Sweet, tangy, spiced, and pungent, this Kerala style Pineapple Pachadi is the perfect addition to the vegetarian feast known as Onam Sadya. Made with fresh pineapple cubes, yogurt, coconut, herbs, spices in about 20 minutes, this fruity raita-like condiment is as simple to make as it is tasty.
About Pineapple Pachadi
Pineapple Pachadi is a deliciously sweet-sour Kerala dish made with pineapple, coconut, mustard seeds, and curd. While they may look somewhat similar, the flavor of pineapple pachadi is very different from regular Pineapple Raita.
Both kichadi and pachadi side dishes are made for the Onam Sadya feast. Various fruits and vegetables are used to make kichadi or pachadi.
The flavor of pineapple pachadi is complex. While pineapple does lend its sweetish aroma and flavor, there is also some pungency from the ground mustard seeds, and a bit of heat and spiciness coming from the green chilies.
Let’s not forget the subtle sweetness of coconut and the tanginess of curd which are also highlights of this pachadi recipe. The tempering of mustard and dry red chillies in coconut oil adds yet another dimension to the taste.
Making pineapple pachadi is easy, similar to the Cucumber Pachadi. In total, you only need 12 ingredients and 20 minutes of time in the kitchen.
Once made, Pineapple Pachadi can be served as a side dish in an Onam sadya or with any vegetarian Kerala meal.
It’s best to use fresh pineapple, but you can also use canned. The canned pineapple cubes will cook faster than the fresh pineapple cubes.
You will also need some regular Indian spices and herbs. These spices and herbs add depths of flavors.
Fresh curd or yogurt is also added which imparts some creaminess to the dish. Do not forget to use edible coconut oil as it makes this dish truly authentic.
How to make Pineapple Pachadi
Make Coconut Paste
1. In a small grinder jar or blender, take the ingredients listed below:
- ¼ cup grated fresh coconut
- 1 green chili (chopped) or 1 teaspoon, chopped
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
- ¼ teaspoon cumin seeds
For a more pronounced mustard flavor, you can add up to 1 teaspoon of mustard seeds.
2. Add 2 to 3 tablespoons water and grind to a fine and smooth consistency. Keep the coconut paste aside.
3. Take 1.25 cups of chopped pineapple cubes in a pan. Dice the pineapple in small pieces or cubes, but not finely — you want some texture in the pachadi.
4. Add ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder and 1 to 2 teaspoons jaggery, or add as per taste.
Jaggery can be skipped if the pineapple is very sweet. Instead of jaggery, you can also add sugar.
5. Add ⅓ to ½ cup water. Just add enough water to *almost* cover the pineapple cubes.
If the pineapple cubes are very sweet and soft, then less water will be required. If they are firm and only a little sweet, then more water will be needed.
6. Mix well to combine.
7. Keep the pan on the stovetop and on a low-medium heat cook the pineapple. Stir at intervals.
8. Simmer till the pineapple cubes have softened. Also, let most of the water evaporate from the pan. Remember not to overcook the pineapple cubes. They just need to soften.
Make Pineapple Pachadi
9. Add the ground coconut paste to the pan with the softened pineapple.
10. Season with salt as per taste.
11. Mix very well.
12. Simmer and cook this pineapple mixture for 2 to 3 minutes on a low heat. Take care not to boil or cook for a long time as this can split the curd.
12. Let this mixture cool at room temperature.
13. Beat ½ cup curd (yogurt) with a spoon or wired whisk till smooth. You can also add some more curd if you prefer.
Ensure that the curd is fresh and not overly sour or tangy.
14. Once the pineapple and coconut mixture has cooled down enough to become lukewarm, then add the beaten curd.
15. Mix very well.
Temper Pineapple Pachadi
16. Heat ½ tablespoon coconut oil in a tadka pan or a small frying pan. Keep heat to a low and add ¼ teaspoon mustard seeds.
17. Let the mustard seeds crackle.
18. Then add 1 dry red chili (seeds removed) and 7 to 8 curry leaves.
19. Fry for a few seconds till the curry leaves become crisp and the red chili changes color. Do not burn them.
20. Pour the tempering in the pachadi mixture.
21. Mix very well.
22. Serve Pineapple Pachadi as a side dish for Onam sadya or any vegetarian Kerala meal. You can also refrigerate and then serve. Leftover pineapple pachadi can be refrigerated for about 1 day.
