake


There are several benefits of beans that need to be highlighted. Being a vegetarian, I get all my protein content from beans, lentils or eggs. Here are some of the benefits of beans:

  • Ready-to-use ingredient for quick and healthy meals or snacks
  • Just four servings of beans a week = 14% lower risk of heart disease
  • Eating beans can significantly lower blood pressure
  • Inexpensive source of protein
  • A variety of flavors, sizes and colors provide boredom-busting meal solutions
  • Eating a serving of beans every day in place of meat could lower breast cancer risk by 15% for all women
  • Bean production is drastically better for the environment than the production of other proteins
  • Plant-based protein is more economical than animal-based protein too

Cheesy tikka masala bean bake


Some of the nutrition facts of beans are:

  • One serving of S&W Beans contains 6-9g of fiber – a whopping 24-32% of your daily value
  • With 18-23g of carbohydrates in a half-cup serving, S&W Beans will provide an energy boost to help
  • The high fiber content of S&W Beans can help lower cholesterol levels, make you feel full and control weight and blood sugar levels in people with diabetes
  • Beans contain zero saturated fat or trans-fat and are cholesterol-free
  • Beans supply several vitamins and minerals, including folate, thiamine, potassium, magnesium and iron

Cheesy tikka masala bean bake



Tikka masala blend is a spice blend that consists of dry roasting whole spices like cumin, coriander, black peppercorn, cardamom, cinnamon, cloves and kashmiri red chilis for the color. 


In this recipe, I omitted the red chilis and added fennel seeds instead, to give a lovely licorice flavor to the masala blend.


Dry roasting the spices, brings out the best flavors in the whole spices. And it does not take time at all. Simply heat up a pan on medium heat, add the whole spices, and shake the spices occasionally on the skillet, until you get the aroma. The whole process takes about 4 minutes. 

Cheesy tikka masala bean bake

Once the spices are cooled, simply grind them in a spice grinder and use, along with other dry spices like turmeric, red chili powder, dry mango powder (optional). This is the base of the tikka masala blend.


To use the tikka masala blend, along with say some protein like paneer, or chicken, simply cover the protein with the spice, some oil, ground garlic and ginger, and massage it. Rest it for half an hour to an hour and then grill it. You can also add the same mixture into yogurt and then rest the protein. It tenderizes the protein and gives it a good flavor!

Cheesy tikka masala bean bake


The tikka masala bean bake is my take on a tikka version of the OG Rajma (red kidney beans).  Rajma is originally cooked only with aromatics like onions, ginger and garlic, and dry spices like turmeric, red chilli powder, cumin/coriander powder and garam masala.


This bake gets a twist by adding tikka masala to the base sauce, along with the dry spices to give it a tikka masala flavor, and then we add the S&W Jacob’s Cattle Beans to it, along with dried fenugreek as a finishing touch. 


The main ingredients of the Cheesy Tikka Masala Bean Bake are:

  • Aromatics: Onions, garlic and ginger
  • Ground Tikka Masala Blend
  • Bay Leaf
  • Crushed Tomatoes (Canned): It gives a good dense tomatoey flavor to the dish.
  • Dry spices: ground turmeric, red chili powder, garam masala
  • S&W Jacob’s Cattle Beans
  • Dried fenugreek
  • Cilantro
  • Cheeses like Pepper Jack and Mozzarella
  • Cilantro and Chives: to garnish

Cheesy tikka masala bean bake

Instead of adding heavy cream, which is traditionally added to the tikka masala dishes, I add cheeses like pepper jack and mozzarella, half in the dish, and half on the top.


The dish is finally baked off for 10 minutes, and then broiled to get a golden brown top. Garnish with the cilantro and chives, and serve piping hot with crostini or olive oil laden sourdough slices.


This dish is a perfect holiday dish that can be served on a party table. You can prepare it the day off and bake it off just before serving with the cheese on the top.


It is sure to be a hit at your party! My family LOVED this dish and could not get enough of it!

Cheesy tikka masala bean bake


S&W Beans are available on Amazon and are linked here.


Follow S&W Beans on its social media channels like @swbeans on Instagram for more beanspiration.


You can also get bean-i-licious recipes on !


Hope you get to try this wonderful bake! Enjoy it with friends and family this holiday season! If you do try this – please do tag me #thejamlab on Instagram and/or leave a comment on this blog post.


Happy Holidays!


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