Made using freshly chopped veggies, Kachumber is a fresh, crunchy no-cook Indian onion cucumber tomato salad that can be rustled up whenever hunger strikes. Pair it with any Indian meal for a taste lift (vegan, gluten-free, and oil-free).
Want more easy-peasy Indian salads like this Kachumber; then you can try these too – Old Fashioned Kidney Bean Salad, Sprouts Salad, and Kakdi Chi Koshimbir.
A healthy salad is a must in our home, especially at lunchtime. To go with our Indian-style meals, we need something simple, tasty, and light to serve on the side. And those days, I make Kachumber Salad (Kachoomer, Indian Cucumber Onion Tomato Salad).
Well, you must be thinking, what does Kachumber (Pronounced kutch-oom-ber) mean? Kachumber is a Hindi word often used for a simple mixture of two or more raw vegetables, and this simple chopped salad is made using cucumbers, onions, and tomatoes, hence the name.
Kachumber can also be called Indian salsa as it is made very similarly to the all-time favorite Mexican Pico De Gallo or Tomato Salsa. It has a crunchy texture from the raw veggies and a citrusy and spicy flavor from the lime and chilies.
This crunchy salad is served at most Indian restaurants and is the everyday Indian salad made in most Indian homes.
Kachumber Salad Recipe is budget-friendly, no-cook, oil-free, vegan, and gluten-free, and this crunchy and colorful salad comes together in just 10 minutes. It is excellent for your clean eating menu too.
The best part about kachumber is that it is very customizable. Add the veggies you like and skip the ones you don’t.
Kachumber recipe can be easily doubled or tripled if making it for a crowd.
Health Benefits Of Kachumber Salad
Kachoomer is a great way to include raw veggies in your diet. Eating veggies in their raw form has many health benefits.
They are low in calories and contain fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
Raw veggies aid digestion, make the skin glow, help in the weight loss journey, and improve heart health.
They have high water content, which is excellent for the body.
Vegetables – The traditional kachumber uses tomatoes, cucumber, green chillies, cilantro (fresh coriander leaves), and red onions.
Try to use English cucumbers, as they are seedless and super crunchy. My second choice is Persian cucumbers which are also seedless but less flavorful than their English cousins.
If using regular cucumbers, peel them and remove the large seeds.
Add more or less green chilies as per your taste. You can use serrano, jalapeno, cayenne pepper, or Thai green chilies. Remove their seeds to reduce the heat.
If red onions are very pungent, soak them in cold water for 10 minutes, drain, and use them in the Indian kachumber salad. You can also use white onions in place of red onions.
Pomegranate – This is entirely optional! I like adding it for extra crunch and a hint of sweetness.
Salt and Pepper – Season it with salt and black pepper powder. That’s it! If you like it tangier, add some chaat masala powder and black salt (kala namak) too.
Lime Juice – This provides the much-needed tang in the kachoomer. You can use fresh lemon juice in place of lime juice.
Some people add ground cumin and red chilli powder to their kachumber. You can try it too. You can replace red chili powder with cayenne pepper or sweet paprika.
Add fresh herbs like mint leaves, basil, parsley, and cilantro (coriander leaves).
For a lovely crunch, add roasted peanuts or other nuts like almonds, walnuts, etc.
Seeds like sunflower, toasted flax, or hemp seeds are also great to add crunch.
Bean and alfa sprouts also go very well in this healthy salad.
To make the kachumber even more interesting, you can add finely chopped mixed bell peppers, shredded or sliced radish, shredded cabbage, corn, shredded beetroots, and boiled potatoes. Avocado is also a great addition.
When green mangoes are in season, add some to give the salad a nice tang and crunch. Gujaratis add chopped ripe mangoes to their Kachumber. It provides a lovely sweetness to this otherwise spicy and tangy kachumber.
You can also use vinegar in place of lemon or lime juice. Try adding different varieties of vinegar for a change in taste.
Cooked chickpeas or red kidney beans can also be added. They are rich in protein and will add to the health benefits.
Add chopped boiled eggs or grilled shredded chicken to kachumber if you eat eggs and chicken.
