Moringa Stir-fry | Muringaella Thoran

Moringa Stir-fry | Muringaella Thoran

Moringa is a fast-growing, drought-resistant tree native to the Indian subcontinent. Its leaves and fruits are a staple in Kerala households. Almost all parts of the tree are eaten or used as ingredients in Ayurvedic medicine.


  Moringa leaves are rich in many important nutrients, including protein, vitamin B6, riboflavin, and iron. They are rich in antioxidants like vitamin C, beta-carotene, quercetin, and chlorogenic acid. It is for all intends and purposes a sustainable superfood! Here is a traditional moringa leaf dish I grew up eating. 

Moringa is a common backyard tree in Kerala.
Source: USDA

Moringa Stir-fry | Muringaella Thoran

Moringa leaves stir-fried with shredded coconut and healing spices.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine Indian, Kerala
Servings 4 people


  • 5 cups moringa leaves
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder; cayenne adjust according to your heat level
  • salt to taste

Coconut Mixture

  • 1/2 cup grated coconut fresh or frozen
  • 1 green chili adjust according to your heat level
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 inch ginger
  • 3 shallots you can substitute red or yellow onion
  • 3/4 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1/2 sprig curry leaves


  • 1-2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1-2 tsp urad dal split black lentils
  • 1 dried whole red chili
  • 4-8 shallots you can substitute red or yellow onion
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 3 tbsp unrefined coconut oil


  • Carefully separate the leaves from the stalk. This is another fun activity for the whole family. Another reason for everyone to come together, be still, and just catch up.
  • Rinse and set aside.
  • Grate a coconut.
    Grated coconut
  • Or defrost frozen shredded coconut. You can find these at all Indian grocery stores.
    Frozen coconut
  • Gather all of your ingredients for the coconut mixture. I don't remove the garlic or ginger peel. I just give it a good wash and throw them in the blender but feel free to peel if you prefer.
    Coconut paste
  • Blend everything to a coarse paste.
    Coconut paste
  • Slice shallots for tempering.
  • Heat coconut oil in a pan, when it's hot add mustard seeds, urad dal, whole red chili, and curry leaves. When you put the curry leaves in be prepared for a lot of spluttering. You can put a lid on right afterward for a few seconds to prevent all the mustard seeds from popping out and to protect yourself from splattering oil.
  • Add sliced onions and salt. Saute until they are translucent.
  • Mix in the coconut and saute for a minute.
  • Stir in turmeric and red chili powder.
  • Now add the prepared moringa leaves and stir well.
  • Cook on low with the lid on for a few mins, making sure to stir occasionally to prevent it from sticking to the bottom or burning. When it's cooked you can drizzle some unrefined coconut oil over it if you like.
  • Enjoy!
Keyword Glutenfree, Moringa, Vegan

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