Sambar Podi Recipe - Capture the Fabulous
Flavours and Aromas of Sri Lankan Cuisine

Sambar podi is a flavourful blend of dry toasted gram, coconut and spices that is enjoyed in Sri Lankan and Southern Indian cooking. It's super versatile and is often used as a seasoning for soups, broths, bean, lentil and vegetable dishes. (See the bottom of the page for links to more of my recipes)

What You'll Need: (makes about 14-15 tablespoons)

4 tbsp brown lentils
4 tbsp chick peas
3 tbsp coriander seeds
3 tbsp coconut flakes
2 tbsp cumin seeds
2 tbsp black peppercorns
2 tbsp hot chili powder (or mild)
4 tsp mango powder (amchoor)
4 tsp turmeric
4 tsp fenugreek seeds
2 tsp brown mustard seeds
1 tsp asafetida (hing)
3 inch piece of cinnamon

tbsp = tablespoon
tsp = teaspoon


  • Break up the cinnamon stick
  • In a pan, dry toast the lentils, chick peas, peppercorns, coriander, cumin and fenugreek seeds for a few minutes
  • When you can really smell the fab aromas, take off the heat, add to a bowl and let cool for a few minutes
  • Once cooled, add them to your grinder and grind along with the coconut, cinnamon pieces and mustard seeds
  • Add to a bowl
  • Finally, stir in the mango, turmeric, chili and asafetida powders

Store in an airtight jar out of direct sunlight. Use within 3 months.

Click here for photos and tips on toasting and grinding. (Link opens in new window)

Note: For the best flavours, I recommend you use a few whole spices. However, if you only have pre-ground powders to hand you can still use these if you reduce the quantities the recipe suggests by half. So for 2 tablespoons of cumin seeds you would use 1 tablespoon pre-ground cumin. Reduce any others you don't have whole by half as well and stir in with any other powders when making.

After Making Your Homemade Sambar Podi You May Like to Try...

Lemon Pepper - A Flavourful
Mix of Lemon, Peppercorns
and Herbs and Spices

Bouquet Garni Recipe -
The Classic French
Herb Blend

A Collection of Dry Rubs
For Superb Grilling
and Frying

Return to  Seasoning Blends

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