Vendakkai Poriyal | Ladies Finger Poriyal

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This one is again an easy South Indian style okra or bhindi preparation, more aptly known as the Vendakkai Poriyal. The particular poriyal preparations from the South Indian cuisine really amazes me with the fact that a dish can be all things delicious, comforting, nutritious as well as soul-soothing, inspite of being so simple. This one made with bhindi is also a no onion, no garlic recipe as well as vegan-friendly too. Looking for a different kind of bhindi dish to pair with your dal-chawal? This ladies finger poriyal is surely the one for you!

vendakkai poriyal served in a white bowl with text layover.

About Vendakkai Poriyal

‘Vendakkai’ is the Tamil name for ‘okra’ or ‘lady’s finger,’ which is ‘bhindi’ in Hindi. Also, a ‘poriyal’ is a simple, yet tasty and hearty dish of a dry vegetable sauté or stir-fry, typically done in a South Indian style. Hence, the name Vendakkai Poriyal.

Every poriyal recipe is wholesome in its preparation because it usually is a vegetable stir-fry, made the South Indian way. The spices and other ingredients that go in the making are mostly similar and are quite healthy. I have already shared a few healthy variations of poriyals like:

This is one of those recipes of mine, which is easy and fuss-free to cook and yet tastes great. Along with the vendakkai or bhindi (okra), rest of the other ingredients that make up this poriyal dish are just as basic and common.

You really won’t have a trouble in sourcing them or even getting them together, as most of it is always available in an Indian home kitchen. Since okra is the hero ingredient in the recipe, make sure to use fresh, tender and bright green okra pods.

So, for this Vendakkai Poriyal, you require mustard seeds, split and husked black gram (urad dal), curry leaves, green chilies, asafoetida (hing), turmeric powder and coriander leaves. You can cook the dish in sesame oil, coconut oil or any other neutral flavored oil.

I make this super easy no onion, no garlic recipe of okra poriyal on a regular basis. Most of the times, as a side dish with sambar-rice or rasam-rice. Sometimes, with chapatis and phulkas too. Do try this recipe and you will surely like it for its simple flavors.

If you are accustomed to having more of the North Indian style bhindi masala or sabji or dishes, then this South Indian Vendakkai fry is a refreshing change. After all, change is what was, is and will always be inevitable!

Step-by-Step Guide

How to make Vendakkai Poriyal


1. Rinse 250 grams lady’s finger (vendakkai, okra or bhindi) in fresh water a couple of times. Then wipe dry each okra pods with a clean kitchen towel.

Ensure that they are thoroughly dried before you begin to chop them. Slice them into thin rounds of 0.25 to 0.5 inches. Keep aside.

sliced bhindi in a bowl for making vendakkai poriyal.

2. In a shallow frying pan, heat 2 tablespoons of sesame oil (gingelly oil) or any neutral flavored oil.

Make sure to use a well seasoned pan with a heavy base. Or else the okra may stick to the pan.

Lower the heat, add ½ teaspoon mustard seeds and ½ teaspoon urad dal (split and husked black gram).

mustard seeds and urad dal added to hot sesame oil in pan.

3. Sauté stirring often till the mustard seeds crackle and the urad dal turns golden.

sautéing mustard seeds and urad dal.

4. Then, add the following ingredients:

  • 8 to 10 curry leaves
  • 1 to 2 chopped green chilies or 1 to 2 dried red chilies (broken and deseeded)
  • a pinch asafoetida (hing)
  • ⅛ teaspoon turmeric powder
curry leaves, chopped green chilies, asafoetida and turmeric powder added to pan.

5. Stir and mix well.

ingredient stirred.

Making Vendakkai Poriyal

6. Add all of the sliced lady’s finger.

sliced bhindi added to pan.

7. Stir and mix to combine.

bhindi stirred well with the spices and lentil.

8. Season with salt as required.

salt added to bhindi.

9. Stir and mix well. Sauté or stir-fry the poriyal on low heat without covering the pan with a lid. Keep stirring at intervals of 3 to 4 minutes for uniform and even cooking.

Do not cover the pan with any lid as this can lead to the okra becoming slimy.

cooked vendakkai poriyal.

