South Indian Vada Sambar | How to make South Indian Vada Sambar

By Lubna Karim  |  6th Sep 2015  |  
2.8 from 4 reviews Rate It!
  • South Indian Vada Sambar, How to make South Indian Vada Sambar
South Indian Vada Sambarby Lubna Karim
  • Prep Time


  • Cook Time


  • Serves





Video for key ingredients

  • Sambhar Powder

About South Indian Vada Sambar Recipe

Much loved and adored South Indian breakfast....even this is served as dinner in most of the Southern Indian states....

South Indian Vada Sambar

Ingredients to make South Indian Vada Sambar

  • TO MAKE VADAS: 1 cup urad dal washed & soaked for 3-4 hrs
  • 1 onion sliced
  • 1 Green chili
  • 2 inch piece ginger
  • 4-5 curry leaves
  • ½ tbsp Black peppercorns
  • salt
  • oil for deep frying
  • TO MAKE SAMBAR: 1 cup Toor dal
  • 6 shallots
  • 1 carrot peeled and chopped into chunks
  • 2 tomatoes sliced
  • 2 tbsp Sambar powder
  • 1 tbsp Red chili powder
  • ½ cup tamarind extract
  • ĵ tbsp turmeric powder
  • salt
  • TEMPERING: ½ tbsp mustard seeds
  • pinch of asafoetida
  • oil
  • 8 curry leaves
  • 1 dry Red chili

How to make South Indian Vada Sambar

  1. MAKING VADAS: Drain soaked urad dal and grind to smooth by adding 2-3 tbsp. of water if required.
  2. Grind green chili, ginger, curry leaves to corse.
  3. Add black peppercorns, salt to the above ground green chili mixture.
  4. Mix all and whisk gently until all the ingredients get combined. Heat enough oil for deep frying in a heavy bottom cooking vessel or kadai.
  5. Drop a pinch of batter into the oil, if it sizzles and reaches the top then oil is ready for frying. Reduce the heat to medium and start shaping the vada’s.
  6. Wet your hands with oil or water and take a lemon sized ball from the batter and flatten it on a greased plastic sheet or plantain leaf or wet piece of cloth to form a circle, make a hole in the center with your finger.
  7. Slowly and carefully drop this into the hot oil and fry on both the sides on a medium flame, till the vadas turn nice golden in color. You can fry 4-5 at a time depending on the size of the vessel/kadai.
  8. Drain on to kitchen tissue and repeat the same with all the batter.
  10. Pressure cook toor dal with enough water until soft for nearly 3-4 whistles. Let the pressure settle down. Mash by adding red chili powder the dal and set aside.
  11. Take 2 cups of water in a cooking vessel and add shallots, tomatoes and carrots to it along with salt and turmeric. When the vegetables turn soft, add in mashed toor dal, tamarind extract, sambar powder and red chili powder. Stir & add salt
  12. Bring this to boil and simmer it for 12-15 minutes or till sambar reaches your desired consistency.
  13. For tempering, in another pan, heat oil and add mustard seeds and when they start to splutter add in curry leaves, dry red chili and fry for 30 seconds. Add in asafoetida and turn off the flame.
  14. Carefully pour this tempering into sambar and close the lid. Leave this for 10 minutes. Serve hot with Vadas.

My Tip:

You can make fresh sambar powder by dry roasting 1 tbsp. Cumin seeds, 1/4 tbsp. Fenugreek seeds, 1 tbsp. Coriander seeds, 1/2 tbsp. Black peppercorns and 4 Dry red chilies separately. Leave it to cool and grind into smooth powder. Store the excess in air tight container.

Reviews for South Indian Vada Sambar (4)

Mona Raiwal2 years ago

M banane ja rahi hu sambhar kyo ki mere sambhar ka market jesa test nahi ata to m ise try kar rahi hu . Milaty h 1 hours k bad

Rekha Unni2 years ago

Thanks for the recipe, made it today it was great

Khushi Choudhary2 years ago


Mona Jain3 years ago