Saravana Bhavan Hotel Sambar Recipe - Madras Idli Sambar in Tamil Restaurant style

Saravana Bhavan Hotel Sambar Recipe - Madras Idli Sambar in Tamil Restaurant style:

Saravana Bhavan Sambar Recipe - A recipe which helps you to make a delicious idli sambar which tastes close to Tamil Nadu popular Sarvana Bhavan hotel.

Will anybody tell no to Saravana Bhavan Sambar? Definitely no, right? Saravana Bhavan hotel was really far from my home before they opened Saravana Bhavan in Kandanchavadi, Chennai. My husband likes Saravana Bhavan hotel Sambar Idli very much. I feel it is worth spending our money there. I have tried Saravana Bhavan Sambar recipe twice and got it successful both of the times. So, it is time to share the recipe with you all with photos. Come, let us see the recipe of tasty and yummy Saravana Bhavan Sambar. Enjoy it with Idli, pongal and Dosa. It is also called Madras Sambar recipe.

Saravana Bhavan Sambar Recipe - Idli Sambar in Tamil Restaurant style - Madras Sambar:

Saravana Bhavan Sambar

Saravana Bhavan Sambar Recipe - Madras Idli Sambar in Tamil Restaurant style:

Saravana Bhavan Sambar Recipe

Prep Time: 15 mins    |  Cook time: 30 Mins    |  Serves: 4
Recipe Category : Side dish | Recipe Cuisine : Tamil
Saravana Bhavan Idli Sambar Recipe


  • Moong Dal - 50g
  • Small onion shallots - 15 nos
  • Tomato - 1
  • Red Chillies - 2 long chillies. Do not break.
  • Tamarind - Very Small size lemon
  • Sambar powder - 1 tbsp
  • Salt - As required
  • Turmeric Powder - 1/2 tsp
  • Jaggery powder - 1/4 tsp(optional)
  • Vegetables of your choice like Brinjal, Drumstick - optional(I did not add)
  • Coriander Leaves - To garnish
To Temper:
  • Oil - 2 tbsp
  • Mustard seeds - 1 tsp
  • Fenugreek seeds - 1 tsp
  • Curry Leaves - Few
  • Hing - A pinch
To Roast and Grind:
  • Oil - 1 tsp
  • Coriander seeds - 2 tbsp
  • Fenugreek seeds - 1 tsp
  • Fried Gram(Pottukadalai in Tamil) - 2 tbsp
  • Green Chilli - 1 no
  • Red Chillies - 1
  • Sambar Powder - 2 tsp
  • Coconut grated - 3 tbsp
  • Hing - A pinch
  • Tomato - 1 chopped rougly(not to be roasted)


1. Soak the tamarind in required water for 5 minutes. You can also heat the tamarind with water for few seconds to speed up the process. Extract the tamarind juice and keep aside.

2. Pressure cook the Moong dal and a pinch of turmeric powder with sufficient water.

3. Heat 1 tsp oil in a pan and add all the items under 'To Roast and grind' except sambar powder and tomato. Roast them till nice aroma comes. Add sambar powder and roast for another minute. 
Switch off the stove. Allow them to cool down.

4. Meanwhile, peel off the small onion shallots and keep it aside.

5. Grind the roasted items with a tomato in a mixer grinder with little water. Make a fine paste.

6. Heat 2 tbsp oil in the same pan and add the mustard seeds. Once they start spluttering, add dry red chillies, fenugreek seeds, curry leaves and hing and fry for a minute.

7. Add small onions and fry till they start turning to golden color. Add chopped tomato and fry for another 2minutes.

8. Add tamarind extract now and little water. Boil for 2 minutes.

9. Add sambar powder, turmeric powder, salt and the cooked and mashed mong dal.

10. Add the ground paste to the sambar and jaggery powder(optional ingredient added to get mild sweetness as in hotels). Add water now and then to avoid thickening of sambar.

11. Allow it cook at least for 15 minutes. The paste should fully blend with the Sambar. This is a very important step. Do not be in a hurry and wait till nice aroma comes and the sambar tastes like Saravana Bhavan Sambar :-) Switch it off once it is ready.

12. Garnish with coriander leaves.


1. Sambar will get further thicken once you switch off the stove. So, make sure to add required water while cooking.

2. Ofcourse, the sambar recipe is not provided by Saravana Bhavan:-) It is my try exploring various resources on internet.

You might like:

Homemade Sambar powder recipe
Udupi Tiffin Sambar
10 minute Idli Sambar Recipe
Daily Idli Sambar Recipe

Try the Saravana Bhavan Sambar recipe and comment on how it comes. Thank you!!
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  1. Semma soooper sambar. Loved ur blog .thanks

  2. Thanks for the recipe!!! When am i suppose to add jaggery? I'm not able to find that step.

    1. Hello Surekha.. Thank you for informing me. I have updated the post. You have to add jaggery when you add the ground mixture. Thanks again :)

    2. Thanks Shunmuga sundari :):)

  3. Great recipe. My son loves SB sambhar, and keeps telling me to learn how to make it. Finally he enjoyed the sambhar I made today using your recipe. Thanks!!

    1. Thank you so much for trying and taking time to post your feedback :) Really happy to know that ur son enjoyed the sambar :)

  4. If one wishes to add vegetables, when should they be added ?