Fried Karele


Fried karele are by far one of my favorite dishes, but its’ not for everyone. They’re crunchy, bitter, and a definitely not kid friendly.

I HATED fried karele as a kid! It was the same reaction that American kids have to boiled Brussels sprouts. Then one fine day, poof, they’re one of my favorite dishes. The sharp flavor combined with the sweetness of the onion balance perfectly.

They’re insanely high in vitamin C, and are claimed to assist in blood purification. So much so that bitter melon is currently being used in scientific research to aid in the prevention and treatment numerous ailments. Now whether any of that is relevant for the purposes of you deciding to cook it, is questionable. I know people want to pretend like they eat like some sort of health fanatic, but lets be honest, no health fanatic is eating friend anything. So move on from that bit and eat them because they’re delicious.

They’re incredibly quick to make and go perfectly with roti, raita, and moong daal. I especially love pairing karele with yellow moong daal! Moong daal is a little basic on it’s own. Don’t get me wrong, I love it and think it has a lovely flavor, but the karele add such a zing to it. The crunch and the bitterness just elevate it to a different level.

Need more authentic Punjabi recipes? Try these:

Fried Karele

Course: Main CoursesCuisine: PunjabiDifficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking time




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  • 2 lbs karele (bitter melon), sliced into 1/2 inch pieces

  • 2 medium-sized onion, sliced in 1/2 inch strips

  • Salt, to taste

  • Enough oil to cover bottom 3 inches of pot


  • Heat oil in a non stick pot till lightly smoking.
  • Fry karele slices in batches till golden brown.
  • Shake off excess oil and put into bowl lined with paper towels.
  • Salt while hot.
  • Fry onion slices till golden brown.
  • Mix onion and bitter melon together and serve hot.

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Nutrition Facts

6 servings per container


  • Amount Per Serving% Daily Value *
  • Total Fat 9.1g 14%
    • Saturated Fat 1.2g 5%
  • Sodium 32mg 2%
  • Amount Per Serving% Daily Value *
  • Potassium 280mg 8%
  • Total Carbohydrate 8.6g 3%
    • Dietary Fiber 0.8g 0%
    • Sugars 1.6g
  • Protein 1.3g 2%
  • Calcium 4%
  • Iron 2%
  • Vitamin D 1%

* The % Daily Value tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

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