This instant Carrot Pickle is the easiest you can ever make! It is going to spice up and add zing to your meal! Traditionally summer time is the pickle season but you can transform any time of the year with this quick and fast Indian Carrot Pickle. This recipe is an instant version meaning it requires no sunlight or aging the pickle is necessary. Make it today, let it soak up the flavors for a day or two and you are good to enjoy it.
In Indian cuisine, we make many kinds of pickles. Mango Pickle, Andhra Avakaya, Lemon Pickle, Amla Pickle and Tomato Pickle are some popular kinds but all these are made the traditional way and letting the pickle mature is essential.
About Carrot Pickle
Carrot Pickle is made by mixing fresh chopped carrots in hot oil along with ground spices. A generous amount of lemon juice or vinegar is used to add tang and improve the shelf life of the pickle.
A small amount of natural citric acid can also be used to extend the shelf life.
Though this recipe is the instant kind, it uses the same ingredients as the traditional Andhra pickle – avakaya. Red chili powder, mustard seeds, fenugreek seeds, fresh garlic or ginger and turmeric are used in this recipe.
How to Make Carrot Pickle (Stepwise Photos)
This recipe makes a small batch. If you want you may make a large batch and store in multiple jars for the best shelf life.
1. Wash and peel 1 medium carrot. Wipe dry completely with a clean kitchen tissue or cloth, just to keep it free from excess moisture. Chop to tiny cubes, set aside. Do the same with garlic or ginger. I prefer using 2 tablespoons ginger here. If you want to use lemon juice in place of vinegar, wipe dry the lemon very well and extract the juice.
2. If you have pre-made mustard and methi powder you can leave out this step. Heat a pan and lightly roast ¼ teaspoon methi seeds until they turn fragrant. Transfer to a plate. Switch off the stove. To the same pan, add 2 teaspoons mustard seeds and stir until they turn warm. Do not roast them. Cool them and powder together.
Make the Pickle
3. Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a pan.
4. Make sure the oil is sizzling hot first (not smoking hot), add chopped ginger or garlic and carrots. Mix the carrots and ginger in this hot oil. Turn off the heat. This step is only to increase the shelf life else the pickle may go bad soon. This step also keeps the carrots crunchy until the pickle ages. If you prefer softer carrots, simply cook them in the oil for a few minutes (3 mins).
5. Add the following spices:
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon turmeric
- 2 teaspoons Kashmiri chili powder
- Mustard powder (1 tsp mustard powder)
- Methi powder (2 generous pinches powder). I had methi and mustard powder done separately, so I used it. To have more gravy in the pickle, double the quantity of red chili powder, methi seeds powder, mustard powder. Add salt and oil only as needed.
6. Mix up everything well. Taste test and add more spices and salt if required. When you taste you must get the salt, hot and pungent taste from the pickle.
Watch the quantity of methi powder, adding a lot can make the pickle taste bitter. Cool completely then add lemon juice or vinegar for the tang & shelf life. You can also add a bit of amchur if you do not have lemon juice. This will change the flavor but that tastes good too. If the pickle looks dry, add more oil.
Store Carrot Pickle in a clean air tight glass or ceramic jar. Avoid plastic containers including Tupperware. Day by day the pickle turns dry since there would be no moisture released by carrots. So you may need to add oil as needed just before serving. Refrigerate and use after 2 to 3 days.
This Recipe was first published in Nov 2015. Updated in July 2023.
Carrot Pickle Recipe (Gajar Ka Achar)
For best results follow the step-by-step photos above the recipe card
Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )
- ½ cup (1 medium) carrot chopped to tiny cubes
- ⅓ teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
- 3 tablespoons oil (more if needed)
- 2 tablespoons ginger or half amount of garlic, peel & fine chop
- ⅛ teaspoon turmeric /haldi
- ¼ teaspoon methi seeds (or 2 generous pinches powder)
- 2 teaspoon mustard seeds or 1 tsp mustard powder
- 2 teaspoons Kashmiri red chili powder (adjust as needed)
- ¾ to 1½ tablespoons lemon juice (or vinegar, adjust to taste)
- Dry roast methi seeds on a low heat until aromatic. As soon as they begin to change to slightly dark color switch off the stove and add mustard.
- Cool them and grind to a fine powder.
- Rinse carrots & ginger thoroughly and peel them. Air dry or wipe dry with a cloth to remove moisture.
- Chop them to tiny cubes and set aside. Next chop ginger or garlic as well.
Ho to make Carrot Pickle
- Pour oil to a pan and heat it. When the oil turns sizzling hot, add chopped carrots, ginger and mix. Turn off the heat. If you want soft carrots in the pickle, you may cook them in the oil for 3 minutes.
- Add the rest of the ingredients except lemon juice and mix well.
- Cool it and then add lemon juice or vinegar. Taste test and add more salt or spices to taste.
- Store carrot pickle in a clean, dry airtight glass jar. Refrigerate and use after 2 to 3 days.
Alternative quantities provided in the recipe card are for 1x only, original recipe.
For best results follow my detailed step-by-step photo instructions and tips above the recipe card.
NUTRITION INFO (estimation only)
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I’m Swasthi Shreekanth, the recipe developer, food photographer & food writer behind Swasthi’s Recipes. My aim is to help you cook great Indian food with my time-tested recipes. After 2 decades of experience in practical Indian cooking I started this blog to help people cook better & more often at home. Whether you are a novice or an experienced cook I am sure Swasthi’s Recipes will assist you to enhance your cooking skills. More about me
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