tomato curry

Tomato Curry Recipe (Andhra Tomato Kura)

By Swasthi on February 22, 2023, Comments, Jump to Recipe

Tomato Curry recipe made with ripe tomatoes, whole & ground spices, curry leaves and coconut. Don’t go by its simple looks, this tomato curry is loaded with flavours from tangy to spicy & tastes delicious. For a comforting meal, serve it with plain steamed rice, Ghee and some papads or with any Indian flatbreads like roti, paratha or even with Dosa.

Tomato Curry

Tomatoes are not native to India and were brought by the Portuguese explorers in the 16th century. However they were grown from the 18th century & over the years have been adapted into the Indian cooking. Today India is proudly the second largest cultivator of tomatoes.

Like eggplants & pumpkins, tomatoes are fruits, classified botanically as berries but used extensively as a vegetable for culinary purposes.

Tomatoes form the base of many curried Indian dishes. Apart from imparting sweet and tangy tones, they add so much flavor and body to the dishes.

About Tomato Curry

Tomato kurma, tamatar ki sabzi, tomato kootu all are various ways of making a tomato curry in Indian cuisine. This tomato curry is the most basic and is made with pantry staples. It can be a great dish when you have too many tomatoes in your kitchen or you just don’t have any other veggies to cook.

This Tomato Curry has its roots from the Andhra Cuisine and in the past, a traditional key ingredient known as Telagapindi was used. In the absence of that coconut milk would be added.

For the uninitiated, Telagapindi is defatted sesame flour and is a popular ingredient from the traditional Andhra cuisine. After extracting oil (using wood press) from the raw sesame seeds, the left over residue in the form of cake, is pulverised to get telagapindi.

It is believed that this defatted sesame flour is rich in protein, vitamins, fibre and minerals. So it was regularly used by a lot of Telugu speaking people and was fed to the lactating mothers for its rich source of lignans.

However for hygiene reasons my Mom never used it. This recipe was passed on by my grandmother. I was taught to add some homemade roasted sesame seeds powder (optionally) and/or some coconut milk. This is what I have shown in the recipe below.

A lot of times I do not add sesame powder and but finish up with just the coconut milk. On occasions I have made this with Almond meal, Peanut podi, Idli podi and even with coconut podi. Each one of these imparts a different flavor to the curry.

If you do not have coconut milk, simply grind some soaked almonds or cashews with water to make nut milk and pour it.


You can make a big batch of this curry and refrigerate. For variations you may add some boiled eggs, boiled green peas, grilled potatoes, grilled vegetables and simmer in the curry for a few minutes.

More simple curry recipes
Beetroot curry
Capsicum masala curry
Soya chunks curry
Cauliflower curry
Ladies finger curry
Potato curry

How to Make Tomato Curry (Stepwise photos)


1. This step is optional but I prefer to get rid of the tomato skin. You may skip if you want to. Rinse tomatoes well under running water. Bring 2 to 3 cups of water to a boil and carefully add 3 large tomatoes. Boil the whole tomatoes until the skin loosens. This takes around 3 to 4 mins.

boil veggies in a pot to make tomato curry recipe

2. Peel off the skin and discard. Chop tomatoes, remove the core & the seeds too if you want.

peeling skin chopping veggies for tomato curry recipe

3. If you want to use sesame seeds, toast 2 tbsps seeds in a pan until light and aromatic. Cool and make a fine powder in a grinder. Set aside. Alternately you may use idli podi, peanut podi, almond meal or even leave out this.

Make Tomato Curry

4. Heat a pan with 2 tablespoons oil. add ¼ teaspoon mustard seeds, ¼ to ½ teaspoon cumin seeds, 1 sprig curry leaves and 1 slit red or green chili. When they splutter add hing. If you want you may add 2 to 3 crushed garlic cloves and fry for 2 mins.

saute spices in hot oil for tomato curry recipe

5. Add ¾ cup chopped onions, sprinkle salt and fry on a high heat till they turn slightly pink & transparent. This takes only 3 mins.

frying onions in the pan

6. Add chopped tomatoes, ¼ teaspoon turmeric and fry on a medium high heat for 3 to 4 minutes.

addition of tomatoes turmeric for tomato curry recipe

7. Cover and cook till the tomatoes turn fully mushy and soft.

cook covered to make tomato curry recipe

8. Add 1 teaspoon red chili powder, ⅓ teaspoon salt and fry for a min or 2.

addition of chili powder salt

9. Add 2 tablespoons almond meal or Peanut podi or Idli podi. Other options are roasted gram powder or sesame seed powder. Mix and cook for 2 to 3 mins.

sesame seeds powder for tomato curry

10. Pour ¼ cup thick coconut milk. Mix well. Simmer for a min or 2. Off the heat. Do not cook for long if using homemade thick coconut milk else it may coagulate. Taste test and add more salt if you want.

addition of coconut milk

Tomato curry is ready to serve. Serve hot with ghee and rice or roti.

