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Easy Raita

A creamy, cooling Indian yogurt-based condiment, this easy raita recipe makes a refreshing dip or a saucy side dish. We especially love it with spicy, juicy Tandoori chicken.

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easy raita in ceramic bowl with a spoon

What is Raita?

Raita is a classic Indian yogurt sauce that’s one of the most versatile condiments we’ve ever encountered! There’s no one way to make raita—recipe vary from region to region, family to family, and season to season. That said, it’s always made with yogurt—typically plain, full-fat yogurt—spices, and some kind of fruit or vegetable that will add heft and texture to the creamy spiced yogurt. Some people finish the raita with a handful of fresh herbs or even fresh, hot chilies. For our cucumber raita recipe, we’re keeping things as basic as possible, but once you’ve got the hang of it, feel free to play around!

Ingredients for raita in small bowls

What’s In Our Raita Recipe

With so many variations out there, we were almost overwhelmed with choices. But ultimately we decided that simpler was better, and our cucumber raita recipe only has a few easy-to-find ingredients:

  • Plain yogurt. We’re partial to whole milk yogurt, for its deeply rich and creamy texture. But low-fat is OK, too!
  • English cucumber. Some recipes call for grated cucumber, but we prefer our Indian raita sauce to have a chunky texture, with obvious cubes of cucumber in it, so we’re calling for it to be finely-diced. Be sure to use an English cucumber—with their thin skin and tiny seeds, they don’t need to be peeled or seeded before use.
  • Spices! If you associate Indian food with liberal use of spices, you’re spot-on, and our easy raita recipe is no different. Cumin and Garam Masala—which is actually a spice blend, akin to Chinese five-spice or French Herbs de Provence—are our species of choice. As ever, be sure your ground spices are not more than six months old. If they are, it’s time to replace them!
  • A pinch of salt—to take this creamy Indian yogurt dip solidly into savory territory.
yogurt, spices, cucumbers and coriander in a ceramic bowl for raita
raita in a ceramic bowl

How to Make Raita

This cool and lush Indian yogurt dip, or saucy side dish, is much easier than it seems. It’s more about texture and temperature than anything else—cool, creamy, a little crunch from the cucumber—and so the preparation is as straightforward as the ingredients.

  1. Cut your cucumber into tiny cubes, and mince some cilantro. If you don’t use an English cucumber, you may want to peel it.
  2. Stir together the yogurt, salt and spices.
  3. Add the cucumber and cilantro. Stir to combine. And you’re done! Raita is good right away, but it also benefits from a few minutes in the fridge to let the flavors meld.
raita in a ceramic bowl with a spoon

Tools You’ll Need:

More Indian-Inspired Recipes:

Indian flavors are easier to come by than you’d think—these Indian-inspired recipes are as weeknight-friendly as it can be!

How Did You Serve Your Raita?

Once you’ve got the hang of it, we bet you’ll be whipping up a batch of raita at least once a week. It’s such a versatile condiment, we’re sure you’ll find lots of ways to use it. Let us know how you used yours! Snap a photo and tag us on Instagram using @themodernproper and #themodernproper so we can see! Happy eating!

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Easy Raita

  • Serves: 8
  • Prep Time:  10 min
  • Cook Time:  0 min
  • Calories: 9

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt, 2%
  • 1 cup finely diced English cucumber
  • 1/4 cup minced cilantro
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp Garam Masala
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt

Method

In a bowl, mix together the yogurt, cucumber, cilantro, cumin, garam masala, and sea salt.

Nutrition Info

  • Per Serving
  • Amount
  • Calories9
  • Protein0 g
  • Carbohydrates1 g
  • Total Fat0 g
  • Dietary Fiber0 g
  • Cholesterol1 mg
  • sodium152 mg
  • Total Sugars1 g

Easy Raita

Questions & Reviews

Join the discussion below.

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  • Nephrina

    Cousin is a vegan and my daughter has a dairy allergy can we substitute a non-dairy yogurt or a soft tofu.

    We haven't tried it but non-dairy yougurt should work fine!

  • Miriam

    How about parsley if cilantro tastes like soap to you?

    You could try parsley.

  • Jean

    I’ve just made this but it’s very thick. How can I thin it down?

    Try stirring in a little whole milk

  • Leslie

    Can I grate the cucumber instead? My knife skills are lacking LOL!

    Haha love that, sure! Hope you enjoy Leslie!

  • Lynne

    Does it need the cilantro? I am not a fan but the rest of this recipe looks fantastic.

    It might lack in a bit of flavor without it but you could try!

  • Susan

    Used fresh mint instead of cilantro...yum!

    Thanks Susan, glad you enjoyed it!

  • Iris

    It was super delicious!
    Served it on a side of pickled chicken curry and basamati rice!

    Thanks Iris, glad you loved it!

  • Harald

    Good easy recipe. I make this every couple weeks when we have samosas for dinner. Great with samosas, but we always have have some leftover and eat that up the following day with pita chips, or pretty much any cracker we have laying around. very much reminiscent of tzatziki.

    Thanks Harald, so glad you love it!

  • Milly

    Raita was delicious, but took three times as long as stated in recipe, because mobile site has too many ads so that the recipe won't load.

    Thanks Milly, we are so glad you enjoyed this! We have updated the prep time as well.

  • LH

    Simple and delicious. Made along side the tandoori roast chicken (5star!) also on this site. Ended up using labneh instead of yogurt since didn't have any. Finely grated half the cuke and some chunks of the rest.

    Thank you, so glad you loved this!