Sambar Rice Recipe A Delicious South Indian Delight

Sambar Rice Recipe: A Delicious South Indian Delight

South Indian sambar rice (sambar sadam) contains rice, lentils, and veggies. The right blend of spices and tastes makes this one-pot dinner a favorite. This sambar rice recipe will impress South Indian food lovers and beginners alike. We’ll show you how to make sambar rice in this article.


To prepare sambar rice, you will need the following ingredients:

  • 1 cup rice
  • 1/2 cup toor dal (pigeon peas)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tomato, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 drumstick, cut into small pieces
  • 1/2 cup tamarind pulp
  • 2 tablespoons sambar powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • A pinch of asafoetida (hing)
  • A few curry leaves
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Coriander leaves for garnishing

Step 1: Preparing the Lentil Base

  1. Toor dal (pigeon peas) should be washed and pressure cooked with three cups of water until soft and mushy.
  2. Use a spoon or dal masher to mash the cooked dal.
  3. Set the prepared lentil base aside.

 Step 2: Cooking the Rice

  1. Rinse the rice till clear. Drain water.
  2. Add washed rice to four cups of boiling water in another pot.
  3. Cook rice on medium heat until tender and done.
  4. Drain and set aside cooked rice.

 Step 3: Preparing the Sambar

  1. Heat oil in a large pan or a kadai.
  2. Sputtered mustard seeds. Cumin, asafoetida, and curry leaves follow.
  3. Sauté chopped onions until transparent.
  4. Cook the chopped-up tomatoes until soft and mushy.
  5. Add the diced carrots and drumstick pieces. Stir well to combine.
  6. Add sambar powder, turmeric powder, and salt. Mix everything.
  7. Pour tamarind pulp and two cups of water into the pan. Stir well.
  8. Cover and boil the sambar over low heat for 10-15 minutes till the vegetables are cooked.

 Step 4: Tempering the Sambar

  1. In a small pan, heat a tablespoon of oil.
  2. Add mustard seeds and let them splutter.
  3. Add a pinch of asafoetida and curry leaves. Sauté for a few seconds.
  4. Pour this tempering mixture into the prepared sambar and mix well.

Step 5: Mixing the Rice and Sambar

  1. Add the prepared lentil base (toor dal) to the sambar and mix well.
  2. Now, add the cooked rice to the sambar and gently combine everything.
  3. Ensure that the rice and sambar are mixed thoroughly to distribute the flavors evenly.

 Step 6: Garnishing and Serving

  1. Garnish the sambar rice with freshly chopped coriander leaves.
  2. Serve hot with a side of papad or crispy appalam.

Tips and Variations

  • For taste and nourishment, add brinjal (eggplant), potatoes, or beans to sambar.
  • Adjust sambar powder to taste.
  • Adding more tamarind pulp makes it tangier.
  • Brown rice is healthier than white rice.

Read More: Discover Delicious Drumstick Leaves Recipes for a Nutritious Meal

 Frequently Asked Questions

Q1: Can I use any type of rice for sambar rice?

A1: Yes, you can use any variety of rice like basmati, sona masoori, or ponni rice.

Q2: How spicy is sambar rice?

A2: Sambar rice can be made spicy by adding more sambar powder. It’s mild or spicy.

Q3: Can I make sambar rice without vegetables?

A3: Sambar rice can be made without veggies. Vegetables improve flavor and texture.

Q4: Is sambar rice a complete meal?

A4: Yes, sambar rice is considered a complete meal as it contains rice, lentils, and vegetables, providing a good balance of carbohydrates, protein, and vitamins.

Q5: Can I refrigerate leftover sambar rice?

A5: Yes, you can refrigerate leftover sambar rice in an airtight container for up to two days. Reheat it before serving.


Last but not least, sambar rice is a delectable South Indian dish made of rice, lentils, and vegetables. You can prepare authentic sambar rice at home using this same recipe. Both foodies and fans of South Indian cuisine will enjoy sambar rice. Sambar rice is excellent. Just gather the ingredients, follow the directions, and enjoy a serving.

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