Tomato Chutney is a tangy and tasty South Indian chutney made from tomatoes, herbs and spices. There are many variations of making tomato chutney aka thakkali chutney. I am sharing 2 such tasty variations in this post.
- Tomato Chutney – Easy recipe made without onion, garlic and tempered with spices.
- Onion Tomato Chutney – Simple recipe made with onions and without tempering.
Both the versions of tomato chutney taste good and go well with South Indian Snacks like Idli, Dosa, Vada or Uttapam.
Table of Contents
About this recipe
This Tomato chutney a spicy, tangy and tasty South Indian chutney and pairs extremely well with idli, dosa, uttapam, pakora or vada varieties.
Apart from the tangy taste of the tomatoes, there is one more ingredient in this chutney which gives a distinct warm aroma and flavor to the chutney – cloves.
I just added two cloves and found it gave a really good strong aroma to the chutney. You can also add one clove to make its flavor & aroma less dominant in the chutney. On refrigerating the chutney the aroma does mellow down.
This tomato chutney is a no onion and no garlic recipe. Though if you want you can add onions as well as garlic.
It goes very well with idli, dosa, uttapam or vada varieties. You can even serve them with pakoras.
Chutney are commonly made in every Indian home. So there are many varieties of chutney. Along with the famous Coconut Chutney, even vegetables and fruits are used to make chutney.
How to make Tomato Chutney
1. Heat ½ tbsp oil and add 1 tsp urad dal (split husked black gram).
2. On a low flame, fry the urad dal till they start turning maroonish brown.
3. Once the lentils get a maroonish brown color, add 2-3 broken dry red chilies, 2-3 cloves, 4-5 black pepper and ½ inch chopped ginger. Stir till the red chilies change their color.
4. Then add 2 large chopped tomatoes (1 cup tightly packed chopped tomatoes) and a pinch of asafoetida (hing).
5. Add salt as required.
6. Stir and sauté till the tomatoes soften. About 6 to 7 minutes on a low flame.
Blending tomatoes and spices
7. Once the tomato mixture cools, add them to a chutney grinder or small blender. add 2 tbsp water and grind to a smooth paste. You can also add 1 or 2 tbsp more water if required.
8. In the same pan or a different pan, heat ½ tbsp oil. Add ½ tsp mustard seeds and crackle them.
9. Then add 7-8 curry leaves, 2-3 methi seeds (fenugreek seeds), a pinch of asafoetida and one broken red chili. Saute till the curry leaves become crisp.
10. Then add the ground tomato paste.
11. Mix well.
12. Saute for 3 to 4 minutes on a low flame.
13. Check the taste and add more salt if required.
14. Mix again.
15. The tomato chutney is done and ready to be served with idli or dosa or uttapam or snacks like masala vada, dal vada.
- Kara Chutney – Spicy chutney.
- Tomato Pachadi – an Andhra style tomato chutney which is tangy, sour and spicy.
- Momos Chutney – spicy chutney for momos made with tomatoes, garlic and red chilies.
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- 2 large tomatoes or 1 cup tightly packed chopped tomatoes or 225 to 250 grams
- ½ inch ginger – chopped
- 2 to 3 dry red chilies – broken and deseeded
- 1 teaspoon urad dal (split and husked black gram)
- 4 to 5 black pepper
- 2 to 3 cloves
- 1 pinch asafoetida (hing) – optional
- 2 tablespoon water for grinding – add 1 or 2 tablespoon more if required
- ½ tablespoon oil
- salt as required
- ½ tablespoon oil
- 1 dry red chili – halved and deseeded
- 7 to 8 curry leaves
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
- 2 to 3 fenugreek seeds (methi seeds)
- 1 pinch asafoetida (hing)
Cooking and blending tomatoes
- Heat oil and add urad dal. On a low flame, saute the urad dal till they start turning maroonish.
- Once the lentils get a maroonish brown color, add broken dry red chilies, cloves, black pepper and ginger. Stir for till the red chilies change their color.
- Then add chopped tomatoes and asafoetida. Add salt.
- Stir and saute till the tomatoes soften. About 6 to 7 minutes on a low flame.
