Sambar Masala is an essential spice blend used to make a delicious south Indian dish sambar. Different aromatic spices are roasted and ground to a powder. This homemade sambar powder recipe is simple and easy to make at home.
Different regions across south India have their own versions of sambar masala that follow different ingredients and processes of making. Each and every homemade sambar recipe is delicious and excellent in its own way.
Each spice has its own aroma and adds its own character to this spice blend. Cassia bark(dalchini), coriander seeds and cumin are the common spices used in most Indian spice blends.
Whole coriander seeds have a slightly citrus flavour with notes of sweetness. Dry roasting allows this spice to take on a more nutty and floral aroma as the oils release from the seeds. Cumin enhances the flavour of spice blends, it lends earthy and spicy-sweet flavour to the spice mixes.
A perfect blend of freshly ground spice brings out the well-balanced flavours and elements of sambhar masala to tantalise an individual's taste buds.
Why you will love this sambar masala recipe?
With just a few basic spices, it's easy to make.
It can be stored for a long time.
Sambar made with homemade sambar powder tastes better than store-bought one.
What is sambar?
Sambar is a stew made with lentils, vegetables, tamarind, curry leaves and sambar masala, one of the staple dishes in South India. Sambar is often served with boiled rice and used as an accompaniment with most of the south Indian breakfast dishes such as idli, dosa, vada, pongal.
It is a tradition in most south Indian households to have this dish in the festive and wedding menu. In fact, south Indian thali is incomplete without sambar.
Coriander seeds: 1 cup
Cumin seeds: 3 tbsp
Black peppercorn: 1 tbsp
Mustard: 1 tbsp
Urad dal: 3 tbsp
Channa dal: 3 tbsp
Fenugreek seeds/ methi seeds: 1 tbsp
Cassia bark (Dalchini): 12 gms
Dry red chillies: 9 (adjust based on your preferred spice levels)
Desiccated coconut: ⅓ cup
How to make homemade sambar masala?
In a pan dry roast coriander seeds on low heat for 1 to 2 minutes or until fragrant. Transfer it to a large plate.
Now roast mustard until it starts to pop. Transfer them to a plate.
Add chana dal, urad dal, peppercorn, cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds, cassia (dalchini), toast until fragrant and take them off the pan.
Dry roast red chillies for a minute or until it releases pungent aroma and take it off from pan.
In the same pan dry roast desiccated coconut until fragrant and transfer it to same plate.
Allow the spices to cool down completely and grind it to a powder.
Store it in an airtight jar.
Check out the instant sambar premix recipe on the blog.
This basic sambar podi has multi-purpose uses, just a big pinch of this spice mix lends great flavours to south Indian style stir-fries and side dishes.
Tips and Tricks
Grind the roasted spices in batches, based on the blender/spice grinder's capacity.
Let the pan heat up before roasting the spices.
The spices should be roasted on a medium-low flame. The spices would get burnt if roasted on high flame.
Before grinding, make sure to let the spices cool down completely.
Wait for the ground powder to cool before transferring it to a container. If not, the powder's shelf life will be reduced.
Store the homemade rasam podi in a glass jar that has been cleaned and dried.
Sambar masala powder remains fresh for 3 months at room temperature, later on, it loses its aroma gradually. As I prepare sambar almost twice a week with different vegetables, so I usually make a big batch that lasts for nearly 3 months. If you do not intend to make sambar regularly I suggest you cut the quantity to half to make a small batch of masala powder.
Sambar powder remains fresh for a longer time if stored in the fridge/freezer. Make sure to seal the ziplock or tightly close the container lid before placing it in the freezer.
To preserve the quality and freshness of sambar masala powder, store it in glass jars with tight lids in a cool and dark pantry or kitchen cupboard, away from heat and sunlight.
📖 Recipe Card
Sambar Masala Recipe
- 1 Spoon
1 Cup = 250ml ; 1 Tablespoon = 15ml ; 1 Teaspoon = 5 ml
- In a pan dry roast coriander seeds on low heat for 1 to 2 minutes or until fragrant. Transfer it to a large plate.1 cup Coriander seeds
- Now roast mustard until it starts to pop. Transfer them to a plate.1 Tablespoon Mustard
- Add chana dal, urad dal, peppercorn, cumin seeds, fenugreek seeds, cassia (dalchini), toast until fragrant and take them off the pan.3 Tablespoon Cumin seeds, 1 Tablespoon Black peppercorn, 3 Tablespoon Urad dal, 1 Tablespoon Fenugreek seeds, 12 gms Cassia bark (Dalchini), 3 Tablespoon Channa dal
- Dry roast red chillies just until it releases pungent aroma and take it off from pan.9 Dry red chillies
- In the same pan dry roast desiccated coconut just until fragrant. Transfer it to same plate.½ cup Desiccated coconut
- Once all the spices are completely cooled, grind to a powder.
- Store it in an airtight jar.
Keep in touch
Do let me know if you make this homemade sambar masala recipe. I love hearing from you all. If you like this recipe kindly consider rating it using stars in the comment section or in the recipe card to help more people find this recipe online.
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