Green Tomato Stew

If you are a late-blooming gardener like I am, you likely have more green tomatoes on your hand right now than you can fry up. So what’s a cook to do?

Desi loves Green Tomato Masial and I make this Tamil treat for him a few times over each summer. But this time I have another ace up my sleeve: an easy but tasty Green Tomato Stew that pairs the tart and unripe tomatoes with the mellow sweetness of coconut milk.

The inspiration for this stew came from a wonderful Vimla Patil recipe that I posted long ago on this blog: a Creamy Tomato Curry that gets ready in under five minutes and is a busy– and exacting– cook’s dream. This is my go-to curry for many busy weeknights and it never fails to win praise from anyone who eats it, including Desi. Green Tomato Curry

My Green Tomato Stew tastes very different but, like the Creamy Tomato Curry, it requires just a handful of ingredients and is ready in minutes. All the time you need is for the tomatoes to break down and turn pulpy in the saucepan, and that takes hardly any time at all.

This stew tastes amazingly like Dahi Kadhi, a popular yogurt-based dish from western India. There’s something about the chemistry of the green tomatoes and the coconut milk that creates a rather yogurt-like flavor. If you are an Indian vegan longing for this old favorite, trust me, you will love this recipe.

Pair this stew with some white or brown rice and some Broccoli Paruppu Usili for a perfectly healthy meal on a busy weeknight. Then sit back and enjoy the compliments that will come rolling in.

Green Tomato Stew
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Stew
Cuisine: Indian
Serves: 8
  • 2 very large green tomatoes ( I have these fantastic heirloom tomatoes in my backyard right now that have great flavor.)
  • 1½ cups coconut milk
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 15 curry leaves
  • 2 green chillies like Serrano, slit down the middle
  • 1 heaping tsp coriander powder
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp vegetable oil
  1. Heat the oil in a saucepan. Add the cumin and mustard seeds and, when they sputter, add the curry leaves and green chillies.
  2. Saute for a few seconds and then add the green tomatoes
  3. Add the coriander powder, turmeric, and sugar and stir together. Add a few tablespoons of water and when the water boils, put a lid on the saucepan and cook over medium-high heat about five minutes or until the tomatoes are soft and pulpy.
  4. Add half the coconut milk and bring to a boil. Add salt to taste and let the tomatoes cook another minute or two.
  5. Add the remaining coconut milk, stir, and heat until the coconut milk is warmed through but not boiling.
  6. Turn off heat and serve.

(C) All recipes and photographs copyright of Holy Cow! Vegan Recipes.

Get new recipes by email. Sign up below.


  1. says

    I wish my tomato plants would sprout atleast one small tomato :(
    I have a black thumb. I managed to grow only 2 green chilies last summer, weak and puny ones at that.

    I love the green tomato curry. Manisha (IFR) has a dry version using peanut powder, I have often made that, now I have your curry to depend on too :)

  2. says

    I so want to have a go at cooking with green tomatoes, sadly I am not growing any this year and its hard to find them at supermarkets here or even at the farmers market, maybe next year.

  3. says

    This looks amazing! Are green ‘maters an Indian thing as much as they are a southern thing in usa? Does the coconut milk tone some of the acid down? And lastly, what’s the best starch to go with this, naan, rice or corn bread?

  4. says

    Ammasdtr, yes, green tomatoes are a beloved food in parts of India, and Tamilians make some great dishes with it, like the masial.
    Rice would be the best pairing with this dish.

    Foodfeud, duds, indeed. :) I wait for summer each year just so I can harvest the green tomatoes — I can never find them in a market.

  5. ValeriaVine says

    I found your recipe looking for ways to use my green tomatoes. Just made it and ate it…..You are right! super quick, easy and delicious and it does have a yoghurt like tartness to it. Can’t wait to make this for my friends! Thank you for this delicious and easy vegan meal.

Leave a comment!