How To Make Kachumber Salad
Start by preparing the ingredients
- Peel the onions and chop them.
- Chop the tomatoes and cucumber. You can chop the cucumbers with skin on them if it’s very fresh or peel the skin using a vegetable peeler before chopping. Remove the seeds of the tomatoes before chopping.
- Chop green chilies and cilantro too. If making it for kids, you can skip adding the chili. Wear gloves while chopping the chilies if you have sensitive skin.
- Take out the kernels of pomegranate.
Note – Do not chop the veggies in a food processor. It will chop the veggies finely, making the dish more of a salsa than kachumber.
Tip – Try to chop the veggies in the same size. I like to use a manual vegetable chopper to do this job; I recently got it from Amazon US and loved it.
Make The Kachumber Salad
- 1 cup chopped red onions
- 1 cup chopped tomatoes (seeds removed)
- 1 cup chopped cucumber (with or without skin)
- 1 teaspoon chopped green chilies
- 2 tablespoon chopped cilantro
- ½ cup pomegranate seeds
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper powder
- 2 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
to a medium-sized, non-reactive (glass is best) mixing bowl.
Mix everything properly using a spoon or with your clean hands.
Check for salt and pepper and add more if needed. Serve immediately.
Frequently Asked Questions
It’s best to chop the veggies in the same size for the kachumber’s nice look and texture. I prefer a vegetable chopper as it makes the chopping quick and easy.
Yes, you can mix the chopped veggies and pomegranate seeds and store them in an air-tight container for up to a day. When ready to serve, mix the spices and lime juice.
Cucumbers taste bitter a lot of times. The best way to eliminate the bitterness is to chop off the top part and rub it against the remaining cucumber. A foam-like substance will collect around the edges of the cucumber. Wash it, and it will not taste bitter anymore.
If you have chopped the cucumber without tasting it before, add some salt to it and keep it aside for 10 minutes. Now rinse and use.
Yes, if you do not eat onions, you can skip adding them. Kachumber tastes great without onions too. Add finely chopped carrots in this no-onion version for some extra crunch.
To make Kachumber raita or Kachumber with yogurt, add chopped onions, tomatoes, and cucumber to the whisked plain yogurt (dahi) and flavor it with cumin powder and salt.
Yes, that’s it! You can also temper the raita with oil, asafetida, and red chili powder. This kachumber raita pairs very well with biryani.
This salad pairs well with any Indian meal. Apart from my everyday meals of dal and Indian curries, I like to serve it with biryani and pulao.
Dal Tadka, Gobi Aloo, Kachumber, and Roti make the best meal ever. I also like to serve this salad along with my Tandoori Chicken.
Add it to your sandwiches, wraps, burritos, tacos, burgers, or a buddha bowl.
Mix it with yogurt and serve it as a dip with chips, nachos, spicy crackers, etc.
It can also be served over fried popadums (papad).
You can also serve this classic Indian salad as a healthy snack.
When kachumber is kept for some time, the veggies release some liquid, which gets collected at the bottom of the bowl. It is gold, guys! I like to sip this tangy liquid as it is or drizzles it over my dal rice.
Kachumber salad doesn’t keep well, so I suggest you make it fresh. You can chop the veggies in advance and mix them with the rest of the ingredients when ready to serve.
But if you still have leftovers, store them in a sealed container for about 2 days in the fridge. Just take a few minutes before serving so that it comes to room temperature.
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Kachumber Recipe (Indian Cucumber Onion Tomato Salad)
- 1 cup chopped onions
- 1 cup chopped tomatoes (seeds removed)
- 1 cup chopped cucumber (preferably English cucumbers, chopped with or without skin.)
- 1 teaspoon chopped green chilies (adjust the amount according to your liking)
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro (fresh coriander leaves)
- ½ cup pomegranate seeds
- ½ teaspoon salt (or to taste)
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper powder (or to taste)
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- Add all the ingredients to a medium-size non-reactive mixing bowl.
- Mix everything well using a spoon or with your clean hands.
- Check for salt and pepper and add more if needed. Serve immediately.
Can this be prepared in a food processor to save time?
I don’t suggest this Michelle, it wil become more like a salsa than kachumber.