Curry Pineapple Relish

You'll make it with the intent to share, but will you?   This curry pineapple relish recipe makes about 4 small jars.  It's a great gift.  In fact I gave a couple of my first batch away as gifts and then I ran out so quickly I had to make more.

curry pineapple relish in a white bowl with spoon.  Background, ham and cheese on bagel with curry pineapple relish.

The back story for my curry pineapple relish recipe is kind of cute. 

Skip right to the recipe if you like or read through for the background and some extra advice on ingredients. 

The Back Story

It all started on a romantic getaway.  My husband and I decided on what is becoming known as a "staycation" for our anniversary.  Travelling out of the country during the pandemic had been shifting between difficult and impossible, and I wasn't thrilled with the idea of getting on a plane anyway, so we booked a romantic weekend at the Millcroft Inn at Caledon, Ontario.  It's more money that we would normally spend for a weekend away but we hadn't travelled in well over a year and wanted to make it special.

Millcroft Inn Caledon Ontario Canada.  Photo of waterfall and sparkling river alongside rustic inn and green foliage.Millcroft Inn, Caledon, Ontario, Canada

Between the wine, gourmet meals and spa treatments we took a short excursion into the rural town of Orangeville, about 15 minutes away, to check out the town and have a dinner away from the resort.

One of the things I love to do while travelling is to shop in local stores that make their own goods or sell products made by local artisans.  We found such a place in Fromage Orangeville.  The owner was just about to close up when she saw us peaking in the door, not wanting to interrupt her sweeping.  She invited us in and was so small town friendly.  We purchased a few cheeses and a jar of, you guessed it, curry pineapple relish.

When we got it home, it sat on the pantry shelf for a couple of weeks.  I'd kind of forgotten about it, when one day I was looking for something to accompany a pork cottage roll I'd made for dinner.  I cracked the lid and had a taste.  Then gave my husband a taste.  We looked at each other like, well it was better than, well maybe not better than, well maybe...

When that jar of curry pineapple relish was empty I decided I had to try to replicate it.  Orangeville is after all a bit far to travel for a jar of preserves.  I scoured the internet and found pineapple chutneys, but nothing quite like I was looking for.  I used a couple of those chutney recipes as a guide, along with the ingredients list on the jar and my own taste-buds and, success.  

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you (drum roll) Naturally Gluten-Free Curry Pineapple Relish!

Curry Pineapple Relish Ingredients

The Pineapple

This is the most important ingredient.  One whole pineapple cut into cubes will give you the perfect amount.  If you can't get fresh pineapple can you use canned?  Fresh is best but if it's not possible, well sure, why not.  I recommend draining off the juice and reducing the sugar by about half to start with, add more at the end if you feel like it needs it.  It's just that canned pineapple is quite a bit sweeter than fresh so without reducing the sugar your curry pineapple relish would likely be too sweet. 

Red Onion

Red onion has more complex, sweet / acidic flavor that a plain cooking onion or even a sweet onion and has the perfect balance for this curry pineapple relish.  If you don't have one, a sweet or Spanish onion would work.

Whole pineappple wearing sunglasses and a party hat.Photo by: Pineapple Supply Co on Unsplash

The Bell Pepper

I recommend using a red bell pepper because, looks matter and and the red pepper adds just the right flavor as well as little red flecks that make your curry pineapple relish look just plain appetizing.  

A Little Heat

The recipe calls for a pinch of cayenne pepper.  Everyone is different when it comes to how much heat they like or can tolerate.  The pinch of cayenne gives more a a depth to the flavor than much actual heat.  If you want to amp it up just a bit, be a little more generous with the cayenne, or add a few red chili flakes or even a bit of minced jalapeno. 

Putting it All Together

You're going to be amazed at how easy this is!

pot with chunky pineapple in red sauce.

You need a good heavy pot, and I recommend an immersion blender.  If you don't have one you can use your regular blender but remember to take the little plastic center out of the lid so the steam can escape.  I've seen people get covered in hot liquid from an exploding blender.  I don't want this to happen to you. 

The rest of the ingredients are pretty self explanatory.  Fresh ginger, garlic, and cilantro are best, but again, if they're hard to find you can substitute ground spices.  

The Recipe


Cubed pineapple, diced red bell pepper and red onion. Avocado oil. orange juice, apple cider vinegar, minced garlic and grated ginger. Corn starch and chopped cilantro.
  • 1 pineapple, cored and cubed.  About 4 1/2 cups
  • 3 tablespoons of oil (olive or avocado work well but any neutral cooking oil is fine).
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of curry powder
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp fresh ginger, grated
  • pinch cayenne (to taste)
  • 3/4 cup orange juice
  • 3/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 tsp corn starch
  • 1 sprig cilantro, chopped
  • pinch salt


  • Heat the oil in the bottom of a large pot or Dutch oven over medium to medium low heat.  
  • Cook the onion and bell pepper until tender but don't brown it.  Hence the lower heat.  About 7 or 8 minutes.
  • Add the curry powder, cayenne, ginger and garlic and cook for two or three minutes until everything is wonderfully fragrant.  
  • Add the orange juice, apple cider vinegar and sugar and stir until the sugar dissolves.  Then add the pineapple.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil then reduce the heat and let it simmer with the lid off for about an hour to an hour and 15 min.  It should thicken up and reduce by almost half.  You should end up with about 3 1/2 to 4 cups of chunky sauce. 
  • Blitz with your emersion blender until you have a slightly chunky sauce.  Think of relish, you still want to see the bits of red pepper and pineapple and your curry pineapple relish should also be spreadable.  
  • Dissolve the cornstarch in just a little water and add it to the relish.  Stir and cook for another minute or two.  It will thicken up just a bit. 
  • Now taste and adjust the seasoning with salt and if it needs it, a bit more cayenne. 
  • Add the cilantro and stir.
  • Let it cool and then pour into jars or freezer safe containers. 
  • Your curry pineapple relish will improve with age, just a bit of age.  The next day or the day after the flavors will have melded beautifully and you may not be able to leave it alone. 
Adding spices to pot of sautéed onion and bell pepper.
pot of red sauce.
chunky pineapple in red sauce.
curry pineapple relish pureed in pot.

Serve with roast pork, pork tenderloin, ham, fish.

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