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Top view image of Bombaby chutney served in a white serving plate with cilantro on top and a lemon slice on the side

Bombay chutney | Besan Chutney

  • Author: Yamini
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


Bombay Chutney is a unique vegan and gluten-free south Indian side dish served with breakfast recipes like Chapathi, Poori, Dosa, Idli etc...


  • 1.5 tablespoons oil 
  • One big onion thinly sliced into 1-inch slices
  • 1 green chili cut lengthwise
  • One big tomato diced
  • One big potato boiled and roughly mashed or diced
  • 4 tablespoons of besan (also called gram flour or chickpea flour)
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons of grated Jaggery ( bellam)
  • Salt to taste
  • Cilantro for garnish
  • Lemon juice (optional)

Ingredients for tempering

  • 1 teaspoon chana dal
  • 1 teaspoon split urad dal
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • A pinch of hing ( asafoetida, skip if you are on a gluten-free diet)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 1 sprig of curry leaves
  • 1 red chilli broken into pieces
  • 1-inch ginger peeled and chopped finely (around 1/2 tablespoon)




  • Start with boiling 1 medium-size potato, peel it and roughly mash it or dice it. You can do this simultaneously while making the chutney to save time.
  • Slice Onions into 1 inch long thin slices, slit the green chilies lengthwise, and dice the tomato.
  • Mix 4 tablespoons of besan (gram flour) in one cup of water and mix without any lumps using a whisk. Then add 3 more cups of water to it and keep it aside.

How to make Bombay Chutney

  • Heat oil in a pot and add all the tempering ingredients and saute for a minute.
  • Then add slit green chili and onion slices with half a teaspoon of salt and saute until the onions are translucent.
  • Next add diced tomato, mix well and cook covered until the tomatoes are slightly softened. No need to cook them completely.
  • Add the boiled and mashed potato and stir well.
  • Now add the besan and water mixture, salt to taste, and cook covered for 5 minutes.
  • Then open the lid and cook until the chutney thickens to desired consistency.
  • Add jaggery or sugar when the chutney is almost done, check salt, mix well and remove from heat.
  • Garnish with cilantro and serve hot with Poori, dosa, idli, or chapati.


  • Adding potato is optional but tastes really good with poori, chapati, or dosa. You can skip it when you are serving it with idli if you prefer.
  • Do not skip adding jaggery or sugar at the end as it beautifully balances all the flavors.
  • This bombay chutney is medium high spicy. Increase or reduce the number of green or red chillies based on your spice tolerance. 
  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Cook Time: 25 mins
  • Category: Main course
  • Method: Stove top
  • Cuisine: Indian

Keywords: Bombay chutney, Besan chutney, Poori curry, besan curry, idli side dish