paratha served with chutney and vegetables

Paratha Recipe

By Swasthi on August 31, 2022, Comments, Jump to Recipe

Paratha recipe – A detailed beginner’s guide to make perfect, flaky & soft parathas every time! Homemade parathas are delicious, easy, flaky yet so soft that once you make them you’ll never go back to store bought frozen parathas again. They are perfect to serve with any curry, stew or soup. They also go great with a spread of jam, pickle or chutney or simply wrap them up with your grilled veggies, fried eggs or meat for a delicious meal or snack. The options are endless & you will love your homemade parathas every time!


paratha served with chutney and vegetables

If you are new to Indian foods you may be wondering what these are.

About Paratha

Paratha are unleavened layered flatbreads made with whole wheat flour (atta), salt, water & ghee or oil. These traditional flatbreads are a staple in Indian subcontinent and are served for a breakfast with a side of curd, chutney, pickle, curries, eggs and meat dishes.

To make parathas, first a soft and pliable wheat flour dough is made. Later portions of this is rolled to a layer, over which ghee is smeared and folded several times to make a triangle or square base. This is then rolled to get several thin layers & lastly this is roasted on a griddle until golden and cooked through.

During the process of roasting, steam traps in between the layers which help to cook the dough well resulting in multiple soft layers of paratha. A generous amount of ghee is then drizzled to impart a nutty aroma and flaky crisp texture to the paratha.

Basically these are of 2 kinds – plain or layered parathas and stuffed parathas. The plain parathas are made the way I mentioned above. Stuffed parathas are made with a stuffing of veggies, eggs or meat inside the dough. Aloo parathas are one of the popular stuffed kind.

The plain layered parathas can also be further flavored by adding various spices, pureed spinach, boiled vegetables, mashed paneer or chopped leafy greens. For more details you may check the variations section below.

The beauty of these parathas is that they are easy to make and requires no special skills like the stuffed parathas. These can also be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator for several days or even frozen.

These make for a great breakfast with some egg bhurji or paneer bhurji. They also go well in the school and office lunch box. Here are some curries that go well with these parathas.
Dal makhani
Paneer butter masala
Dal tadka
Vegetable Jalfrezi
Mix vegetable curry

How to Make Plain Paratha (Stepwise photos)

Make dough

1. Add 2 cups or 250 grams whole wheat flour (atta), ¼ tsp salt (optional) and 2 tsps oil (optional) to a mixing bowl.

adding ingredients for paratha

2. To knead the dough I use 1 cup water for 2 cups flour, it may vary slightly depending on the kind of flour. Add ¾ cup plain water over the salt and oil. You can also use luke warm water.

pouring water to knead dough

3. Begin to mix the flour. Use your fingers to mix.

4. Use water as needed and make a non sticky tight dough.

prepared paratha dough

5. Begin to knead the dough on the kitchen counter or a wide utensil. If the dough is too tight and difficult to knead, I dip my fingers in a bowl of water just to moisten them. Then continue to knead. I repeat this until the dough turns soft.

6. After kneading the texture of the dough must be soft and pliable.

soft dough after kneading

7. Wrap it with a moist cloth or just cover it. Cover & set aside for at least 30 mins.

keep the dough covered

8. Divide the dough to 8 equal parts and make smooth balls. You can also knead the dough again and then roll to balls. Keep them covered until we finish using them up.

balls to make paratha

How to Roll Paratha – square

9. I suggest using melted ghee for rolling since it is easy to control the quantity used. You can melt the ghee in a small bowl and set aside. Lightly flour the rolling area . Flatten a ball. Sprinkle flour over it.

flatten dough ball to make paratha

10. Roll the dough to a round layer. Smear ghee evenly using your fingers. You can substitute ghee with oil. Optionally you can also sprinkle some dry flour here.

smear oil over the paratha

11. Fold 1/3 of the roti as shown in the picture below. Repeat applying ghee.

folding paratha to make layers

12. Fold the other 1/3 and apply ghee.

making layered paratha

13. Repeat the folding.

repeating the folds

14. Finish off.

square shaped dough for paratha

15. Roll this evenly to a paratha. You can also sprinkle some flour before rolling. I prefer to roll 4 to 5 parathas and finish frying them to prevent drying up. Then finish rolling and frying the rest.

rolled paratha

Make Triangle Parathas

16.I made a round layer first and then sprinkled carom seeds. It is optional.

making triangle paratha

17. Fold it to half.

fold it half way

18. Fold it to a quarter.

make a triangle

19. Roll it to a thin paratha. Do not make it too thin.

roll to a triangle paratha

Toasting

20. While you roll the rest, heat a tawa or pan on a high flame. When it is hot enough, transfer the paratha to the pan. Very soon bubbles begin to show up. You will have to adjust the heat as needed. Very high flame may burn them and low flame tends to make them hard.

toasting paratha

21. Flip it to the other side. Gently press with a wooden spatula. It begins to puff up and the layers get cooked and separated well. Add ghee as desired.

puffed paratha

22. If you are on a low fat diet, ghee can be skipped while frying. Fry well until cooked & dark brown spots appear.

ghee over parathas

Stack the parathas to keep them soft.

paratha recipe with whole wheat flour, salt and water

How to keep paratha soft

  • Keep them covered using kitchen tissues or clean cloth.
  • Place a cloth or kitchen napkin in a casserole or a box, stack them. Keep them covered.
  • Do not fry them on a low flame as this will harden them.

