Gobi manchurian recipe – Make the best super delicious & crispy gobi manchurian at home with this simple recipe. Cauliflower manchurian is one of the most popular manchurian dishes from Indo chinese cuisine. Gobi means cauliflower in hindi & manchurian is a sweet, tangy & slightly spicy sauce made with chilli sauce, vinegar, ginger & garlic.
This delicious crisp fried appetizer is very popular in Indian subcontinent. It makes its appearance everywhere in street stalls, restaurants and even in parties. Gobi manchurian is not an authentic Chinese dish nor a manchu dish but is a fusion of both the Indian & Chinese cuisine.
If you are new to Indo chinese cuisine then read on to know more.
What is Gobi Manchurian?
Gobi Manchurian is a popular Indo Chinese appetizer made with cauliflower, corn flour, soya sauce, vinegar, chilli sauce, ginger & garlic.
To make gobi manchurian, cauliflower is first coated in batter & then deep fried until crisp. Then these are tossed in sweet, sour and hot manchurian sauce.
Though a manchurian recipe can be made using chicken, mixed vegetable, soya chunks, fish etc – this one made with cauliflower has very much been loved and raved by most Indians.
The aroma and taste of fried cauliflower makes gobi manchurian a unique & super delicious appetizer.
There are 2 variations of gobi Manchurian – first one is a dry or a semi dry version & the second one a gravy version.
Which one tastes best – dry or gravy gobi manchurian?
My vote is for the dry or semi dry version of gobi manchurian. It is tasty & is much healthier than the gravy version. The major ingredient used to make the gravy is the corn starch which I always prefer to minimize.
Moreover the gravy version also needs more amounts of soya sauce and chilli sauce which I don’t opt. Over all it is a personal choice.
In this post I have included instructions for all the 3 versions – dry, semi dry & gravy versions. In the video I have shared how to make dry crispy gobi manchurian without using corn starch for the manchurian sauce.
For making semi dry & gravy, do check the notes in the recipe card
Can you bake gobi?
Yes you can bake them. Rinse and drain the florets. Toss the moist florets in spices first and then in 2 to 4 tbsps flour. Dust off the excess flour and place them in a greased tray. Ensure the cauliflower is moist otherwise the dry ingredients will not coat them well. You may check the details on this post – Baked gobi 65
What to serve with gobi manchurian?
Dry gobi Manchurian is served as a starter or appetizer so you don’t need anything else. It has a right balance of slightly spicy, sour & sweet tastes so it tastes amazingly delicious on its own.
Gobi manchurian gravy can be served as a side with any noodles, fried rice or even with plain fluffy long grain rice.
How to make the recipe glutenfree?
For gluten free version just replace all purpose flour with corn flour or arrowroot powder. Use gluten free sauces.
How to Make Gobi Manchurian (Stepwise Photos)
1. Clean cauliflower florets and add them to hot water, not to very hot or boiling water. Rest them for 3 to 5 mins. Discard the water and rinse them well few times. Drain them to a colander. Allow the water to drain completely.
2. Spread them on a clean cotton cloth or a wide colander. Air dry for sometime. This is done to remove excess moisture after washing. I usually leave them in a wide basket colander for sometime.
3. Begin to heat oil in a kadai on a medium flame. Meanwhile prepare the batter. To a large mixing bowl, add plain flour/ maida, corn flour, red chilli powder, salt and pepper. Mix.
4. Add water as needed and make a free flowing batter.
5. The batter must be smooth, free flowing and thick. It should not be runny or too thick. Check the salt, if needed add more.
6. Add gobi to this batter and coat them well.
7. Check if the oil is hot enough and pick up the florets one by one and gently slide in hot oil.
8. This two step guide will help you to make perfect crunchy fried gobi.
Make sure the flame is medium when you begin to add the florets and the oil is hot. Gradually as you add more florets to the pan, slightly increase the flame to maintain the temperature.
9. Once you finish adding the florets, regulate the flame to medium again and keep frying stirring often. At one point you will see that the bubbles begin to cease or at least reduce, then put the flame to low and allow them to fry for 2 to 3 mins without burning. During this 2 to 3 mins you have to keep stirring without stopping else they may get burnt.
10. The above 2 steps give the same effect of double frying the gobi which is usually done in restaurants. Remove them when they are golden.
11. Drain them on a kitchen tissue. This recipe requires frying gobi for longer time, the oil is no longer good to use. Just discard it.
Make Manchurian Sauce
12. Add 1 ½ tbsp fresh oil in a wide pan or wok and heat it. Add garlic, ginger and green chilies. Saute them well for 1 to 2 mins. Do not over fry as it makes the manchurian bitter.
13. Add onions or spring onions and capsicum. Even onion works well here. Finely chopped capsicum lends a very good flavor to the sauce. Saute this for 1 to 2 mins.
14. Add soya sauce. Prefer organic or at least naturally brewed soya sauce for health reasons.
15. Add red chilli sauce, red chilli paste and vinegar. To make red chilli paste, mix chilli powder with little water. Do not add dry powder to the pan, this may make the sauce bitter.
16. Add sugar.
17. Mix everything well.
18. Pour 3 tbsps of water. Mix it very well and allow to cook on a low heat until the sauce thickens. Red chilli sauce has already starch added to it so as we add water and cook it turns saucy.
19. Add coarsely crushed pepper. When the sauce turns thick turn off the stove and allow to cool down a bit. Just for 2 mins. Taste the sauce. It has to be slightly sour, sweet & hot. If needed you can adjust the salt, vinegar and red chilli sauce as well. I have not used any extra sauce than mentioned in the recipe card.
