Mango Pickle

Mango Pickle Recipe (4)

Condiments like mango pickle or chutney play an important role in Indian cuisine, at least in Britain. It is ill-advised to spend time slaving over the stove in pursuit of a delicious curry only to forget one of the aforementioned accompaniments – the only possible outcome is disappointment. Unfortunately, good quality pickle and chutney is often rather expensive and you’re far more likely to end up spending your hard-earned money on a jar of overly sweet mango “jam” than you are an intricate and well-balanced chutney. The situation is similarly dire in the case of pickle, which can be hard to find at the best of times. Instead, it is better to find a recipe – such as the one below – and produce your own condiments. It takes a little time, patience and commitment, but the exercise is worth it in every respect.

I am of the opinion that the key to a fantastic pickle or chutney is the use of whole spices. Of course, ground turmeric and fennel provide a wonderful base of flavour, but whole mustard and kalonji seeds provide much needed bursts of intense flavour that really serve to elevate a pickle or chutney above its competitors. Remember, these small additions to a meal aren’t intended to be slathered across every mouthful, they should be powerful and pungent – special not constant.

Mango Pickle Recipe (2)

Above all, time is the most important ingredient in a mango pickle. The mango needs time to dry and the spices time to mature, develop and mellow. Rush this recipe and you’ll simply be left with a soggy pile of putrid fruit, not fit to grace the most mass produced of jarred curries. However, get it right and that curry night you have once a week will never be the same again. Or at least until you realise you’ve devoured the first three jars of pickle and more is needed.

Mango Pickle

Makes 3 jars


  • 3 medium-large mangoes

  • 2 tbsp salt (heaped)

  • 1 tbsp turmeric

  • 1.5 tbsp fennel seeds

  • 1 tbsp mustard seeds, roughly bashed

  • 1 tbsp kalonji seeds

  • 1.5 tbsp chilli flakes

  • vegetable or mustard oil*, as required

*mustard oil is best used if you want a very pungent pickle.


  1. Wash and roughly chop your mangoes, keep the skin on unless it is particularly thick and tough. Coarsely grind the fennel seeds and chilli flakes. Place the mango in a large bowl and cover with the spices and salt – mix thoroughly.

  2. Cover the bowl with a thin muslin and leave the mangoes in the sun for 3-6 days – until dry. If finding enough sunlight proves tricky, try spreading the pickle on a baking sheet in a slightly warmed oven overnight.

  3. Once dry, transfer the mangoes and spices to three sterilised jars. Pour in the mustard or vegetable oil until it just covers the mangoes. Seal the jars and shake.

  4. Shake the sealed pickle every day until ready (3-4 days). Enjoy with a curry, or simply with chapati or paratha.

Mango Pickle Recipe (1) Mango Pickle Recipe (3)

Cost: The price of mangoes is hugely divergent depending on where you are and the time of year. At the moment my grocer is selling them at 3 for £1, which is almost unbelieveable. As such, this batch of pickle set me back a mere £2 and will last for months. However, it may be a little more expensive, depending on the price of mangoes where you are.

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35 comments on “Mango Pickle

  1. thesinglegourmetandtraveller
    February 3, 2014 at 5:05 pm

    Looks wonderful and you’re so right about the over-sweetness of most bought pickles and chutneys.

    • frugalfeeding
      February 4, 2014 at 4:59 pm

      Exactly. This is the best way to avoid it 😀

  2. ellamedler
    February 3, 2014 at 5:11 pm

    Never heard of drying the fruit before. I must try this. So far, I’ve made chutneys out of most anything available, and by far the most fragrant was a plum chutney I made out a Tesco punnet of plums (or six). Ok, I like deals. Sue me. I’ll keep an eye out for mangoes. Thank you for sharing. 🙂

    • frugalfeeding
      February 4, 2014 at 4:59 pm

      Interesting… I’ve only ever heard of drying the fruit :D. I love chutney. It’s lime pickle next though.

  3. cookinginsens
    February 3, 2014 at 5:27 pm

    Perfect to accompany a curry. Good.

    • frugalfeeding
      February 4, 2014 at 4:58 pm

      Thank you, Rosemary. Again, so happy for you.

  4. VogueVegetarian
    February 3, 2014 at 7:11 pm

    Sounds delish! Just to make sure, will this will last a couple months in the refrigerator without actually canning them?

    • frugalfeeding
      February 4, 2014 at 4:58 pm

      Thanks. Yes, definitely! Probably longer. It’s the oil and salt that preserves the fruit more than anything.

  5. Dr Dan
    February 3, 2014 at 11:49 pm

    Finally! I will be able to make this! Thanks for the recipe.

  6. Can't live without....
    February 4, 2014 at 3:26 am

    looks mouthwatering!!

  7. Liz @ Economies of Kale
    February 4, 2014 at 8:59 am

    I just moved into a place with a mango tree in the garden 🙂 This pickle looks delicious and I am definitely going to try it if I can salvage the mangoes from the possums 🙂

    • frugalfeeding
      February 4, 2014 at 4:57 pm

      Oh my – well, you have to make it… mango tree?! Jealous!

  8. cheri
    February 4, 2014 at 2:19 pm

    This looks fabulous, can’t wait to try my hand at this!

    • frugalfeeding
      February 4, 2014 at 4:57 pm

      Please do – it’s a really great pickle.

  9. trixpin
    February 4, 2014 at 4:28 pm

    It looks great, and I’m encouraged to see how easy and cheap it is to make. I rarely make Indian food so might slave away making a curry and then just buy a pickle to go with it. Now at least I can make a good pickle (even if the curry doesn’t go so well 😉 )

    • frugalfeeding
      February 4, 2014 at 4:56 pm

      Thank you – yes very simple and inexpensive. Indian food is definitely something to practice. Once you get the basics nailed down it becomes really very easy.

  10. lilyjt
    February 4, 2014 at 7:23 pm

    Looks delicious, will be trying this very soon!

    • frugalfeeding
      February 5, 2014 at 2:00 pm

      Make sure you let me know what you thought 🙂

  11. Eva Taylor
    February 4, 2014 at 7:46 pm

    I do love a good Indian pickle, they are so addictive! This one is quite beautiful with the bright turmeric colour and the speckles of the seeds.

  12. Lorien Silverleaf
    February 7, 2014 at 3:02 am

    Should the mangoes be green or ripe?

    • frugalfeeding
      February 10, 2014 at 10:43 pm

      The mangoes I used were firm, but not green. Somewhere in between, if you see what I mean.

  13. yummania
    February 13, 2014 at 11:51 pm

    love mango pickle.i always buy when i go to Belgium.we can`t find it here in Albania unfortunately.

    • frugalfeeding
      February 14, 2014 at 1:09 pm

      Do you get mangoes?

      • yummania
        February 14, 2014 at 2:51 pm

        yes actually, so i might try myself;)

      • yummania
        March 8, 2014 at 5:20 pm

        yes mango we have,but i don`t know how is this done.

  14. Pradeeta
    November 23, 2015 at 10:17 am

    Mouth watering! The achaar is what makes a simple meal robust! 😀 love the pictures!

  15. Billy
    July 17, 2017 at 5:52 pm

    This looks so delicious! I absolutely adore mangoes but have never tried a mango pickle before. What sort of dishes are they commonly served with? You mention curry but is that the main use? Thank you for sharing!

  16. Carol
    August 4, 2018 at 10:53 am

    Nice chutney recipe I am not sure I can get nigella seeds but will mix cumin and sesame half and half should be ok I think…I will give it a go 🙂

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