bharwa karela fry in a kadai

Bharwa Karela Fry, Stuffed Bitter Gourd Fry

Bharwa Karela Fry recipe is nothing but stuffing the masala in the bitter gourd and frying it. Yummy, delicious and spicy, this dish is just perfect for the winter days.
Course Side Dish, Vegetarian Side Dishes
Cuisine Indian
Keyword bharwa karela, bharwan karela, stuffed bitter gourd fry
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4 people
Calories 242kcal
Author Fareeha


  • 250 gms small bitter gourd / karela
  • 2 tbsp yogurt
  • 1 juice of lemon
  • 1/2 tsp salt or to taste
  • 1 pod garlic
  • 2 tsp red chili powder
  • 2 tbsp dried desiccated coconut
  • 1/2 cup oil for frying
  • thread or string for tying the karela


Preparing the bitter gourd

  • Scrape the outer part of the bitter gourd. Make a slit on one side. If the seeds are too hard, then remove them. Wash and set aside.
  • Beat the yogurt and add salt. Mix in a cup of water to this yogurt to make buttermilk.
  • Next add the lemon juice to this buttermilk.
  • Add the bitter gourd to this buttermilk and bring to a boil.
  • Stir in between. Cook till all the water dries up. (You will notice that the karelas have changed their color by now and are tender.)
  • Allow them to cool down while you get the masala for stuffing ready.

Preparing the stuffing for the bharwa karela

  • Remove the cloves from the garlic and peel them. Grind this to a find paste.
  • Add red chili powder and dried coconut to the garlic paste. Mix well to make a thick paste.

How to make the bharwa karela recipe

  • Take one boiled karela, stuff the garlic masala inside it, tie with a thread firmly and set aside.
  • Repeat with all the karelas.
  • Heat oil in a kadai and fry the stuffed bitter gourd on low heat till they are crisp on the outside.
  • Serve with plain steamed rice with a dash of ghee on it.
  • The bharwan karela fry stays good for a week if you do not add any water in the masala.



  • The bharwan karele┬ástay good for up to a fortnight if you store them well. Do not add water or your hand into it.
  • Fry them on really low heat for the perfect result.


Calories: 242kcal | Carbohydrates: 11.1g | Protein: 2.7g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 6.4g | Sodium: 317mg | Potassium: 3.5mg | Fiber: 3.5g | Sugar: 2g | Calcium: 110mg | Iron: 0.7mg