Karela (Bitter Gourd) Chutney

As a child, I remember making faces every time any Karela dish was served! As an adult, I relish it! So, what happened…did I start making it the way I wanted to eat it or was it just the fact that I started appreciating the uniqueness of Bitter Gourd or Bitter Melon (the name and the flavor)? Whatever the case may be, Karelas now have a special place in my heart (and my stomach)!
This Karela Chutney is an original recipe (thanks to Hetal’s Mom) and you will be amazed what a bit of Peanuts and Sesame Seeds can do to a dish!

Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 20 min


Chinese Karela – 3 large (deseeded)
Salt – to taste
Oil – 2 tbsp or 3 tbsp (depending on the size of the karela)
Mustard Seeds – 1/4 tsp
Fenugreek Seeds – 1/8 tsp
Peanuts – 1/2 cup (roughly crushed)
Sesame Seeds – 2 tbsp
Turmeric Powder – 1/4 tsp
Red Chili Powder – to taste
Coariander Powder – 1 tsp
Cumin Powder – 1/2 tsp
Lime/Lemon Juice – 1 tbsp or to taste


1. Finely chop the Karela, preferably in a food processor.
2. Sprinkle Salt generously, mix well and set aside for 30 minutes.
3. After 30 minutes, take the Karela in your palms and squeeze the juice out of it.
4. Set aside and meanwhile heat a skillet on medium heat.
5. Pour in the Oil and once hot, add in the Mustard Seeds and allow them to pop.
6. Add in the Fenugreek Seeds and cook for 15 seconds.
7. Add in the Sesame Seeds and allow them to pop.
8. Add in the crushed Peanuts and cook till they turn light golden in color.
9. Add in the squeezed Karela, mix well.
10. Also, add in the powdered spices – Red Chili, Coriander, Cumin & Turmeric.
11. Mix well and cover and cook till the Karela is cooked.
12. Stir occasionally.
13. Once the Karela is cooked all the way through, remove the cover and allow it to dry out and turn crispy.
14. Add in the Lime/Lemon juice and mix well.
15. Cook it to desired crispy-ness.
16. Serve hot or cold.


1. Be very careful while the Sesame Seeds are popping. Keep a lid handy.
2. To save time use roasted peanuts instead of raw ones.
3. Dry Mango Powder is a great alternative to Lime or Lemon Juice.
4. We have used Chinese Karela for their mild flavor but Indian Karelas may also be used for this dish.
5. Karela Chutney has a long shelf life and can be stored in the fridge for upto 7-10 days.

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0 thoughts on “Karela (Bitter Gourd) Chutney

  1. I did a little twist in the above recipe. I used Cashew nuts instead of peanuts. I then made a gravy of 5 tomatoes, a cup of yogurt and added the chutney to the gravy to make a Karela Gravy subzi. I topped them with some Kismis and my kids really loved the subzi.

    Request Anuja & Hetal to try the above and if you like the results make a video of the same.

    Thank you

  2. i dont have food processor so i grated the bittergourd and then i slightly chopped it
    it helped me a lot bittergourd was very finely chopped

  3. Hi,
    IT looks yummy!! i will definately try this .

    I wa looking for karela sabji recipe. Can you post the recipe of karela sabji, the dark green karela with roogh surface..:))

  4. My husband and I like dishes made with Karela and I’m always looking for innovative ways to cook this vegetable.This recipe is definitely a keeper.Thank you!

  5. Hi ! I hate Karela but now after seeing dis recipe of yours . I’m sure I’ll start cooking nd eating it . I never thought tat two Great Cute Chefs can bring about a change in the attitude of a person .

  6. Hi Hetal and Anuja
    Thanks to the two of you, I am bringing home vegetables from the store that I previously had absolutely no idea what to do with – Arbi, Karela, etc. Thanks for taking me to a new level of cooking. Al my friends look forward to my parties because the food is so good! You’re the best!

  7. Its a wonderful recipe and a wonderful different way of making and having Karela. I must thank you two for the wonderful recipes on this website a great initative adds variety to everyday food. Keep up the good work.
    Many Thanks

  8. I loved this recipe…amazing recipe for one of the most hated vegetable in Indian cuisine. i am an amateur in cooking and i tried it today and it came out so good, i have saved it as “THE” recipe for Karela

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