20. Add fried gobi, just before serving. Toss well.
21. Garnish with spring onions.
Serve gobi manchurian as a appetizer or a side with fried rice or noodles.
Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )
- 250 grams cauliflower florets (gobi cleaned)
- Oil for deep frying as needed
To Make Batter
- ½ cup all-purpose flour (maida, prefer organic or at least unbleached)
- ¼ cup cornstarch (white corn flour or yellow corn flour)
- ½ to 1 teaspoon red chilli powder or paste (less spicy variety) (optional)
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper crushed or ground
- ¼ teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
- ½ cup water (more if needed)
To Make Gobi Manchurian Sauce
- 1½ tablespoons oil (for sauce)
- 1 tablespoon garlic fine chopped
- ½ tablespoon ginger fine chopped
- 1 green chili chopped (optional)
- ⅓ cup onions or spring onions fine chopped
- ¼ cup bell pepper (capsicum chopped fine) (optional)
- 1 tablespoon soya sauce (organic or naturally brewed)(or tamari)
- 2 to 3 tablespoon Red Chilli sauce (or 2 tsps hot sauce, adjust to taste)
- 1 to 2 tablespoon tomato ketchup (optional, use if using hot sauce)
- ½ teaspoon Red chili powder (optional) (less spicy variety)
- ½ tablespoon rice vinegar (I used apple cider vinegar)
- 1 teaspoon sugar (adjust to taste)
- salt as needed
- 3 to 4 tablespoons water
- ½ to ¾ teaspoon black pepper crushed or ground
- ⅛ teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
- 2 tablespoons spring onion greens chopped for garnish
- Clean 250 grams of gobi and cut the florets to medium size.
- Add them to 3 cups of hot water and rest for 5 minutes.
- Later drain the gobi completely to a colander or spread on a clean cloth until no moisture remains on the gobi.
- You can do this ahead and set aside. Any moisture in the gobi will cook it to soft and not crisp.
- Heat up the oil for deep frying on a medium heat.
- Meanwhile make the batter by adding cornstarch, all-purpose flour, red chilli powder, black pepper and salt to a mixing bowl.
- Mix and add water little by little as needed and make a free flowing lump free batter. The consistency has to be medium and not too thick or very runny. Adjust salt as needed by tasting the batter. (check video)
- Then add the gobi florets to the batter in batches, coat them well.
- When the oil turns hot enough, check by dropping a small amount of batter to the hot oil. The batter has to rise without browning. This is the correct temperature.
- Pick up each cauliflower floret with a spoon or fingers & gently drop them one by one to the hot oil. The flame has to be medium initially and should be increased slightly as more gobi is added. Reduce the flame to medium and fry until the florets turn golden and crisp. Keep stirring in between for even frying.
- Drain them to a kitchen tissue or a steel colander. Repeat the same steps of adding the rest of the cauliflower florets to the batter, coating them well and then frying them in hot oil until crisp.
- For extra crisp gobi manchurian, you can also refry the once fried gobi again in oil. I usually do not do it as frying them once is good enough to get very good crisp manchurian with this recipe.
How to Make Gobi Manchurian
- Mix together red chili powder with little water to a paste and keep aside. This step is optional and is used mainly for the red color.
- Heat 1½ tablespoons oil in a wide pan.
- When the oil turns hot, add garlic, ginger and green chilies. Saute for a minute or two.
- Then add spring onions & capsicum. Saute them on a high flame for 2 mins.
- Add soya sauce, red chili sauce, tomato ketchup, red chili paste, sugar and vinegar. (for gravy version refer the notes section below).
- Mix and add water. Mix and cook stirring and add pepper.
- Cook on a medium heat until the sauce thickens.
- Turn off the stove and check the taste.
- The sauce has to be slightly sour, sweet & hot. If needed you can adjust the salt & add more sauces as well.
- Allow the sauce to cool for 1 to 2 mins.
- Add the fried cauliflower and stir gently to coat the gobi well with the manchurian sauce.
- Garnish gobi manchurian with spring onion greens.
- Serve immediately as a appetizer or as a side with noodles or fried rice.
- Red chilli sauce is a sweet, hot and slightly tangy sauce. If you do not have it, use 1 to 2 tsps of any hot sauce along with tomato ketchup. Adjust the sugar as well.
To make gobi manchurian semi-dry
- Double the amount of chilli sauce, sugar, vinegar and tomato sauce. Use red chilli powder as required. I double it.
- Mix 1 tsp corn flour with half cup water. Stir in to the bubbling sauces. Taste and adjust the sweet, spice & tang.
To make gobi manchurian gravy
- Triple the amount of chilli sauce, sugar, vinegar & tomato sauce. I triple the red chilli powder as well for this. But if you want it less spicy then you may just double it.
- Mix ¾ tbsp corn flour with 1 cup of water and stir in to the bubbling sauces. Taste the sauce when it thickens and adjust the sweet, spice & tang.
- Please adjust the amount of chilli powder as needed. I use a low heat chilli powder. Some readers mentioned it turned out too spicy for them. You can totally skip the chilli powder in the seasoning as it is used only for color.
- Since cauliflower is fried for long time, for health reasons discard the used oil and do not reuse it.
- Instead of frying you can also bake the cauliflower. Rinse and drain the florets. Toss the moist florets in spices first and then in 2 to 4 tbsps flour. Dust off the excess flour and place them in a greased tray. Ensure the cauliflower is moist otherwise the dry ingredients will not coat them well. You may check the details on this post – Baked gobi 65
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)
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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.
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