How to make Pulpa de Tamarindo (Tamarind Pulp)

by Erica Dinho on November 13, 2012

How to make Pulpa de Tamarindo (Tamarind Pulp)

Tamarind is a sweet and sour fruit very popular in Colombian cuisine. We use it to make tamarind juice (jugo de tamarindo), desserts and sauces for savory dishes.

I find dried tamarind at Hispanic markets in the US, sold either in their pods or in blocks with seeds. I usually buy the blocks, so I have less work to do.

What do you need to make the pulp:
(About 2 cups of pulp)

1 (14-ounce) block of tamarind
2 cups of water


  1. Place the tamarind block and water in a bowl
  2. How to make Pulpa de Tamarindo (Tamarind Pulp)

  3. Let it soak for 20 to 25 minutes. Using your hands grab a handful of the tamarind pods and squeeze the pulp hard to separate it from the seeds.
  4. How to make Pulpa de Tamarindo (Tamarind Pulp)

  5. Discard the seeds and keep the purée. Do this process until you have a thick and smooth pulp in the bowl.
  6. How to make Pulpa de Tamarindo (Tamarind Pulp)

  7. ransfer to a glass jar and place in the refrigerator. To freeze the pulp, place it in ice trays.
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{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Raquel November 13, 2012 at 11:22 AM

Where do you find dry Tamarind pulp? I can’t find it anywhere here in Massachusetts.


2 Erica November 13, 2012 at 1:18 PM

Raquel-You can find it at Latin and Asian markets in the USA.


3 Evelyne@cheapethniceatz November 14, 2012 at 1:53 PM

Last year I tasted my first fresh tamarind, so cool to eat. I have a dying block in my cupboard, I will save it with your technique.


4 Erica November 14, 2012 at 2:26 PM

Thank you for your comment,Evelyn!


5 Belinda @zomppa November 14, 2012 at 10:32 PM

Ah! So great that you make your own – love how tamarind adds depth to dishes.


6 Erica November 15, 2012 at 7:25 AM



7 rebecca November 15, 2012 at 10:22 PM

good trick in Indian recipes I often soak taramind and add the juice to the dish


8 Erica November 16, 2012 at 7:34 AM

Thank you, Rebecca!


9 tasteofbeirut November 17, 2012 at 7:39 AM

I have been looking all over to find some tamarind paste and finally decided to make my own when I could not find any! Thanks so much for your recipe which is both easy and handy!


10 Erica November 17, 2012 at 7:56 AM

Thank you,Joumana!


11 Chris November 17, 2012 at 1:34 PM

When we did this earlier in the year, we had the pods. Your way is MUCH easier! Removing from the pods wasn’t hard, just time consuming.


12 Erica November 17, 2012 at 1:34 PM

I agree,Chris!


13 Gisela November 28, 2012 at 9:13 PM

Erica, I made the pulpa de tamarindo today and I made Tamarind cake and your post was very helpful. thanks!


14 Erica November 28, 2012 at 9:24 PM

Thank you for the feedback!


15 Brittany February 21, 2013 at 5:09 PM

Hi Erica,
I am doing a project for my Spanish 2 class in high school. We each were assigned a spanish speaking country, mine of course is Colombia. My project is making a food and I really want to make the bacon wrapped chicken with tamarind sauce. It looks absolutely delicious, my only problem is that i can not find tamarind anywhere around where I live. Im in West Virginia and was wondering if you knew where I could find some? any and all help is very appreciated. :)


16 Erica February 23, 2013 at 7:47 AM

Did you check


17 Raisha April 19, 2013 at 8:03 PM

Hi. I want to ask what is the best way to make this paste with fresh tamarind? I do not like buying blocks… and I prefer the fresh tamarind. ^^; I want to make tamarind balls but I’m struggling. T.T Help?


18 Joanne February 5, 2014 at 2:08 PM

Hola thank you for your recipie I have been looking for it what if I have tamarind in shell would that still work instead of the block?


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