Tamarind Date Chutney


Tamarind Date Chutney is a delicious sweet and tangy chutney made from tamarind paste and dates. Enjoy it for breakfast on toast. Excellent with grilled meats, chicken, fish or chickpea curries. Did you like hummus? You will love this date chutney. It’s sweet. Yes, sweet. Dates are the main ingredient and tamarind is there for the balance.

tamarind chutney recipe | imli chutney | sweet tamarind dates chutney

tamarind chutney recipe | imli chutney | sweet tamarind dates chutney recipe with detailed photo and video recipe. basically a sweet and tangy chutney recipe prepared from dates, tamarind and jaggery. it is typically used in chat recipes, especially in pani puri and bhel puri and is quite popular in northern india. it is also commonly refereed as saunth chutney or sonth chutney recipe or even sweet chutney recipe.

tamarind chutney recipe | imli chutney | sweet tamarind dates chutney with step by step photo and video recipe. traditionally, sweet chutney were prepared from just jaggery, however these days dates have also been added to get sweetness taste and texture. tamarind chutney is primarily used in chat recipes, but can also be served as condiments for aloo samosaonion samosa and aloo tikki.

initially, i thought of preparing just sweet tamarind chutney, but i was having a bunch of dates unattended from my previous recipe. hence i decided to prepare the sweet tamarind dates chutney. while i personally avoid having this chutney recipe in any of my chaat recipe. however my husband loves sweet and spicy combination in his chaat recipe. hence i prepare this chutney recipe well ahead in advance and store in a air tight container. typically it has a long shelf life and can be preserved for months.

in addition some tips, variations and suggestions for a perfect sweet tamarind chutney or khajoor imli ki chutney. in this recipe i have prepared a thicker version which can be ideally used as dip. if you are using as topping for chaat recipes, add water to make it thin and flowing consistence. secondly, if you do not have dates, then even jaggery can be used to get the sweet taste. lastly, you can also soak the tamarind and dates in water so that they can be easily grounded.

Tamarind Date Chutney (Meethi Chutney)

You can’t imagine a chaat recipe without this tamarind date chutney. In Hindi, it is called khajur imli ki chutney. It has a unique sweet and sour taste (khatta-meetha) hence it is also known as meethi chutney.

Meethi chutney served in a small bowl.

❤️About This Recipe

As the name says, it is made from tamarind and dates along with jaggery and a few spices. 

This tamarind date chutney is one of the must-have chutneys for Indian chaat recipes like bhel puri, sev puri, ragda patties, dahi vada or some snacks like samosa, pakoda, vada pav, etc. Apart from this, two other must-have chutneys are green chutney and red garlic chutney.

2 Methods: Make in a saucepan on the stovetop or Make in Instant pot (Both methods are mentioned below.)

Easy to make: Choose any method you prefer as both of them are easy to follow and quick to make.

Better than store-bought tamarind date chutney: Homemade always tastes better and is fresh. Plus, it is preservative-free or additive-free. 

Make a big batch: Most of the time I make a large batch and freeze the remaining meethi chutney in the freezer.

🧾Ingredient Notes

  • Tamarind: I prefer to use seedless tamarind to avoid one step of getting rid of seeds. Instead, you can use ready tamarind paste as well.
  • Dates: I have used Medjool dates and seeds are removed.
  • Jaggery: You can use any kind of jaggery (desi, powdered or kolhapuri) you have on hand. Instead, you can use brown sugar.
  • Roasted cumin powder: To make this at home, dry roast the cumin seeds on medium-low heat until darker in color. Once it cools down grind into a spice grinder or mortar and pestle. 
  • Dry ginger powder (Saunth): It adds a nice flavor to the meethi chutney. If you don’t have it then skip it.

👩‍🍳Step By Step Photo Instructions 

1) Take seedless tamarind and dates in a saucepan or patila.

2) Add 3 cups of water and turn the heat on medium. Let it come to a boil and simmer for 7-8 minutes.

3) Add jaggery.

4) Also, add salt, red chili powder, roasted cumin powder and dry ginger powder.

5) Mix well and let it simmer for again 7-8 minutes. Let this mixture cool down to room temperature.

Collage of 5 images showing cooking tamarind, date, adding jaggery and spices.

6) Grind into a smooth puree.

7) Strain the chutney using a strainer.

8) You cannot skip this step, as you can see that it may have some string of tamarind which is unpleasant to bite into.

9) Sweet chutney is ready, let it cool completely before storing it in the jar. If it’s too thick at this point then you can add some water to make it a runny, drizzling consistency.

Collage of 4 images showing grinding, straining the chutney.

Instant Pot Instructions

  1. Add tamarind, date, jaggery and water in instant pot liner. NOTE: you can do the same using the pot-in-pot method as you can see in the pic, I have made ragda in the liner and tamarind date chutney mixture in the PIP.
  2. Cook on Manual (high pressure) for 8-10 minutes.
  3. Once the pin drop, add salt, red chili powder, roasted cumin powder and dry ginger powder. Mix well.
  4. Follow the same steps as above (grind, strain and store).
Cooked tamarind date chutney mixture in instant pot.

💭Expert Tips

  • You can use the tamarind pulp instead of seedless tamarind. If so use the same amount of tamarind pulp that is easily available in Indian grocery stores. 
  • If using tamarind pulp then no need to strain the chutney mixture. So here is the one less step to do.
  • Instead of jaggery, you can use regular sugar or brown sugar. But you’ll miss the depth of flavor that jaggery gives.

