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4.5 from 4 votes

Keerai sambar recipe

Keerai sambar recipe with detailed full video, stepwise pictures for easy learning. Keerai (Tamil) means a spinach variety we get in South india. 
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Servings: 4


  • 1 bunch Keerai / amaranth leaves
  • ½ cup Toor dal
  • 1.5 tsp Sambar powder
  • 1 small gooseberry sized Tamarind 1 tsp packed
  • 1 Onion
  • ¼ tsp Turmeric
  • Salt - As needed


  • 2 tsp Oil
  • 1 Red chilli
  • tsp Fenugreek seeds
  • tsp Asafetida
  • ½ tsp Mustard
  • 1 tsp Cumin seeds


  • Peel off small onion skin and slit green chilies.
  • Pressure cook toor dal with 1 & ½ cup water for 4-5 whistles or until done. Mash well and keep aside.
  • Extract tamarind juice by soaking in warm water for 30 mins.
  • I usually extract tamarind juice easily by keeping inside a small bowl along with dal and pressure cooking. This way, we can get the juice efficiently with less effort and water.
  • Clean the keerai by washing it well 2-3 times and chop it. Do not chop too fine.
  • Heat a kadai with oil and add the items under To Temper table in order.
  • Then add onions and green chillies and fry till onions turn golden brown here and there.
  • Add to the tamarind extract, with salt,turmeric and sambar powder and bring to boil.
  • Once it starts boiling, add the chopped keerai.
  • Stir well so that the keerai so gets immersed.
  • Boil till keerai gets cooked, check the stem for doneness by pressing between two fingers.
  • Lastly add cooked toor dal and mix well.Boil for 2 minutes and now keerai sambar is ready!



  • We can use any variety of keerai like arai keerai, mulai keerai or siru keerai.
  • I have used the stem too, you can use leaves alone.
  • Water should be added carefully-very less, since this sambar should be bit thicker in consistency than our usual sambars. Keerai by itself leaves out water and cannot take more water.