15 Mango Powder Substitutes [For Salads & Vegetables]

It’s happened to all of us. You’re in the middle of cooking a splendid, flavorful curry when you realize disaster is imminent. You’re out of mango powder! Rather than frantically call your neighbor or rush to the store, take a few breaths. Likely, all you need is already in your kitchen.

Whether you’re making curry, stew, vegetables, or another dish where mango powder is essential, there is no need to worry. It is almost certain you have one of the following substitutes already in your kitchen.

For vinaigrettes and vegetable-based dishes like chutney, use pomegranate powder, citric acid powder, or apple cider vinegar. Tomato powder, sumac, and Persian loomi work well with savory dishes and meats. If you want to opt for a dairy substitute, try using yogurt as a base for curries and kebabs. For whole fruit substitutions, try mango, papaya, or kokum.

In this article, we’ll discuss some of the best substitutes for mango powder. Keep in mind that you can mix these substitutes if desired and can adjust any recipe.

Mango Powder Substitutes

1. Dry Pomegranate Powder (Or Anardana!)

This substitute is a great addition to make your dish slightly sour while maintaining a sweet base.

This product is readily available in food markets. You can buy this substitute as a pre-made powder or use a food processor to ground whole pomegranate seeds.

Like the fruit, pomegranate powder is loaded with health benefits. In addition to carrying a ton of nutrients, it’s a cancer-fighting food and has anti-inflammatory qualities.

Because of its sweetness, you’ll want to use smaller quantities of anardana. You can add dry pomegranate powder to smoothies, salad dressings, and even use it in place of powdered sugar!

2. Citric Acid Powder

Sometimes used as a preservative, food-grade citric acid can also be an effective souring agent. Because of its high citrus concentration, the powder is very potent and should be used sparingly.

While we only ingest a little at a time, the citric acid powder helps boost metabolism and maximize nutrient absorption.

It lacks the sweetness of mango powder, so try balancing out its astringent properties with some table sugar. To use this substitute as is, try adding it to candies or carbonated beverages for extra zing.

3. Apple Cider Vinegar

Nearly a universal staple in everyone’s pantry, apple cider vinegar is a go-to substitute in a pinch. While other vinegar could work as a mango powder substitute, apple cider vinegar is best due to its fruity profile.

Apple cider vinegar is a great health-conscious option, as it helps lower cholesterol and promotes heart health. You can use apple cider vinegar in salad dressings, chutneys, and even smoothies. For a healthy fruit smoothie, try this recipe.

Apple cider vinegar can be used in salad dressings, chutneys, and smoothies

4. Tajin Seasoning

Originating from Mexico, Tajin seasoning brings both heat and sweetness in one punch. The spice is made from dehydrated lime, salt, and ground chili peppers.

The complex flavor profile enables you to use Tajin interchangeably with mango powder. Just watch the spice level as you add more to your dish.

It complements savory dishes but makes an especially unique pairing with fruits. Try using it over fruit salads or even to rim a margarita glass.

5. Dry Sumac Powder

Known for its zesty, sour flavor, sumac is an apt substitute for mango powder in meat-based dishes. The taste is more in-line with spices than fruit, so it complements umami dishes well.

This dry spice is made from grinding dried sumac berries and is readily available in stores and online.

For a unique twist on Kool-Aid, try making Sumac-ade. In this recipe, you can substitute fresh sumac berries for sumac powder.

6. Persian Loomi

For a salty option with notes of citrus, try using the Persian Loomi. This substitute is made by boiling Persian limes in salt water and then setting them out to dry.

Its rich flavor makes it most suitable for meat dishes as well as hearty vegetable plates.

While a great option for stunning guests, it can be hard to find. Try ordering online or visiting a Mediterranean or Middle Eastern market.

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7. Dried Tomato Powder

Did you know that a tomato is a fruit? No wonder it’s such a great option for a mango powder substitution.

Tomato is rich, tart, and a tad citrusy, making it a stand-out ingredient in any dish. To replicate the sour taste of mango powder, try adding a few teaspoons of tomato powder.

Many use tomato powder to accentuate the flavor of sauces, but you can also try adding it to curries.

Try using it in salad dressings, curries, and chutneys.

8. Lemon Juice

In liquid recipes, lemon juice is a great and easy substitution for mango powder. Try adding about a tablespoon of lemon juice to sauces, chutneys, curries, and even beverages for a flavorful kick.

