Stuffed bitter gourd

One of my readers asked me for this recipe. I was a bit hesitant to try this because I am not a big fan of bitter gourd. But since it is good for health, I use it once in a while. Whenever I use it, I chop it finely and fry it well to remove bitterness. But for this, I had to use the whole bitter gourd.

I tried this last week and as I said it was bit difficult to remove bitterness. But I know many people who like the bitterness of bitter gourd. So this recipe is for these bitter gourd lovers. The stuffing is very tasty and I liked this dish.

I don’t have good pictures of this. Somehow when I started taking pictures, my hand was shaking. I prepared it again day before yesterday just to take pictures, but still I am not very happy with it.

1 bitter gourd
¼ cup chopped onion
¼ cup chopped tomato
½ tea spn cumin seeds
3-4 curry leaves
A pinch turmeric
½ tea spn chili powder
3-4 strands coriander leaves
½ tea spn grated ginger
½ tea spn finely chopped garlic

Put a cut in bitter gourd and scoop out all seeds. Apply generous amount of salt to both inside outside and leave it for around 2-3hrs.

Heat oil and add cumin seeds. Add curry leaves, onion, ginger, garlic and tomato, fry for around 5mins. Don’t let tomato to become paste. Add chili powder, salt, coriander leaves and turmeric powder. Mix well and remove from heat.
Squeeze bitter gourd as much as possible to remove the white colored water out of it. Wash it well.
Stuff the onion-tomato mixture in it. Heat oil in a pan and fry this on a medium flame till the outer skin becomes almost black.

While serving, make 2-3 pieces of it and serve.

Serves : 2
Preparation time : 35mins

16 thoughts on “Stuffed bitter gourd”

  1. Shilpa…The pictures are not bad at all. I have two bittergourds sitting in my fridge since a week. I was thinking of various authentic dishes, with coconut but i am out on a vacation for a week, so maybe when i come back.

  2. Shilpa,

    Some people make stuffed karela using patrodo’s filling.. the “peet”. Smear the peet on the halved karela and stem it.. you can alter in anyway you like..


  3. I am not much of a bitter gourd fan myself Shilpa but its interesting to read recipes with it. May be in the future I might love bitter gourd. Your bitter gourd looks a bit like stuffed grilled whole fish. I like your Moong dal Kosambir too. I make it that way too.

  4. Hi Shilpa, I love karaten -bitter gourd, when served in very small WW portions ! My mammama used to make karaten walwal -with plenty of jaggery. I could eat it at one meal, but could not stomach any leftovers at later meals.
    At a potluck, a friend, who is of Parsi & Mangalore Catholic background – had made kheema stuffed bitter gourd, then coated with mashed potato and deep fried. It looked like a long potato kebab. Ofcourse a couple of bites into the’fake’ kebab and I had eaten the kheema stuffing and the potato shell. That was the delish part ofcourse !

  5. I love bittergourd and that too stuffed.never tried with this filling.I make a filling of onion,tamarind pulp,cumene-coriander powder and red chilli powder.thanks for sharing.

  6. Hi friends,
    Dont be so scared of karela!If you gently scrape a little off the karela till you feel it smooth it will reduce the bitterness infact i dont find it bitter. also make sure you brown it evenly on all sides on slow fire.dont be in a hurry when you cook karela.
    you dont throw away the scraped skin! cube two small potatoes & fry the karela skin along with it on medium fire.add red chillie powder & salt to taste. make sure the potatoes are cooked. It is so good that even my kids eat it. It is not bitter.add the chillie powder only 5minutes before you are going to remove from fire.please give me your feedback.

  7. Hi.. most of the bitterness is lost if we lightly scrape the outer skin…even if a bit of skin remains,the bitterness is lost if it can be fried well.

  8. hi
    I love stuffed karela! of courses there’s a reason for that : I only eat those stuffed with beef (or with exception the one cooked with tomatoe sauce!) You should try the recipe with stuffed ground beef it is beter in taste (I made my friends try it without them knowing what a bitter groud was! they loved the taste!)

  9. Hey Shilpa, Nice recipes!! You can try applying turmeric in the bitter guard instead of salt. My mother would apply turmeric. I’ve never tried applying salt so I dont know how it tastes but turmeric reduces the bitterness. You can try that and let me know if it makes any difference.

  10. Hi,

    I always scrape the skin off a bit before i do stuffed karela or even karela chips…….that way……some bitterness is gone.
    Also, my mother used to make these at home but we used small karelas which she then used to stuff with some masala powder…..gotta get the recipe tho!
    Thanks for this tho! Maa ki yaad aagayi!


  11. I love stuffed karela and will surely try out this recipe.But usually i pre cook karela before frying it ,because it needs less oil.I clean the karelas like you do and also scrape out a bit and then immerse the karelas in hot water for a few mins,strain the water out then stuff the masala and shallow fry in oil in a non-stick pan.The cooking process of the karela takes less time since the stuffing is already cooked.Try it out!!!

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