- Once the tomato mixture cools, add them to a chutney grinder or small blender.
- Add 2 tbsp water and grind to a smooth paste.
- In the same pan or different pan, heat 1 tbsp oil.
- Add the mustard seeds and crackle them.
- Then add curry leaves, methi seeds, asafoetida and one broken red chili. Saute till the curry leaves become crisp.
- Then add the ground tomato paste. Stir well.
- Saute for 3 to 4 minutes on a low flame. Check the taste and add more salt if required.
- Stir again. The chutney is done and ready to be served.
- This tomato chutney pairs extremely well with idli, dosa, uttapam or vada varieties. You can even serve this thakkali chutney with pakoras.
Nutrition Info (Approximate values)
About Easy Onion Tomato Chutney
To make this onion tomato chutney is easy and you can just change the taste a bit here or there, by altering the proportions of onion, tomato, dry red chilies and tamarind.
I have used equal proportions in weight of the onion and tomato in this recipe.
I have not tempered the chutney towards the end, but just to perk up and make it more flavorsome you can temper with mustard seeds, dry red chilies and curry leaves.
But there is really no need. As the chutney tastes good even without tempering.
I served the tomato onion chutney with crisp dosa made in an easy way. No soaking and grinding method. It is so easy to make dosa using the method shared in the recipe.
How to make Tomato Onion Chutney
1. Heat 1 tbsp sunflower oil (or peanut oil) and add ½ tsp urad dal.
2. Once they start to become light brown, add 1-2 dry red chilies. So by the time the urad dal turns to a maroonish color, the red chilies would also have changed color. Make sure you don’t burn them.
3. Add 2 medium sized chopped onions (100 grams onion) and saute till they are light golden.
4. When the onions have become light golden, add 2 medium sized chopped tomatoes (100 grams), a pinch of asafoetida and salt as required.
5. Stir and saute till the tomatoes have softened and cooked. This step is important as you don’t want the raw aroma of tomatoes in the chutney. If the tomatoes start sticking to the pan, then just sprinkle some water on them and continue to saute.
6. So now the tomatoes are cooked and softened.
7. Let the chutney mixture become warm or cool. Later add in a chutney grinder or a small blender jar. Add a small piece of tamarind (approx ½ tsp of seedless tightly packed tamarind) too.
8. Without adding any water grind the chutney till smooth. You can also make it semi coarse if you prefer. If you are unable to grind, then you can add some water.
9. Serve the onion tomato chutney as an accompaniment with idli or dosa or medu vada.
More chutney recipes
Onion Tomato Chutney
- 100 grams onion – about 2 medium sized onions
- 100 grams tomatoes – about 1 large tomato or 2 medium sized tomatoes
- ½ teaspoon urad dal (spilt and husked black gram)
- 1 to 2 dry red red chilies – kept whole or broken, deseeded if you prefer
- 1 pinch asafoetida (hing)
- a small piece of tamarind – approx ½ teaspoon of seedless tightly packed tamarind
- 1 tablespoon sunflower oil or peanut oil or sesame oil – not the asian variety of sesame oil
- salt as required
- water as required for grinding the chutney (optional)
- Heat the oil. Lower the flame. Add the urad dal and when they start to become light brown, add the red chilies.
- Saute till the urad dal become golden.
- Add the onions and saute till light brown. Add the tomatoes and asafoetida. Season with salt.
- Saute till the tomatoes become soft, pulpy and are completely cooked. The rawness of the tomatoes should go away, otherwise you will get the raw aroma of the tomatoes in the chutney.
- Cool this onion tomato mixture and then grind in a chutney grinder with tamarind. No need to add water while grinding. But if you are unable to grind then add little water.
- Check the taste and add some more salt or tamarind if required and continue to grind to a smooth chutney. Pour the chutney in a serving bowl.
- You can temper the chutney with mustard seeds, dry red chilies and curry leaves if you want. But without the tempering, also the onion chutney tastes good.
- Serve tomato onion chutney with idli, dosa or medu vada.
This tomato chutney recipe post from the archives (December 2014) has been republished and updated on 29 May 2020.