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Onion tomato thokku
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Onion tomato gravy recipe

Simple South Indian style Onion tomato gravy, pairs well with chapati, idli and dosa
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Breakfast, Breakfast | Dinner, picnic recipes
Cuisine: Indian, South Indian
Keyword: picnic recipes, Side dish for Idli dosa, side dish for roti, travel recipes
Servings: 3
Author: Jeyashri suresh


  • 3 onions
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tbsp urad dal
  • Few curry leaves
  • 2 tsp sesame oil
  • 3 tsp sambar powder
  • ½ tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp jaggery powder
  • Salt as needed


  • Chop the onions into thin slices and chop the tomatoes into small cubes.
  • In a pan add 1 tbsp of cooking oil and add the mustard seeds, urad dal, asafoetida and curry leaves.
  • Once the dal turns golden brown, add the sliced onions.
  • Saute for a minute and add the tomatoes.
  • Add the sambar powder, turmeric powder and salt.
  • Mix well.
  • Add 1 cup of water and mix well.
  • Cover this and cook for 10-12 minutes in medium flame.
  • Stir in between.
  • The tomatoes and onions would have cooked well now.
  • If you want a thick consistency, cook for 2 more minutes.
  • If you want to serve as a gravy, add little more water and adjust the consistency.
  • Add the jaggery powder at this stage. This balances the spiciness of the onion tomato thokku.
  • This is optional, if you don’t want to add, you can skip this. It will no give any sweet taste to the gravy.
  • Cook for a minute and switch off the flame.
  • Add 2 tsp sesame oil to this.
  • Onion tomato gravy is ready to serve.
  • You can serve this with chapati, poori, idli and dosa too.
  • This tastes best with curd rice as well.



  1.  If you are packing this for travel, cook till the water gets fully absorbed and make it like a thokku. So this will be a non-spill gravy and easy to carry for travel.
  2.  Sambar powder can be replaced with red chili powder and coriander powder.
  3. You can add 1/4 tsp of freshly ground black pepper. 
  4.  You can add ½ ts of garam masala towards the end if you want.
  5.  Onion tomato thokku stays at room temperature for a day and stays in the refrigerator for a week.