Coconut Chutney - easy, versatile and full of bursting flavors! A delicious South Indian chutney served with dosa, idli, masala dosa, medu vada, upma and many more. Here is how to make 3 types of best coconut chutney recipes with step by step photos and video.
Chutneys are my most favourite condiment to go along with my Indian food or snacks. Sometimes when I am super lazy to cook, then most of our meals are very basic dal rice or khichdi. And to go with it, either tomato chutney or raw mango chutney seals the deal.
About the recipe
Coconut chutney is a delicious and creamy side dish made form fresh or dry coconut, chilies, cumin, ginger garlic and salt. This is absolutely easy to make, vegan, gluten free and can be adjusted as per your liking.
There are various ways of making it and other flavourings like fresh coriander, roasted dal, yogurt, shallots, tamarind or lemon etc. can be added to it.
Dried or fresh, quintessentially, coconut is a part of most of the South Indian recipes. Hence, these chutneys becomes the important side dish to most of the South Indian breakfast dishes. This is our all time love to go along with any of the South Indian snacks.
Well, during our childhood days, we always referred it as the, nariyal chutney idli chutney or dosa chutney only :). Never knew this chutney also has other names as well. They are also known as Thengai Chutney, Kobbari chutney or Pachadi in Telugu.
The tangy hint in it comes either from curd or with tamarind as in the Andhra style one. Or from lemon or raw mango as in basic ones.
You will also find the addition of peanuts and onions along with coconut in some of the Indian homes. But the simple and basic version can never replace the aroma and taste of mixed variations.
Traditionally, in olden days, it was always ground in stone mortar pestle. Even in today's time, many people do prefer to make it in the same way, that is without using any mixer grinder.
I have to admit this, sometimes, even I do prefer to make it on a stone slab. Because, it gives so fresh aroma and heavenly taste.
Honestly, you will find countless versions of this very basic coconut chutney. With a slight variation, the recipe and method differs in every household and hence every region, but, the base of the chutney is always the same.
Coconut : Fresh coconut is what actually goes into the chutney. It's easily available in the Indian stores.
Roasted Chana Dal : The another key element in to this condiment. It adds earthy flavour and gives body to the chutney.
Yogurt : It adds lovely sour and flavor, so I love to add in the white chutney. Feel free to add either lemon juice or tamarind instead of yogurt.
Green Chillies and Dried Red Chillies : The green ones goes ofcourse into the green and white coconut chutney. Whereas the red goes into the red chutney. Adjust the amount as per your taste.
Green Coriander and Curry Leaves : Gives beautiful freshness flavour as well color to green coconut chutney.
Ginger and Garlic: Ginger goes in all the three variations. Garlic goes into the red and green only. But, you can add it to the white variation also.
Tamarind Pulp : Like sour yogurt, tamarind gives nice tang to the chutney. I have added it to red and green coconut chutney.
Tempering (Tadka) : For the best of the taste, tempering is key step, so do not compromise on this. For this, you will be needing oil, mustard seeds, cumins seeds, urad dal, chana dal, curry leaves and dried red chilies.
How to make Coconut Chutney - 3 ways
White Chutney Instructions
To begin with, gather all the ingredients. Then, add coconut, green chillies, roasted chana Dal, ginger, yogurt into a blender along with water and grind to a fine paste. I have used around half cup water for this chutney.
For tempering heat oil in a small pan. Once the oil heats up, add mustard and cumin seeds and fry for few seconds until aromatic. Then, add urad dal and chana dal and fry until it picks up golden color, do not burn.
Add curry leaves and dried red chili, fry for another few seconds. Finally, pour the tempering over the white chutney.
Red Chutney Instructions
Note : We shall be using dry red chillies here instead of green chilli.
To begin with, gather all the ingredients. Then, add all the ingredients into a blender along with water and grind to a fine paste. Transfer the chutney to a bowl.
For tadka, first, heat oil in a pan, add mustard and cumin seeds and fry for few seconds until aromatic. Then, add urad dal, chana dal, and fry until it picks up golden color, do not burn. Pour the tempering over the red coconut chutney and serve with your favourite breakfast or meal.
Green Chutney Instructions
To begin with, gather all the ingredients. Then, add all the ingredients into a blender along with water, grind it into a smooth chutney and transfer it into a bowl.
To give tadka or tempering, firstly, heat oil in a pan. Once the oil heats up, add mustard and cumin seeds and fry for few seconds until aromatic.
Then, add urad dal, chana dal, and fry until it picks up golden color, do not burn. Now, add curry leaves, fry for another few seconds. Finally, pour the tempering over the green chutney.
FAQs + Storage and Freezing
Yes! Why? Because, coconut is high in fibre, vitamins and minerals like magnesium, calcium, selenium and zinc. It is a great source of vitamin B- complex, potassium and helps in reducing the cholesterol levels.
