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South Indian recipes


Last Updated : Apr 17,2021



दक्षिण भारतीय व्यंजन - हिन्दी में पढ़ें (South Indian recipes in Hindi)
દક્ષિણ ભારતીય વ્યંજન - ગુજરાતી માં વાંચો (South Indian recipes in Gujarati)

South Indian Recipes

South Indian Cuisine – Awesome, Awe-Inspiring Variety

South Indian Recipes, 950 South Indian Dishes, Food Recipes. An acquaintance had this irksome habit of referring to all South Indians as “Madrasis”. And one fine day she stopped saying so. In an attempt to quell my curiosity I asked – and got to know that after a tour of South India she realised there is so much diversity down South that it is just not fair to generalise – the best example being South Indian cuisine. South Indian cuisine and food habits are so varied that it is common for a person to feel lost in the menu of a neighbouring state. Say, when a person from Tamil Nadu attends a wedding in Andhra Pradesh, it is a common trick to keep an eye on the next person’s plate or banana leaf, to figure out what order and in what combinations the food is to be consumed!

Tiffin - Much more than idlis and dosas

Idli
Idli

When one mentions South Indian food, idli, dosa and vada are the first dishes that come to one’s mind – and it’s fair enough because these dishes are popular in all the South Indian states. It is a daring risk to venture into the question of which state they originated in – so we will not touch upon that, but the fact remains that these are much-loved foods all over South India. Served with the quintessential Sambhar and Chutney, this “tiffin” platter is enjoyed any time of the day – for breakfast, evening snacks or dinner.

Pongal Kootu
Pongal Kootu

A word that the British introduced us to, tiffin refers to snacks that are neither too light nor too heavy, and can be relished at any time of the day! When it comes to tiffin, there is a lot of similarity amongst the South Indian states, and we find many common favourites like idli, dosa, vada, uttapam, upma and pongal. Apart from these, each state has its unique offerings too – like the paniyaram and adai of Tamil Nadu, the aapam, puttu, avial and kadala curry of Kerala, neer dosa, kadubu, benne dosa and rava idli of Karnataka and pesarattu of Andhra. Apart from Sambhar, tiffin is usually served with chutneys like coconut chutney, coriander chutney, tomato chutney, etc., or dry chutney powders like the idli milagai podi or curry leaves powder.

Lunch – rice is special for South Indians

Curd RiceCurd Rice

Rice holds a special position in the South Indian kitchen. More than a mere ingredient, rice or annam is given a divine connotation and treated with respect. In all South Indian states, rice is the staple grain served during lunch time. Some prefer to use raw rice, while others opt for parboiled or boiled varieties. Rice lovers that they are, South Indians can often tell the difference between rice grown in various regions and different river beds! At lunch time, the rice is freshly steamed and served hot with a spread of dal-based curries and vegetables. There is a lot of difference in the items served during lunch time, and the order in which they are served.
 

Andhra Pradesh and Telangana Recipes

PesarattuPesarattu

Lunch is dominated by rice, which is served with dollops of ghee and a range of curries and dals. Depending on whether it’s a normal day or a special occasion, the number of items served may vary. When you see the word ‘pappu’ in a dish’s name, you can understand that it comprises dal. It may be plain or combined with veggies. Usually, a meal begins with rice mixed with pappu and enjoyed with a spicy oorgaya (pickle). Other main course dishes are koora (dry or semi-dry subzi), pulusu (sour and tangy gravy made of tamarind, tomatoes, sour curd or raw mangoes), pachadi (a spicy and saucy accompaniment), charu or rasam (a thin, soupy dish that is mixed with rice), curds, and so on. Pulihore, a peppy rice preparation with tamarind and spices, is much-loved by the Telugu folks and everyone who tastes it!
 

Karnataka Recipes

Tomato GojjuTomato Gojju

A regular meal consists of vegetable preparations, a dal based preparation like sambhar, and saaru or rasam, ending with majjige (buttermilk). Kannadigas also love gojju, a featuring a unique blend of sweet, spicy and tangy notes. There are also one-dish meals like the Bisi Bele Bath, a hot and spicy rice preparation, made of rice, dal and veggies flavoured with a special masala and tamarind pulp. Karnataka within itself has several sub-cuisines like Udupi, Mangalore and Mysore, and a discerning diner can easily tell the difference between these.

South Indian Recipes, Kerala

Quick IdiyappamQuick Idiyappam

Don’t be fooled by the simple food that the Keralites have on a normal day – visit them on a festive occasion to experience the mind-boggling variety of the state’s cuisine. Kerala food is rich in all things coconuty! From coconut milk to grated coconut and coconut-based spice pastes, it is used in every possible form to make vegetable and curd-based curries. Yellow banana and jackfruit are also used abundantly in the region to make crispies, curries and desserts.
 

