Kachumber Salad (Indian Onion Cucumber Salad)

5 from 4 votes

Made using freshly chopped veggies, Kachumber Salad 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.

If you 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.

Kachumber salad served in a bowl.
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Salad is not a concept in Indian cuisine. However, all meals are served with some chopped or grated fresh vegetables. In winter, when fresh carrots, beetroot, and radishes are in season, they are grated, mixed with lime juice, salt, and chaat masala powder, and served as a salad. When fresh vegetables are limited in summer, it’s mostly this kachumber.

This is not even a recipe. Just chop the veggies and mix them with lime juice, salt, pepper powder, and a refreshing salad that gives the meal a nice crunch is ready in no time!

About Kachumber Salad

Kachumber (Kachoomer) is a healthy 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 similar to the all-time favorite Mexican Pico De Gallo or Tomato Salsa. The raw veggies give it a crunchy texture, and the lime and chilies give it a citrusy and spicy flavor.

This crunchy salad is served at most Indian restaurants and for everyday meals in most Indian homes.

Kachumber Salad Recipe is budget-friendly, no-cook, oil-free, vegan, and gluten-free. This crunchy and colorful dish 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.

Ingredients

Vegetables – The traditional kachumber uses tomatoes, cucumbers, green chilies, 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 to your taste. You can use Indian green chilies, 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. 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). 

Lime Juice – This provides the much-needed tang in the kachoomer. You can use fresh lemon juice in place of lime juice.

Variations

Some people add ground cumin and red chili 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 for adding 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 kachumber 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. For a change in taste, try adding different varieties of vinegar.

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

Add the following ingredients to a medium-sized, non-reactive (glass is best) mixing bowl.

  • 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
All the ingredients added to a bowl.

Mix everything properly using a spoon or with your clean hands.

Check for salt and pepper and add more if needed. Serve immediately.

Ready kachumber.

Pro Tips By Neha

Do not chop the veggies in a food processor. It will chop them finely, making the dish more of a salsa than a kachumber.

Try to chop the veggies into the same size. I like to use a manual vegetable chopper for this job; I recently got one from Amazon US and loved it.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I chop vegetables effectively?

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.

Can I make kachoomer ahead of time?

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.

What do I do if the cucumber is bitter?

The Indian variety of cucumbers often tastes bitter. 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, add some salt and keep it aside for 10 minutes. Now rinse and use.

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Made using freshly chopped veggies, Kachumber Salad 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.
5 from 4 votes

Kachumber Salad Recipe (Indian Onion Cucumber Salad)

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.
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 5 minutes
0 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
Servings: 4 people

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup chopped red 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
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Instructions 

  • 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.

Video

YouTube video

Notes

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. Remove their seeds to reduce the heat. You can also use Jalapeno or Serrano in place of green chilies.
If red onions are very pungent, soak them in water for 10 minutes, drain, and use them in the recipe.
To make it tangier and spicier, add some chaat masala powder and red chili powder.
Do not chop the veggies in a food processor. It will chop the veggies finely, making the dish more of a salsa than kachumber. Use a knife or a manual vegetable chopper.

Nutrition

Calories: 18kcal, Carbohydrates: 4g, Sodium: 45mg, Potassium: 95mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 2g, Vitamin A: 270IU, Vitamin C: 7.3mg, Calcium: 5mg, Iron: 0.1mg
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