10. Switch off the heat when the okra is softened and cooked well. This takes about 12 to 14 minutes on low heat.

cooked vendakkai poriyal

11. Lastly, sprinkle 2 tablespoons of chopped coriander leaves. At this stage, you can also add 2 to 3 tablespoons of grated fresh coconut, if you like.

chopped coriander leaves added to cooked vendakkai poriyal.

12. Stir and then serve Vendakkai Poriyal hot or warm as a side dish with Curd Rice, sambar-rice or rasam-rice.

You can also serve it as a side dish with your everyday dal-rice. You want to make the dal, North Indian, Maharashtrian or any other regional style, completely your wish. This poriyal will taste good with everything.

If you are a flatbread fanatic, then you can easily pair this vendakkai fry with your rotis, phulkas, chapatis or even plain parathas. You can also pack it in your lunch box.

vendakkai poriyal served in a white bowl.

Expert Tips

  1. For best results, use tender okra or bhindi for this recipe. If the vendakkai is mature, then you might get a fibrous mouth-feel while eating it.
  2. This poriyal can be cooked in coconut oil, sesame oil, sunflower oil or any other neutral flavored oil.
  3. You can add 1 to 2 dried red chilies, broken and deseeded, if you don’t have green chilies.
  4. If you want to make the poriyal spicier, you can increase the quantity of chilies in it.
  5. Once the okra is softened and cooked, you can opt to add about 2 to 3 tablespoons of grated fresh coconut if you prefer.
  6. Use a heavy and well seasoned frying pan or saute pan to make this dish.

More Poriyal Recipes To Try!

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vendakkai poriyal recipe, ladies finger poriyal recipe, okra poriyal recipe

Vendakkai Poriyal | Ladies Finger Poriyal

This ladies finger poriyal is a tempered and sauteed dry South Indian dish made with ladies finger and spices.
4.92 from 12 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Cuisine South Indian, Tamil Nadu
Course Side Dish
Diet Vegan
Difficulty Level Moderate
Servings 2 to 3


  • 250 grams bhindi (vendakkai or okra or lady finger)
  • 2 tablespoon sesame oil or any neutral flavored oil
  • ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
  • ½ teaspoon urad dal (split and husked black gram)
  • 8 to 10 curry leaves
  • 1 to 2 green chilies – chopped or 1 to 2 dry red chilies, broken and deseeded
  • 1 pinch asafoetida (hing)
  • 1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder (ground turmeric)
  • 2 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves (cilantro)
  • salt as required



  • Rinse the okra a few times in fresh water and wipe dry all the okra with a clean kitchen towel. Make sure that there is no water or moisture on the okra pods before chopping them.
  • Then slice the bhindi into thin rounds of 0.25 to 0.5 inches. Keep aside.
  • Also chop 1 to 2 green chillies and coriander leaves. Keep aside.

Making vendakkai poriyal

  • In a shallow frying pan, heat sesame oil. Lower the heat. Add mustard seeds and urad dal.
  • On low heat saute till the mustard seeds crackle and the urad dal turns golden.
  • Then add the curry leaves and chopped green chilies or dry red chilies (broken & deseeded). Also add a pinch of asafoetida and turmeric powder. Stir to mix.
  • Add all of the sliced okra. Stir well.
  • Season with salt according to taste. Stir well again and saute the poriyal on a low heat without covering the pan with a lid. Keep on stirring at intervals of 3 to 4 minutes for uniform even cooking. Do not cover the pan with any lid.
  • Switch off the heat when the ladies finger is done and cooked well. This takes about 12 to 14 minutes on a low heat.
  • Lastly sprinkle chopped coriander leaves. 
  • At this stage you can also add grated fresh coconut if you want.
  • Stir and then serve vendakkai poriyal hot or warm as a side dish with curd-rice, sambar-rice or rasam-rice.
  • You can also pack this vendakkai fry in your tiffin box with a side of roti, paratha or whole wheat bread.


  • This vendakkai fry recipe can be scaled as per your needs.
  • Use a well seasoned heavy pan or frying pan to make the dish.
  • Use tender and fresh okra.
  • Don’t cover the pan while sauteing the okra as it can make the okra slimy.

Nutrition Info (Approximate Values)

Nutrition Facts
Vendakkai Poriyal | Ladies Finger Poriyal
Amount Per Serving
Calories 181 Calories from Fat 126
% Daily Value*
Fat 14g22%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Sodium 84mg4%
Potassium 373mg11%
Carbohydrates 12g4%
Fiber 5g21%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 1075IU22%
Vitamin C 111.5mg135%
Calcium 119mg12%
Iron 0.9mg5%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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This Vendakkai Poriyal Post from the blog archives, first published in September 2015 has been republished and updated on December 2022.

