Lemon/Lime Pickle, Indian Style (Nimbu Ka Achar)

Posted on Feb 28 2013 - 2:45am by Whitney


While traveling through India, I quickly realized that pickles are served with every dish. Although I am not a fan, the man of the house loves them. He has pretty much stopped eating them, even though I didn’t ask him to. I decided to be a nice girlfriend and make him some lemon pickles, which are slightly hot with a nice tang. Homemade pickles are so much better for you health-wise and taste-wise than the store bought Indian pickles in a jar. This recipe will be ready to serve after 3 days (but get better the longer they sit), and will keep for up to 90 days stored in a jar.

IMG_20130227_110840IMG_20130227_111113IMG_20130227_112647Lemon Pickle 


  • 6 lemons or limes, 4 for pickling cut into 8 pieces each, 2 for juice
  • salt, 1 tablespoon
  • red chili powder, 3 tbsp
  • garlic paste, 1 heaping tsp
  • fenugreek powder, 1/8 tsp
  • turmeric, 1/4 tsp
  • oil, 3 tbsp
  • red chilis, 2 broken
  • mustard seeds, 1/2 tsp
  • cumin seeds, 1/2 tsp
  • hing, a dash
  • curry leaves, 3


Cut the ends off of 4 lemons or limes and cut into 8 pieces each and put into a bowl. Add salt, turmeric, red chili powder, fenugreek powder and garlic. Stir. Add the juice of the other 2 lemons and stir. Set aside.

In a small pot, heat the oil. Add red chilis along with the mustard seeds. When those start popping add the cumin seeds and when those pop turn off the heat. Add hing and curry leaves. Let cool to room temperature.

Add the room temperature oil mixture to the lemons and stir. Lemons will be ready after 3-7 days. You can store them in a jar for up to 3 months.

Here is what the pickles look like after a month. IMG_20130401_154745


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3 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Dimple Makani August 15, 2013 at 3:22 pm - Reply

    My mouth is watering!

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