Cabbage Vada | Cabbage Patties
Cabbage Vada are Indian style crisp fried cabbage patties made with lentils, spices, herbs and fresh cabbage. These cabbage patties are a vegan, gluten-free and protein packed snack that you can make any time with easily available ingredients. Serve them with Indian Tea, Coconut Chutney or Mint Chutney for an extra zing. In this post I share the recipe to make cabbage vada with stovetop, oven and air fryer instructions. For a guilt-free cabbage patties, air fry or bake them in an oven.
Vada are traditional spiced lentil fritters or patties made often in the Indian homes and restaurants. There are many different kinds of vada popular among the Indian food lovers. The South Indian Medu vada, Masala vada and Dahi vada are some popular kinds.
Cabbage vada is not so popular but you will find a lot of South Indian home cooks making these as a way to use up the extra cabbage. These are made in 2 ways. My Mom sometimes would add chopped cabbage to the Medu vada batter. Surprisingly the cabbage in the vada tastes so crisp and good. We never realized there is cabbage in the medu vadas.
The other method is the way I am showing in this post. These cabbage patties are made on the similar lines as this masala vada. Chana dal known as Bengal gram is briefly soaked and ground to a coarse mixture to which the spices, herbs and chopped cabbage is added.
If you have ever loved the South Indian street style Masala vadai, I am sure you will instantly fall in love with these cabbage vada. Though these cabbage patties won’t taste the same as your masala vada, they are fantastic with fried cabbage in them. You know how good the fried cabbage smells!
More Snacks Recipes,
Mixed dal vada
Instant rava vada
How to Make Cabbage Vada (Stepwise photos)
1. Wash ¾ cup chana dal very well and soak it for 1 hour in enough water. Discard the water and set aside to drain completely in a colander.
2. Heat 3 cups water in a large pot to clean cabbage. Cut to 4 quarters and remove the core. Dip it in slightly hot water and rest for 5 minutes. Discard the water and wash the cabbage well again in fresh water. Drain them in a colander and shred or chop finely.
3. Add 2 ½ cups chopped cabbage, ⅓ teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon ginger or ginger garlic paste, 2 chopped green chilies, 2 tablespoons coriander leaves, 2 tbsps mint leaves and ¼ cup soaked chana dal.
4. Add rest of the chana dal to a blender and just pulse it without adding water, no grinding.
5. Pulse it only a few times to keep the mixture coarse.
Make the dough
6. Add the ground mixture to the cabbage along with ¾ to 1 teaspoon garam masala and ¼ teaspoon red chili powder. You can also replace garam masala and chili powder by coarsely pounding cloves, cinnamon, red chilies, fennel seeds and cumin seeds. For exact quantities check my masala vada recipe.
7. Mix everything very well. Set this aside for 10 minutes.
8. Begin to heat oil for frying on a medium heat. After a while (about 8 to 10 mins) you will find the mixture has shrunk a bit and cabbage releases moisture. Add 2 tablespoons rice flour and mix again. Taste test and adjust salt and spice if required.
9. The mixture at this stage should be binding well. If needed you can also add another tbsp of rice flour, this helps to keep the vada crisp. Divide the dough to 10 to 12 balls and flatten them with greased hands. You can do this directly on your palms or on a greased cling wrap or foil. Make sure the patties are not too thick else they will not cook well.
Fry the Cabbage Patties
10. When the oil is hot enough, test by dropping a small portion of the dough to the hot oil. It should sizzle and come up with out turning too brown. Regulate the flame to medium and gently slide the vada one after the other. You can fry 2 to 3 depending on the size of your kadai. Do not disturb them for 2 mins until they firm.
11. Keep stirring and fry them until golden on both the sides. Drain them on a cooling rack or steel colander.
Cabbage vada are best served hot with chutney or tea.
Cabbage Vada | Cabbage Patties
For best results follow the step-by-step photos above the recipe card
Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )
- ¾ cup chana dal (Bengal gram, skinned lentils)
- 2 ½ cups cabbage finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon ginger paste or ginger garlic paste
- ¾ to 1 teaspoon garam masala (you can replace with masala vada spices)
- ¼ teaspoons red chili powder
- 2 tablespoons mint leaves (chopped finely)
- 2 green chilies chopped (skip for reduced heat)
- 2 tablespoons rice flour (or gram flour, more if needed)
- ⅓ teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
- 2 tablespoons coriander leaves (chopped finely)
Preparation for Cabbage Patties
- Add chana dal to a medium sized bowl and rinse well a few times. Soak for 1 to 1½ hour. Drain completely.
