Puran poli recipe for beginners with detailed tips & tricks to make the best. Puran poli is a popular Maharashtrian sweet flatbread made with flour, lentils, jaggery and cardamoms. It is a festive delicacy and is made during most festivals like Diwali, Ganesh Chaturthi and Holi.
Vedmi, Bobbatlu, obbattu, holige, poli are the other names for puran poli which is also popular in all South Indian states and Gujarat.
In all these regions they are made the same way but the ingredients used vary slightly. So the texture of this sweet stuffed flatbread is different.
What is puran poli?
Puran poli are traditional Indian flatbreads stuffed with flavored and sweetened lentils. The outer covering is made with wheat flour or all-purpose flour.
The stuffing is made with cooked chana dal (bengal gram) which is sweetened with jaggery and flavored with cardamom and nutmeg powder.
How is puran poli served?
Traditionally it is eaten with katachi amti which is made by tempering the strained lentil stock. It can also be served with melted ghee or milk.
This post will help you to make perfectly thin and soft puran poli with a melt-in-the-mouth texture.
1.Add 1 cup chana dal to a cooker and rinse well. Pour 2 ½ cups water and add half teaspoon ghee. Pressure cook until soft for 5 to 6 whistles. If cooking in Instant pot, press pressure cook button (high) and set the timer to 10 mins.
2. While the dal cooks, make the dough for covering. Add 2½ cups flour. Here I have used 2 cups wheat flour & ½ cup all-purpose flour. If you do not want to use all-purpose flour, use 2½ cups wheat flour. (More details in the tips below)
3. Add a pinch of salt and ¼ teaspoon turmeric (optional). Begin to make a soft dough by adding warm water as needed. I used ¾ cups plus 3 tbsps. You will need more if using only whole wheat flour.
4. Pour 3 tablespoons oil and knead well until the dough absorbs all of the oil & becomes soft, pliable. If you press down with your finger, it should dent easily.
5. Cover and rest aside until the puran/ filling is ready. It needs a minimum of 1 hour resting time. The longer it rests the results are better especially since we are using wheat flour. You can also make it the previous night and refrigerate it for upto 2 days.
6. When the pressure releases naturally, open the lid. Check if the dal is soft cooked by mashing it in between your thumb and forefinger. It should be well-cooked & get mashed easily. You will be left with very little water in the pot.
7. Transfer this to a strainer, cool and add the dal to a blender jar. Make a smooth paste. You will be able to blend all of the dal in one batch. Alternately you may pass it through a strainer like I did. To do that rub the dal against the strainer with a sturdy spoon or steel cup. Collect the smooth dal at the bottom. Note that this is a bit of arm work so you may prefer blending.
8. Next put back the dal to the same pot. I was left with very little dal water/stock which I just let it stay in the same pan.
9. Add jaggery to the pan. Stir and cook on a medium flame to avoid splatters. Jaggery will melt and the entire mixture turns gooey.
10. Just cook until the mixture turns slightly thick. Add 1 tablespoon ghee towards the sides and cook until the entire mixture begins to leave the pan.
11. Add cardamom powder. You can also add nutmeg powder (optional). Mix well and turn off the stove when the consistency is thick as seen in the picture below. As it cools it will thicken. You should have a smooth puran at this stage. Cool this completely.
How to make puran poli
12. Divide the dough to 12 equal parts and the puran/ stuffing to 12 equal parts.
13. Take a dough ball and slightly flatten it. Dip it in flour & dust off the excess. I prefer to use all-purpose flour here as wheat flour makes them tough/ hard.
14. With the help of your thumb and fingers on both your hands, begin to shape it like a cup or a puri. I made mine around 3 ½ to 4 inches.
15. Then place a ball of puran in the center and push it to the deep center.
16. Bring the sides of the cup higher by simply tapping the whole thing on the hand and stretching the dough on the sides.
17. Keep pushing the puran in and stretch the dough on the sides until you are able to bring all the edges on top.
18. Bring the edges together, join and seal them. I do not remove any excess dough, instead pat it back. Do check the video to make it right.
19. Flatten this gently in between your palms or with your fingers to make a small puri.
20. Dust some flour on the rolling board and place it. Also sprinkle some flour on top.
21. Gently roll it to as big as you can taking care not to tear the covering. I roll mine to 8 to 9 inches. While rolling take care you do it evenly so all of the puran and the covering is well distributed including to the sides. If you see the poli becoming too thin and about to tear, sprinkle some flour and gently pat it.
22. Heat a griddle on a medium high flame. I make 3 to 4 poli at one time and then begin to cook them. When the pan is hot enough, dust off the excess flour from the puran poli and transfer it to the hot griddle.
23. Soon you will see bubbles on the puran poli. Flip it gently to the other side, pressing down with a spatula so it puffs fully. Drizzle as much ghee as you like and cook until it is evenly done including on the edges. I use about a tablespoon for each.
24. Flip to the other side and spread more ghee as desired. Remove to a serving plate. Spread enough ghee over the puran poli and then stack them.
Serve with ghee, milk or katachi amti / holige saaru. We personally love these dipped in this kesar badam milk.
Tips & notes for puran
Dal: If you plan to make katachi amti or holige saaru then use 4 cups water to boil the dal and strain it. Use the collected dal stock to make the amti or saaru.
If you want to use toor dal, use only 2 cups water to pressure cook & reduce the cook time.
Jaggery: Dark color jaggery and powdered jaggery will make dark or brown color puran. This makes the whole poli look darker in color so you may choose lighter color jaggery.
