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How to make Chakalaka from scratch

Chakalaka is a favourite South African vegetable relish that is served with just about anything from meat, bread, pap, mashed potato and with stews.

Depending on where you come from, recipes vary and Chakalaka recipes can be a close kept family secret. There is no right or wrong way to make your Chakalaka and most people have a preferred method of how fine to chop the veggies, how spicy to make it or even what to put in it.

Perhaps you feel like trying a new recipe or you are searching for something even better than your everyday chakalaka relish. Whatever the case is, you can now give your family and friends a new favourite relish to accompany your mouth-watering meals. Chakalaka is delicious as a flavouring for stews and sishebos and you can make it in advance and store it in the fridge.

  1. Heat ½ a cup of oil in a pot over a medium heat.
  2. Add 1 onion, 2 green peppers, 1 or 2 chillies, 2 cloves of garlic and 1 tablespoon of hot curry powder and cook until the onions are soft.
  3. Add 4 carrots, 6 tomatoes and a tin of baked beans in tomato sauce.
  4. Mix well and allow to simmer on a medium heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Season with salt and pepper to taste.


This chakalaka recipe chooses simplicity with a serious flavour kick. Using a grater for your veggies is an effective way to get a consistent, less chunky size for your ingredients if you like the vegetables finely diced. Alternatively, use a rough chop for a chunkier relish consistency.