🥣 Storage Instructions

  • This tamarind date chutney has a really good shelf life. 
  • In the refrigerator, it stays good for up to a month in an airtight container. If it thickens after storing, you can add a tablespoon or so of water to make the chutney consistency.
  • In the freezer, it stays good for up to 4-5 months. I would freeze in the smaller portions and defrost them by keeping on the countertop for a few hours as needed.

Sweet Tamarind Date Chutney

PREP TIME : 5 mins

COOK TIME : 35 mins

TOTAL TIME : 40 mins

This sweet chutney is one of favourite chutney’s! It’s vegan (obvi), gluten free, refined sugar free and oil free!

Make this super simple, sweet tamarind date chutney to accompany your favourite Indian street food dishes and snacks. It’s completely different to most of the other chutneys, as the main profile of this chutney is sweet and sour. Naturally vegan, gluten-free, refined sugar-free and SO good. This is a must-have with my vegetable samosas!

What Is Sweet Tamarind Date Chutney?

It’s a popular chutney, that’s also known as…

  • khatti meethi imli ki chutney
  • khatta meetha chutney
  • imli chutney recipe
  • imli ki chatni
  • saunth chutney

Naturally vegan, gluten-free and refined sugar-free. It’s made with dates, tamarind pulp, water, jaggery, chilli powder and salt. You’ll find it being used for all kinds of Indian street food dishes. I’m talking, aloo chaat, chana chaat, bhel puri, dahi puri, samosa chaat, pani puri, papdi chaat and so many more Indian snacks.

Ingredients For Sweet Tamarind Date Chutney

  • Dates: grab your Medjool dates, and remove the seeds or simply use seedless dates.
  • Tamarind Pulp: you’ll be able to find this at your local Indian grocery store.
  • Jaggery: it’s an unrefined sugar, that is healthier than traditional sugar as Jaggery is packed with vitamins and minerals.
  • Water: this recipe calls for a couple of cups of water, but you can add as much as you like. It all depends on how much water evaporates while everything is cooking over the stove.
  • Spice powders: the red chilli powder will add a slight bit of heat to this chutney.
  • Salt: add according to your taste, but I use around 1 tsp in total.

How To Make The Best Sweet Tamarind Chutney

There are two ways of softening and cooking the chutney. The first way is to add the seedless dates, jaggery and tamarind pulp in a bowl, and add in a cup of water or just enough until everything is covered. Cover the bowl with a lid and allow to soak and soften overnight. Transfer into a saucepan and cook for 15 minutes.

The second way is to add the seedless dates, jaggery, tamarind pulp and 2 cups of water into a saucepan. Heat over medium heat, and once the water starts to boil, reduce to low heat and cook for 30-40 minutes or until everything is soft. The quantity of water you use depends on how much of the water gets cooked off and how thin you want the chutney to be. I personally like it to have a thick consistency, that way, I can thin it out with a little water depending on what I’m using this chutney for.

Next, strain the chutney using a sieve and with a spoon, press and gently scrape to push out as much of the liquid as you can. Add all the pulp back into the saucepan, add in a splash of water and strain once more. This way you’ll get as much of the smooth paste out of the date pulp and dates. Discharge the pulp.

Add in a little red chili powder and salt. Mix to combine and add more if needed. If you want the chutney to be sweater, mix in a little sugar. Add a pinch of cumin powder is also optional.

Enjoy in your favourite Indian chaat recipes or as a samosa sauce.

How To Store Tamarind Date Chutney

Keep in an airtight container and store in the fridge for a couple of weeks or freeze for a couple of months. Bring back to room temperature before using or pop in the microwave on the defrost setting for a few minutes. Mixing halfway

Sweet Tamarind Chutney (Vegan)

 Prep Time: 5 mins

 Cook Time: 35 mins

 Total Time: 40 mins

 Servings: 2 cups

 Category: Condiments

 Cuisine: Indian

Diet Gluten Free, Hindu, Vegan


Make this super simple, sweet tamarind date chutney to accompany your favourite Indian street food dishes. It’s completely different to most of the other chutneys, as it’s the main profile of this chutney is sweet and sour. Naturally vegan, gluten-free and refined sugar-free.

Ingredients 1x2x3x

  • ▢1/3 cup tamarind pulp
  • ▢1/2 cup pitted medjool dates
  • ▢2 cups water, plus more, if needed
  • ▢1/3 cup jaggery
  • ▢1/2 tsp salt, or to taste
  • ▢1/2 tsp chilli powder, or to taste


  • Into a saucepan, add pitted dates, tamarind pulp, jaggery and water. Heat over medium heat, and once it starts to simmer bring it down to low. Cook for 30-40 minutes or until the dates are soft, and the jaggery is melted. You can speed this process by crushing the tamarind and dates with a fork while it cooks. Adding more water if needed.
  • Once soft allow the mixture to cool slightly, then pass through a sieve so you get a nice smooth chutney. Add the pulp back into the pan with 1/4 cup of water and massage to help get extra flavours from the tamarind and dates. Then sieve it one more time. Mix in chilli powder and salt.
  • Optional: Add in some more water to thin out the chutney to your desired consistency. (I used around 1/2 Cup)

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