Onion Raita is the perfect condiment to cool down spicy Indian meals. This perfectly creamy and cooling Raita recipe makes a great dip or side dish. We love to serve it with Biryani, Kebabs, and Meat Curries but there are many other ways to use this phenomenal Raita.
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What is Raita?
Raita is a Yogurt based sauce staple in South Asia. Every household had their own recipe for Raita. Raita is basically a mixture of seasoned creamy yogurt, seasonal fruit or vegetables, and herbs like cilantro and mint. It is so easy to whip up and it is one of the finest condiments you would ever encounter! My Onion Raita has all you need in that staple Indian Raita to go with any meal. I feel that there is no need to add too many spices to this beautiful condiment with all the fresh ingredients. Feel free to play around with the ingredients according to your preferences!
Difference Between Indian Raita and Greek Tzatziki Sauce
A friend and I were having a good conversion about Raita over a Biryani dinner at my place. She compared the Raita to Greek Tzatziki sauce and our conversation went deep! No, folks, Raita isn’t the same as Tzatziki sauce. They both are yogurt based sauces and they might have some similar ingredients but there is a huge taste and texture difference. Raita is made with creamy full fat yogurt with the right amount of water content and Tzatziki is made with thickened Greek yogurt with very minimal water consistency. I bet a true Greek would agree with my statement ;)!
What’s In My Onion Raita Recipe
There are many recipes for Raita out there and I understand how overwhelming it can be to pick one good recipe that isn’t too complicated and tastes great as well. My Onion Raita recipe calls for just a few fresh ingredients and chances are you have them all sitting in your refrigerator right now.
- Plain Yogurt– I highly recommend using whole milk yogurt from an Indian store. The rich and creamy texture of Indian yogurt with the right amount of water consistency gives the Raita its authentic taste. Otherwise, plain yogurt is fine as well. No Greek yogurt for Raita, please!
- Red Onion– I highly recommend using Red Onions or Shallots for raita. The crunch and flavors of these two types of onions are close to what I grew up eating in India. The water consistency in red onions and shallots create that unique flavor of Raita.
- Cilantro– Freshly chopped cilantro is a crucial part of any Raita recipe. The mild flavor of fresh cilantro gives raita it’s authentic Indian taste. You may use stems or only leaves. I like to use leaves and stems.
- Mint– Just the right amount of freshly chopped mint leaves makes the Raita refreshing. I don’t recommend adding stems.
- Green Chili– I like to use Thai green chili with seeds for my Raita. If you can’t handle the heat then you can use deseeded Serrano or Jalapenos. If you don’t have Green chili or prefer not to add them at all then go for some freshly ground Black Pepper.
- Pink Salt– I like to use Pink Salt for all the Indian condiments like Raita and Chutney. Pink salt gives these condiments a pungent salty taste like using Indian Kala Namak(Black Himalayan Salt). It’s a great substitute to any Chaat Masala I think.
How to Make Raita?
Making Raita is so easy. Once you get the hang of it, you can start experimenting with your favorite ingredients.
Whisk yogurt until smooth then combine thinly sliced Red onion, Cilantro, Mint, Green Chili and Pink Salt.
Storing Onion Raita
This Onion Raita stays well in the refrigerator. Making Raita is super easy and it is best prepared fresh before serving along a meal.
- To refrigerate– Store Raita in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days
How to Serve Raita?
One of my favorite ways to serve Raita is as a cooling sauce next to Biryani and Mutton Curry. I also like to use my Raita as a sauce on Kebab-Pita Sandwiches.
Indian Recipes to Serve Onion Raita with
Kitchen Tools You’ll Need:
Onion Raita-Onion Raita for Biryani
- ½ cup thinly sliced Red Onion
- 1 cup Whole Milk plain Yogurt , Preferably Indian yogurt
- 1 Tablespoon chopped fresh Mint leaves , no stems
- 2 to 3 Tablespoons chopped fresh Cilantro
- 1 small chopped Green Chili , deseeded Serrano or Jalapeno for milder taste
- ½ teaspoon Pink Salt or Kosher Salt , or to taste
- Whisk yogurt in a medium prep bowl until smooth.
- Add all the ingredients to the yogurt and mix until well combined.
- Serve it immediately with Biryani, Curry-Naan, Pulao(Pilaf), Kebabs, Kofta, Sandwiches, and Burgers.
- You may add 1/2 teaspoon of roasted and coarsely grounded Cumin Seeds to enhance the flavor.
- Toast the Cumin Seeds in a skillet on low heat for about 2 to 3 minutes or until it starts to change color. Coarsely grind the seeds in a Mortar & Pestle or a Spice grinder.
- If you are not fond of Green Chilies, you may use freshly ground Black Pepper.
|Total Fat 6.1g||8%|
|Saturated Fat 3.5g||18%|
|Total Carbohydrate 11.5g||4%|
|Dietary Fiber 0.8g||3%|
|Total Sugars 8.7g|
|Vitamin D 0mcg||0%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calorie a day is used for general nutrition advice.|
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Mother, Wife, Indian-American born and raised in the small town of India. Former IT employee now a food blogger. A self-taught food photographer.
I choose to cook with Whole Foods and Clean Ingredients as my Mother did. I am a firm believer in cooking meals with lots of vegetables, little meat, and generous spices.