Instant Indian Red Chili Pickle | Lal Mirch ka Achar

Step by Step process to make the famous North Indian Red Chili pickle which is also known as ‘Lal Mirch ka Achar’. It’s hot, spicy, ready in 5 minutes and can be stored in the fridge for up to a month.

Instant Red Chili Pickle
I’m in India for a few days of vacation which is a combination of a friend’s wedding, family + friends meet-ups, shopping, eating out and copious amounts of food made by mom.

Or as it’s lovingly known worldwide ‘Maa ke Haathon ka Khana’ which is ALWAYS the highlight for all us kids living away from them.

Homecooked meals by mom, even a simple buttered toast or a plain flatbread (paratha) made by her is filled with soooooo much love and care that it’s just beyond any meal served anywhere in the world.

Hence we always say there’s ‘Magic in their Hands‘!!!

(I can go on & on and maybe this will become one of THE MOST Emotional post written till date on my blog)

So lets get back to the Achar/ Instant Red Chili Pickle πŸ˜‰ which is absolutely droooooooliscious and her recipe!

Indian Red Chili Pickle recipe

My mom is pretty famous in our family for her cooking and hospitality, you’ll never leave empty-stomach and empty-handed from their house.

She would rather have you stuffed with delicious food and she will happily pack some to go as well πŸ™‚

Well, that’s a mom and even after all this, she’s ever-smiling and ready with a new recipe.

So this time, when I reached my parents home, I was welcomed with my favorite recipes cooked by her (4 A.M – India Time).

And an almost verbal list of recipes she has planned for me during the coming weeks…so that’s the kind love and excitement we have with food+family.

Our discussion for the rest of the day continued about flight food, wedding preparations and calling cousins.

We finally attended the Big Fat Indian Wedding (300+ guests) + Tons n Tons of Food + Absolutely Gorgeous Colorful Indian Outfits  –

It was an 8 days hectic, crazy and fun activities and now I’m back to spending time with close friend’s and family.

So after all this, the first thing that I really missed having was pickle made by Mom and you just need to casually mention it to her.

And before you could say anything else, she has already instructed the local organic grocer to send us some of his best Red Chilies/Lal-Mirch.

HUGE – Bright Red in color and just became available in the market (Beginning of summer is the time for all these bright fruits n veggies in India).

The process of the Instant Indian Red Chili Pickle / Lal Mirch Achar is here:

Instant Indian Red Chili Pickle Process
Once, the fresh red-chilies were delivered home, I insisted mom to include me as her assistant in the Instant Red Chili Pickle process to which she agreed …

Provided I don’t poke my fingers in my eyes after touching the chilies (can you believe she still thinks I’m gonna do that …..

We seriously had such a huge laugh about this but she was absolutely serious). Now, there are prominently

2 Types of Indian Red Chili Pickle:

– One is where you stuff the entire chili with pickle spices and fry and keep in sun for it to process eventually.

– Second is ‘Instant’  where you simply chop the chilies, use the same spices and lightly saute the chilies (this one can be consumed right away)

So, this is the Instant Pickle which takes about 5 minutes to make and can be served right after it’s prepared.

Lal Mirch ka Achar

 – Pro Tips for Making Best Instant Indian Red Chili Pickle –

Remove the seeds in chili to control the heat, less seeds means less heat/hot & more seeds means more spicy/hot

After, we thoroughly cleaned the chilies, we pat them dry using a paper towel or clean cloth (make sure the chilies are absolutely dry when you start mixing spices).

Then, you simply cut them into the desired size (thin/huge) and mix the homemade pickle-mix.

Toss everything together and lightly saute in mustard oil.

You may use Sesame Seed Oil but I Still recommend making pickles in Mustard oil as it adds to the spicy/tangy flavor.

Some of you may worry looking at the extreme red color of the chilies, but the pickle can be made almost as mild as you want, just remove the seeds.

