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Pakora Sauce

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Pakora sauce is served at almost all curry houses and is loved by so many!

This is a recipe that I get asked for often. I finally got around to typing out my pakora sauce recipe and now you can make this hugely popular dip at home.

I included another famous pakora sauce recipe in my cookbook ‘The Curry Guy’ which is actually quite similar. This one, however looks different, with its bright red hue.

Pakora sauce served with chicken pakoras.

What is pakora sauce?

As you are looking at this recipe, you probably don’t need an explanation. At the thousands of UK curry houses dotted around the country, this pink to bright red sauce is famous.

The thing is, there are many different recipes for pakora sauce. You will know that too if you have ever visited India.

Some are bright green and others light red. They all have their own distinctive flavours but this version is the most popular at UK curry houses.

What does this pakora sauce taste like?

As you will see in the photos and recipe below, there are a lot of ingredients in this pakora sauce.

You are going to be treated to a variety of flavours from sweet, sour, savoury and nicely bitter. 

How do you get the best results?

This is your pakora sauce so you need to make it as you like it!

Taste the pakora sauce as you make it. Feel free to adjust the flavouring to your own personal taste.

You could add more lemon or lime juice for a more tart flavour. Season it with salt to taste. Add sweetness with more ketchup or mango chutney. Make it creamier with more yoghurt. Get the idea?

What do you serve with this pakora sauce?

Pakoras of course but there are many other things you can serve it with.

So if you make my onion bhajis, air-fryer onion bhajis or chicken or haggis pakoras, they would all be good with this sauce.

You could also use it as a dip for samosas, chicken seekh kebabs, lamb seekh kebabs and poppadoms. If it sounds good, it will be.

How long can you store this pakora sauce in the fridge?

Like most pakora sauces and raitas, this one can be made a couple of days before serving.

If this sounds like a convenient option for you, go for it. Your pakora sauce will keep, covered tightly in the fridge for at least 3 days. In fact, as it rests in the fridge, the flavours will develop and it will be even better.

Can you freeze the sauce?

No because yoghurt does not freeze well. It is best to make as much as you require and keep it in the fridge until you are ready to serve it.

How do you make the sauce red?

As you will see in the step by step photographs below, this is done with food colouring.

Food colouring add no flavour to the sauce so it is added solely for presentation. You can leave it out or add as much as you like until you have the colour you are looking for.

How do you adjust the consistency of the sauce?

This recipe, like many raita recipes calls for thick Greek yoghurt. Greek yoghurt gives the pakora sauce a creamy consistency.

You might find that your sauce is too thick or perhaps not creamy enough. All this can be easily fixed.

If you find your sauce too thick, try adding a drop of milk. Add the milk in small amounts until you achieve the consistency you are looking for.

You can also add more yoghurt if you find it is not creamy enough. Just taste and adjust as you go and your pakora sauce will be perfect.

Step by step photographs.

Ingredients for the sauce.

Get all your ingredients prepared and at the ready before starting. It’s easier that way.

Toasting cumin seeds in a pan.

Toasting the cumin seeds will give the sauce more depth of flavour. Heat the seeds over a medium heat until warm to the touch and fragrant but not yet smoking.

All of the ingredients in a mixing bowl.

Place all of the ingredients in a mixing bowl and stir well to combine.

Adding food colouring to the pakora sauce.

Your pakora sauce will look like this before adding food colouring. Either option tastes the same.

The pakora sauce after the red food colouring is added.

This is what the sauce look like with a little food colouring. You could add more for it you want a redder glow.

The finished pakora sauce.

Add salt and lemon juice to taste. It is best to place your sauce in the fridge for about 30 minutes before serving.

Pakora sauce photographed with chicken pakoras.


If you like this pakora sauce recipe, you might like to try some of these popular dishes with it.

Meat Samosas
Chicken Samosas
Samosa Chaat
Homemade Poppadoms
Easy Poppadoms
Beef Biryani
Pakistani Chickpea Biryani
Chicken Biryani
Keema Biryani
Lamb Biryani
Spicy Lamb Chops
Chicken Tikka
Chicken Seekh Kebabs
Lamb Seekh Kebabs
Haggis Pakora
Baked Onion Bhajis
Onion Bhajis
Air-Fryer Onion Bhajis

Have you tried this pakora sauce recipe?

If so, please give it a star rating in the comments below and leave a comment. I love receiving your feedback and I’m sure other readers of my blog do too. Thank you.

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Yield: 4 - 6

Pakora Sauce

Pakora sauce served with chicken pakoras.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 2 minutes
Total Time 7 minutes


  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp smooth mango chutney
  • 3 tbsp ketchup
  • 1 tsp mint sauce
  • 200g (1 cup) plain natural yoghurt
  • 1/2 tsp roasted cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp Kashmiri chilli powder, or to taste
  • 1 tbsp sugar or to taste
  • 1 tsp lemon juice or to taste for a tart flavour
  • 1/2 tsp red food colouring powder (optional)
  • Milk (optional)
  • Salt, to taste


  1. Whisk all of the ingredients together, except fir the food colouring, salt and milk.
  2. Once the sauce is nicely combined, check for seasoning and add salt to taste.
  3. Add the food colouring, if using.
  4. If the sauce is too thick for your liking, stir in a little milk until you are happy with the consistency.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 108Total Fat: 3gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 9mgSodium: 185mgCarbohydrates: 18gFiber: 1gSugar: 13gProtein: 3g

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