Chettinad Tomato Chutney

chutney recipe for idli with tomato
Chettinad Tomato Chutney with Idli

Today, I present an absolute winner of a recipe, Chettinad tomato chutney. Chutney aka Pachadi is a revered dish in our home and my blog is testimony to it. Chutney recipes are numerous with various permutations and combinations. I do not follow any particular chutney recipe as such when I venture out to make a pachadi. I just add a twist to an original chutney recipe by tweaking it and a new chutney flavor is born.

I wanted to make an authentic Chettinad tomato chutney to go with idli for breakfast and went about searching through my large collection of hand written recipes for one. I found a couple of chettinad chutney recipes but was not sure how authentic they were but settled for this particular chutney recipe as I liked the list of ingredients that went into its making. I’m glad I made it. Its the coconut milk which elevates the flavor of the tomato chutney. Spicy with slight tang and sweet notes, Chettinad tomato chutney is sensational and a keeper.

chutney recipes for idli
Tomato Chutney with Idli

Chettinad Tomato Chutney

  Prepare time:
 Serves: 4

 Main Ingredients:

  •  tomato


  •   Onion - 1, finely sliced
  •   Tomatoes - 2 large, sliced
  •   Chana dal - 1 1/2 tbsps (Bengal gram/senaga pappu)
  •   Dry red chilies - 2
  •   Green chilies - 1
  •   Ginger - 1/2 " finely minced
  •   Coconut milk - 3-4 tbsps
  •   Salt to taste
  •   Cooking oil - 1/2 tbsp
  •   For tempering/poppu/tadka:
  •   Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp
  •   Red chilies - 2
  •   Curry leaves - a sprig
  •   Asafoetida - pinch

Method for making Chettinad Tomato Chutney

Heat oil in a vessel. Once the oil is hot, reduce flame, add chana dal, red chilies and green chili and saute till the dal turns light brown. Remove the dal, green chili and red chilies from oil and keep aside to cool.
In the same oil, add the onions and ginger and saute till transparent, approx 3-4 mts. Add the tomatoes and saute for 9-10 mts on low to medium flame. Turn off heat and cool.
Blend the cooled ingredients (dals, chilies, tomatoes and onions) along with salt and coconut milk to a fine paste. Remove onto a serving bowl.
Heat a tsp of oil in a small pan, add the mustard seeds and allow them to splutter. Add the curry leaves, red chilies and asafoetida and turn off heat.
Pour this tempering over the chutney and serve with idli or dosa.


Made Chettinad Tomato Chutney with idli for our breakfast today. I try to prepare a new variety of chutney recipe for idli and dosa.
  • Kavitha

    Coconut milk in chutney?!! Interesting ๐Ÿ™‚

  • radha

    Looks so delicious.

  • R.Punithavathi

    Hi Sailu ,

    I’m Punitha , do you remember me ???

    You are 100% deserve to Mrs.Perfect ๐Ÿ™‚

    Neat presentation as Usual, looks and sounds well….

    • Sailu | Indian Food

      Of course, I do remember you, Punitha. Hope you are doing good. ๐Ÿ™‚

      • R.Punithavathi

        Hi Sailu ,

        Thank you for your reply.

        One humble request to you Sailu.

        I know you are always having hectic schedule.

        If it possible to you, Please spend a few seconds for me to visit my blog and

        give me your opinion and suggestions abt the blog Sailu.

        Thank you Sailu and convey my warm regards to Nehal….

        Bye and Take care…

  • Manidipas Kitchen

    Another wonderful contribution.

    I blog @ Manidipa’s Kitchen

  • LBV

    is another name for this ‘Karam’ chutney? If no, do you have a recipe for Karam chutney? Btw I really like your blog…

    • Sailu | Indian Food

      This is not Karam Chutney. Will blog Karam chutney recipe sometime. ๐Ÿ™‚

      • LBV


  • Priya

    Can have this chutney every day, yummy and flavourful..

  • Happy Cook / Finla

    Looks so so good I am bookmarking this one

  • Dhivya

    it was just awesome…tried it for dinner tonight,,,and it went so very well with crispy dosas. Thanks sailu ๐Ÿ™‚ now my mom too wants the recipe ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Siri

    wow………tempting recipe…i should try it out soon. Thanks Sailu !!!

  • Neelima

    One suggestion to the recipe. Coconut milk is not an easily available ingredient unless you open an entire can of it. Instead I used dry coconut shredded 1tsp. Also one needs to increase flame to let the water evaporate in the sautรƒยฉ stage of the chutney will be of runny consistency.

  • Jaya

    Thank You Sailaja for a delicious pachadi recipe …although I have to skip coconut part as i had none time I am going to add that too..hugs

  • Jaya

    Thank You Sailaja for a delicious pachadi recipe …although I have to skip coconut part as i had none time I am going to add that too..hugs

  • Shankari Sundaram

    Tried the chutney recipe this morning. My family and I loved it! Thanks a lot Sailu. I didn’t have coconut milk and neither did I have the time to extract fresh milk. So I substituted with fresh coconut. The next time I will try with the coconut milk.

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  • Ramneekkaur

    i would suggest put a table spoon of sugar to this chutney its great

  • Faseela

    yummy n tempting chutney

  • Bhagyajyothi

    tried this chetney yesterday, my husband liked a lot..100 likes for the chetney..yummy taste, goes well with dosa…

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  • Kanchanamala56

    Good tast

  • Savitha Umesh

    Seems to be tasty, i will surely try once Savitha

  • Chefrakesh1

    so nice recipes………..

  • Pingback: Chettinad Tomato Chutney « Sravanthi's Recipe Collection()

  • raji

    fr seeing nice bt if we taste

  • Akshay-vetri

    Use milk instead using of coconutmilk

  • Shoba Sane

    wow i tried making the chutney and i must tell u it came out yummiest….i became an instant star in my family….everyone loved it with idli and dosal….i only tweaked the recipe a little instead of coconut milk i added little pieces of coconut while grinding the paste….it tasted yummy….muah thanks for sharing the recipe….

  • Sruthi

    I just tried this & it came out awesome. Thank you!!

  • Mansha M

    Tried this chutney today- it came out delicious!

  • Sraddhanjali Jena

    The chutney turned out to be super yumm ๐Ÿ™‚ Must try for those who havnt tried it yet..very simple and tasty..I made it without coconut milk

    • Nilaya

      Hey Did you prepare it on regular basis? if so does coconut help!!

  • Samyu

    Hi sailu
    Im a 10 week pregnant and nauseous.Today i tried this chutney came out well without coconut milk.
    Had tummy full.

    Thanks for a simple and nice recipe

  • Neela

    Hi , I do make a similar chutney without the coconut . We add quartered boiled eggs into it and it’s a side for biryani , even dosa ! It’s a great recipe ! I recall now that in Chennai I have eaten the same pachadi type with coconut ground as well ! There’s some harmony here as it blends in and give a base to the tomatoes