Tomato curry recipe made with fresh tomatoes, onions, spices and herbs

Related Recipes

Recipe Card

tomato curry recipe

Tomato Curry Recipe

Simple Andhra style tomato curry made with onion, tomatoes & spices. This tomato curry goes great with rice, chapati or paratha.
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For best results follow the step-by-step photos above the recipe card

Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time15 minutes
Total Time20 minutes

Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )

  • 3 large tomatoes
  • ¾ to 1 cup onions chopped, about 2 medium
  • 1 green chili slit
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 1 teaspoon garlic chopped or crushed (optional)
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons Oil
  • ¼ teaspoon mustard seeds
  • ¼ to ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 pinch hing (asafoetida) (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon red chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric (haldi)
  • teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
  • ¼ cup coconut milk thick (refer notes)
  • 1½ to 2 tablespoons almond meal (or peanuts or sesame seeds) (optional)



  • Optional step: Boil tomatoes for 3 to 4 minutes in 2 cups water. This will loosen the skin. Once cool, remove the skin and discard. Discard the core as well and chop the tomatoes. If you want you can also deseed completely.
  • Optional: Skip this step if using almond meal. Toast the sesame seeds or peanuts on a low flame until aromatic. Cool and make a fine powder. If you do not have sesame or peanuts, replace with almonds or roasted gram. Set this aside.

How to make Tomato Curry

  • Add oil to a pan and heat it. Add cumin and mustard.
  • When they begin to sizzle add curry leaves, green chili, garlic (optional) and hing. Let them fry for a minute or 2.
  • Add chopped onions and salt. Saute till they turn pink, not necessarily golden. 
  • Add the chopped tomatoes and turmeric. Saute for about 3 to 4 minutes.
  • Cook covered till the tomatoes turn soft and completely mushy.
  • Next add red chili powder and almond meal (or sesame seeds powder or fried gram powder). Mix and cook for 2 to 3 minutes until the curry turns thick. 
  • Add coconut milk and stir. Taste the curry and add more salt if needed.
  • When the tomato curry begins to bubble, Turn off the heat. Cooking for longer may coagulate the coconut milk if using homemade.
  • Serve tomato curry with rice & ghee or with roti.


  • Coconut milk: If you do not have coconut milk, you may blend 15 soaked almonds or cashews with 1/4 to 1/2 cup water to make smooth vegan milk. Skip the almond or peanut powder and just use this nut milk.
    This recipe needs only thick coconut milk. Do not use thin coconut milk as you will not get the flavor.
  • Sesame seeds: Traditionally white sesame seed powder is used. However I sometimes also use this Spiced peanut podi or idli podi for this. Taste test the sesame seeds first before you powder them.

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
Tomato Curry Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 131 Calories from Fat 81
% Daily Value*
Fat 9g14%
Saturated Fat 3g19%
Sodium 76mg3%
Potassium 204mg6%
Carbohydrates 11g4%
Fiber 3g13%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 2g4%
Vitamin A 290IU6%
Vitamin C 20.5mg25%
Calcium 20mg2%
Iron 1.5mg8%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe?Mention @SwasthisRecipes or tag #swasthisrecipes!

© Swasthi’s Recipes

Tomato curry recipe first published in May 2013. Updated & republished in August 2022.

Tomato Curry Recipe (Andhra Tomato Kura)

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
Very delicious I use cashew milk

5 stars
This recipe brought back memories of my grandmother making something similar. I made this and loved it. Thank you

5 stars
Very delicious curry! I used almond flour.

5 stars
This recipe was so delicious. I was not with a couple ingredients but it still turned out great using fresh home grown tomatoes. Looking forward to trying when I have the curry leaves and mustard.

5 stars
Yummylicious!! Aunty, Can we use dedicated coconut powder instead of sesame?

5 stars
I just made this for my wife (but a bachelor could do it ? ). Delicious! I doubled all the spices because a) we do not have very good spices and b) we LIKE spices. Thank you so much.

5 stars
You are the best


its good but ingreadient is less but its can not keep for long time.

5 stars

it is really easy. nice one swasthi

Looks delicious.

perfect with rice and roti.. i dont use coconut milk often in this curry..

fast to make side dish…. looks grt

Indeed yummy and very handy Swasthi.

Yummy curry !!!

Would love it with my rotis.l

flavorful curry…it goes well with dosa

Delicious and adore the tangy flavorful curry.

Yummy and tasty curry.

delicious lip smacking tomato curry.

nice way to eat up tomato in summer. delicious.