Tips to make the covering:
I often make different kinds of wheat flour poli for my kids’ school box. So sharing my findings on the covering.
Choosing flour: Using only wheat flour makes nutty and denser covering if not prepared well. So I use 1¼ tablespoon oil for every cup of atta. Rest the dough overnight in the fridge. Bring it to room temperature before rolling it. You can do the same if you want to use only wheat flour here.
If making for a special occasion I use 2 cups atta and ½ cup all-purpose flour. This gives better results than using only whole wheat flour.
For health reasons, use organic or at least unbleached all-purpose flour and avoid regular maida as it is bleached.
I have also made these a lot of times with whole wheat pastry flour or white wheat flour. This gives very close results of using 1:1 atta:maida. For more thinner puran poli you may use that.
Oil: Using a good amount of oil to make the dough helps you to make thin poli as it stretches well. Do not reduce it.
Turmeric does not add any flavor to the puran poli but it imparts a nice bright color. It is a tradition for many people and some use it since they like the color. You may skip it if you don’t like.
I personally like it because sometimes darker jaggery makes brown poli which don’t look appealing.
Tips to use ghee
It is believed that ghee helps in digesting lentils. So traditionally a generous amount of ghee is used while cooking the puran poli. I usually do not measure when I cook them. Please use more or less to suit your taste and diet.
Differences – puran poli, bobbatlu, obbattu
Andhra style bobbatlu are made without turmeric. The covering is mostly made with whole wheat flour but it also depends on the region. Some people also make them only with all-purpose flour and is similar to the Karnataka style holige.
Karnataka obbattu are mostly made with only all-purpose flour & lots of oil to make the dough. Also known as holige, these are hand stretched and not rolled. These are made paper thin with different kinds of stuffings.
Again these are only my findings and vary a lot from one household to the other.
Puran poli (Bobbatlu)
For best results follow the step-by-step photos above the recipe card
Ingredients (1 cup = 240ml )
For puran (filling)
- 1 cup chana dal 200 grams (bengal gram) (refer notes)
- 2½ cups water (more if needed)
- 1 cup jaggery 150 grams (powdered or grated)
- 1 tablespoon ghee
- ½ teaspoon cardamom powder
- ⅛ to ¼ teaspoon nutmeg powder (optional)
- 2½ cups flour (2 cups wheat flour & ½ cup all-purpose flour) (refer notes)
- 1 pinch salt
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric (optional)
- 3 tablespoons oil
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour for dusting
- 3 to 4 tablespoons ghee (for frying/toasting, use as needed)
- Rinse and pressure cook chana dal until soft. If cooking in traditional cooker, cook for 5 to 6 whistles. If cooking in instant pot, pressure cook for 10 mins.
- While the dal cooks, make the dough by mixing together flour, salt, turmeric and ¾ cup water. Make a soft dough adding more water as needed. Then drizzle oil and knead until all of the oil is absorbed. Cover and rest until the puran/ filling is ready.
- When the pressure in the cooker drops, open the lid and strain the dal. Cool slightly and blend the dal to a fine powder or paste.
- Add the smooth dal back to the same cooker pot along with jaggery. Begin to cook on a medium heat. Jaggery melts and the entire mixture becomes gooey. If using instant pot, cook on saute mode.
- Keep stirring and cook until the puran turns thicker & much of the moisture evaporates.
- Then add ghee. Saute until it leaves the pan and becomes thicker. Check step-by-step photos for the consistency. Add cardamom powder and nutmeg powder (optional). Cool this completely.
How to make puran poli
- Divide the dough to 12 equal portions and the puran as well to 12 equal portions. Keep the dough covered.
- Take a dough ball and dip it in all-purpose flour. Dust off the excess. Press down in the center spread the dough to a 4 inch cup or disc. You can roll it with a rolling pin or do it with your fingers.
- Place the puran in the center and press it down inside. Gently bring the sides over the stuffing by tapping the cup on your other hand & pushing the puran in with your finger.
- Bring the edges together and seal them carefully. Flatten the ball and dip it in flour. Dust off the excess. Sprinkle some flour on the rolling area and place the ball. Begin to roll evenly all over without putting pressure.
- Roll to a 8 to 9 inch puran poli. Take care not to tear off the covering. If you see the poli becoming too thin in certain places, sprinkle some flour and gently apply it. You can make about 3 to 4 polis before you begin to cook them.
- Heat a pan on a medium high flame. When it is hot enough, dust off the excess flour from the puran poli and gently transfer it to the hot pan.
- Soon you will begin to see bubbles. Flip it to the other side and cook gently pressing down with a spatula.
- Puran poli will puff soon, then drizzle a generous amount of ghee about 1 tsp. Flip it to the other side as well and drizzle more ghee.
- Press down with a spatula as needed and cook well until you see golden to light brown spots on it. The edges also should get cooked well.
- Transfer to a serving plate and serve with melted ghee or milk. Ensure you smear enough ghee before you stack them.
- Serve puran poli with ghee, katachi amti, milk or this badam milk.
NUTRITION INFO (estimation only)
- Dal: Chana dal can be replaced with toor dal or moong dal. If using toor dal, use only 2 cups water.
- Flour: I have used 2 cups wheat flour (240 grams) and ½ cup (70 grams) all-purpose flour. You may use only 2½ cups wheat flour. But they will be slightly thicker. For more thinner and softer poli than you see in my pictures, you can also use 1½ cups wheat flour and 1 cup all-purpose flour.
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.
© Swasthi’s Recipes
Puran poli recipe first published in Oct 2015. Republished in August 2020.