Kathi Roll Recipe
Make delicious & wholesome Kathi Rolls with my easy recipe. Chewy, tender, spicy, and tangy with a hint of crunch is how you’d describe this scrumptious street food – Kathi Roll. In this post I share an easy recipe to make healthy & nutritious vegetable Kati rolls that you can easily customize to your taste. Make them cheesy by using paneer or cheese, meaty by using chicken or/& eggs following my variations section below.
What is Kathi Roll?
Kathi Roll is an Indian layered paratha wrap with a filling of grilled kebabs (on kati/skewers), green chutney or sauces, shredded veggies and sometimes even with eggs.
Kathi Roll gets its name for the skewers or stick referred to as ‘Kati’ in Bengali, to which the kebabs are threaded before grilling.
Kathi roll is an innovative dish created in the 1930s by Kolkata’s famous Nizam’s Restaurant, before it was adapted and popularized by the street vendors. In fact, no trip to this city will be complete without the tasting of authentic Bengali sweets, puchkas, and the you-cannot-escape–me Kathi roll.
This savory Indian wrap started as a meat kebab stuffed within rolled parathas and has since evolved to the versions you see today.
With the movement of people and their foods across the country, kati roll has become a pan India food served by everyone from street carts and small eateries to canteens and restaurants.
Then you have us creative home cooks trying our hand at the modest but delicious food.
Kathi Rolls are especially popular with kids and make a balanced lunchbox meal for them. This dish is a great menu option when you’re entertaining guests at home or need something that stays fresh for office potlucks.
About this recipe
My recipe isn’t the traditional roll with meat kebab stuffing in case you’re wondering. I have taken the basic idea of that wrap and given it a healthier makeover. It features some easy to find vegetables, regular spices and the everyday roti or Chapati dough.
There are numerous ways to make this stuffing and even the wrappers. From thick dough wrappers (Paratha) to thin Thepla-style wraps, you have options galore.
Roll, wrap, wrapper, packet – call it by any name – makes a complete meal, and often, a hearty one depending what goes inside. When you start making wraps, you realize that these recipes are indeed versatile. Kathi rolls are no exception!
For the healthy vegetarian version vegetables are sautéed with spices and wrapped in whole wheat Chapatis that come with a thick spread of Green chutney.
The boiled and cubed potatoes provide a filling and rich taste when combined with green peas. The stir fried bell peppers provide the necessary crunch with warm spices adding the much needed flavor.
How to make Kathi Roll (Stepwise Photos)
1. Steam or boil 1 medium to large potato until fork tender. I used 1 large potato, rinsed, peeled and cubed. I steamed in pressure cooker until just done not mushy.
2. If you know how to make roti or paratha, you may skip the first few steps of making them. Add 1¼ cup atta (wheat flour) to a mixing bowl. Sprinkle little salt. I usually do not use salt.
3. Pour 1 tsp oil and little less than ⅓ cup water. Oil is optional. You can also use buttermilk to make the dough.
4. Mix it to a dough. Knead well until it looks soft and pliable. Cover and set aside until the filling is ready.
Make the Filling
5. Heat a pan with 1 tablespoon oil. Add ½ teaspoon cumin and ¼ teaspoon mustard seeds (optional). When they begin to crackle, add a pinch of hing (optional).
6. Add 1 medium sliced onion (about ½ to ¾ cup) and sprinkle a pinch of salt. Saute until the onions slightly discolor.
7. Next add ¾ teaspoon ginger garlic paste (or ½ teaspoon each grated or fine chopped).
8. Saute until the raw smell of the ginger garlic goes off.
9. Add the following ingredients.
- 1 to large medium boiled potato diced
- ¾ cup bell peppers sliced (or Carrots julienned)
- ¼ to ½ cup green peas (frozen or boiled)
- ⅛ teaspoon turmeric
- ¾ teaspoon coriander powder
- ½ teaspoon red chili powder
- ½ teaspoon garam masala
- ½ teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
For my kids’ I generally use less garam masala and more coriander powder and saunf powder.
