pappu charu

Pappu charu recipe | How to make pappu charu recipe

By Swasthi on August 7, 2022, Comments, Jump to Recipe

Pappu charu is a simple basic lentil soup from andhra cuisine. It is similar to the sambar but made without sambar powder. Pappu charu is made with just the basic ingredients and most times a lot of veggies are not added to it. It is a traditional recipe & is most commonly eaten with a meal along with some rice & veggie stir fry.

pappu charu recipe

Usually most homes make pappu charu with toor dal or kandi pappu. However I use a combination of toor dal and moong dal (pesar pappu) to get a thicker texture.

During summers my mom always would make pappu charu with moong dal as it is cooling to the body & helps to balance the body temperature.

At home I make regularly some kind of soupy dish for dinner like sambar, pulusu or rasam. This pappu charu is something I resort to when I run out of veggies or have no time to make sambar powder.

The basic version of pappu charu is made just with onions and tomatoes. However we also make this with lots of veggies some times. Bhindi, small onions & drumsticks go very well in this.

Serve this hot with some plain rice, ghee & papads or with veggie stir fry. I usually make a vepudu to go with the meal. Here are some you may want to try – bendakaya vepudu, andhra style raw banana fry, Dondakaya vepudu & beerakaya fry.

How to make pappu charu

1. Wash and cook 1/2 cup dal with 1 1/4 cup water till soft in a pressure cooker. Mash the dal and set aside. Soak tamarind in 1 cup water. squeeze it and set aside.

sorakaya pappu step 2

2. Pour ghee or oil to a hot pot. When the ghee turns hot add cumin, mustard and methi. When they begin to splutter add red chili, curry leaves, garlic and hing.

pesara pappu charu recipe 1

3. When the curry leaves turn crisp, add onions and fry for about 2 to 3 minutes.

pappu charu recipe step 2

4. Add chopped tomatoes, green chilies, turmeric and salt. Fry till the tomatoes turn mushy.

pappu charu/moong dal rasam step 3

5. Add red chili powder and fry for a minute till the raw smell goes off.

pappu charu/ moong dal rasam step 4

6. Filter the tamarind water and add one more cup of water.

pesara pappu charu step 5

7. When the water comes to a boil, Add mashed smooth dal. I prefer to pass it through a seive to get nice smooth pappu charu. You can skip this if your dal is smooth. Stir well. Check salt, sour and chili. Adjust what ever you like.

pesara pappu charu recipe step 6

8. When the pappu charu comes to a boil, switch off the stove. Add coriander leaves with stalks. keep it covered.

Serve pappu charu with rice or idli.

pesara pappu charu recipe step 7

Related traditional andhra recipes,
andhra sambar
drumstick sambar
tomato rasam

Pappu charu recipe

pappu charu

Pappu charu

Pappu charu is a andhra style basic lentil soup that is mostly eaten with rice. It is similar to sambar but is made without sambar powder or spice powder. I have shared the basic recipe here. You can also add in your favorite veggies like drumsticks or ladies finger.
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For best results follow the step-by-step photos above the recipe card

Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time35 minutes

Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )

  • ½ cup kandi pappu or pesara pappu (or a combination)
  • cup water or little more to pressure cook
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons tamarind or lemon juice as needed
  • 1 medium onion thinly sliced
  • 1 large tomato chopped
  • ½ teaspoon red chili powder
  • 2 sprigs coriander leaves
  • ¼ teaspoon Salt (adjust to taste)
  • 1 green chilli slit or chopped

talimpu / tempering pappu charu

  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 1/8 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 Pinch hing or asafoetida (optional)
  • ½ tsp mustard seeds
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds or jeera
  • 1 pinch methi seeds or menthulu
  • 1 red chili broken
  • 1 to 2 cloves garlic crushed


  • Pressure cook dal till smooth. I usually use 1 cup of water for ½ cup of dal and pressure cook for 2 whistles on a medium flame. You can also cook following pot-in-pot method by placing the bowl of dal inside the cooker. In this case pressure cook for 3 to 4 whistles. When the pressure releases mash it well.
  • Soak tamarind in little water. Set aside.
  • Heat ghee in a pot. Add red chili, mustard, cumin and methi. When they begin to crackle add garlic, curry leaves & hing.
  • Add onions and sauté for a min. I like them to be crunchy. If you want them to be soft, fry till they are half done.
  • Add tomatoes, green chilies sprinkle salt and turmeric, fry till the tomatoes turn fully mushy. If you do not want to use tomatoes, just proceed to next step
  • Add red chili powder, mix well and fry for a min. Squeeze the tamarind and filter the water to the pot. Pour 1 cup plain water, bring it to a boil.
  • When the water comes to a boil, add mashed dal or filter the dal through a colander like me to remove coarse grains. Taste and adjust the salt as needed. Bring it to a boil and simmer for 1 minute. Add coriander leaves.
  • Serve pappu charu with rice, ghee and papad.


In winters it can be prepared differently,
The red chili powder is replaced with green chili; a small piece of ginger is crushed and added to the seasoning.

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)

Nutrition Facts
Pappu charu
Amount Per Serving
Calories 113
% Daily Value*
Sodium 16mg1%
Potassium 400mg11%
Carbohydrates 20g7%
Fiber 8g33%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 7g14%
Vitamin A 510IU10%
Vitamin C 36.5mg44%
Calcium 29mg3%
Iron 2.6mg14%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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About Swasthi

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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5 stars
youn are very good guide to learn and improve our quality of indian cooking.i am enjoying your recipies at 76 yrs of my age.thks

Hi,all the time I cook your recipes my family likes so much ,thankyou for all the recipes

5 stars
it turned out really good. Thank you so much

Swathi ji
Iam fan of your favourite recipes


5 stars
Hi Swasthi. I had been looking for authentic Andhra Pappu recipe since a year and was not satisfied with any that I found online. Finally this looks like a recipe that will take me back to my days in Bangalore when I used to eat Pappu and rice from a local mess. Thank you so very much! I love all your recipes that I have ever tried. 🙂 <3

Thanks! looking forward to it.

5 stars
good for all recipes

good for all receipes

Please I want vinayaka chavithi hardhi recipe

Yes madam I like very much your dishes

5 stars
Nice recipe thanks

5 stars
Nice recipe thanks chitra

So so so good yummy

I love Rasams of all types… I cook this with a slightly different way… Thanks for sharing Swasthi 🙂

Yummy appetising dish 🙂

yummy appetizing rasam…

yummy n healthy recipes…

Healthy rasam..

Yummy and healthy rasam :)<br />

Love the variety of Rasam!!

Wow..truly a very simple yet flavorful dal..