Instant Red Chili Pickle in a bowl with fork
Once, the pickle was ready, we absolutely gorged on it with some hot potato flatbread and fresh curd, which is a typical Delhi Breakfast for you and can keep you going for a good half day.

I hope you really like this recipe and try it soon.

(If you’re unable to find red chilies, you may use big green chilies or medium green chilies for the same).

We couldn’t sign off this post without a picture of Mom holding our favorite pickle πŸ™‚

(I’m telling you, there’s MAGIC in those Hands)

mom's Instant Red Chili Pickle recipe


As always, I Looove when you try my recipes and send me pictures & feedback.

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Instant Indian Red Chili Pickle - Lal Mirch ka Achaar


You Can Also Try This:

Dhaniya Chutney – Indian Cilantro Chutney

Sweet – Spicy Mango Chutney

Apple Ginger Chutney


Yield: 10

Instant Indian Red Chili Pickle (Lal Mirch ka Achar)

Instant Indian Red Chili Pickle recipe

Instant Indian Red Chili Pickle: Step by Step process of an absolute famous pickle from North India, which is also known as 'Lal Mirch ka Achar'.

Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 7 minutes


  • 5 Big Fresh Red Chilies - washed and dry
  • 4 Tbsp Mustard Oil
  • 1 Tsp Salt
  • 1 Tsp Red Chili Powder - use as per taste
  • 1 Tsp Dry Mango Powder - also known as 'Amchur' - Optional (Used to add tang)

Pickle Spice-Mix:

  • 1 Tsp Fenugreek Seeds - also known as 'Methi Dana'
  • 1 Tsp Nigella Seeds - also known as 'Onion Seed' or 'Kalonji'
  • 1 Tsp Fennel Seeds - also known as 'Saunf'
  • 2 Tsp Coriander Seeds
  • 2 Tsp Yellow Mustard Seeds


  1. In a medium wok/pan, heat the mustard oil till you see fumes rising from it (takes about a minute on high flames).
  2. Close the heat and keep the oil aside to cool down (this process is very important as it removes the pungent mustard smell/taste from the oil).
  3. Cut pre-washed and dried chilies (cut them into any size or shape of choice) and keep aside.
  4. In a small pan, roast fenugreek seeds on low flame for a minute (till they slightly change color).
  5. Add, the remaining pickle-spice mix and roast all the seeds for another minute and turn off the heat.
  6. Cool down the roasted spices and then powder them using a mortar pestle or using an electric grinder (we need a smooth powder consistency).
  7. Now, mix the powdered spices, cut chilies, salt, red chili, amchur and toss everything together.
  8. Heat the cooled down oil (for 1/2 minute) and add this mixture.
  9. Saute the mixture in oil for about 2 minutes and then turn off the heat.
  10. The pickle is ready to eat now or you can store it in a clean, dry bottle for upto a month in fridge.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 25Total Fat: 2gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 240mgCarbohydrates: 2gFiber: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 1g

26 Replies to "Instant Indian Red Chili Pickle | Lal Mirch ka Achar"

  • Apu March 18, 2021 (5:48 pm)

    I have made this pickle thrice in 2 months, I loved it so much! Thanks Molly for sharing a simple but treasured family recipe.❀️

    • Molly Kumar April 1, 2021 (7:58 pm)

      Hello Dear, thank you for your sweet message and I’m so glad you liked the recipe. Thanks, Molly

  • Razena | Tantalisemytastebuds April 5, 2016 (4:25 pm)

    These look so easy to make, that I will even give them a shot since I haven’t made pickles (or been my mum’s assistant) in more than 10 years.

    I’m looking forward to the wedding post to see the array of colorful dishes served up.

    • Molly Kumar April 5, 2016 (5:15 pm)

      Thanks Razena, I would be extremely happy when you try my recipe. Would love to hear about it – Hugs Molly

  • Amanda April 4, 2016 (8:36 pm)

    These look beautiful and I can imagine that they’re so fragrant with those beautiful spices. I, too, have never used Mustard Oil, but I’m really intrigued and am going to look for it in my market!