- Use sweet, ripe pineapple. If it’s sour or tangy, it won’t be good in this pachadi recipe. You can also use canned pineapple. If using canned pineapple, drain all the liquid, rinse the pineapple and then chop them in small cubes.
- Spices and herbs. Make sure to include all the spices and herbs as mentioned in the recipe. Removing any of them will bring about a change in the taste.
- Fats: For an authentic dish, coconut oil is a must. Having said that if you cannot source coconut oil, make the recipe in any neutral flavored oil.
- No fresh coconut? No problem. Desiccated coconut can be used instead of fresh coconut, but the taste will change slightly. Frozen coconut also works well. Make sure the frozen coconut has a sweet, not sour, taste and that it hasn’t gone rancid.
- To make a vegan option. Feel free to use your favorite plain, unsweetened plant-based yogurt (e.g. coconut, cashew, or almond yogurt).
- Scaling. Easily scale the recipe up or down as needed. You could also add some more curd if you prefer to the pachadi recipe.
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For cooking pineapple
- 1.25 cups pineapple (chopped)
- ⅓ to ½ cup water or add as needed
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1 to 2 teaspoons jaggery powder or grated jaggery, add as required
For ground coconut and mustard paste
- ¼ cup grated fresh coconut
- 1 green chili chopped or 1 teaspoon, chopped
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
- ¼ teaspoon cumin seeds
- 2 to 3 tablespoons water or add as required
- ½ cup Curd (yogurt) – beaten or whisked
- salt as required
- ½ tablespoon coconut oil
- ¼ teaspoon mustard seeds
- 1 dry red chili – seeds removed
- 7 to 8 curry leaves
Making coconut paste
- In a small grinder jar take grated fresh coconut, chopped green chilies, mustard seeds and cumin seeds.
- Add 2 to 3 tablespoons water and grind to smooth and fine consistency. Keep the coconut paste aside.
- Take chopped pineapple cubes in a pan. Remember to cut the pineapple in small pieces, but not finely.
- Add turmeric powder and 1 to 2 teaspoons jaggery or add as per taste. Jaggery can be skipped if the pineapple is very sweet. Instead of jaggery you can also add sugar.
- Add ½ cup water and mix well.
- Keep the pan on stovetop and on a medium-low heat cook the pineapple. Do stir at intervals.
- Simmer till the pineapple cubes have softened. Also let most of the water evaporate from the pan.
Making pineapple pachadi
- Now add the ground coconut paste.
- Season with salt as per taste and mix very well.
- Simmer and cook this pineapple mixture for 2 to 3 minutes on a low heat stirring often. Take care not to boil or cook for a long time as this can split the curd.
- Then keep the pan down and let this mixture cool at room temperature.
- Beat ½ cup curd with a spoon or wired whisk till smooth.
- Once the pineapple+coconut mixture has cooled or become lukewarm, then add the beaten curd. Mix very well.
- Heat coconut oil in a tadka pan or a small frying pan. Keep heat to a low and add ¼ teaspoon mustard seeds.
- Let the mustard seeds crackle.
- Then add the dry red chilli and 7 to 8 curry leaves.
- Fry for a few seconds till the curry leaves become crisp and the red chili changes color. Do not burn the spices.
- Pour the tempering in the pachadi mixture. Mix very well.
- Serve Pineapple Pachadi as a side dish in an Onam sadya or a Kerala vegetarian meal. You can also refrigerate Pineapple Pachadi for a few hours and then serve. Left over pineapple pachadi can be refrigerated for about a day.
- Ensure that pineapple has a sweet taste and are not sour or tangy.
- Desiccated coconut can be used instead of fresh coconut, but taste will change slightly. Frozen coconut also works well. Make sure the frozen coconut has a sweet taste and not sour or gone rancid.
- The recipe can also be made with plant based yogurt like coconut yogurt, almond yogurt and cashew yogurt.
- Try to use coconut oil if possible.
- You can easily scale the recipe.
Nutrition Info (Approximate Values)
This Pineapple Pachadi recipe from the archives first published in May 2018 has been republished and updated on November 2022.