- Cut cabbage to quarters and remove the core. Dip them in slightly hot water and leave it for 5 mins. Drain and rinse well in fresh water in a pot. Drain completely and shred the cabbage and chop to very small size bits.
- Add the cabbage to a mixing bowl along with coriander leaves, salt, green chili, ginger, curry leaves and ¼ cup soaked chana dal. Keep this aside.
- Pulse the remaining chana dal in a grinder or a food processor to a coarse mixture without adding any water. Check the picture in the post for texture.
- Add this to the cabbage & other other ingredients. Also add garam masala and red chili powder. Mix this well and set aside for 10 minutes optionally. This draws out the moisture from the cabbage.
- Add 2 tbsp rice flour and mix. Take small portion (about 2 to 3 tbsps) of this mixture and check if it binds well.
- If the mixture looks too loose to bind, add more flour and mix. Taste test and adjust salt and spices as required.
How to Make Cabbage Vada
- Heat oil in a deep pan for deep frying. Test if the oil is hot enough by dropping a small portion of the dough. If the oil is hot enough the dough will sizzle and come up. It should be medium hot and not brown the dough instantly. This is the right temperature.
- Divide the dough to 10 to 12 portions and make round balls. Grease your palm and flatten a dough ball and shape it to a patty as shown in the picture in the post.
- You can make the cabbage vada on a greased foil or cling film. You can also make it directly in your palm and shape them.
- Regulate the flame to medium. Gently slide 3 to 4 to the hot oil, depending on the size of your kadai. Do not disturb them for 2 mins or so until they firm up.
- Later stir and fry until golden and crisp. Drain them to a cooling rack or a steel colander. Fry all the cabbage patties in batches of 2 to 3.
- Serve cabbage vada with a cup of Indian tea or any chutney. This coconut chutney & mint chutney go well.
Cabbage Patties in Air Fryer
- Do not make thick patties, they should be thin enough so the cabbage gets cooked well. Place them in the air fryer basket and spray oil.
- Air fry for 18 mins at 180 C or 350 F. Turn them to the other side after 10 mins. For the extra crisp texture I air fry at 200 C or 390F.
- We prefer to brush the cabbage patties with a bit of ghee and serve them hot.
Bake in the Oven
- Place them on a greased baking sheet. Place the tray in the center of the preheat oven. Bake them for 12 mins and then turn them to the other side and fry for another 8 mins. Adjust the time as needed depending on the oven.
- Shape the cabbage vada well. If done loosely they may disintegrate in the oil.
- Add as much flour as required for the binding but also note that you don’t add a lot as this makes the patties harder.
- Cabbage is prepared to get rid of little worms. If you want you may skip that step but make sure there is no excess moisture in the cabbage.
Alternative quantities provided in the recipe card are for 1x only, original recipe.
For best results follow my detailed step-by-step photo instructions and tips above the recipe card.
NUTRITION INFO (estimation only)
© Swasthi’s Recipes
Cabbage Vada Recipe first published in September 2016. Updated & republished in May 2022.
I’m Swasthi Shreekanth, the recipe developer, food photographer & food writer behind Swasthi’s Recipes. My aim is to help you cook great Indian food with my time-tested recipes. After 2 decades of experience in practical Indian cooking I started this blog to help people cook better & more often at home. Whether you are a novice or an experienced cook I am sure Swasthi’s Recipes will assist you to enhance your cooking skills.
Follow Swasthi’s Recipes
Tried this recipe everything went well but it was not cooked inside … where it went wrong ? Can you please tell me… Tried many of your recipes like spinach rice. Taste was just too good…
Fry the vadas on a medium to medium low heat. If the oil is too hot, the outer side gets cooked and browns quickly but the inside won’t cook well. So ensure the oil is hot but not very hot (smoking hot) and keep the flame medium. Hope this helps. Also use a thicker kadai. Thanks for trying the recipes.
Can I make this in an air fryer?
Yes. Total time 18 to 20 mins at 180 C.
Turn them to the other side after 10 mins. To make them golden and crisp air fry the last 2 mins at 200 C
Yummy and crispy badass. Thank you for this recipe
It really came out well.Good one for lockdown
Love all ur receipe. Tried many . Thank U
Would it be okay if we make the mix in the evening and fry the vadas early next day? Please advise.
I think cabbage will let out moisture if rested overnight. You may need to add more flour in the morning.
I love ur all recipes. Very easy to follow. Thank u dear
Is mint necessary ?
Yes mint gives a good flavor. If you dont have skip it
Sjhould we use the balance oil after making the urad dal cabbage vada in the next day for variety rice
It is not healthy to reuse oil. I use less oil to fry and discard it after one use.
Great recipe Swasthi..Keep up the good work..