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Meet Dassana

Welcome to Dassana's Veg Recipes. I share vegetarian recipes from India & around the World. Having been cooking for decades and with a professional background in cooking & baking, I help you to make your cooking journey easier with my tried and tested recipes showcased with step by step photos & plenty of tips & suggestions.

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Comments are closed.


  1. Simple recipe.. but usually it did not come out well. But this time Vendekai came out well.. Thank you..
    Thanks for all your good recipe.. ?

  2. I was wondering how I should do it if I have frozen oakra. Can you please tell me?5 stars

    1. i have never used frozen okra, so i do not know how they are added to sabzis or gravies.

  3. Dassana ji,

    Your recipes are simple and easy to make. First of all i should thank you for the rasgulla recipe which came out nicely. Every time what ever i make any item i follow your vegrecipe only it is really a good one. Thanks a lot once again

    Madhavi5 stars

  4. HI Dasanna, in your apple cake recipe, can I replace coconut sugar with normal white baking sugar? Sorry for posting it here; needed to know by today and see that comments there are closed.

    Hare Krishna!

    1. hare krishna divya.

      no issues. yes you can add regular sugar. it will work.

    1. thanks divya. i generally do not chilli powder. i either add green chilies or dry red chilies. but will try with chilli powder.

  5. hi dassana
    Good to have you back. Such a wonderful site you have. M a regular visitor.i keep browsing your site whenever i get free time. It’s become a hobby now. The step by step pics are very useful. I refer to your pics while cooking to see if my dish has the same look as yours at that stage. I,v tried many of your recipes. Most have turned out good. Especially loved the tawa paneer,eggless banana cake. Wanted to leavea comment but the comment option wouldn’t open . now i know why. Hope you had a great holiday.
    Also tried the basic wheat chocolate cake but it was a disaster. Din’t cook in the middle though my toothpick came out clean. I had inserted it at the middle. N cake sunk in the middle. May be it was overmixed, I had some difficulty folding . anyways will try again.
    I haven’t tried this recipe so can’t rate it. The five star is for your passion n dedication . and also for replying to every single comment n helping out your readers. Very few bloggers do that
    Keep Motivating us with your good work. God bless you.
    P.s sorry about the long comment5 stars

    1. shilpa, no problem with the long comment and thanks a lot for all that you have said. hugs 🙂
      with the cake sunken, it could be due to the low temperature in the oven or opening the oven door many times or uneven folding or mixing. you can try next time 🙂

      1. Hi dassana
        Was very happy to see your prompt reply. Gave me the confidence to ask my silly doubts. I had read all the comments before trying the cake. So I guess it could be over mixing. My mixture had good amount of lumps so i had to mix more than i usually would.I baked in a Samsung oven convection mode at 180° preheated for 10 min at 200°. Opened at to 15 min to cover with foil n 25 min, 30 min n 35 min finally to take it out. Just as I opened at 25 min the cake sunk in front of my eyes. The central portion was not cooked as in the batter remained just like that. I have a few doubts
        1. For covering with aluminium foil should we take out the cake from the oven .(I tried covering while it was inside n couldn’t do it well) wont taking out affect the rising of the cake
        2. For manual mixing which is better a wire whisk or wooden spatula
        3. To make a wheat cake, can I substitute any maida cake recipe with wheat n add some more liquid ingredient than the recipe calls for.
        Thanks in advance

        1. welcome shilpa.
          1. when i cover with aluminium foil, i directly keep the foil on the pan in the oven. very rarely i have removed the pan outside when i was not able to cover the pan properly. but nothing has gone wrong with the cake so far. when you remove the pan also, keep it gently on the on the kitchen surface. even a slight force will sunk the cake from the center.
          2. depends on what you are mixing. for mixing stuff like cream or softened butter, wired whisk is better. for mixing liquid batters, again wired whisk is better. for thick batter and for folding, a wooden spatula is better.
          3. whole wheat cake can be replaced with maida in most cake recipes. depending on the fibre quotient and the type/quality of whole wheat flour, you may need to add more liquids in it.

