Instant Pot Kerala Kadala Curry is a quick, one-pot version of the popular Kerala recipe. This Brown Chickpeas Coconut Gravy is usually served with Puttu or Appam. With Instant Pot, you can make this flavourful curry in 30 minutes. Let’s see how to make Kerala Kadala curry in Instant Pot!

About Kerala Kadala Curry

As the name suggests, this recipe is a popular one from Kerala. “Kadala” stands for chickpeas. In this recipe, brown chickpeas are used. It is very different from the regular white chickpeas. The texture is a bit nutty and delicious. I personally love this one a lot.
If you are familiar with Kerala Cusine, you know how famous this dish is. For those unaware, Kerala is a state in the Southern part of India. It is such a beautiful and serene place. Their food tastes out of the world as well! The main flavour of their food comes from the fresh coconut & coconut oil used in cooking.

From what I have heard, kadala curry is a part of the weekly menu in most Kerala households. I haven’t tasted authentic home-style Kadala Curry but have had this in few Kerala restaurants, thanks to my husband. He loves Kerala Cuisine and almost every weekend we used to go in search of a nice Kerala restaurant and try a different dish. This Kadala curry impressed me instantly. From then on, I have been making it along with puttu , at least once a month. This one tastes just as good as what we find in restaurants and trust me! You will Love it.

Traditional Kerala style, Kadala Curry has a lovely texture and aroma from freshly made coconut paste and fresh tempering with coconut oil. It is usually served with puttu, appam.

how to make kerala kadala curry in instant pot

Ingredients

Brown Chickpeas is the main ingredient of this Instant Pot Kerala Kadala Curry. Also the coconut paste! The main flavour of this dish comes from there. We need to dry roast the coconut and make a smooth paste with little water.
Next, a paste made out of tomatoes, green chilli, ginger, garlic, whole spices & spice powders is used for the curry consistency. We need onion for the gravy and of course, coconut oil, mustard, red chilli, green chilli and curry leaves for tempering.
Finally, some coriander leaves for garnishing. Sounds simple, isn’t it?

How to make Kerala Kadala Curry in Instant Pot

Soak kadala / brown chickpeas overnight in enough water.

In a mixer jar, add tomatoes, ginger, garlic, clove, cardamom, fennel seeds, cinnamon, cumin seeds, red chilli powder, salt, turmeric powder and coriander powder. No need to add any water while grinding. Keep it aside.

Press SAUTE mode on Instant Pot. Once hot, roast fresh coconut for a minute. Roast on low heat and ensure it doesn’t burn. Switch off. Once cooled to room temperature, make a smooth paste by adding little water to it.

How to make kerala kadala curry

Again, press SAUTE mode on Instant Pot. Add coconut oil to the POT. Once POT is hot, add onions and saute until onions turn light brown. I have used shallots ( Indian small onions). You can use regular onion as well.

Now, add the curry paste and cook for a couple of minutes.

Drain the water from the chickpeas and add it to the pot. Give a mix. Add water. Check for salt & spices. Add if needed.

Close the pot with the lid. PRESSURE COOK for 30 minutes on high.

Release pressure NATURALLY.

Once the pressure has released naturally, add the ground coconut paste and cook on SAUTE mode for 5 minutes. Cook till you reach the desired consistency. If you want the curry to be runnier, add more water. If you want the curry to be thicker, let it be on saute mode for few more minutes till the water reduces.

In a pan, add some coconut oil. Once hot, add mustard seeds, red chilli, curry leaves, green chilli, asafoetida. Once mustard splutters, switch off. Add the tempering to the cooked curry.

how to make kadala curry

Garnish with coriander leaves. Serve hot.

how to make kerala kadala curry in instant pot

Tips & Suggestions

The main flavour comes from the tempering. So, do not skip it. If you don’t have coconut oil, use your choice of oil.

Authentic Kerala Kadala Curry is made with brown chickpeas only. If you use white chickpeas the taste will still be good. But the texture will change.

If you are running short of fresh coconut, use dry coconut or coconut milk.

Traditional Kadala Curry is a bit runny. Adjust consistency to suit your taste.

