Recipe: Ayurvedic Kitchari w/ coriander coconut chutney

This traditional cleansing dish from Ayurveda is called Kitchari and pronounced “kich-uh-ree”. Nowadays, we tend to associate cleansing with fasting, juicing or eating only raw foods. However, according to the ancient tradition, this mung bean-rice-mixture combined with heaps of spices has specific effects that are beneficial for the mind-body system.

“Because we cannot scrub our inner body,
we need to learn a few skills to help cleanse our tissues, organs, and mind.
This is the art of Ayurveda.”
(Sebastian Pole)

 Here are some benefits from this plant-based Ayurvedic dish:

  • Kitchari balances every mind-body type. As the soaked and well cooked beans are easy to digest, it is even recommended for Vata body types.
  • Kitchari contains a complete source of protein by combining grains (rice) with legumes (mung beans).
  • Kitachri is an easy-to-digest food, so it offers the digestive system some rest. Especially white rice digests very easily.
  • The used spices improve your overall digestion (digestive fire = agni).
  • The astringency from the mung dal supports detoxification as it loosens built up toxins.

Ready for this healing, warming, yet delicious meal? – Let’s get into it!

Ingredients (2 servings)


  • 1/2 cup mung beans (ideally split)
  • 1/2 cup basmati rice (white or brown rice)
  • 5-6 cups water
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 inch ginger (fresh)
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • ¼ tsp asafetida
  • ¼ tsp ajwain
  • 1 pinch  sea salt
  • 1 pinch black pepper

Coriander-coconut chutney

  • 2 bunches coriander
  • ½ cup lemon juice
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 cup dried coconut flakes
  • 1 inch fresh ginger
  • 1 pinch Himalayan pink salt


  1. For the kitchari, soak the mung beans for a couple of hours before cooking.
  2. Drain and rinse mung beans, bring them with 4 cups of water to a boil. Tip: scoop off any foam on the top.
  3. Meanwhile, slice the fresh ginger thinly, prepare the mustard seeds.
  4. Mix the other spices with a splash of water together into a paste.
  5. Heat the coconut oil up in a pan, fry the mustard seeds in it until they start to pop. Then, add the paste and fry for a few more seconds.
  6. Bring spices and mung beans together.
  7. As soon as the mung beans begin to soften (30-45 min.) add the rice with 1-2 more cups of water (white rice = 1 cup, brown rice = 2 cups). Bring everything to a boil, immediately lower the heat and let the dish simmer on low heat until rice is soft (20-30 min.).
  8. For the chutney, wash the coriander well and remove the stems.
  9. Add coriander together with the lemon juice and water to a blender and blend until well combined. Add the remaining ingredients and blend into a paste. (You can store the chutney in an airtight glass container for up to one week.)
  10. Serve Kitchari with chutney on top!


Extra tips for your Dosha

If you’re familiar with your Ayurvedic mind-body type, adjust this basic recipe according to your needs:

  • Vata: Slightly increase amount of oil. Slightly increase the ratio of rice to mung beans. You can even use quinoa (instead of rice) for more protein.
  • Pitta: Skip mustard seeds, fresh ginger, and reduce amount of pepper. Coriander is well – use chutney, but reduce amount of ginger in it.
  • Kapha: Skip oil (and therefore the frying instructions), and add a pinch of cayenne pepper. Reduce ratio of basmati rice to mung beans (little bit more beans than rice).

Support your digestion, cleanse your body, and simply enjoy!

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