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Ivy gourd

Also Known As : Kowai fruit/Scarlet Gourd/tindora/tondli
Technical Name : Coccinia grandis


Taste Profile

It has a mild sweet, juicy taste with slightly bitter after taste.

Usage Tips

  1. Ivy gourd can be fermented and used in curries and soups with rice and fries.It can be pickled and served with a chilli dip.
  2. It's young fruit, leaves and leafy shoots can be served fried or boiled with soups, rice or noodles.
  3. It can be stuffed with spices and fried in oil. It can also be served deep-fried in a curry.
  4. It can be consumed raw or comfited(coated with sugar).


Ivy gourd is a smooth, green colored, ovoid to ellipsoid shaped berry with longitudinal stripes when young and turn bright red when ripe. It primarily grows in tropical climates and is commonly found in the Southern Indian states. It has long elastic tendrils and palmate leaves with five lobes. Its inside reveals white, crispy flesh with some pale, flattened seeds 7 mm long. It is used both for food and medicinal purposes. Its leaves and fruit are used as a vegetable in India and other Asian countries.

Health benefits

  • Ivy gourd contains anti-adipogenic agent that can help to improve metabolic diseases induced by obesity. (1)
  • It can help to lower blood sugar level by improving the glucose tolerance. (1)
  • It contains good amount of iron that help body feel energetic and protect body weakness and severe fatigue. (1)
  • The vitamins and antioxidants in ivy gourd can help in strengthening the nervous system. It can also help treat nervous system problems such as Alzheimer’s disease, anxiety, numbness and multiple sclerosis. (1)
  • It contains thiamine that helps to convert carbohydrates into glucose, thus producing energy and maintaining healthy metabolism. (1)
  • It is a good source of fiber that helps to keep digestive tract healthy and prevent gastrointestinal disorders like gastric ulcers, hemorrhoids, gastroesophageal reflux disease and constipation. (1)

Selection Guide

Look for young, smooth skinned, green ivy gourds as they are best for cooking. Avoid mature ivy gourds as they tend to be more sweet and will impart sweet flavour to savoury dishes.


Those with low blood sugar levels must not consumed ivy gourd as it may reduce blood sugar to extreme levels. It must not be consumed a couple weeks just before scheduled surgery as it may affect blood sugar levels. Those who are allergic to other members of the Cucurbitaceae family of vegetables, may be allergic to ivy gourd as well and it may cause allergy, inflammation or difficulty in breathing. (2)

- Disclaimer
"Information here is provided for discussion and educational purposes only. It is not intended as medical advice or product or ingredient review/rating. The information may not apply to you and before you use or take any action, you should contact the manufacturer, seller, medical, dietary, fitness or other professional. If you utilize any information provided here, you do so at your own risk and you waive any right against Culinary Communications Private Limited, its affiliates, officers, directors, employees or representatives.”