South Indian Recipes, Tamil Nadu

More KuzhambuMore Kuzhambu

Different regions of Tamil Nadu have different styles of cooking, the popular strains being Tanjore, Tirunelveli, North Arcot and Chettinad. However, a three-course lunch broadly consists of rice served with sambhar and/ or mor kuzhambu, then rasam and finally curd, accompanied by a range of vegetable dishes. If lunch is had out of a dabba, people often opt for what is colloquially known as ‘mixed rice’ or ‘variety rice’. Tomato Rice, Tamarind Rice, Sambhar Rice, Curd Rice and Peanut Rice are some of the common options. On special days, vada, kheer and pachadi (raita) are also served with lunch.

Sweets and savouries for South Indians

Ela Ada Recipe
Ela Ada Recipe

Like the rest of the country, South India also loves sweets and snacks! From the Ela Ada and Unni Appam of Kerala to the Kajjikaylu of Andhra Pradesh, the Jangiri and Chakkarai Pongal of Tamil Nadu, and the Obbuttu and Mysore Pak of Karnataka, each sweet delight has a culinary anecdote to tell with distinct flavours, native ingredients and exclusive cooking techniques.

Mysore Bonda
Mysore Bonda

Snacks are also an integral part of the South Indian food scene – they are enjoyed at practically any time of the day but mostly in the evening with a cup of hot coffee or tea. It is amazing how they never tire of having a steaming hot cuppa however sweltering the weather might be! But then, nothing can complement a Masala Vada, Mysore Bonda or Plantain Bajji as well as a cup of South Indian filter coffee or Chukku Kaapi (a tea of dried ginger and spices). Keralites enjoy snacking on steamed yellow bananas and Kattan Chaai (black tea).

Every kitchen in South India is also well-stocked with pickles, dry chutney powders, vadams and papads (that can be roasted or deep-fried), which are served in perfect combos to make a simple meal seem like a special treat!

The magic of the South Indian tempering

Homemade Rasam PowderHomemade Rasam Powder

If you are going to experiment with South Indian cooking, your kitchen needs to be stocked with rice, tamarind (or kokum), sambhar powder and rasam powder, ghee and cooking oils like groundnut, coconut or sesame oils. More importantly, you need to get your masala box or ‘anjarai petti’ (literally five-compartment box, although the modern ones have seven) equipped with mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, cumin seeds, coriander seeds, sesame seeds, red chillies, broken urad dal and chana dal, as these are frequently used in South Indian cooking. These ingredients in different combinations are used to make masalas for South Indian curries. Sometimes, they are ground raw, while sometimes they are roasted and ground. The method and proportions give each dish a distinctly different flavour even when the same ingredients are used. That said, the final master stroke in most South Indian dishes is the zesty tempering of mustard seeds, asafoetida and curry leaves, which gives the food a trademark South Indian seal!
 

More food stories to tell from each nook and corner

Each nook and corner of Tamil Nadu has a different food story to tell, and we realise now that it’s a mistake to try and cover it all in one article, so we urge you to read more about each of these cuisines (Andhra and Telangana, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka) and recreate the magic in your own kitchen using our authentic recipes. In India there is so much variety in each cuisine that it is difficult for an individual to entirely master their own cuisine. Just when you think you know all your native foods, someone busts the misconception and widens your horizon by sharing yet another treasure! While we focus on our own cuisines, we should also try and set aside at least a day every week to try the culinary gems from other Indian regions, so that we grow to appreciate the unity in diversity.

Enjoy our South Indian Recipes, 950 South Indian Dishes, Food Recipes and other South Indian Recipe articles below.

30+Karnataka Cuisine
15+Kerala Cuisine
20+Tamil Nadu Cuisine
10+South Indian Appe
125+South Indian Breakfast
45+South Indian Chutney
175+South Indian Curries / Subzis
125+South Indian Dosa
125+South Indian Idlis
10+South Indian Pachadi, Raita
5 South Indian Pickle
10+South Indian Podis
55+South Indian Rasam
50+South Indian Sambar
45+South Indian Snacks
90+South Indian Sweets
15 South Indian Uttapam
35+South Indian Vada


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Sambar Recipe, South Indian Homemade Sambar Recipe
Recipe# 1557
29 Apr 21

