Kadhi Chawal Recipe

Punjabi food culture is known for its spicy curries in all over the world. Nowadays, you won’t find many Indian restaurants serving authentic regional food without Punjabi touch.

That’s how this culture has influenced our traditional food in the modern era!

Having said that, Punjabi people don’t actually eat such food all the time. They also enjoy less spicy food in their daily lives.

And one such delicacy is Kadhi Chawal!

This combination of Kadhi (an Indian term for curry; not to be confused with vegetable curries) and Chawal (steamed rice) has been a great alternative to Dal Chawal, Sambar & Rice and similar dishes prepared in other parts of India.

Talking about its success, people from all caste, color, and regions relish on this lip-smacking combination. The Langars have also been serving this delicacy for hundreds of years.

So, let’s take a look at the Kadhi Chawal recipe –

Chawal Preparation

For steamed rice, you can use any of your favorite technique. I’ve shared the most common pressure cooker technique for perfect results.

Ingredients –

  • Rice – 2 cups, washed and soaked for 10 minutes
  • Salt to taste
  • Water as needed


1. Get a bowl and put all the soaked rice in it.

2. Add the water and salt into it. Stir well.

3. Place this bowl in a pressure cooker filled with enough water.

4. Switch on the flame at a high level and let the rice cook for 3-4 whistles (depending on the pressure cooker’s model).

Kadhi Preparation

In case you don’t know, this type of Kadhi is often prepared using deep fried onion fritters i.e. Pakodas. So, you will need to make them separately before the kadhi preparation.

I’ve included a small recipe of Onion fritters in the following section. If you want the more detailed recipe, please check the link above.

Ingredients for Pakodas

  • Gram Flour – 5-6 tablespoon
  • Onion – 1, medium sized, sliced into juliennes
  • Turmeric Powder – 1/2 teaspoon
  • Red Chilli Powder – 1-1/2 teaspoon
  • Oil for deep frying
  • Salt to taste

Ingredients for Kadhi

  • Gram Flour – 4-5 tablespoon
  • Yogurt/Curd –  8-10 tablespoon, slightly sour curd, whisked
  • Red Chilli Powder – 1 teaspoon
  • Turmeric Powder – 1/2 teaspoon
  • Ginger-Garlic Paste – 1 teaspoon
  • Asafoetida – 1/4 teaspoon
  • Fenugreek Seeds – 1/2 teaspoon
  • Cumin Seeds – 1/2 teaspoon
  • Dry Red Chillies – 2 nos., cut into halves
  • Coriander Leaves – 2 tablespoons, finely chopped
  • Green Chilli – 1, finely chopped (Optional)
  • Oil -2 teaspoon
  • Water as needed
  • Salt to taste

Instructions –

1. Heat oil in a kadai on medium-high flame.

2. Get a bowl and add the sliced onions, turmeric powder, red chili powder and salt in it. Mix well.

3. Then, add the gram flour in this mixture and prepare a thick batter without adding water.

4. Fry the Pakodas in hot oil till golden brown and keep them in an air-tight container for some time.

5. Meanwhile, get another bowl and mix the sour yogurt, gram flour, water, turmeric powder, red chili powder and ginger-garlic paste together.

There shouldn’t be any lumps in the mixture. Also, make this mixture slightly on the thinner side so that it can gradually become thicker on the flame.

6. Heat some oil in a pan on medium flame.

7. Add the cumin seeds and fenugreek seeds in hot oil.

8. When cumin seeds begin to splutter, add the dry red chilies and asafoetida. Stir well.

9. Pour the yoghurt-gram flour mixture in it. Stir in between to avoid thickening process of gram flour.

Note – If you don’t stir it, the gram flour might accumulate at the bottom.

10. After 7-8 minutes on the flame, add the salt, fresh coriander leaves in it. Mix them well and check the taste.

11. If everything looks good, you can reduce the flame and add the Pakodas into your silky gravy.

12. Finally, garnish it with remaining coriander leaves and chopped green chilies.

Serve the Kadhi immediately with hot steamed rice.

Kadhi Chawal Preparation in Different Styles

Although the basic recipe of this dish is well-known to everyone, you’ll come across many variations in different locations of India.

So, here are some interesting preparation styles for you –

Sliced Onions Base –

Unlike above recipe, some people like to use sliced onions in their version of Kadhi preparations.

It helps prepare the gravy with more substance than plain texture and consistency. The stir-fried onions also add sweetness to the taste of final Kadhi.

Methi Pakodas –

In this, you can replace Onion Pakodas with Methi Pakodas. It’s a common practice in different regions of Punjab.

If your kids don’t like to eat Methi vegetable preparation, you can certainly experiment with this type of dish. You may also combine Onions and Fenugreek Leaves together to make crispy Pakodas.

Use of Potato in Pakoda or Curry –

As I’ve mentioned above, Pakodas can be prepared using various ingredients.

Simply chop the potatoes in cubes and put them in Onion Pakoda’s batter. That’s it! You don’t have to follow anything else.

For health concerned people, you can try making these Pakodas in Airfryers.

Both these styles are equally popular among many households in North India, as potatoes and onions are regularly available ingredients in our bazaars.

Spice-based Kadhi –

The dried spices are an important part of Indian curries, but you would rarely see them in restaurant-style Kadhi Chawal.
Some housewives, however, do prefer dried spices like Black Pepper Seeds, Bay Leaf, and Cinnamon Sticks over ground spices in their Kadhi preparations


As you can see, Kadhi Chawal is a complete meal in itself. And if you still feel like enjoying with accompaniments, you can serve it with roasted Papad and Aam ka Achar (Raw Mango Pickle).

So, do try it out and share your thoughts below.

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