Slow cooker onion tomato masala for Indian gravies

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Slow cooker onion tomato masala for Indian gravies – a versatile masala that can be used for almost all the Indian recipes that calls for onion, ginger, garlic and tomato as base ingredients. Slow cooker method is a hit in my home because there is NO STRONG SMELL and it uses very less oil. Do you cook and store onion-tomato masala in bulk? If so then you will find this post helpful. If you are looking for Onion- tomato masala cooked over the stove/cooktop method – follow this link. 

PLEASE DO NOT COOK THIS MASALA WITH RED ONIONS – The pigment that give red onions its color reacts with the cooking environment – it  causes a chemical change and because of that (heat), red onions loses it’s color – they turn dark blue or green in color. 

RECIPE DETAIL – Peel, wash and ground onions, ginger and garlic to a fine paste. Add everything to the slow cooker, set the timer, cover and let it cook for 4 hours on HIGH setting. After the cooking time, remove the lid – masala will have some liquid left at the base, no worries, let it simmer with the lid off for another 1:30 minutes. Depending on the slow cooker model, cooking time may vary. This masala stays fresh in refrigerator for at least a month.  In slow cooker method we hardly add any oil, so the oil will not separate from the masala.

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Having guest over for dinner, no worries just throw in this masala with nearly any vegetable – Matar paneer, Aloo matar, Chicken recipes, Besan ke gatte, Lauki ke kofte, Palak Paneer ….the list is endless. This masala can be substituted for almost all the Indian recipes which calls for onion, ginger, garlic and tomato as base ingredients.

HOW TO USE THIS MASALA IN A RECIPE? If a recipe calls for 1 medium onion, 2-3 cloves of garlic, some ginger and 2 tomatoes then use 1/4 cup of cooked onion tomato masala and you are all set, follow rest of your recipe and your meal will be on the table in no time. Since there is very less oil added to this masala in slow cooker – so when you use it for a recipe, saute in oil for couple of minutes and that takes care of everything.

Follow this link to learn about how to store onion tomato masala.

Also try other slow cooker recipes – slow cooker ghee, slow cooker langarwali dal, slow cooker kadhi, slow cooker palak paneer, Slow cooker lobia.

Slow cooker onion tomato masala for Indian gravies
Votes: 7
Rating: 4.29
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A versatile masala that can be used for almost all the Indian recipes that calls for onion, ginger, garlic and tomato as base ingredients - slow cooker method.
Servings Prep Time
2 8 OZ. JARS 10 MINUTES
Cook Time
5 - 6 HOURS
Servings Prep Time
2 8 OZ. JARS 10 MINUTES
Cook Time
5 - 6 HOURS
Slow cooker onion tomato masala for Indian gravies
Votes: 7
Rating: 4.29
You:
Rate this recipe!
Print Recipe
A versatile masala that can be used for almost all the Indian recipes that calls for onion, ginger, garlic and tomato as base ingredients - slow cooker method.
Servings Prep Time
2 8 OZ. JARS 10 MINUTES
Cook Time
5 - 6 HOURS
Servings Prep Time
2 8 OZ. JARS 10 MINUTES
Cook Time
5 - 6 HOURS
INGREDIENTS
CHANGE SERVING SIZE: 8 OZ. JARS
CHANGE UNITS:
METHOD
  1. Peel, wash and crush onions to a fine paste. I have used store bought tomato puree here.
  2. Assemble ginger-garlic paste.
  3. Add onion, ginger and garlic paste to the slow cooker. Plug it in.
  4. Add tomato puree.
  5. Pour in oil.
  6. Mix everything together.
  7. Put the lid on and set the timer for 5:30 hours on HIGH setting. Cook masala covered for 4 hours.
  8. After the desired cooking time, masala will have some liquid, open the lid and cook for another 1:30 minutes on HIGH SETTING. Depending on the slow cooker model, cooking time may vary.
  9. Perfectly cooked masala is ready to be used for Indian gravies. Since there is very less oil added to this masala in slow cooker - so when you use it for a recipe, saute in oil for couple of minutes and that takes care of everything.
  10. This masala stays fresh in refrigerator for at least a month.
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17 Responses

  1. Priya says:

    What i is this slow cooker? Can we prepare this onion tomoato masala in regular cooker. If yes for how much time we need to cook it? kindly reply

  2. Sorb says:

    how long can the frozen masala be stored for and still used safely: 1week? 1 month?

    • Sorb says:

      sorry, i just reread your article and it clearly says 1 month storage. another question is can we use salt instead of vinegar? would the vinegar change the taste of subsequent dishes using this masala?

  3. pooja says:

    Ruchi, I had been wondering for years why sone onions turn green when cookjng abd the. taste weird (sweetish bitter). Today yih solved this mystry! looking forward to trying this recipe!!

  4. Hani says:

    I tried this several years ago with yellow onions. It was a disaster!! The onions turned green and the house was filled up with a weird smell…definitely not that of frying gravy masala. Don’t know what I did wrong. I never tried it again. Do you have any suggestions Ruchi?

    • RK says:

      Slow cooked onion tomato masala is very different from the cooktop one. The reason your mixture turned green was because of garlic. It release a sort of enzyme during cooking that makes the mix turn green when heated.It happens in the cooktop method too but it is sauteed until the masala is browned, so we do not notice that color. It is common, I have also noticed over the years that tomato puree gives a nice texture to the masala compared to the raw pureed tomatoes. Visit my facebook page to see reader’s success story.

  5. moma says:

    I have a question: I don’t plan on using onions. can this be made using just tomatoes, ginger and green chili?

  6. aseem gauba says:

    Nice and easy and very useful when you are on busy schedules.I’ll advise to cook with white onions which gives great flavours…Great stuff.

    • RK says:

      Thanks for trying the recipe Aseem. Glad you found it useful. Agree, making this masala with white onions makes a huge difference.

  7. Alka says:

    I was looking for something like this for a while. Very nice and easy. Thanks al lot.

  8. Nishi says:

    Lovely way of teaching recipes.thanks.

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