Avial or aviyal recipe is a quick, tasty and easy to make dish with mixed vegetables, coconut, curd and some basic spices. Popular in Tamil Nadu and Kerala, this avial is a part of traditional sadhya for Onam. Best served with rice or adai.
Just like any traditional recipe this coconut vegetable curry also has many variations. There are slight differences in how it is made from region to region and home to home too.
This post will help you make traditional avial recipe made with fresh coconut spice paste and curd or yogurt. I have also given some variations and tips to make best south Indian aviyal recipe.
Mixed vegetable curries are quite popular in India and every region has its own preparations using assorted vegetables. Veg korma, mixed veg stew, veg sagu, hotel style kurma are few curries using a variety of vegetables just like this aviyal.
Here in this curry, vegetables are steamed first and then simmered with a freshly made coconut paste. Finally we will add some curd and it is ready to eat. It is a super simple healthy dish gets ready in 30 minutes.
About This Recipe
Avial is a south Indian special mixed veg curry made widely in Tamil nadu, Kerala and some parts of Karnataka like Udupi region.
It is a thick coconut based vegetable curry with yogurt added for tangy flavor and taste. In some places avial is made without yogurt too. In some places raw mango is added for sourness.
The word avial means both steamed as well as mixed in Tamil. Vegetables used in this recipe varies from place to place.
In some homes they use only tube vegetables while others use a mix of tuber vegetables as well high vegetables with high water content like ash gourd, pumpkin etc.
We make this dish on kanu pongal to go with coconut rice. It is an awesome combo that we love in our home. Another famous combination is adai-aviyal-butter.
The recipe I am sharing today is Tambram style aviyal recipe. This recipe is very simple to make, only task here is chopping loads of vegetable.
It is believed that avial was made by Bhima, the second one among pancha pandavas first. It is said that he made this dish when was disguised as a cook in King Virata’s palace. He had just chopped and boiled all the available vegetables and added gated coconut to it, which tuned out be a tasty curry 🙂
This dish has come a long way since then. It is one of the healthiest veg curries made with less oil and load of assorted vegetables.
Piping hot rice with ladles full of this curry or crispy adai served with curry is a delightful and comforting combination.
I hope you will try this easy avial recipe and enjoy as much we do. It is
easy to make
healthy veg curry
vegetarian and gluten free
tasty with rice and adai
Vegetables Suitable For Aviyal Recipe
To make avial you can use any three or more of the following vegetables.
Pumpkin or kaddu
Ash Gourd or petha
Suran or elephant yam
Field marrow or madras cucumber
Plantain or raw banana
Tindora (Ivy gourd)
Vegetables like cauliflower, eggplant, okra are not used for this side dish recipe usually.
How To Make Avial Recipe
Chop all the vegetables you are using into cubes of same size. Do not chop the veggies very small. For this recipe I have used 1 cup each chopped ash gourd, pumpkin, carrots and 1/2 cup beans.
Pressure cook or steam cook the veggies until soft and cooked. I always prefer to steam cook as the vegetables retain their shape and do not turn very mushy. If using a pressure cooker cook for 2 whistles in medium flame.
Making Coconut Paste
In the meantime, grate 1/2 part of a large coconut. You will need 1 cup tightly packed grated coconut. Grind the grated coconut to a coarse paste along with 4 green chillies and 2 teaspoons cumin seeds. Set aside.
Heat 2 teaspoons coconut oil in a pan. Add the ground coconut paste and saute for few minutes.
Next add the steamed vegetables and coat well with the coconut paste.
Add very little(1/4 cup) water, salt and turmeric powder. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes.
Heat 2 teaspoons coconut oil in another kadai and temper with mustard seeds and curry leaves.
Add the tempered ingredients to the simmering avial. Mix well and turn off the heat.
Whisk the curd very well until smooth and add the avial to it.
Mix well and serve avial with coconut rice or adai.
Instant Pot Method
You can easily make avial in instant pot in 20 minutes if you have chopped vegetables and ground coconut paste ready. Rinse, peel and chop the vegetables for aviyal. No need to steam or cook them.
