Homemade Tamarind Paste Recipe

Tamarind paste has a sweet and sour flavor that can be added to many dishes such as jams, soups, sauces, marinades, curries, and stir-fries. Although it is super easy to make, opening the pods and stripping the flesh from the seeds takes a while, but it’s totally worth it. Especially if you make a bigger batch and freeze in ice cube trays or mini cupcake molds for later use.
Prep Time2 hrs
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time2 hrs 30 mins
Course: Dressings & Sauces
Servings: 18 1-serving cubes
Calories: 131kcal


  • 2 pounds tamarind pods (check your Asian store to find some)
  • water
  • 1/4 cup raw honey, maple syrup, or agave syrup
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar or any other type of vinegar


  • Remove the shells from the tamarind pods by pressing and peeling them. Once you start peeling them, you’ll notice that there are 4-5 roots running down the sides. Best is to remove these as well while peeling the pods. This takes forever, but the result will be worth it.
  • Add the peeled pods to a saucepan and just barely cover them with water.
  • Bring to a boil over high heat. Boil for a few minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and let sit for 10 minutes. Put the lid on the pot.
  • They should be all soft and mushy now.
  • Remove the seeds and any root strings that still may be there. Place a few pods add a time in a bowl and press out the seeds with a spoon.
  • Place all the paste back into the saucepan and add apple cider vinegar and your sweetener.
  • Bring back to a boil over medium-high heat. Once boiling reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes. The mixture should thicken and get a rough paste-like consistency.
  • Place the paste in a colander or fine mesh sieve and squeeze through the holes to remove the last tougher parts and make a smooth tamarind paste.
  • Add to an ice cube tray or mini muffin tin. Line with saran wrap (something I forgot, end results: tamarind paste stuck in ice cube tray ) and freeze overnight. Take out the frozen tamarind cubes and store in a Ziploc bag or plastic container with lid in your freezer.


Depending on where the pods were bought or how they were packaged the roots on the side will be tougher to remove. Use a paring knife if needed and it’s no problem to leave a few on.


Calories: 131kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 0.3g | Saturated Fat: 0.1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.03g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Sodium: 15mg | Potassium: 328mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 31g

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