The Best Tomato Chutney Recipes from India

What’s up, chutney lovers! I’m back with another round-up of my favorite kinds of chutneys – tomato chutneys!

Now, you might be wondering…aren’t all tomato chutneys basically the same? Tomato, some spices, blend it up and you’re done?

Well let me tell you, the world of Indian tomato chutneys is much more diverse and exciting than you might think!

India’s different regions have put their unique spin on tomato chutney recipes over the years.

From fiery South Indian coconut-tomato blends to the syrupy, tangy tomato chutneys of Northern India – there’s a mind-blowing diversity when it comes to tomato chutneys across the various states and cultures of India.

And I’m here to walk you through it all! I’ve picked 8 of my personal favorite tomato chutney recipes from different corners of India.

These chutneys make the perfect accompaniments to add flavorful punch to snacks like idli, dosa, vada, samosa and more.

We’ll explore how small tweaks in the ingredients and cooking techniques result in tomato chutneys with distinct textures, aromas, sweetness and heat levels.

I’ll also share some pro tips I’ve learned over the years for getting your tomato chutneys just right every time.

So grab your aprons and a bowl of freshly chopped tomatoes – it’s time to dive into the fantastic world of Indian tomato chutneys!

The Many Flavorful Varieties of Tomato Chutney

When it comes to tomato chutney, India’s regional cuisines each have their own take. Let’s explore some of the most popular varieties you’ll come across:

In South India, tomato chutneys are often on the tangier side. They use curry leaves and chili peppers to add an aromatic heat. Some also incorporate coconut. These chutneys pair wonderfully with rice dishes as well as breakfast foods like idli and dosa.

Head up North, and you’ll find tomato onion chutneys flavored with cumin and coriander. They have a raita-like texture and milder spicing. These chutneys are great dips for parathas or to stuff inside kathi rolls.

Over in Western India, tomato chutneys use plenty of garlic, cumin powder, coriander powder, and red chili powder. They have a street food style taste – the perfect topping for snacks like samosa and dabeli.

In Eastern India, you’ll find tomato chutneys brightened with nigella seeds and panch phoron spice blends. They go well with steamed lentil snacks like litti chokha.

With so many options, how do you choose? Well, I suggest trying out a couple recipes from each region. Let your tastebuds be your guide to find your favorites!

8 The Best Tomato Chutney Recipes from India – Iconic Recipes to Try

Best Tomato Chutney Recipes from India

Now let’s get to the fun part – the recipes! I’ve rounded up 8 of my favorite tomato chutney recipes representing different regions of India so you can taste the diversity for yourself.

1. Spicy South Indian Tomato Chutney

This lip-smacking tomato chutney is from South India. It strikes the perfect balance between tangy, sweet, and moderately spicy. The ingredients like tamarind, curry leaves, and chili give it a complex flavor. It’s the ideal dip for idli and dosa or served alongside rice and sambar.

2. Tomato Coconut Chutney

For this chutney, I use a combination of juicy tomatoes and shredded coconut. The tomatoes provide sweetness while the coconut gives it a creamy texture. It’s only mildly spiced with red chilies. Dunk your medu vada in this chutney and enjoy the perfect bite!

3. Tomato Onion Chutney

Inspired by North India, this chutney uses sautéed onions cooked until caramelized along with tomatoes. It’s mildly spiced and sweet-tangy in taste. I love having it as a spread in paratha rolls or to top chapatis and parathas.

4. Tangy Tomato Garlic Chutney

With a base of tomatoes and garlic sautéed in cumin, this chutney is bursting with flavors. It’s a popular street food style chutney and goes amazingly well with fried snacks like samosa, kachori, dabeli, and more.

5. Roasted Tomato Onion Chutney

For this chutney, I roast the tomatoes and onions before blending them to get a deeper, more complex flavor. The natural sugars caramelize and intensify during roasting. This chutney is versatile – enjoy it with rice, parathas or even as a sandwich spread!

6. Tomato Date Chutney

This chutney uses Medjool dates to add a touch of natural sweetness. I also add aromatic spices like cumin, coriander powder, cloves and cinnamon. The dates balance the tanginess from the tomatoes. It’s delightful paired with mathri, fafda, litti and more.

7. Tomato Nigella Chutney

With inspiration from East India, this chutney uses panch phoron spice blend along with nigella seeds. It has a robust flavor and beautiful aroma. I like to have it with litti chokha as well as dhokla and theplas.

8. Spicy Kerala Style Tomato Chutney

From South India, this tomato chutney packs quite the punch! It uses curry leaves, shallots, green chilies, and is pretty fiery. But the intense blend of flavors is amazing. Enjoy it with appam, puttu, or idiappam.

With so many tasty tomato chutneys from different parts of India, I hope you’re feeling inspired to cook up a batch! Let me know if you have a favorite I should try.

Tips and Tricks for Crafting the Perfect Tomato Chutney

Over the years, I’ve picked up some useful tips and tricks for getting my tomato chutneys just right every time. Here are some of my best tips:

  • Use ripe, juicy tomatoes – they have the best natural sweetness and flavor. Avoid mealy tomatoes.
  • Roast the onions and tomatoes before blending – this caramelizes their sugars and provides depth.
  • Add fresh curry leaves or cilantro – they give a nice aromatic edge.
  • Bloom whole spices like cumin, mustard, fenugreek in hot oil – this intensifies their flavors.
  • Get the right texture – make it smooth or retain some chunkiness based on preference.
  • Balance sweetness by adding dates, jaggery or honey.
  • Add tamarind, kokum or lime juice for some tang.
  • Control the heat by using mild or spicy chili peppers.
  • Allow chutney to rest so the flavors can meld properly before serving.
  • Adjust salt to taste – add in increments to avoid over-salting.

With these tips in mind, you’ll be churning out incredibly tasty tomato chutneys on the regular. Let me know if you have any other tips to share!

Storing and Retaining the Freshness of Your Chutneys

With tomato chutneys bursting with so much flavor, you’ll want to save some for later and have it stay fresh. Here are my best storage tips:

  • Refrigerate the chutney for up to 1 week in an airtight container. The cold prevents spoilage.
  • Pour a thin layer of oil on top – this prevents oxidation and discoloration.
  • Add a pinch of ascorbic acid powder – helps retain the bright red color.
  • Store in the freezer for longer durations like 2-3 months.
  • Freeze chutney in ice cube trays for easy portioning.
  • Always use clean, dry spoons to take chutney out to prevent contamination.
  • Don’t keep dipping wet spoons back into the chutney.
  • Microwave frozen cubes briefly before serving to thaw.

Proper storage is key to enjoying your chutneys for longer. Let me know your best storage hacks!

Tangy, Sweet, Spicy Tomato Chutneys – A World of Flavor

Whew, that was quite the journey through the diverse array of incredible tomato chutneys from different regions of India!

Tomato chutney is one of the most popular and beloved condiments in Indian cuisine. But it’s so much more than just diced tomatoes in spice. There’s a treasure trove of recipespacked with unique flavors, aromas, textures and heat levels.

In this post, we explored fiery South Indian coconut-tomato chutneys, mild North Indian onion-tomato raita-like chutneys, sweet and tangy Western chutneys perfect for street foods, and robust Eastern chutneys with nigella and panch phoron.

The 8 recipes I shared give you a taste of how versatile this side dish can be. And my tips will help you hone your chutney crafting skills.

So get in the kitchen and start experimenting with new tomato chutney recipes. Let your family be the judge of which region’s version you’ve mastered. And as always, enjoy the delightful experience that Indian food offers to all your senses!

What are you waiting for? Go make some chutneys!

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