  This recipe has an associated video
 by Tarla Dalal
sambar recipe | South Indian sambar recipe | homemade sambhar recipe | how to make sambar | with 20 amazing images. Sambar is a definite part of
Rava Idli in Microwave
Recipe# 4883
28 Apr 21

 
 by Tarla Dalal
rava idli in microwave | microwave sooji idli | quick rava idli in microwave | with 27 amazing images. rava idli in microwave is one of the most popular
Semiya Vegetable Upma, Vermicelli Veg Upma Low Salt
Recipe# 22307
26 Apr 21

 
 by Tarla Dalal
semiya veg upma recipe | whole wheat vermicelli vegetable upma | healthy semiya upma | low salt semiya upma for hypertension | with 26 amazing images. semiya veg upma re ....
Coconut Chutney  ( Idlis and Dosas)
Recipe# 1653
26 Apr 21

  This recipe has an associated video
 by Tarla Dalal
coconut chutney recipe | thangai chutney | coconut chutney 6 varieties | coconut chutney for idli, dosa, uttapa | nariyal chutney | with 20 amazing images.
Dal Rasam, South Indian Toovar Dal Rasam
Recipe# 42385
27 Apr 21

 
 by Tarla Dalal
dal rasam recipe | tur dal rasam | paruppu rasam | South Indian toovar dal rasam | with 33 amazing images. dal rasam is an everyday fare in Tamil Nadu! Learn how ....
Rava Dosa, Onion Rava Dosa
Recipe# 169
26 Apr 21

 
 
by Tarla Dalal
rava dosa | onion rava dosa | crispy rava dosa | instant rava dosa | sooji ka dosa | with 24 amazing images Rava dosa is a delectably c ....
Raw Banana Subzi, Veg Raw Banana Sabzi Recipe
Recipe# 6428
13 Apr 21

 
 by Tarla Dalal
Relish raw banana, the South Indian way! A simple, dry subzi of raw bananas, tempered traditionally with mustard seeds, red chillies, et al, and garnished with grated coconut. While you can ....
Curd Rice, South Indian Curd Rice Recipe
Recipe# 32893
16 Aug 20

  This recipe has an associated video
 by Tarla Dalal
curd rice recipe | South Indian curd rice | dahi chawal | thayir sadam | with 20 amazing images. Just like khichdi is to Gujarati, rajma chawal is to Punjabi, the curd rice is to South-Indi ....
Tomato Rasam
Recipe# 32903
08 Apr 21

  This recipe has an associated video
 by Tarla Dalal
A perfect recipe for you to enjoy the true flavours of home-made south Indian cooking. Rasam is an essential part of every south Indian meal, and is usually served as the second main course following sambhar (or some other kuzhambu).
Potato Bhaji, Aloo Bhaji
Recipe# 1661
03 Apr 21

  This recipe has an associated video
 
by Tarla Dalal
aloo bhaji recipe | aloo bhaji with puri | batatyachi bhaji | with 16 amazing images. Potato Bhaji also called Aloo Bhaji is made in every household in India. Ea ....
South Indian Filter Coffee, Filter Coffee Recipe
Recipe# 40622
26 Apr 21

  This recipe has an associated video
 by Tarla Dalal
filter coffee recipe | South Indian filter coffee recipe | kaapi | Kumbakonam degree coffee | Mylapore filter coffee | Madras kaapi | with ....
South Indian Sambar Powder, Sambar Masala Powder At Home
Recipe# 30828
26 Mar 21

  This recipe has an associated video
 by Tarla Dalal
sambar powder recipe | how to make South Indian sambar powder at home | best sambar masala powder | sambar masala with Kashmiri chillies | with 18 amazing images. sambar ....
Sooji Idli ( Suji Idli)
Recipe# 1384
08 Apr 21

  This recipe has an associated video
 
by Tarla Dalal
sooji idli | instant rava idli | suji idli | instant suji ki idli | with 16 amazing images. sooji idli requires no fermenting or grinding and hence called
Urad Dal and Vegetable Appe
Recipe# 40524
23 Mar 21

 
 
by Tarla Dalal
Urad dal, generally the basic ingredient for vadas, takes on the form of appe in this delicious recipe! A batter of soaked urad is perked up with spice powders and grated veggies before being cooked in an appe mould till crisp and golden in colour. Since this irresistible Urad Dal and Ve ....
Drumstick and Cashew Curry
Recipe# 32916
23 Mar 21

 
 
by Tarla Dalal
Cashews being abundant in regions across the west coast of India, it is usually used to complement vegetables in various curries. They are commonly combines with drumstick, long beans etc. A horde of spices is usually used to balance the blandness of cashews. Serve this delicious curry wi ....
Spinach Dosa
Recipe# 41017
29 Mar 21