To make the gravy thicker and creamier, once the chana is cooked, take a ladle full. Grind it to a fine paste and add it back to the curry.

how to make kerala kadala curry in instant pot

Can I make this Curry without Instant Pot?

Of course yes! Traditionally this curry is made on the stovetop. Pressure cook the brown chickpeas for 6 whistles or until well cooked on medium flame. Make the tomato paste and coconut paste. Follow the rest of the procedure as mentioned above.

Serving Suggestions

Traditionally, Kerala Kadala Curry is served with Puttu or Appam. It also tastes great with parotta, dosa, idli or rice!

I personally love having it with hot rice! Do try this combination.

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how to make kerala kadala curry in instant pot
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5 from 1 vote

How to make Kerala Kadala Curry In Instant Pot

Instant Pot Kerala Kadala Curry is a quick, one-pot version of the popular Kerala recipe. This Brown Chickpeas Coconut Gravy is usually served with Puttu or Appam. With Instant Pot, you can make this flavourful curry in 30 minutes. Let's see how to make Kerala Kadala curry in Instant Pot!
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Soaking time8 hrs
Course: Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: How to make Kerala Kadala Curry in Instant Pot, Instant Pot kadala curry, Instant pot kerala kadala curry, Kerala Kadala Curry in Instant Pot, Kerala kadala curry recipe, One pot kerala kadala curry
Servings: 2 people
Author: Gayathri Vijayakumar

Equipment

  • Instant Pot

Ingredients

  • 1 /2 cup Brown Chana / Brown Chickpeas
  • 10 Shallots Can use 1 medium onion in its place
  • 1 cup Water
  • 4 tbsp Coconut Fresh or Frozen
  • 1 tbsp Coriander Leaves To Garnish

For making Curry Paste

  • 2 Tomatoes Medium Size
  • 3 cloves Garlic
  • 1 inch Ginger
  • 1 Clove
  • 1 Cardamom
  • 1 Cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Fennel Seeds
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 & 1/2 tsp Red Chilli Powder
  • 1/4 tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 1 tsp Coriander Powder

For tempering

  • 1 tbsp Coconut Oil
  • 1 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 1 Red Chilli
  • Curry Leaves Few
  • Asafoetida a Pinch
  • 1 Green Chilli Slit

Instructions

  • Soak chana (brown chickpeas) overnight or for at least 8 hours.
  • In a mixer jar, add the Ingredients under "Curry Paste". Without adding any water, make a smooth paste and keep it aside.
  • Press SAUTE mode on Instant Pot. Once hot, roast fresh coconut for a minute. Roast on low heat and ensure it doesn't burn. Switch off. Once cooled to room temperature, make a smooth paste by adding little water to it.
  • Again, press SAUTE mode on Instant Pot. Add coconut oil to the POT. Once POT is hot, add onions and saute until onions turn light brown. I have used shallots ( Indian small onions). You can use regular onion as well.
  • Now, add the curry paste and cook for a couple of minutes.
  • Drain the water from the chickpeas and add it to the pot. Give a mix. Add 1 cup water. Check for salt & spices. Adjust if needed.
  • Close the pot with the lid. PRESSURE COOK for 30 minutes on high.
  • Release pressure NATURALLY.
  • Once the pressure has released naturally, add the ground coconut paste and cook on SAUTE mode for 5 minutes. Cook till you reach the desired consistency. If you want the curry to be runnier, add more water. If you want the curry to be thicker, let it be on saute mode for few more minutes till the water reduces.
  • In a pan, add some coconut oil. Once hot, add mustard seeds, red chilli, green chilli ,curry leaves, asafoetida. Once mustard splutters, switch off. Add the tempering to the cooked curry. Garnish with coriander leaves. Serve hot.

Notes

Adjust spice to your taste. This curry is medium spicy only. 
The main flavour comes from the tempering. So, do not skip it. If you don’t have coconut oil, use your choice of oil.
Authentic Kerala Kadala Curry is made with brown chickpeas only. If you use white chickpeas the taste will still be good. But the texture will change. If you are running short of fresh coconut, use dry coconut or coconut milk. 
Traditional Kadala Curry is a bit runny. Adjust consistency to suit your taste. To make the gravy thicker and creamier, once the chickpeas is cooked, take a ladle full. Bring it to a fine paste and add it back to the curry.