  6. hi dassana, I am sorry for asking another recipes question on this recipe comment. I couldnt find the comment box in the ragi dosa (fermented one) recipe, and I really want to make it, hence I am asking you here. Sorry once again.

    From the ragi dosa batter, I want to make idlys, 2 questions:
    1- can I use basmati rice or brown rice instead of the idly rice?
    2- I dont have poha, is there a substitute?

    Thanks alot and sorry once again.

    1. no issue pia. use brown rice or use a combo of both brown and basmati rice. add cooked rice (same proportion as poha). when you cook rice, just reserve 1/4 cup for making the batter.

  7. Dassana is it necessary to add urad daal. Actually I don’t know much about how to use that daal .

    1. urad dal gives a nice flavor. you can skip it if you want. with urad dal you can make idlis, dosa, medu vada and even plain dal fry. you can also mix urad dal with other dals and make a dal tadka or dry fry. also dry sabzi can be made from urad dal.

  8. Hi dassana. I love ur recipes and enjoy to cook them. I am a north indian but am doubtful about you as u make boththr noth and south indian recipes very well. I have a request could u please post a recipe how to make madalas at home as the market onescare not that much good
    Thanks again

    1. thank you kaur. i am from south but my husband is from north. so i make both south and north indian food at home. what is madalas? i have never heard. let me know.

      1. Actually it is masalas while writing it was written wrong . Thanks for answering.

        1. fine 🙂 i have already added punjabi garam masala powder in the blog. you can have a look at the recipe.

      2. Hello. Love ur recipes. I made semolina modaks and they didn’t come out well. I couldn’t get the the shape; the dough was breaking and the jaggery mixture dried up. Could you help me in this situation. I also made black forest cake following you . Itwas perfect. Before that I never knew that cakes can be made without milkmaid too . Thanks a lot again.

        1. thanks for the positive review on the black forest cake. for modaks, i think the moisture was less, thats why they were breaking. some hot water could have been added to the dough and kneaded again. depending on the quality of sooji/rawa more or less water can be added. the jaggery mixture got cooked too much and hence it dried up. just cook till you see some moisture in it. not too wet and not too dry.

  9. Dear Dassana & Amit ji,

    A warm welcome back into our lives! ? Missed you a lot, but then decided to be productive by cooking those recipes from the site that were on my to-try list, such as idli, coconut chutney, kalakand, banana bread, bisibele bhaath, baingan bharta etc. I’m happy to report that all the dishes turned out amazing on the very first attempt…as expected! However, the idli-dosa batter, in particular, was phenomenal as it yielded super-soft and spongy idlis & paniyarams and crisp, yummy dosas… How lovely! ?
    Now, I’m facing a bit of a problem with the chai masala, as the recipe mentions 10 gm cardamom and 5 gm cloves!!! How much would it be in terms of tsp/Tbsp or numbers? Please guide this clueless soul…
    Thanks & regards,

    1. thank you much neeti. glad that the recipes turned out good in the first attempt. thanks for all the feedback.
      i measured the quantities for the cardamom and cloves just now. 2 tbsp green cardamoms is about 10 grams and 1 tbsp cloves is close to 5 grams. i will update in the chai masala recipe too.

      1. Thanks for the super prompt reply and for taking the trouble of measuring the cardamom and cloves! You are such a darling!

  10. Welcome back dassana!
    I do this poriyal often. You can also add fenugreek seeds while tempering and finally some coarsely crushed peanuts.
    Thanks and waiting for more recipes

    1. thanks lata. i do add fenugreek seeds at times. will try with coarsely crushed peanuts too 🙂

  11. hi dassana, like all the other readers i too missed you and yur lovely recipes .. good that you had a nice trip and all is well with you… was wondering as to what must hv happened .. .. anyway i did try a lot of recpies some were good some were ok … learnt a lot from your site and still hv to learn a lot … u take care dassana …

    marina5 stars

    1. thank you marina for your kind words. i feel blessed to have readers who keep me in their thoughts and prayers. cooking is all about learning. on my trip to kerala, i also learnt a few things about kerala cuisine 🙂 thanks again.