Lemon juice is one of the most reliable substitutions because. If you don’t have a few lemons laying around your kitchen already, they’re available in every food market.

lemon juice is the most reliable substitute because of its availability in every food market

Simply cut a lemon into two halves and use a juicer to extract the juice. If you don’t have a juicer, try cutting it into wedges and squeezing it over your dish after cooking.

9. Tamarind

For a sweeter option without sacrificing tang, try using tamarind powder. Tamarind powder is a staple in many Asian kitchens and is commonly used in vegetable-based dishes, meats, sauces, and chutneys.

While you can use tamarind power in most dishes, try this recipe to opt for a homemade tamarind paste.

10. Chaat Masala

This substitution is one of the best because it actually contains mango powder, in addition to red chili powder and salt.

Its sweet, spicy, and salty flavor profile make it a versatile kitchen staple that pairs well with almost anything.

11. Paprika

If you’re looking for something with a kick, look no further. Paprika leans on the spicey side of mango powder’s complex flavor profile.

paprika works amazing with umami dishes

While paprika works amazingly with umami dishes, you can also use it on desserts, eggs, and salads. The spice level of paprika isn’t overwhelming, so you can use a 1:1 ratio for substitutions.

12. Diced Fresh Pineapple

If you’re looking for a refreshing mango powder substitute on the sweeter side, try diced pineapple. In addition to being gluten-free, this substitution is vegan.

Pineapple is a great option for adding a refreshing element to meaty dishes, so try using some on top of tacos, kebabs, or guacamole.

13. Diced Fresh Papaya

Papaya's fruity profile is a great substitute to mango powder

If you’re looking for a substitute for the mango powder you normally add to your smoothie, try some fresh papaya. Papaya is not overly sweet or spicey, but its fruity profile is a great tangy addition to any dish.

14. Kokum Fruit

To use this substitute, soak the fresh fruit to harvest the pulp, which is similar to mango powder. The tartness of kokum fruit makes it a great flavor enhancer for liquid-based dishes as well as beverages.

15. Yogurt

Known for its mild taste, yogurt may seem like a surprising alternative to mango powder. However, used in tandem with another souring agent, yogurt is a great choice as a substitute.

In addition to its versatility, it’s an almost ubiquitous ingredient and can be found in any grocery store.

Yogurt also carries health benefits, as it is high in probiotics, calcium, protein, and Vitamin D for immunity.

How To Choose The Best Mango Powder Substitute?

When choosing a substitute, it’s important to assess the flavors of the dish you’re making. Each substitute carries different intensities of core flavors, like sweet, spicy, and sour. Choosing to bolden flavor is often a personal preference, and the following list can help you pick the best fit.

While most of these substitutes fall into the fruity category, spices like chaat masala and tajin work just as well. Like mango powder, the following substitutes work to balance dishes by adding savory, spicy, and tangy notes of flavor.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do You Use Mango Powder?

Due to its sweet and tart taste, mango powder is a common ingredient in Indian kitchens. It’s used to enhance a variety of dishes, like curries, chutneys, and lentils.

It’s most commonly used as a souring agent to accentuate other flavors. It is a truly versatile spice that pairs well with almost anything.

How Do You Make Mango Powder?

While it’s easiest to buy premade mango powder, you can make your own. You’ll need to peel five green mangoes and slice the peels into thin strips.

Mango Powder(Amchur)

Place the pieces on a large plate and cover with a dry cloth. Leave the plate in direct sunlight for at least five hours. Once the pieces are totally dry, blend in a food processor for your very own mango powder.

What Does Mango Powder Taste Like?

Mango powder has a sweet base with a strong tang. It has a powerful flavor and is best when used sparingly.

The sourness of mango powder works to highlight the flavors of other ingredients in the dish. Its sweetness complements warm, spicy flavors in meals like curry and chutney.

Final Thoughts

Mango powder is a cornerstone ingredient in many Middle Eastern and South Asian cuisines. While its flavor is distinct, there are many great substitutions that mimic its flavor.

These substitutions can be easier to find in stores than mango powder or could already be present in your kitchen. Why go out and buy more products when you can use what you have at home?

No matter which you choose, you can be sure all will leave you with tasty, flavorful dishes.

Happy cooking!

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