Meet Manali

Hey there! I am Manali, the cook and photographer behind this blog! I am so happy you’re here!


About Me and My Family

I was born and brought up in India. My dad is an Indian government officer and my mom is a housewife. I have 2 younger brothers and they all live in India. I am blessed to have a such a wonderful family, who have supported me in every decision of my life.

I live in Seattle with my husband, Sarvesh. I moved to USA in December 2011, a week after my wedding. Me and my husband were best friends for 10 years before we tied the knot [I guess we realized that we wouldn’t find anyone better than each other after 10 years!!]. Yeah we have a very filmy story, a Bollywood movie on it is definitely possible! ? Sarvesh is my biggest supporter, it’s his constant encouragement that pushes me to give my best to this blog and to everything else in life in general. And not only that, he also handles all the technical stuff on this blog. The blog design, logo, everything is done by him. I have zero technical knowledge so it’s all him.

About Cook With Manali

I started this blog in 2013 to keep all my recipes at one place. It was Sarvesh’s suggestion to start this blog so that I could have a record of all my recipes, rather than scribbling them on papers all the time. I thought it was a good idea since it would also help me kill some time. At that time, I did not have a work visa and was struggling to pass time in this new country. What started as a time pass, became my passion over time. I am a self taught cook, baker and photographer. Whatever I have learned is through trial and error. I have failed so many times but because I was so passionate about getting it right, I just kept trying till I got it right. That’s why I say if I can cook, anyone can. I had never baked a cake in my life till 4 years back and I know it’s difficult to believe it considering the number of baking recipes I have on the blog! We never had an oven in our house growing up, in fact ovens aren’t still very common in India but back then they were literally non existent. But I fell so much in love with the art and science of baking that now I literally live and breath it.

Cook With Manali is a vegetarian food blog. I have been vegetarian for almost 15 years now and my husband is a born vegetarian. Through my recipes I want to show everyone that vegetarian cooking is just as delicious and not boring at all! India has countless vegetarian and vegan dishes that I grew up eating and I share all those and much more on this blog.


My Background

They say sometimes it takes a lifetime to realize your true passion! It couldn’t be more true in my case, thankfully I realized it before it was too late. I was always a good student in school and college and cooking was probably the last thing on my mind. I wish I could say that I was in love with cooking and baking since my childhood but that would be totally false. I never bothered to enter the kitchen. It was only after moving to the USA that I started spending time in the kitchen. Long story short, I realized that this is where my heart lies. Now I can’t stop thinking about cooking, recipes and food photography!

* I used to be a bookworm in school, yeah those nerdy students who never leave the book, yep that was me!
* I am a medical doctor, I did my MBBS from India.
* I also have an MBA in Health Care from University of Aberdeen in Scotland.

Keeping In Touch
If you have any questions or just want to say hello, please write to me at
I would reply to you at the earliest! You can also keep in touch with me through Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

Thank you for supporting me in this journey! ❤



207 thoughts on “Meet Manali

  1. Hey Manali

    Landed into your website during the first lockdown in London and then onwards ur recipes have been the primary one i have referred since then. never ever cooked before but started to improvise on your recipes.. really simple, easy and very practical ones…

    thanks for sharing and making life easier for many worldwide

    wishing you a very happy new year 2021 🙂


  2. Hi Manali,

    Love your online biryani recipe!! Have been cooking it for quite some time now. A few years back, my son gifted me your instant pot recipe book as he embarked on his college and cooking journey. I have tried so many recipes from there successfully. Only today I realized that it is the same Manali on the blog who wrote the book!!! It’s been great to give a break from cooking to my wife or mother in law occasionally and your recipes have hit the right balance of traditional and modern!!

    Thank you!!

  3. Manali,

    Greetings from London! My family’s life would have been significantly less fun m throughout this awful lockdown if it weren’t for your recipes. I’m a particular fan of your Indo-Chinese recipes, and really appreciate your precision with measurements! You also write so well, I quite enjoy reading the stories behind each recipe nearly as much as I do the actual recipe itself; something I would not say about most cooking blogs!

    Thanks again! Btw have you considered compiling your recipes into a book? I’d so buy one for my kitchen bookshelf!

  4. Hi Manali,
    I was searching for a good tasting veg biryani and tried yours, it came out so well….. spurned on we tried your paneer tikka today and it was a smash hit with my teenaged son! We filled the paneer in pockets made by slicing a chappathi into two…. since two of your recipes have turned out well, excited to try a few more! Do you still practice medicine? If so amazing that you still find the time to write such a detailed recipe, imparting several valuable tips… I learnt from you that smearing oil on the paneer prior to cooking helps keep it soft! Looking forward to reading and imbibing more tips! Keep going!

  5. Hi Manali,

    I was also born and brought up in India and moved to Seattle a few years back. Your recipes are now my go-to! I’m an entry level cook – and your blog has helped me a lot!
    PS: glad to see Maharashrtian recipes like Sabudana Khichadi on the blog too!

  6. Hi Manali, have just come across your blog and really love the recipes, though I still have to try them. One question, if I may ask, what is the preheating time generally required for baking or does it vary from one recipe to the other. Thanks

  7. Minali I love all your recipies! So easy and organized! My family is quite a fan of yours haha. Thank you for all the inspiration! <3

  8. I am loving your recipes. It is easy, simple to cook. I am a working mom and have started cooking only because of pandemic. I never liked to cook but with your easy receipe I love trying new things in kitchen. Your recipes are not time consuming so I can even try them on working days.

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