As it is high fibre element, it helps keeping you full for longer time. Combined with exercise and balanced diet, this chutney may even help you in weight loss.
Even in diabetes, heart ailments or pregnancy, you can enjoy this chutney in moderation with your favourite meal. Just that, consult your doctor once before adding it to your diet.
Transfer it in clean bowl and cover it either with cling wrap or tight fitting lid and refrigerate. These coconut chutneys will stay good in refrigerator up to 10 days.
The chutney tends to loose it flavor and gets spoilt easily when left on the counter for hours, especially, in summers. So, do not keep these chutneys on the counter for too long. Instead, keep it refrigerated for longer time.
These chutneys freezes very well. Transfer them to a clean air tight container or zip pouch. It will stay for as good as 3 months. Whenever, you want to serve it, thaw it in refrigerator for few hours and then on the counter at room temperature for some time.
Another trick that you can do is, make the chutneys and store them in clean container or zip bag without tempering it. Then before serving, thaw it for some time on counter and then temper it as shown. Chutneys will be as good as fresh.
You can add little water and adjust the salt if needed.
- I would highly recommend you to use fresh coconut. If you are out of fresh ones or if they are not available in your region, then you can use either frozen grated coconut or even the dry coconut.
- In case, if you using dried grated coconut or desiccated coconut, then add a bit of warm water while grinding.
- All of these chutneys are vegan except for the white one as it has yogurt. So, skip only yogurt and add some lemon juice or little tamarind for the tang.
- Usually, here in India we add roasted chana dal (roasted husked black chickpeas) to the chutney. But, if you wish to make it without chana dal then, just substitute it with roasted peanuts or roasted sesame seeds and proceed. Or you may even skip adding any of them.
- You can skip the garlic if you wish to.
- I prefer to remove the brown bits from the fresh coconut and love to use white part only especially while making the white chutney. This will give proper white colour to the chutney and not creamish or green.
If you love variations in chutneys, then consider adding these ingredients for different flavors and tastes - Raw mango, Blanched spinach, Beetroot, Tomatoes, Carrot, Mint. Add them in quantity depending upon the flavor intensity you like.
Serve these chutneys with your favorite idli, dosa, pongal, pesarattu, vada, upma, uttapam and paniyarams. Coconut chutney goes perfect with Indian meals like rice and dal or khichdi. Or simply slather it between the bread slices to make chutney sandwich.
This post has been updated from recipe archives, was first published in 2018.
If you made my recipe for Coconut Chutneys, please let me know how it turned out for you! I'd love to hear through your comments and ratings below.
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Coconut Chutney Recipe
To Prepare Red Coconut Chutney:
- 1½ cups Fresh Coconut (chopped or grated)
- 10 - 12 Dry Red Chilies (you can use the spicier variety)
- 3 tablespoons Roasted Chana Dal
- 1½ inch Ginger piece
- 6-7 Garlic Cloves
- 1½ tablespoon Tamarind Pulp
- Salt to Taste
To Prepare White Coconut Chutney:
- 1½ cup Fresh Coconut ( chopped or grated)
- 4 tablespoons Roasted Chana Dal
- 2 Green Chilies
- ⅓ cup Curd
- 1½ inch Ginger Piece
- Salt to Taste
To Prepare Green Coconut Chutney:
- 1½ cup Fresh Coconut ( grated or chopped)
- ¾ cup Coriander Leaves
- 2 tablespoons Roasted Chana Dal
- 5 Garlic Cloves
- 3-4 Green Chilies
- 1½ tablespoon Tamarind Pulp
- 1½ inch Ginger Piece (piece )
- 5-6 Curry Leaves
- Salt to Taste
For tempering the chutneys:
- 2 tablespoons Oil
- 1 teaspoon Mustard Seeds
- ¾ teaspoon Cumin Seeds
- ¾ teaspoon Urad Dal
- 1 teaspoon Chana Dal
- 10-12 Curry Leaves
- 3-4 Dried Red Chilies (to temper only white chutney)
- Gather all the required ingredients.
- In a blender jar, add all the ingredients mentioned for red chutney.
- Using little water, blend it to a fine paste. ½ cup water or little more than that would be good enough to grind the chutney.
- Transfer the chutney into a bowl.
- Similarly, blend the ingredients for white and green chutney as well and transfer each of the them into the seperate bowl.
- Heat oil in a pan.
- Add mustard and cumin seeds and fry for few seconds until aromatic.
- Then, add urad dal and chana dal and fry until it picks up golden color, do not burn.
- Add curry leaves and fry for another few seconds.
- For white chutney tempering, add dried red chilies along with curry leaves.
- Finally, pour the tempering over the prepared chutney.
- Serve these with idlis, dosa, vada, upma and much more
- To make vegan white chutney, skip yogurt and proceed. You may add some cashewnuts to it instead of yogurt
- While grinding, add water as per the consistency required.