Karela Fry | Bitter Gourd Fry

A simple and quick recipe to cook karela (bitter gourd). Karela fry can be relished with phuklas, parathas or daal-chawal. To prepare it you’ll need bitter gourd, onions, raw mango and a few spices. 

Tip: To reduce the bitterness from the bitter gourd we soak it in salt. Even after rinsing off thoroughly some salt is left in it, so add salt accordingly while cooking.

Also Try: Stuffed Bitter Gourd

Course: Main Course

Cuisine: North Indian

Time: Preparation – 5 mins, Soaking – 2 hours, Cooking – 25 mins, Total – 2.5 hours.

Servings: 2


  1. Karela (Bitter Gourd) – 2 large
  2. Onions – 2 medium (sliced)
  3. Raw Mango – 1/2 cup (grated)
  4. Green Chili – 2-3 (finely chopped)
  5. Fennel Seed Powder – 2 tsp
  6. Turmeric Powder – 1/2 tsp
  7. Red Chilli Powder – 1/2 tsp
  8. Coriander Powder – 1 tsp
  9. Garam Masala Powder – 1/2 tsp
  10. Mustard Oil (or any other oil) – 4 tbsp
  11. Salt to taste.

How to make Karela Fry:

  1. Wash karela and pat dry. Chop off the tails and cut length-wise. Remove the seeds and chop
  2. Add 1/2 tsp salt and toss the chopped karela, keep aside for 2 hours. This step will help in reducing the bitterness from the karela
  3. After 2 hours rinse thoroughly and keep aside
  4. Heat mustard oil in a kadai or a pan, let it smoke for a min then turn the flame to low and add a pinch of salt, it helps in removing the mustard oil aroma
  5. Add chopped onions and green chillies. Saute until translucent
  6. Add chopped karela and mix. Cook covered on a low-medium flame for about 10 mins, stir occasionally
  7. Add fennel seed powder, coriander powder, red chili powder, turmeric powder and salt. Mix and cook covered on a low flame until karela is soft
  8. Add grated raw mango and mix. Cook covered for another 4-5 mins
  9. Add garam masala powder and mix. Your Karela Fry is ready!!!


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