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Quick Peanut Chaat (Spicy Indian Peanuts)

This quick peanut chaat is one of those ridiculously quick and easy recipes (ready in just five minutes with only seven ingredients!), that is SO quick and easy that I wondered whether I should bother posting it or not.

Close up of peanuts, coriander, lemon slices and tomatoes with red chili peppers in the background

I took another spoonful of the tangy spicy fresh peanut salad full of Indian flavors and decided to post it anyway. All I can say is YUMMY.

Why you’ll love this dish:

  • It’s vegan!
  • It’s spicy (but you can dial the spice up or down).
  • It’s deliciously crunchy and tangy.
  • It literally takes minutes to make.
  • It’s the perfect snack any time and also great for entertaining.

I absolutely adore just about every type of chaat ( an Indian savory snack or street-side-style vendor food), but I particularly love the ones that lean more towards salad-like and less towards fried, and this peanut chaat is one of my favorites.

It’s my (reasonably successful) attempt at recreating one of my favorite snack-style starters from a restaurant on New Bel road in Bangalore, India, where I used to live.

Ingredients and substitutions

With just seven easy-to-find ingredients, the ingredients that are used are kind of essential. Any substitutions which can be made are noted beside the ingredient below:

  • Onion (preferably red onion)
  • Tomatoes
  • Red chili pepper (green can be substituted)
  • Cilantro (fresh coriander)
  • Ready salted peanuts (you can substitute with dry roasted peanuts or boiled peanuts)
  • Lemon juice
  • Chaat masala (ESSENTIAL! You can buy in any Indian or specialty grocers or order online)
Two bowls of peanuts tomatoes and onions on a grey background

I used packaged-salted peanuts in this recipe (the fried kind), which is not exactly authentic but is the way I first tried them (albeit with skins on).

Feel free to push for authenticity – and a lighter dish – by swapping the salted peanuts for boiled peanuts (but do then add salt to taste – I recommend black salt if possible) or dry-roasted peanuts.

If like me, you are ALL ABOUT the amazing cuisine that is Indian food, these other easy recipes might be right up your alley:

How to make it

two grey plates with peanut salad and red chili peppers in the background

Again, embarrassingly easy to make (I feel like I should just give you the list of the ingredients and let you guess how to make it).

Chop half a small red onion finely (white will also do, I just use red out of habit as when living in India red onions were more commonly used). Chop up the chili pepper, and coriander finely.

Seed and chop the tomatoes into pieces as small as you can. It’s important to not add the juicy seed part as it will make the nuts watery. I just slice off the sides and the bottoms of the tomatoes and use them.

two tomatoes, a red chili pepper, a lemon, a red onion, fresh coriander and peanuts

Make sure your tomatoes are ripe but firm as you’ll really notice their flavor in this dish. If you can’t get a hold of decent tomatoes or they are out of season, you can try 12 cherry tomatoes.

Do be careful with the amount of chili pepper you use – chili peppers vary greatly in heat even among a handful from the same plant, so add less at first, and then more later if needed.

Juice the lemon and add 1.5 tbsp to the chopped vegetables and peanuts. I usually just make this with ready salted peanuts but dry roasted and regular boiled peanuts will do as well.

A glass bowl with peanuts, cilantro, red onion and tomatoes

Just make sure they don’t have the skins on or the skins will get unpleasantly damp from the lemon juice. You can easily rub the skins off roasted peanuts by rolling them between your hands.

Sprinkle the chaat masala on top, mix, and taste to check if you need more chili.

Chaat masala is absolutely essential to this dish, is cheap, can be found in any Indian food store, and lasts forever.

A glass bowl with a mixture of peanuts, tomatoes, fresh cilantro and red onion

You can also use it to make these ridiculously easy 5-minute masala sandwiches and this super tasty corn chaat.

This chaat is best served immediately while all the flavors and vegetables taste fresh. However, I have happily eaten a bowl of this the day after making it (I stored it in the fridge).

Just be aware that the longer it sits, the more liquid will be drawn out of the vegetables, so you may have to drain it off and add a little more chaat masala.

two grey dishes of peanut salad on a grey background

Serve in small individual ramekins, or in a bowl in the middle to share. A perfect snack (with a cup of hot chai of course!) or light appetizer.

In India, we would chow down on a bowl of these delicious spicy peanuts and share between friends with a round of drinks, as they make the perfect light snack (kind of like an Indian tapa!) for munching on casually while entertaining.

How will you serve your delicious easy peanut chaat?


Did you make this recipe? Let me know how much you loved it with a star rating in the recipe box, review, or comment below.

Or take a picture and tag me on Instagram (@the_fiery_vegetarian), I love seeing all your creations!

Close up of peanuts, coriander, lemon slices and tomatoes with red chili peppers in the background

Quick Peanut Chaat (Spicy Indian Peanuts)

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

Tangy, spicy and crunchy, if you've never had these easy five-minute 7-ingredient Indian spicy peanuts you are definitely missing out! Make them today and enjoy as a light snack, an appetizer, or with friends and some cold beers and cocktails or mocktails.

Ingredients

  • ½ small red onion
  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • ½ - 1 mild red chili pepper
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro
  • 1 cup salted peanuts
  • 1.5 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tsp chaat masala powder

Instructions

  1. Finely chop the onion, cilantro, and chili pepper. Seed and chop the tomatoes, . I recommend you try the dish with half a chopped chili pepper first and add the other half later if needed.
  2. Toss the chopped vegetables in a bowl with the peanuts.
  3. Pour over the lemon juice and mix.
  4. Sprinkle with the chaat masala and mix again.
  5. Serve immediately.

Notes

  1. You can substitute boiled peanuts or roasted peanuts for the ready-made salted fried peanuts used in this recipe.
  2. To boil the peanuts, chuck them in a pressure cooker with enough water to cover them and a pinch of turmeric and salt and cook on high pressure for four whistles.
  3. You can tweak this recipe to suit your taste, but the chaat masala is absolutely necessary!
  4. This recipe is best served freshly made as otherwise the vegetables, especially the tomatoes, will release quite a lot of liquid.
Nutrition Information
Yield 4 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 237Total Fat 18gSaturated Fat 3gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 13gCholesterol 0mgSodium 157mgCarbohydrates 13gFiber 4gSugar 5gProtein 10g

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Ramya Sundararajan

Wednesday 17th of March 2021

Hi there, love your blog and this chaat. I had to jump in and immediately make this chaat as I started to drool looking at the pix. Thanks for sharing.

Deirdre Gilna

Friday 19th of March 2021

Hi Ramya, thanks so much for the lovely comment, I hope you enjoyed the chaat (chaat is life!)

Choclette

Sunday 13th of September 2020

I've never tried peanut chaat, but I'm so going to make your recipe now. It sounds delightful and our tomatoes are finally beginning to ripen. Just need to source some chaat masala now.

The Fiery Vegetarian

Sunday 13th of September 2020

Oh great I do hope you enjoy, I love all types of chaat! I'm so jealous of your home grown tomatoes as well, the downfall of living in a flat in Spain without a balcony I suppose. You're in the UK aren't you Choclette? You can even get the masala in some of the larger Tescos, if there are no Indian grocers closerby. Mdh Chunky in the green box is my favourite, although I still have no idea why it's called chunky when it's just a ground mix like other brands...

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