  12. Hi Dasanna,

    Like everybody even I was wondering why you are not posting any new recipes and got worried .. Nice to hear that u were on a family trip.. I am sure it must have been a memorable one :). .. Welcome back 🙂 waiting for your new recipes 🙂4 stars

    1. thank you deepika. it was one of our memorable trips. yes getting back to the routine of adding new recipes 🙂

  13. Hi Dassana,

    I love your blog! Great pics and easy steps to follow. Most of your recipes are so similar to my mom’s cooking (the panjabi recipes :)). Thanks for putting this all together!

    I wanted to leave a comment on Gajar Halwa, butw as not able to. I wanted some advise – do you think it will come out the same if I replace sugar with jaggery. I have a toddler, and trying to not give her too much sugar. In my head, I think jaggery is still better than sugar 🙂 Repond when you have some time.

    Many Thanks for this lovely effort 🙂
    Swati5 stars

    1. thanks a lot swati. jaggery will taste different in gajar halwa as compared to sugar. but the taste will still be delicious. try making with sweet carrots, so you need to add less jaggery or sugar in it. jaggery is a better option than sugar.

  14. Hi Dassana,
    Glad to see you back blogging more mouth watering recipes and those drool-worthy photos!. I hope you had a peaceful trip and feel well in yourself. Take care, hugs!

    1. Thanks and hugs laxmi. We had a good trip and it was relaxing and peaceful.

  15. Hi Dasana,

    Have been a regular visitor to your site now. Was reallly wondering where you disappeared and there your are 🙂 Missed your receipes. I must say to are a greatttt inspiration to people like me who are not much into cooking. I have tried some of your receipes and all have turned out well. My sis in law too is addicted to your website. A ” BIG THANK YOU” to you for always being at my rescue :):)

    Thanks & Regards,


  16. Hi Dassana, so nice to have you back. I have missed you. I tried to see if any comments section was open so I can update few things, but I couldn’t find any. I visited your website and made own garam masala. I also made dal makhani with dhungar method. It was delicious:-) I make dal tadka regularly as it has become our favorite.
    I made methi theplas as per your recipe with mixed attas and loved them. They didn’t stay very soft next day, I don’t know why. I will try again. I mixed dough with only curd.
    I am looking forward for more yummy recipes. I also want to share some south Indian recipe like ‘andhra pappu’, how I make, it is just that there is no time. I will try soon.

    1. Thank you aparna. I still have not opened the comments section of the remaining recipes. Currently even though we are back, i am occupied with many things.
      For the thepla since different flours are used, they won’t be soft the next day. If you make only with atta, they will remain soft. I do plan to add some more recipes.
      You can share the recipe whenever you have time 🙂

      1. Thanks Dassana. Next time I will make theplas with atta only. I must say the mixed flour theplas taste so good:-) I had also added 1/4 cup of oats flour. I am sure you have a busy schedule, take your time to add recipes.

        1. yes aparna, mixed flour ones taste better. oats flour is a good addition 🙂

  17. Hi,

    I am a regular visitor of your website… Have been waiting for a new recipe and wondering why no post for such a long period.. Now got the reason why..

    I have tried many of your recipes and whenever I am doubtful about any recipe your website is there for my rescue.

    Recently I made Modak for the first time with your Fried Modak recipe and everybody liked it.. All thanks to you for your website

    1. So the suspense is over, mamta 🙂 thanks for the kind words and feedback 🙂

  18. Hi dassana, bhindi is one of my favourite vegetables. Your recipe looks delicious.
    I have never seen any one put urad dal and sesame seeds in bhindi.
    I have to give this a try.

    1. Thanks minaz. In the cuisine from tamil nadu, urad dal is added while tempering in many recipes. Sesame seeds are not added. Its sesame oil that is used 🙂

  19. Nice to see you back Dassana.. I missed you n your recipes for more than a month.5 stars

    1. Thank you akriti. I also missed blogging as well as responding to readers like you. I still have to open the comments for all the recipes.

  20. Hello Dassana,

    So glad to see you back in action . I was wondering like many others I am sure why you had not posted anything for a month. It is a strange world we live in, we probably will never meet but you and the site are always in my thoughts. Hope you were just busy and not unwell. Best wishes and hope to see you with your delicious recipes regularly.

    Will try this recipe and let you know how it turns out. This message was to welcome you back and tell you I missed you.:)5 stars

    1. Thats so sweet anu and touching. Hugs 🙂 I was fine and in good health. We just had a spiritual trip which we extended further. I will add recipes gradually and some are already in drafts. So will post them accordingly.