Authentic Indian Chickpea Flour Pancakes Recipe - Delicious Vegetarian Dish

Chickpea Flour Pancakes

Authentic Indian Chickpea Flour Pancakes Recipe - Delicious Vegetarian Dish
Region / culture: India | Preparation time: 20 minutes | Cooking time: 15 minutes | Servings: 4 | Vegetarian diet


Chickpea Flour Pancakes
Chickpea Flour Pancakes

Chickpea flour pancakes, also known as besan chilla or cheela, are a popular and nutritious dish in Indian cuisine. These savory pancakes are made from a mixture of chickpea flour, spices, and water, and are typically served for breakfast or as a snack.


Chickpea flour pancakes have been a staple in Indian households for centuries. Chickpea flour, also known as besan, has long been used in Indian cooking for its versatility and nutritional benefits. The tradition of making chickpea flour pancakes likely originated in the northern regions of India, where chickpeas are a common ingredient in many dishes.


How to prepare

  1. Mix the dry ingredients using a whisk to remove any lumps.
  2. Add enough water to create a medium-thick batter, ensuring it is not too stiff or too runny. The amount of water needed may vary depending on the type of flours used.
  3. Add all the remaining ingredients, except for ghee or oil, and mix well.
  4. Allow the batter to stand for approximately 15 minutes.
  5. Heat a small amount of ghee or oil in a nonstick crepe pan or a pan with low sides.
  6. Once the pan is hot, pour in about 0.33 cup of batter and rotate the pan to spread the batter evenly.
  7. Cook the pancake for a few minutes before flipping it to cook the other side.
  8. Keep the cooked pancakes warm in the oven until all the batter has been used.


  • Add chopped vegetables such as onions, tomatoes, or bell peppers to the batter for added flavor and nutrition.
  • Sprinkle grated cheese on top of the pancakes before flipping them for a cheesy twist.
  • Experiment with different spices such as garam masala, coriander powder, or chili powder to customize the flavor to your liking.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

Make sure to mix the dry ingredients well to ensure there are no lumps in the batter.

- Adjust the amount of water based on the consistency of the batter - it should be medium-thick.

- Let the batter rest for at least 15 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together.

- Use a nonstick pan to cook the pancakes and make sure it is hot before pouring in the batter.

- Cook the pancakes on low to medium heat to ensure they are cooked through without burning.

Serving Suggestions

Chickpea flour pancakes can be served with a side of yogurt, chutney, or pickles for a complete meal. They can also be enjoyed on their own as a snack or light meal.

Cooking Techniques

Use a nonstick pan to cook the pancakes to prevent sticking.

- Cook the pancakes on low to medium heat to ensure they are cooked through without burning.

- Flip the pancakes carefully to avoid breaking them.

Ingredient Substitutions

If chickpea flour is not available, you can use gram flour or besan as a substitute.

- Wheat flour can be replaced with rice flour or any other gluten-free flour for a gluten-free version of the pancakes.

Make Ahead Tips

The batter for chickpea flour pancakes can be prepared in advance and stored in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.

- Cooked pancakes can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days and reheated in a pan or microwave before serving.

Presentation Ideas

Serve the pancakes on a platter garnished with fresh herbs such as cilantro or parsley. - Drizzle a little yogurt or chutney on top of the pancakes for added flavor and visual appeal. - Stack the pancakes on a plate and serve with a side of fresh salad for a complete meal.

Pairing Recommendations

Chickpea flour pancakes pair well with a variety of side dishes, including yogurt, chutney, pickles, or a fresh salad. They can also be served with a hot cup of tea or coffee for a satisfying breakfast or snack.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Cooked pancakes can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

- To reheat, simply warm the pancakes in a pan over low heat or in the microwave until heated through.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

Each serving of chickpea flour pancakes contains approximately 180 calories.


Chickpea flour pancakes are a good source of carbohydrates, with each serving containing approximately 20 grams of carbs.


These pancakes are low in fat, with each serving containing around 5 grams of fat.


Chickpea flour is a rich source of plant-based protein, and each serving of these pancakes contains about 8 grams of protein.

Vitamins and minerals

Chickpea flour is high in vitamins and minerals, including iron, magnesium, and folate. These pancakes are a nutritious way to incorporate these essential nutrients into your diet.


Chickpea flour is naturally gluten-free, making these pancakes a great option for those with gluten sensitivities or celiac disease. However, individuals with chickpea allergies should avoid this recipe.


Overall, chickpea flour pancakes are a nutritious and delicious dish that provides a good balance of carbohydrates, fats, proteins, and essential vitamins and minerals.


Chickpea flour pancakes are a nutritious and delicious dish that is easy to make and versatile in flavor. Whether served for breakfast, as a snack, or as part of a meal, these pancakes are sure to be a hit with your family and friends. Enjoy the flavors of India with this simple and satisfying recipe!

How did I get this recipe?

I remember the excitement that washed over me when I first saw this recipe for Chickpea Flour Pancakes. It was many years ago, when I was just a young girl living in a small village in India. My grandmother, who was known for her culinary skills, had acquired this recipe from a traveler who had passed through our village. She had made these pancakes for us one morning, and I was instantly hooked.

The pancakes were unlike anything I had ever tasted before. They were light and fluffy, with a slight nutty flavor from the chickpea flour. My grandmother had served them with a dollop of yogurt and a drizzle of honey, and I had devoured them in minutes. From that moment on, I knew I had to learn how to make them myself.

I spent hours in the kitchen with my grandmother, watching her as she measured out the ingredients and mixed them together in a large bowl. She showed me how to whisk the batter until it was smooth and free of lumps, and how to ladle it into a hot skillet to cook. I watched in awe as she flipped the pancakes with ease, creating perfectly golden brown circles that smelled like heaven.

As I grew older, I began to experiment with the recipe on my own. I added different spices and vegetables to the batter, creating my own unique twist on my grandmother's original recipe. Sometimes I would make them for breakfast, other times for lunch or dinner. No matter when I made them, they always brought me a sense of comfort and nostalgia.

Years passed, and I eventually moved to a new country, far away from my grandmother and the village where I had grown up. But no matter where I went, I always carried her recipe for Chickpea Flour Pancakes with me. It became a staple in my own kitchen, a link to my past and a reminder of the love and warmth that surrounded me as a child.

I shared the recipe with my own children, passing down the tradition of making these delicious pancakes from generation to generation. They too fell in love with the taste and texture of the pancakes, and would often request them for breakfast on lazy weekend mornings.

Now, as I sit in my kitchen, surrounded by the comforting smells of chickpea flour and spices, I can't help but smile as I think back on all the memories that this recipe has brought me. From lazy Sunday mornings with my grandmother to busy weeknight dinners with my own family, Chickpea Flour Pancakes have been a constant source of joy and comfort in my life.

I am grateful for the traveler who brought this recipe to our village all those years ago, and for my grandmother who took the time to teach me how to make it. As I take a bite of a warm pancake, drizzled with honey and topped with yogurt, I am transported back to those simpler times, surrounded by the people I love and the food that sustains us. And for that, I am truly thankful.


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