10. Mix everything well and saute for 3 to 4 minutes. If you want to add paneer, add it at this stage. Cover and cook on a very low heat for 2 to 3 mins until the capsicum partially cooks to your liking. Taste test and adjust salt. Set this aside & cool down. While these cook, I finish making the fresh green chutney. You can find the recipe of green chutney here. You can also use any store bought sauce like red chilli sauce or sriracha or schezwan sauce.
Make Kathi Rolls
11. Divide the dough to 4 to 5 equal parts. Shape them to round balls.
12. Dust the rolling board with little flour. Flatten a ball and sprinkle flour over it on both the sides.
13. Begin to roll it evenly to a round shaped layer. Set this aside and continue to make the rest while you fry them.
14. Heat a tawa / griddle. When it is hot enough, transfer the roti to the pan. When you begin to see the bubbles, flip it and press down gently.
15. Flip it and cook on both the sides until golden to brown spots appear. You can add ghee or oil at this stage. Spread a kitchen cloth or tissue over a plate. Transfer the cooked roti to the plate and stack them.
16. Smear the chutney or sauce as much as you like. Make sure the chutney is thick else the roti will turn soggy and break. You can also use fresh veggies like shredded cabbage, onions and carrots.
If you are making these to serve later or to pack in the office or school boxes, avoid spreading the chutney, instead drizzle some thick chutney over the filling.
17. Fold one edge of the roti towards the inner side. Begin to roll it tightly. Use a sandwich pick to hold the kati roll in shape. You can also use a parchment paper to wrap one end of the rolls.
Keep the kathi rolls covered until used.
There are standard fillings that have come to be associated with a kati roll, but don’t let that stop you. When you’ve mastered the method of making these rolls, you can try your hand at different filling combos.
Gluten-free option: This is a vegan but not gluten-free recipe. Use corn tortillas, plain chilla or even gluten-free roti (made with flours like millet, sorghum, soy) as wrappers.
Add Protein: Grated paneer, hard cheese, tofu, tempeh and even cooked beans (not the mushy kind) make good additions.
Make Paneer rolls by following one of these recipes – Paneer tikka, Garlic Paneer, Paneer Jalfrezi or Chilli paneer. Use fresh shredded veggies of choice like carrots, onions, zucchini, cucumbers etc.
Make meaty kathi rolls: You can use this Chicken Jalfrezi to fill your chicken rolls. Or grill the chicken following my Chicken tikka or Chicken kebabs. Make this Kachumber or Onion salad and use as a filling.
Street style Kathi rolls are made with refined flour. For a healthier version I use whole wheat flour. You are free to use any.
For the sauce, my preferred choices are these homemade Green chutney, Mint chutney, Coriander chutney and Schezwan sauce as we try to minimize the consumption of store bought bottled sauces. For convenience you may use store bought red chilli sauce, sri racha or any other of choice.
To wrap the Kathi rolls, I use sandwich picks or wooden picks. If you are serving them to young kids, please wrap them in parchment paper or do monitor them.
If making Kathi rolls for school or office boxes make sure you don’t spread the sauce or chutney on the chapati or paratha as the kati rolls can turn soggy. Instead pack the sauce or chutney separately.
Kathi Roll Recipe
For best results follow the step-by-step photos above the recipe card
Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )
For the roti or wraps
- 1¼ cup whole wheat flour (atta)
- ¼ teaspoon salt (optional)
- ⅓ cup water (can use warm water/ buttermilk)( adjust as needed)
- 1 teaspoon oil (optional)
For kathi roll filling
- 1 potato (Medium to large or ¾ cup paneer cubed)
- ¼ to ½ cup peas (frozen or boiled)
- ¾ cup bell peppers (or carrot, julienned)
- 1 tablespoon oil
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds (jeera)
- ¼ teaspoon mustard seeds (optional)
- 1 Pinch asafoetida (hing, optional)
- ½ to ¾ cup onion thinly sliced (1 medium)
- ¾ teaspoon ginger garlic paste or grated ginger or minced garlic
- ¾ teaspoon coriander powder
- ½ teaspoon red chili powder (adjust to taste)
- ½ teaspoon garam masala
- ⅛ teaspoon turmeric (haldi)
- ½ teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
- 2 tablespoon coriander leaves chopped
- 2 to 3 tablespoons Green chutney or any sauce
- Steam or boil potato until just done without making mushy.
