Easy simple sambar recipe without vegetables (or simply sambar without vegetables) can be made really quick if you are looking to make a quick dal based curry for rice or some quick sambar to go as side dish for idli or dosa.
This is a very simple plain sambar recipe without using vegetable for preparing easy and quick vegetarian/vegan meals for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
You can make this quick sambar using just toor dal (yellow pigeon peas), tamarind and sambar powder, (using a pressure cooker or programmable instant pot) or by adding more spices (even without sambar powder) and a simple seasoning (as I do sometimes).
This is basically a very simple and plain idli sambar recipe without vegetables (samabar for idli & dosa) and this goes great with rice too.
You can use a pressure cooker or programmable instant pot to quickly make sambar at your home.
As a matter of fact, vegetables are main ingredients in traditional sambar recipes, as this is actually a healthy soup/stew kind of combination of dal and vegetables with spices.
However if you are out of time and if you don’t have chopped vegetables with you, this simple sambar recipe without vegetables can help you to make a quick gravy for rice or dosa or idli.
Even simple sambar recipe without vegetables can be made in different ways with slight modifications. This simple sambar recipe without vegetables is made without coconut as well.
However, if you love adding coconut, go ahead and dry roast a cup of grated coconut which can be grind and added to the gravy. This will add extra thickness to the gravy which is made without vegetables.
You might like to see my post on authentic south Indian sambar recipe here
However even if you don’t want to add roasted grind mix of coconut to the sambar, you can easily make sambar using this simple sambar recipe without vegetables.
The main ingredient for sambar is split yellow pigeon peas which is known as toor dal in India.
I am using some extra dal (toor dal/yellow split pigeon peas) for this sambar recipe as this is needed to add thickness to the sambar which is made without vegetables or coconut.
You will need to add tamarind extract for this sambar recipe even if you don’t usually add, as we are not using tomatoes for this recipe. Tamarind extract will add the needed sourness for sambar.
If you have tamarind paste, just take half a lemon sized tamarind paste, dissolve this in half a cup of water(soak for about 5 to 10 minutes) and filter it to get tamarind extract.
You can use sambar powder or use individual spices as mentioned in this recipe.
See easy recipe for instant sambar powder here ( I have shown in it how to make instant sambar powder without dal and tamarind and also another method where you can prepare instant sambar powder with dal & tamarind)
More Notes: You can make most of the Indian curry dishes including sambar in many different ways and one thing you can do in two different ways is the addition of seasoning.
The ingredients for the seasoning in the recipe can be made in advance in the same pressure cooker and you can cook the sambar in the same cooker, which will make the dish more easy and a one pot dish. This is the way I am going to explain here in detail.
However, you can make fry the ingredients for the seasoning separately in a pan and pour on top of the sambar after you make the dish which will make it more yummy especially if you love the spicy red chilies in the seasoning.
You may also make the tadka (seasoning) by frying the ingredients for the seasoning separately and add to the sambar later.
So here is how you can make simple sambar recipe without vegetables.
Simple Sambar Recipe Without Vegetables
- 2 cups Toor dal (yellow split pigeon peas)
- 4 Water
- salt as required
- 1 tablespoon tamarind extract (or filtered tamarind paste of about half of a lemon dissolved in half cup of water)
- 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder
- 3 tablespoons coriander powder
- asafoetida a pinch
- 1/4 fenugreek powder teaspoon
- 2 teaspoons sambar powder (optional)
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 5 dry red chilies
- 1 string curry leaves
- 2 tablespoons Oil
- 2 tablespoons shallots or pearl onions peeled and chopped finely (optional)
- In a pressure cooker (without lid), heat the oil and add mustard seeds.
- When the mustard seeds splutter, add the sliced shallots or small onions (if using) and lightly fry until it starts to brown. Also add the dry red chilies and curry leaves and fry for few seconds.
- Now add the dal and saute for few seconds.
- Add the salt and spice powders and sambar powder (if using) and saute for 1 minute.
- Add the water and tamarind extract and mix everything well.
- Close the lid of the pressure cooker with the safety valve inside. Always make sure you follow the directions in the manual of the pressure cooker.
- Cook the contents in medium heat for about 10 minutes after the steam starts coming or until 3 whistles come.
- Once this is done, switch off the stove and wait for the pressure cooker to cool down.
- Once the pressure cooker is cool, you can open the cooker and see if the dal is cooked enough and soft and blended with the spices nicely.
- You can check the salt at this point and add more if needed.
- If you need more gravy for your sambar, you may add a little more of water and heat for another 2 minutes (without closing the cooker). Now the sambar without vegetables is ready to serve!
Hope you found this post on simple sambar recipe without vegetables helpful to make easy and quick sambar for breakfast, lunch or dinner!