Beetroot Pachadi OR Beet & Yogurt Salad With Mustard Seeds

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I was reading the wonderful Shaheen Peerbhai’s blog and she had posted a link to this beautiful video of a beet and chocolate cake from Vimeo. And I was reminded of how much I love beetroot.

Beetroot has always been a staple in our diet- I’m not sure if it’s a Kerala thing or a family thing. But ever since I can remember, we’ve had beetroot 3 ways. Cubed or julienned beetroot stir-fried with coconut; and sliced beetroot sauteed in coconut oil with lots of black pepper. The third beetroot staple in our home was beetrootΒ pachadi, a yogurt-beetroot salad tempered with mustard seeds.

Pachadis are common all across south India- they are vegetables tempered with yoghurt, coconut, ginger, chillies and curry leaves. The yogurt-based variety are mostly eaten in Kerala and Tamil Nadu as an accompaniment to rice and other stuff. Think of it as a tangier, spicier version of a tzatziki!

As with any other dish, you can improvise with pachadi. I didn’t add any grated coconut to mine, instead I used some finely chopped onions. Whatever you like.

There is no real rule to pachadi…you can make it runny or more dense, use home-made curd or store bought, use cucumber, tomatoes, beets, pineapples, any vegetable you like (though I’m yet to come across a pachadi made with potatoes…)

I like using beetroots because they bleed and mix with the yogurt and make such a pretty colour. It reminds me of my days as a kindergartner when I’d eat Cap’n Crunch’s Crunch Berries just to watch the red cereal berries make the milk turn pink.(Please don’t read into this with any Freudian intentions, I was just a little girl who liked the colour pink.)

Anyway, this is my recipe for beetroot pachadi, with whatever I could lay my hands on. It’s tart, tangy and slightly sweet thanks to the beetroot!



  • 1 medium sized beetroot; grated
  • 1 small onion; chopped
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • A few curry leaves
  • 1-2 tablespoons set yogurt (or more if you desire)
  • Salt to taste
  • A pinch of chilli powder


  • Heat the coconut oil in a pan. Once the oil is hot, add the mustard seeds and let them pop.
  • Next, add the chopped onions, grated beetroot and stir-fry. Add a few curry leaves so that their flavour is released into the oil. Add a pinch of chilli powder and salt to taste.
  • Sautee till the onions are soft.
  • Remove from heat, stir in the yogurt. Garnish with some curry leaves and you’re done.

I just love pink food!

Mustard Seed

11 thoughts on “Beetroot Pachadi OR Beet & Yogurt Salad With Mustard Seeds

  1. Your subtitle for this post reminded me of Banana Yoghurt Crunch! You’re inspiring me to cook now. Once I set up house in Delhi I’m going to try all your recipes πŸ˜€

  2. Pachadi made with potatoes…ohh yess!! Mahahrashtrians have a raita they make with curd, boiled potatoes and peanuts…. slightly on the sweeter side, usually served during fasts as a side for sabudana kichadi… its absolutely yummy!! πŸ™‚

    • Thanks so much for visiting Sandya! The potato-peanut raita sounds yummy…I have tried a tondli bhaji with ground peanuts and jaggery, but this sounds even better. I shall try it out.

  3. Thanks Giju chettan! I think our kichadi is nicer than the TN version…more kick! I guess pachadi and kichadi are like po-tay-to po-taah-to. Every region has a different word for the preparation!

  4. @Namrata The Konkani version must be even nicer with the extra spice! I can happily eat beetroot for all three meals πŸ™‚

    @ Preena Thanks for visiting! Yes, the pineapple pachadi is one of my all-time favourites. My grandmom puts purple grapes in it too

  5. There is something about the color of beetroots. Beetroot ‘thoran’ and ‘kichadi’, as we called it in Trivandrum, were absolute favorites. Did not mind the blander, cubed and boiled version they served in Tamil Nadu. Finally ‘Shalgam’ curry with mushrooms in Delhi. There is something about beetroots………!

  6. I’m a big fan of beetroot and have tasted a konkani version of this dish. My mum makes the best beetroot and coconut curry, with a tadka of curry leaves, mustard seeds and red chillies. I’m going to go home and demand that we have beetroot for breakfast, lunch & dinner

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