Place the steel insert inside your instant pot and switch it on. Press saute and once it turns hot, add oil. Add 1 teaspoon mustard seeds and 15 curry leaves. Fry for a minute.
Next add the chopped vegetables and ground coconut paste. Also add salt to taste. Mix and saute for 3-4 minutes.
Add 3/4 cup water and mix. Cancel saute and close the instant pot. Press pressure cooker or manual button and set timer for 6 minutes. Position pressure valve to seal.
Once the IP beeps let pressure settle down naturally for 5 minutes. Release any residual pressure carefully. Switch off the IP and add the whisked curd. Mix thoroughly.
Serve avial hot.
Aviyal recipes goes very well with steamed rice. It is an integral part of traditional Kerala sadhya or vegetarian feast served during Onam festival. You can add a papad, chips or vegetable dish like vendakai poriyal, cabbage fry, carrot poriyal or potato poriyal.
Vegetables– You can choose three or more of varieties of vegetables from the above list. More the merrier here :). While chopping them make sure not to dice the veggies very finely, they may turn mushy as you cook.
Next while cooking the vegetables you have cook them until they are tender but retain shape. I prefer to steam the vegetables for this reason.
Ground spice paste– The ground coconut paste is the only source of flavor for this curry. You can totally vary the amount of green chilies and cumin seeds here. We like spicy avial so I add around 4 plump green chilies.
Some recipes use 1/2 tablespoon chana dal in the spice paste for flavor and also for thickness.
Tempering– The final tempering of mustard seeds and curry leaves is optional in this recipe. In some homes avial is not tempered but we always add this tadka.
Instead of this tempering you can simply add 2 teaspoons coconut oil and mix well before adding yogurt or curd.
Coconut– I highly recommend you use freshly grated coconut for making avial. Frozen coconut can be used but there will be a change in flavor and texture.
Vegan Aviyal– To make this recipe vegan you can leave out yogurt and add 2 tablespoons thick tamarind extract along with coconut paste. You can also add 1/2 cup chopped raw mangoes along with other vegetables too.
Frequently Asked Questions
Avial means steamed or a mix of many things in Tamil.
Yes, it is a healthier dish with loads of vegetables and fresh coconut. If you are ok with including coconut in your diet it is a healthier curry.
Yes use 1/2 cup thick coconut milk and grind the other ingredients along with it.
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Avial Recipe- How To Make Aviyal
1 CUP = 250 ml
- 3 cups Mixed vegetables peeled and cubed
- 3/4 cup yogurt whisked well
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 2 teaspoons oil
- 1/4 cup water
- Salt to taste
For ground paste
- 1 cup grated coconut grated
- 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
- 4 green chillies
To temper avial
- 2 teaspoons oil
- 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 10-12 curry leaves
- Chop all the vegetables you are using into cubes of same size. Do not chop the veggies very small. For this recipe I have used 1 cup each chopped ash gourd, pumpkin, carrots and 1/2 cup beans.
- Pressure cook or steam cook the veggies until soft and cooked. I always prefer to steam cook as the vegetables retain their shape and do not turn very mushy. If using a pressure cooker cook for 2 whistles in medium flame.
Making Coconut Paste
- In the meantime, grate 1/2 part of a large coconut. You will need 1 cup tightly packed grated coconut. Grind the grated coconut to a coarse paste along with 4 green chillies and 2 teaspoons cumin seeds. Set aside.
- Heat 2 teaspoons coconut oil in a pan. Add the ground coconut paste and saute for few minutes.
- Next add the steamed vegetables and coat well with the coconut paste.
- Add very little(1/4 cup) water, salt and turmeric powder. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Heat 2 teaspoons coconut oil in another kadai and temper with mustard seeds and curry leaves.
- Add the tempered ingredients to the simmering avial. Mix well and turn off the heat.
- Whisk the curd very well until smooth and add the avial to it. Mix well and serve avial with coconut rice or adai.