- Add atta to a mixing bowl along with salt and oil. Pour water just as needed and make a soft dough. Knead well until it becomes soft and pliable. Cover and set aside for 20 mins.
- Divide the dough to 4 to 5 equal parts. Lightly sprinkle the rolling area and the dough ball with flour. Using a rolling pin roll the ball evenly to a round layer.
- Heat a pan / griddle or tawa on a medium high heat. Gently transfer the roti to the tawa. When you see tiny bubbles, flip it and press down gently with a spatula.
- Cook on both the sides flipping until both the sides are cooked with golden to brown spots. Add ghee or oil now.
- Spread a kitchen cloth or tissue over a plate. Transfer the roti to it. Make all the rotis and stack them in the plate.
- Heat a pan with oil. Allow mustard and cumin to crackle. Add hing, onions and a pinch of salt. Saute until onions turn golden.
- Fry ginger garlic paste until the raw smell goes off. Add all the veggies. Next add turmeric, chili powder, coriander powder, garam masala & the rest of the salt
- Saute for 3 mins. Cover and cook on a low flame until the veggies are cooked to your liking. Taste test and add more salt if you want. Set this aside to cool.
How to make Kathi Roll
- Smear chutney or sauce over the roti. If you are making these ahead to serve later, do not smear the chutney as the rolls can easily turn soggy. Instead drizzle a little over the filling and serve the chutney/ sauce at the time of serving.
- Add a sufficient amount of cooked veggies to one side of the roti. Begin to roll it tightly and prick a sandwich pick to hold in shape. Or wrap them with a parchment paper to cover half of the kathi roll and tuck the bottom.
- They are ready to serve with more chutney or sauce of choice.
- If you want to use paneer, soak the paneer in hot water for 15 mins and drain completely. Add that to the pan after stir frying the veggies, before you cover and cook the filling.
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
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
Comandable recipes. Very simple and easy procedure
Thanks for easy recipes
Kathi rolls become soggy if packed for lunch box for kids.. how do i go about it
I have mentioned in the tips – if using for school box I do not use chutney or any spread. Just skip the chutney and spread. Keep the veggies slightly moist. That will keep the rolls good. Hope this helps.
Very nice recipe, I think my both kids would love it.
Yes kids will surely love them.
I made these Kathi rolls today for lunch for my children and hubby. Everyone loved them and asked to give regularly. I made the rotis in rotimatic. i will be making these with different fillings especially with Greek yogurt. Thank you very much for lovely recipes.
Great! so glad all of them liked the kathi rolls. Yes do try the other variations. Thanks for the comment.
Thanks for the delicious recipes
Looking yummy!!! wonderful recipe for kids. Is the chutney spread mandatory? Just to know if I don’t have any chutney in hand and wanted to do this roll . Thank you.
You are welcome Dil,
You can make the rolls even without chutney. You can also check these rolls for kids
Vegetable kathi rolls
Palak paneer rolls
Thank you,mam..sure will try out all.
Going to make this in the upcoming days.
Thanks for the recipe.
Welcome Mohit kumar,
Thanks for the comment
Thanks for sharing the recipe….I tried it and guess what….It was awsome..my mother loved it.
Glad to know you all liked it. Thanks for the comment
thanks to share your healthy recipe.
Nice Preparation!!!Thanks…will try
Yes do try it
Thanks a lot for these nice recipes. My kids love these
so glad to know your kids love them.