    • Molly Kumar April 5, 2016 (4:30 pm)

      Thanks Amanda, Mustard Oil does take a lil to get used to the taste, but definitely go ahead and give it a try – It’s perfect for cooking meat n pickles.

  • Deepika@EasyBabyMeals April 4, 2016 (8:07 pm)

    Wow, this is so vibrant and delicious. And I love the fact that it’s simple too. I usually give up on making pickles at home, but this recipe is a must try. I am trying this soon.

    • Molly Kumar April 5, 2016 (4:32 pm)

      Thanks Deepika, I too hate spending time making pickles as they are kind of tedious, but this one is absolutely quick n taste awesome. Do give it a try.

  • Melissa April 4, 2016 (2:59 pm)

    We have a Southern version of relish called chow chow that I love to eat as an accent to dishes. I bet this would be the very same concept. Can’t wait to try!

    • Molly Kumar April 5, 2016 (4:54 pm)

      Chow Chow sounds yum too, Thanks n Glad you liked this recipe of Pickle.

  • Uma April 2, 2016 (2:08 pm)

    Love your pickle recipe simple and different from my moms recipe . Mother cooking is always best in the world. I feel the same way Molly.

    • Molly Kumar April 5, 2016 (4:44 pm)

      So True Uma, Mom’s cooking is the best – Glad you liked the recipe.

  • Himani April 2, 2016 (1:19 pm)

    I love pickle and chili pickle sounds so tempting. Will give this recipe a try.

  • Laura | Wandercooks March 29, 2016 (10:04 pm)

    Oh to be invited to your mom’s place for dinner! I’d want to be assistant chef too to learn all her secrets haha. These sound delicious, especially being cooked in mustard oil. NEVER heard of that before, so wondering if we can get it here in Australia? Good thing we have some delicious Indian grocers within driving distance – I’ve been looking for an excuse to head out to one so this is perfect. Thanks!

    • Molly Kumar April 1, 2016 (5:20 pm)

      Lolz, Thanks Laura, I’m sure she would absolutely love it πŸ™‚ Hey, Indian Grocers would definitely be carrying ‘Mustard Oil’ as many of Indian recipes calls for it – Happy Shopping πŸ™‚

  • Annemarie @ justalittlebitofbacon March 29, 2016 (6:51 pm)

    It’s hard to beat mom’s cooking. These look so yummy! And I love how quick they are to make.

    • Molly Kumar March 31, 2016 (3:04 pm)

      Absolutely, thanks for visiting πŸ™‚

  • ginger and scotch March 29, 2016 (6:35 pm)

    This sounds really spicy but I can just imaging how delicious it must taste! For the record, my husband has rubbed his eyes after chopping fresh chillis and boy did he suffer for it..

    • Molly Kumar April 1, 2016 (5:22 pm)

      Hehehhe, thanks Ginger, I can so sympathize with your husband, as I’ve done something similar in past and it was quite an incident.

  • ludmilla March 29, 2016 (6:20 pm)

    The way you described your mom I felt that you are describing my grandma… lol Food in my family means caring!!
    Your recipe looks delicious!!

  • Sam | Ahead of Thyme March 29, 2016 (6:14 pm)

    Wow this looks so yummy and vibrant and I love how easy it is to make!! Thanks for sharing!

  • Kylee @ Kylee Cooks March 29, 2016 (4:41 pm)

    What a beautiful post, Molly. I can feel the love you have for your Mom through your words. I’m also my mother’s child when it comes to cooking – such wonderful memories of being instructed by her (and ignoring… lol). How awesome it is to have this time with her. You are right to cherish this time!

    • Molly Kumar March 30, 2016 (5:18 am)

      Thanks Kyle and you got it so right πŸ˜‰ Working with Moms are just so much fun and love the instructions given by them πŸ˜‰

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