Kara chutney recipe – How to make kara (spicy) chutney recipe – side dish for idlis | dosas

Kara chutney is a spicy red chutney made from onions, tomatoes and red chillies and which goes well with idlis, dosas, appams and uthapams.  This chutney is also an easy and quick to make chutney recipe.  Kara chutney is a south indian style chutney and as the name suggests, the red chillies gives a spice taste and tamarind a tangy twist to the chutney.

Other chutney recipes :

Coconut chutney  

Peanut chutney

Mint chutney

Onion chutney

Tomato chutney

Onion tomato chutney

Coriander chutney



Prep Time : 10 mins

Cook Time :  5 mins

Servings :  2 persons

South Indian cuisine


Tomatoes – 2 (roughly chopped)

Onion – 1 (roughly chopped)

Whole red chillies – 2

Chana dal (Bengal gram) – 2 teaspoons

Garlic cloves – 4 (optional

Tamarind – a small piece (gooseberry sized)

Salt to taste

Cooking oil – 2 tablespoons


Cooking oil – 1 teaspoon

Mustard seeds or rai – 1/2 teaspoon

Curry leaves – few

A pinch of asafoetida or hing


Heat 2 tablespoons of  oil in a pan.  Add chana dal and red chillies and roast till chana dal turns golden in colour.  Then add chopped onions, tomatoes, garlic cloves, salt and tamarind and saute on low flame, till the tomatoes become soft.

Once the tomatoes become tender and mixture gets thick, switch off the flame.  Transfer to a plate.  Allow the onion-tomato mixture to cool down.

Grind the mixture to a smooth paste without adding water.  Add very little water, if required.

Temper the chutney with mustard seeds, hing, curry leaves in a teaspoon of oil.

Serve delicious kara chutney with idlis, dosas or uthapams



Adjust red chillies as per spicy taste required by you.

For a variation, you can add little grated coconut for making this chutney.

You can use gingelly oil for seasoning, as it gives a nice flavour to the chutney.


One Response to Kara chutney recipe – How to make kara (spicy) chutney recipe – side dish for idlis | dosas

  1. mohammed says:

    Can we make this chutney without tamarind?

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