Pro Tips

1. Kneading dough well is the key to make good soft, flaky parathas. The dough can also be formed using a food processor, kitchen aid or hand mixer with a kneading hook/attachment. Just sprinkle some flour over the dough if it is too sticky after kneading.

2. Using right amount of water & oil is another important thing to get the parathas right. The dough should not be crumbly or sticky. If the dough is sticky simply sprinkle some flour. It is too hard, then sprinkle some water and knead.

3. Resting the dough for a while helps the dough to absorb the water and keep the parathas soft for long hours.

4. Fats: I use oil if making for lunch box as ghee tends to harden the paratha in cold temperatures.

5. You can also add a tbsp of curd (Indian yogurt) while mixing the dough. This helps the parathas to remain soft for long hours.

Here are some sides for your parathas
Dal dishes
Chicken curry
Egg curry
Paneer recipes.

Once you master making the basic plain parathas then you can try the variations which I have shared below.

Variations

1. For vegetable paratha – Mash well 1½ cups of boiled mixed vegetables & add it to 1 cup flour along with half tsp garam masala, little salt and half tsp of red chilli powder & handful of coriander leaves. You can find the complete recipe of Vegetable paratha here

2. To make spinach paratha – Blend 1 cup spinach with 2 to 3 tbsp water, 1 garlic clove, 1 chilli & ¼ tsp garam masala to a smooth paste. Mix this with 1 cup flour, salt & 1 tsp oil. For complete recipe check Palak paratha

3. For spiced or masala paratha just add half tsp each of red chili powder, garam masala, 1 tablespoon kasuri methi & handful of coriander leaves to 1 cup of flour. Mix the dough and make masala paratha. You can also sprinkle it in between the layers like I did in this ajwaini paratha

4. To make methi paratha, just add half cup finely chopped methi leaves to 1 cup flour along with spices, ginger garlic & herbs. For complete recipe you can check this recipe of Methi paratha.

5. If you want to transform your plain parathas to a quick breakfast then you can make these egg paranthas.

Related Recipes

Recipe Card

paratha made with whole wheat flour salt and water

Paratha Recipe, How to Make Paratha

Parathas are unleavened Indian flatbreads made with whole wheat flour. They are eaten for breakfast or a meal with chutney, pickle, curry or yogurt. This recipe shares how to make simple layered paratha.
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For best results follow the step-by-step photos above the recipe card

Prep Time40 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time1 hour
Servings8 parathas
AuthorSwasthi

Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )

  • 2 cups wheat flour (atta or substitute with all-purpose flour)
  • 2 teaspoons oil for kneading (optional)
  • ¾ to 1 cup water (or luke warm water)
  • ¼ teaspoon salt (optional, adjust to taste)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoon ghee or oil (use as needed)

Instructions

Make Dough

  • Mix together wheat flour, salt, oil in a wide mixing bowl. 
  • Pour water little by little as needed & make a stiff non sticky dough. 
  • Knead well to make the dough soft and pliable. If the dough is hard or dry knead with moist fingers.
  • When you press down the dough with a finger, you must feel it is soft and dent easily.
  • Wrap it in a moist cloth or cover it in a container and set aside for 30 mins. 
  • You can also grease the ball with a few drops of oil and cover. 

How to Make Paratha

  • Knead the dough lightly & divide to 8 parts. 
  • Then roll to balls & keep them covered.
  • Take a few tbsp of flour to a small bowl & flour the rolling area lightly. 
  • Dip a ball in the flour and dust off the excess. Too much flour on the parathas can make them hard.
  • Place the ball on the rolling area and flatten it slightly with fingers. 
  • With the help of a rolling pin begin to roll each ball to a round layer or roti of 7 inches. Do not put pressure on the dough, roll it with light hands.

Make Square Paratha

  • Apply ghee all over the paratha and fold ⅓ part of it. (check step by step photos in the post)
  • Then apply the ghee to the folded part as well & repeat folding the other ⅓ part.
  • Apply ghee over the 3 layered long strip and fold ⅓ part of it. 
  • Then repeat the other ⅓ part & you will have a square.
  • Sprinkle little more flour if needed to prevent sticking. 
  • Then roll the square further to make a 7 inch square paratha.