  This recipe has an associated video
 by Tarla Dalal
spinach dosa recipe | palak dosa | keerai dosai | spinach dosa for pregnancy and kids | with step by step images. spinach dosa is a unique snack idea to make up f ....
Jowar Palak Appe
Recipe# 42675
11 Mar 21

 
 by Tarla Dalal
Irresistibly tempting, the Jowar Palak Appe is a real treat to the palate, while also being a nourishing snack for your body. Rich in iron , fibre and other nutrients, this appe is quite easy to make and super tast ....
Tamarind Pulp, Imli Pulp
Recipe# 32648
08 Mar 21

 
 
by Tarla Dalal
tamarind pulp recipe | how to make imli pulp | how to make tamarind pulp at home | tamarind pulp for South Indian recipes | with 7 amazing images. tamarind pulp recipe
Moong Sprouts and Bajra Pessaruttu
Recipe# 42538
08 Mar 21

 
 
by Tarla Dalal
Pesarattu is a South Indian specialty, especially famous in Andhra Pradesh. While it is traditionally made of moong and rice, we have made an awesome version with two iron-rich ingredients –
Quick Rava Idli ( South Indian Recipes)
Recipe# 32608
02 Mar 21

  This recipe has an associated video
 by Tarla Dalal
rava idli recipe | South Indian rava idli | quick sooji idli | instant semolina idli | with 20 amazing images. Our quick rava idli recipe is an instant
Corn and Paneer Bhaji
Recipe# 1662
01 Mar 21

 
 by Tarla Dalal
If you wish to break away from the standard coconut or potato-based accompaniments, try this corn and paneer bhaji with your dosa! of late, innovatively stuffed dosas are featuring on menus across the world. So, why not try one stuffed with this subzi?
Moong Dal and Spinach Idli
Recipe# 38991
27 Feb 21

  This recipe has an associated video
 
by Tarla Dalal
Eliminating rice reduces the calorie count of these spinach idlis, making them suitable for diabetics as well. The same moong dal batter can also be used to make healthy pankis and pancakes.
Cucumber and Carrot Curd Brown Rice, Low Salt Recipe
Recipe# 42017
24 Feb 21

 
 by Tarla Dalal
On a busy day, a simple bowl of curd rice can come to your rescue by satiating your tummy and keeping you fit! We have enhanced the health quotient of this simple South Indian recipe by making it using brown rice rather than white rice. A few low-sodium ....
Sambar ( Sambhar, Idlis and Dosas)
Recipe# 1663
10 Apr 20

 
 
by Tarla Dalal
Like idlis and dosas, Sambhar is also an all-time favourite that is almost synonymous with South Indian food! From the smallest roadside hotel to the classiest Indian restaurants around the globe, ‘idli, Vada, Sambhar’ is a very popular breakfast combo! ....
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South Indian
5
 on 03 Sep 20 09:59 AM


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Tarla Dalal    Ashraf thanks for the feedback !!! keep reviewing recipes, articles you loved.
Reply
03 Sep 20 01:28 PM
South Indian
5
 on 27 Aug 20 12:41 PM


My name is Manik Das. I read your all articles and your food article are so delicious.
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Tarla Dalal    Manik thanks for the feedback !!! keep reviewing recipes, articles you loved.
Reply
27 Aug 20 12:46 PM
South Indian
5
 on 08 Feb 20 06:43 AM


South Indian
5
 on 13 Jun 19 06:26 PM


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Tarla Dalal    Glad you liked the South Indian recipes.
Reply
14 Jun 19 02:41 PM
South Indian
5
 on 03 Mar 19 09:04 AM


South Indian
5
 on 11 Jul 18 04:54 PM


Thanks for your big collection of South Indian recipes. So true about your statement of rice holds a special position in the South Indian kitchen. Have tried your 4 flour dosa which our entire family loves.
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Tarla Dalal    Hi Sheetal, Thank you for your kind words. Happy to know you loved the information we shared. Do try more and more recipes and share with us your feedback.
Reply
12 Jul 18 08:58 AM
South Indian
5
 on 11 Jul 18 11:07 AM


Our office is providing evening snacks for all staff everyday in which 2 days is for South Indian snacks in a week i.e. idli & some day dosa. My colleague has given Tarla Madam idlis & Dosas recipe printouts to our office maid. Now she is referring to different variety of Tarla Dalals idlis & Dosas recipes. She enjoys making it because of simplicity & perfection of each recipe and we all enjoys eating fresh, hygienic and tasty snacks. Their are lots of Tarla dalal''s delicious south Indian dishes that are made at my home. I loved that tadka aroma of curries, chillies and many other spices used while making spicy & savory dishes. Sweets pongal, Paal Payasam, rice pancakes is NO.1, which we make it at home and all liked them very much.
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Tarla Dalal    Hi Krutika, That is amazing! Thank you for your kind words. Happy to know you loved the information we shared.
Reply
12 Jul 18 08:47 AM