Pecel (Indonesian peanut sauce for salad)

Pecel (Indonesian peanut sauce for salad)

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  • 2 cm x 2cm block of seedless tamarind
  • 500 gr raw shelled peanuts
  • 5 Kaffir Lime leaves (cut into small pieces)
  • 1/2 cup Cooking oil
  • 2 bird's eye chili more if you like it spicier
  • 5 shallots peeled
  • 5 garlic peeled
  • 200 gr Gula Jawa/ Palm Sugar (cut into small pieces)
  • 2 inch Kencur peeled
  • 2 tsp salt or to your taste

Suggested vegetables for salad:

  • Boiled papaya leaves
  • Boiled cassava leaves
  • Boiled snake beans or green beans
  • Fresh cucumber
  • Boiled water spinach (kangkung)
  • Boiled bean sprouts
  • Boiled cabbage


  • Even though the package of the tamarind says it is "seedless", I find still find some seeds. For this reason, I usually mix the tamarind with about 2 Tbsp of hot water and kind of mashed it and remove the seeds before I put in the food processor. Place the rest of the ingredients in the food processor and process into a paste. It will be kinda of sticky and thick and this is the way it should be. Have a taste and add more salt if needed. It should be more on the sweet side. They can be store for months in freezer
  • When ready to serve, scoop out as many of the bumbu pecel into a bowl and thin it out with some hot water. I like it not too runny. So use your own judgment on how much water to use for the consistency you like. Arrange all the vegetables on a large platter and pour the bumbu pecel over the vegetables and serve