Easy Sambar Recipe Without Pressure Cooker Home Cooking

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Easy Sambar Recipe Without a Pressure Cooker: A Flavorful South Indian Delight

Sambar, a comforting lentil soup with mixed vegetables, is a staple in South Indian cuisine. Although traditionally prepared using a pressure cooker, it’s also possible to make a delicious sambar using a regular pot on the stovetop. This blog post provides a comprehensive guide on how to prepare an easy sambar recipe without a pressure cooker.

Easy Sambar Recipe Without Pressure Cooker Home Cooking

About Sambar

Sambar is a protein-rich dish made from tuvar dal (pigeon pea lentils) and a variety of vegetables, simmered in a tangy tamarind broth. It’s typically served with rice, idli, dosa, or vada.

Items Required List & Quantity

  • Tuvar dal (Pigeon pea lentils): 1/2 cup
  • Assorted vegetables (drumstick, pumpkin, eggplant, onion): 2 cups
  • Tamarind: 1 lemon-sized ball
  • Sambar powder: 2 tablespoons
  • Turmeric powder: 1/2 teaspoon
  • Asafoetida (Hing): a pinch
  • Mustard seeds: 1 teaspoon
  • Dry red chilies: 2
  • Curry leaves: a handful
  • Coriander leaves: for garnishing
  • Salt: to taste
  • Oil: 2 tablespoons

Nutritional Information

Approximately, a bowl of sambar provides about 150 calories, 5 grams of protein, 25 grams of carbohydrates, and 3 grams of fiber.

Cooking Time & Preparation Time

The total preparation time is around 15 minutes, and the cooking time is approximately 30 minutes.

Cooking Steps Overview

The process involves three main steps:

  1. Cooking the lentils and vegetables
  2. Preparing the tamarind extract
  3. Mixing everything together and bringing it to a simmer

Step-by-Step Cooking Procedure

  1. Rinse the lentils thoroughly and cook them in a pot with enough water until they become soft and mushy.
  2. Soak the tamarind in warm water for about 20 minutes. Squeeze out the pulp and strain to get a thick tamarind extract.
  3. In a large pan, heat the oil and add mustard seeds. Once they start spluttering, add the dry red chilies, curry leaves, and asafoetida.
  4. Add the chopped vegetables, turmeric powder, and a little salt. Sauté for a few minutes until the vegetables are half-cooked.
  5. Add the tamarind extract and sambar powder to the pan and bring to a boil.
  6. Add the cooked lentils and mix well2. Adjust the consistency by adding water if needed.
  7. Let the sambar simmer for 10-15 minutes. Garnish with coriander leaves before serving.


  • Always add the asafoetida at the end to retain its aroma and flavor.
  • Adjust the quantity of sambar powder and tamarind according to your taste preference.
  • Use a variety of vegetables to make the sambar more nutritious and flavorful.

Things to Know

Sambar is a versatile dish that can be customized to suit your palate. You can experiment with different types of lentils, vary the vegetables, or adjust the spices to your liking.


1. Can I use any type of lentils to make sambar? Traditionally, tuvar dal (pigeon pea lentils) is used to make sambar. However, you can also use masoor dal (red lentils) or moong dal (split green gram).

2. Can I store leftover sambar? Yes, you can store leftover sambar in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days. Just make sure to reheat it thoroughly before serving.

In conclusion, preparing sambar without a pressure cooker doesn’t have to be intimidating. With these simple steps, you can enjoy a delicious and hearty meal right at your home.

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