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Tamarind Sauce

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Freshly made tamarind sauce is so much better than anything you can purchase.

There are many brands of tamarind sauce that you can purchase to make life easy.

They are good but really don’t compare to the tamarind sauce you can make at home. Make this chutney and serve it with poppadoms or homemade samosas. It’s the perfect way to start off a curry feast! If you like a good sauce with your poppadoms, tandoori or samosas, you should also check out these delicious sauces.

Tamarind sauce

Quick and easy to make! This tamarind sauce is so better than shop bought!

How do you make tamarind sauce?

Let’s break this recipe down. 

To make the tamarind sauce, you first need to process a brick of tamarind. Photos of this process are below.

Once you get all the seeds out of the tamarind and run it through a sieve, you have tamarind concentrate.

So if you don’t add any spices or other ingredients to this concentrate, you still have a very useful ingredient. Tamarind concentrate is called for in many recipes. It adds a delicious sour flavour to a curry so it is good to have on hand.

To prepare the tamarind sauce, however, you just need to add the remaining ingredients and it’s job done.

How long can you keep tamarind sauce?

Like the tamarind concentrate mentioned above, tamarind sauce is of course available to purchase. But this recipe for tamarind sauce which is sweet, sour and spicy is my personal favourite. 

No shop bought tamarind sauce for me!

Both the concentrate and the sauce can be stored in the fridge for weeks. 

Working ahead

You can make this tamarind sauce a few days ahead of serving. It keeps for months in the fridge.

If time is an issue, go ahead and prepare the tamarind concentrate on one day and finish it up later to serve.

Make this recipe your own.

Taste and adjust. Please use this tamarind sauce recipe as a guide.

You can adjust the flavours to your own personal preference. Add more sugar or jaggery to taste for a sweeter sauce. You could also add more salt or chilli powder.

The best way to perfection is to taste what you’ve prepared and then have a good play until you are happy with the flavour.


Here are some delicious recipes you can use your homemade tamarind sauce in!

Tamarind sauce ingredients

Get your ingredients together before starting. It makes things that much easier. I also added chilli powder to mine, not shown.

Adding tamarind to pan with water

Break the tamarind into about six chunks and cover with water. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 5 minutes.

Breaking the tamarind down in the pan

As the tamarind simmers, press down and break it up with a wooden spoon or potato masher.

Cooling tamarind concentrate

Allow to cool for a couple of minutes.

Running tamarind through a sieve

Press the tamarind through a fine sieve with a spoon. This takes time! Probably about 10 to 15 minutes.

Tamarind bits in sieve.

You’ll be left with a few seeds and stringy bits. Throw these away.

Tamarind concentrate

You now have tamarind concentrate. The same stuff you can purchase but much tastier. It can be used in sauces and many other things to add a delicious sour flavour. It keeps for months.

Tamarind concentrate in pan

To make the sauce, pour the sieved concentrate back into the pan.

Adding chilli powder to tamarind concentrate.

I added chilli powder to mine which is optional.

Adding spices and sugar to tamarind concentrate.

Stir in the sugar and other spices and simmer for a few minutes, stirring often. Water can be added for a thinner sauce if preferred.

Tamarind sauce

I made a thick sauce but as mentioned above, this can be thinned if preferred.


Tamarind sauce

The thick or thin sauce can be stored in a jar or squeeze bottle.

Tamarind sauce

This delicious sauce can be stirred into curries for a sour flavour. It is also good on its own.

Tamarind sauce

So good!

Yield: 250ml

Tamarind Sauce

tamarind sauce
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes


  • 200g block of tamarind pulp
  • Water to cover 1 ½ cups plus more if preferred
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1 teaspoon chaat masala (optional)
  • ½ teaspoon dried ginger powder
  • ½ teaspoon red chilli powder or to taste
  • 1 tablespoon sugar or jaggery – more or less to taste
  • Salt to taste


  1. Break up the block of tamarind into about six pieces in a small saucepan and cover with 375ml ( 1 ½ cups) water. Bring to a rolling simmer over medium–high heat, stirring often for about 5 minutes. Then remove from the heat and let it cool for another 5 minutes.
  2. Using a wooden spoon or potato masher, smash the tamarind in the water. The sauce will become thick like ketchup. Run this through a sieve into a bowl, pushing against the solids as you do. You should end up with a thick tamarind paste. If you have ever used shop bought tamarind concentrate, this is what you have though shop bought tamarind concentrate is much more concentrated. Discard any solids that remain in the sieve.
  3. Return the tamarind paste to the saucepan and add the cumin, chaat masala (if using), ginger, chilli powder and sugar. Bring to a simmer for about 3 minutes until the sugar is completely dissolved. You can add a drop more water if you prefer a runnier sauce or reduce it more if you prefer a thicker sauce. Taste the sauce and add more sugar, salt or other spices to taste. (You will need to dissolve any additional sugar over a medium heat if added.)
  4. I store this in a convenient squirt bottle in the fridge.

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I hope you enjoy making and using this tamarind sauce recipe in a variety of recipes. If you do, please don’t be a stranger! Leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you. 


Monday 31st of May 2021

Hi! If I use tamarind pasteinstead of pulp to make this sauce, I guess I should use much less water. Do you naybe have ab indication for it? Thanks in advance!

Dan Toombs

Tuesday 1st of June 2021

Tamarind paste can be quite strong so I would just add to taste until you think it is right as it is hard to be precise. Thanks Dan


Monday 22nd of February 2021

Hi, I have tamarind concentrate in a tub. How much of that, with your sauce recipe do i use to make the sauce?


Dan Toombs

Wednesday 24th of February 2021

Add to taste, maybe add 1 teaspoon then another if you decide it needs more. Thanks Dan


Saturday 23rd of January 2021

All I could find was tamarind puree. Can I substitute it, and if so how much should I use?

Dan Toombs

Tuesday 26th of January 2021

Yes , I think you could use that. use about half the amount stated but add to taste. Thanks Dan

Lorraine Goley

Sunday 10th of January 2021

Could you get the same results using this recipe with powdered tamarind

Dan Toombs

Monday 11th of January 2021

Yes, I think powdered tamarind would be a good compromise. Thanks Dan


Saturday 9th of January 2021

I'm surely gonna try cause its delicious as dip for samosas or chips. I love tramrind I also use it in fish & dholl _mixed Veggies curries is awesome ❤️

Dan Toombs

Monday 11th of January 2021

Yes, I love it as a dip too. Thanks Dan

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