Are Tamarind Seeds Edible?

While reading some articles about tamarind, I discovered that its seeds can be eaten. I wonder what it taste like.

I have tried tasting santol seeds. The taste is very bitter. Chewing santol seeds was one of the punishment during our ROTC training (Reserved Officer Training Course). I also tried tasting mango seeds, the taste is also bitter.

Some plants are harvested for its seeds. Like peanut, black pepper, lima bean, kadyos and green pea. Others have edible flesh and seeds. The squash and watermelon, seeds are sold as butong kalabasa and butong pakwan. They are eaten as pulutan and as past time (pampalipas ng oras ika nga).

Some fruits have edible flesh but the seeds are toxic. The perfect example is guyabano. We are unable to export soursop products because foreign countries are suspecting that some seeds are accidentally crushed and mixed with juice.

Are you now afraid of eating guyabano? Don’t be cause its seed coat is so hard. You need a hammer to break one. The stomach acids are not strong enough to disintegrate the seed coat.

Going back to tamarind. The article said that it could be eaten by removing the seed coat, then frying or boiling.

tamarind seeds

I still have some sampalok seeds on my table. I got it and brought to boil.  I got sample and tested after 30 minutes. No changes, still hard. I continued boiling for one hour and tested again, still no changes occurred. I removed it from fire and throw it away.

Why? For me, cooking it for more than one hour is not practical. It will consume a lot of energy. Besides, I cannot find ways  to removed the seed coat with ease. Bare hands won’t do. Seeds are small and peeling it off with knife is dangerous.  Cutting it forcefully with a bolo will make the two halves fly.

Are tamarind seeds really edible? Maybe!


The tamarind seeds are edible as stated by Simon. I have also an updated testing – The Roasted Sampalok Seeds.

Marvin is the lead chocolate maker of Ben and Lyn Chocolate Inc. Has strong background in food research and development. Occasionally conducts training and lectures. Lecturer of Cocoa Foundation of the Philippines. Do coaching and consultancy services on his free time.

4 Replies to “Are Tamarind Seeds Edible?”

  1. Hey, if you dry roast the tamarind seed in a pan over a medium heat, keeping them moving to stop them burning, for around 10 minutes they will be truly edible. The outer coating will split on the seed, then crack away easily when you come to peel the seed. They taste slightly like coffee and peanuts, they are hard to the tooth, but edible nonetheless. You can boil them after you have dry roasted them to make them softer, but the crunch is satisfying.

  2. when eating tamarind seeds you don’t wait for the seeds to become brown or ripe. When using tamarind for the sinigang, we use the not so mature tamarind, remove the tamarind from the broth, mash and strain and bring the juice back to the sinigang. Meanwhile don’t throw the mashed tamarind after juice extraction, get the seeds, peel them with your hands because they’re soft (color is very light green), and you can eat them..yummy!!

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