Make Triangle Paratha

  • Apply ghee all over the roti & fold it to half to make a half circle. 
  • Next apply ghee over it & repeat folding it to get a triangle shape. 
  • Sprinkle a bit of flour & begin to roll evenly to a triangle paratha.

Fry Paratha

  • Heat a griddle until hot on a medium high flame. 
  • Dust off any excess flour over the parathas. Transfer paratha to the griddle gently. Cook it until you begin to see bubbles, then turn it to the other side.
  • Fry on a medium high flame on the other side as well pressing down with a spatula. 
  • Pressing down helps the parathas to puff up and the layers get separated and get cooked through. 
  • Turn the parathas too and fro. Cook until brown spots appear on both the sides.
  • Drizzle ghee or oil on both sides. 
  • Remove the paratha to a wired rack or plate lined with a clean cloth or kitchen tissue.
  • Stack them one over the other to keep them soft. 
  • To cook the next paratha make sure the pan is hot but not extremely hot that it burns the parathas. If you see any flour on the griddle gently and carefully wipe off with a thick clean cloth.
  • Serve paratha with curry or chutney or just yogurt.

Notes

  1. If the dough turns sticky, sprinkle some flour and knead it.
  2. If the dough turns hard or too stiff, then moisten your fingers and knead the paratha dough.
  3. You can also make the dough in a food processor or stand mixer.

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)

Nutrition Facts
Paratha Recipe, How to Make Paratha
Amount Per Serving
Calories 155 Calories from Fat 45
% Daily Value*
Fat 5g8%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Cholesterol 9mg3%
Sodium 73mg3%
Potassium 33mg1%
Carbohydrates 23g8%
Protein 3g6%
Calcium 5mg1%
Iron 1.5mg8%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe?Mention @SwasthisRecipes or tag #swasthisrecipes!

© Swasthi’s Recipes

This Paratha Recipe was first published in February 2016. Updated and republished in July 2021.

Paratha Recipe

About Swasthi

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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5 stars
I always felt intimidated to make any kind of flatbreads. I tried your naan recipe twice last month. My family was surprised at my work. They turned out great. Last night I made your parathas. These were a huge hit. The aroma of ghee oh my god was amazing. Thank you

5 stars
Recipes made easy, yet authentic and delicious.

5 stars
Hi Swasthi,

I have tried this method of making parathas. It actually came very well.
Thank you for posting this recipe.

I have also tried many of your recipes.

Thank you.

Can I freeze them before cooking?

5 stars
This was the only roti recipe with proportions that actually WORKED for me. Thank you!

5 stars
First time made these parathas and they came out delicious. All we ate were the roti canai from the shops. These are delicious but and my boy loves.

What’s the difference between paratha and chapati?

5 stars
Hello Swasthi, excellent recipe as usual from you. I have not tried yet but wondering how the parathas will turn out, if I use 100% all purpose flour instead of wheat flour or a 50/50 blend of wheat and all purpose flours? Have you tried anything like this? If you did, I would very much like to know your experience on this.
Thanks

Good for superb

5 stars
Too good

5 stars
Great recipe. Every one of your recipes turns out great! Thank you!

I love this recipes

5 stars
So easy to make and so yummy and tender. No more tough store bought paratha for us.

5 stars
During this pandemic, what I miss the most is Indian bread with curry. I use to eat out because I couldn’t make it at home. Now I can make both. I’ve tried two curries and this bread recipe. Both turned out really well. Have to practice a bit more to make parathas as nice as yours.

5 stars
Hi Swasthi!

Thank you for this recipe, I haven’t made it yet but I’m sure, seeing all these positive comments, it will be delicious! I was just wondering if you’ve had any success with freezing these before frying then frying from frozen? I live alone, so while I would love to make these to enjoy for breakfast, there’s no way for me to finish a whole batch in a day. Please let me know if you have any advice for long(-ish) term storing of these.

Thank you so much!

4 stars
Hi Swasthi
Made these twice now in last two weeks
I used Ghee from famous brand , I didn’t think the taste is as good as it should be. Should I just use normal butter ir should I make my own ghee ?
They were still good but not as good as I think they should be considering the chapati was great,
Brian

5 stars
Tq for your sharing???

5 stars
The first time I tried to make parathas using a different method, they were rock hard, like frisbees. But I followed your recipe and they turned out amazing. So soft. Thank you!

5 stars
Hi there,
I made dough for the first time and followed your recipe.
The dough was perfect as were the parathas, my rolling skills need to improve significantly though. There were of different geometric shapes 🙂
I used yogurt as well.
Thank you indeed as my kids enjoyed thoroughly.

5 stars
Like at home in Delhi!

I have not made it yet, but I will give it a trial please