Molagai Podi/Spiced Mixed Lentil South Indian Chutney Powder

Molagai Podi/Spicy Lentil Chutney Powder is a spicy south Indian mixed lentil-chilli chutney powder, normally served with oil (or melted ghee) as a condiment or accompaniment with various Indian dishes like dosas (savory rice-lentil crepes), idlis  (steamed rice-lentil cakes) etc.

“Molaga” or “molagai” is chillies in Tamil (a south Indian language) and “podi” is powder. Dry red chillies are roasted with a lentil mixture (split black gram and split chick peas or Bengal gram dal) along with sesame seeds (optional), curry leaves (also optional, but gives an amazing healthy twist to the chutney powder!), mustard seeds and hing/asafetida and then powdered either fine or coarse.

Every household in south India has this condiment powder in their pantry all the time; either homemade or store bought. As far as I can remember, my mother (she makes the best molaga podi to date!) used to always make sure there is a bottle of chutney powder in our pantry all the time and the tradition goes on!

Every morning, our breakfast of idlis, dosas, uttupams etc. was always served with sambhar or coconut chutney and sometimes both; but my plate would always have molaga podi along with it! I love it so much that every time I needed a spicy mid morning or a front-of-the-TV snack, you would find me eating molaga podi (mixed with coconut oil, vegetable oil or sometimes melted ghee!!) with slices of soft bread!

To satisfy my molaga podi obsession without the added calories or fat from excess oil, I would just mix the chutney powder with coconut chutney and enjoy! You should try it too!!

So what are you waiting for?  Whip up this easy Indian spicy chutney powder (also called β€œgunpowder” by some because of its fiery taste!) and make your breakfast more exciting and tasty!

Try Molaga Podi with:

Instant Rava Idli

Instant Multigrain Ragi Dosa

Instant Ragi Rava Dosa

Molaga Podi/South Indian Chutney Powder
A spicy mixed lentils powder, normally enjoyed with a bit of oil (preferably sesame or coconut oil) as a condiment with dosas (Indian savory crepes), idlis (Indian soft steamed rice-lentil cakes) etc.
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Prep Time
20 min
Prep Time
20 min
887 calories
136 g
0 g
23 g
42 g
2 g
364 g
218 g
30 g
0 g
18 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
Amount Per Serving
Calories 887
Calories from Fat 196
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 23g
Saturated Fat 2g
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 8g
Monounsaturated Fat 10g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 218mg
Total Carbohydrates 136g
Dietary Fiber 38g
Sugars 30g
Protein 42g
Vitamin A
Vitamin C
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
  1. 1 cup split urad dal/Split black gram
  2. 1 cup chana dal/split Bengal gram or split chickpea
  3. 1 cup dry red chillies (more or less according to how spicy you want your chutney powder)
  4. Β½ teaspoon hing/asafetida
  5. Few Curry leaves (optional)
  6. 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  7. 2 teaspoons cooking oil (coconut or sesame oil)
  8. Salt to taste
  1. In a large kadai or deep saucepan, heat oil and add mustards seeds.
  2. Once the seeds start to crackle and splutter, add curry leaves and fry for a few seconds.
  3. Lower the heat to medium low and stir in the dals (urad and chana) along with dry red chillies and roast or fry on medium low heat until the mixture is lightly fried and light brown in color. Do not fry on high heat; keep stirring continuously on medium low heat and make sure the mixture does not burn; especially the red chillies. Over roasting will lend a bitter taste to the chutney powder.
  4. Just before removing from heat, stir in hing/asafetida powder, mix well and let cool. The heat of the mixture will roast the hing.
  5. Powder the roasted mixture in a blender jar or coffee grinder. You can blend it fine or leave it a bit coarse (the way I like it!). I love the slight crunch of roasted lentils in every bite!
  6. Stir in salt to taste, mix well and store in airtight bottles until ready to use.
  7. To serve with dosas, idlis, uttapams etc., spoon chutney powder on your serving plate, pour required amount of oil (3 teaspoons powder with 1 to 2 teaspoons or more of oil) in the center and mix well.
  8. Enjoy spicy, crunchy south Indian style chutney powder any time.
  1. All the ingredients like lentils and red chillies can be roasted separately too and made into a powder.
  2. Adjust the amount of dry red chilllies according to your spice level. If you want a lovely red color, use some kashmiri red chillies which impart only color and not heat.
  3. For another flavor dimension, stir in ΒΌ cup of white sesame seeds while roasting.
  4. This chutney powder/gunpowder makes amazing masala idlis!! On a tawa or flat griddle, heat a few spoons of oil, splutter mustard seeds and curry leaves along with a pinch of hing. Toss in chopped idlis along with chutney powder and mix well. Stir fry until hot and slightly roasted. Serve immediately as an evening snack or as appetizers or starters.
  5. My favorite way of enjoying chutney powder any time is with soft slices of my favorite bread!! Just dunk the bread with the lentil powder mixture in oil and enjoy!!!
  6. It stays fresh for a couple of months on the shelf. For longer storage, you can freeze it.
Curry and Vanilla
I am sharing this with #FoodFriday#FiestaFriday cohosted by CH @ Cooking From My Heart and  Nimmi @ Adorable Life| #WasteNotWednesday | #RecipeoftheWeek


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  1. nimmiafzal says:

    This podi is a must try recipe.. loved it.. I hope you are enjoying the party.. please do provide a link to the host and co-hosts in order to get featured 😊 Happy Fiesta Friday 😊!!

    • curryandvanilla says:

      Thanks Freda πŸ™‚ I love it too with idlis and sometimes bread!! My pantry never runs out of this spicy chutney powder!

  2. Aditi Dave says:

    Can we add black pepper n methi Dana?
    Which dry chilli is good to add n do we have add powedred Kashmir lal mirch?

    • Vanitha says:

      You can add black pepper, but do not add too much; it will overpower the flavor of red chillies. Normal dry red chillies available which has color and spice can be added. In Karnataka, we get a variety called Byadgi which imparts more color than spice or heat.

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