Khaman Dhokla is a soft fluffy, spongy, mouth-watering, nutritious steamed savory chickpea-flour cake prepared with chickpea flour (besan) and spices. It is a very popular snack from Gujarati cuisine loaded with protein.
This healthy and filling recipe is super easy-to-make and It comes together in less than 30 minutes. It can be eaten for breakfast, as a main course, as a side dish, or as a snack. It tastes great when served with a cup of hot tea and green chutney.
When I was living in Vadodara, mostly every weekend I used to go to my favorite shop to buy Khaman Dhokla and Jalebi for breakfast. Even after so many years, I still do remember the taste and flavor of sweet-tangy flavorful Khaman Dhokla.
What is Khaman Dhokla?
This popular snack is traditionally made by fermenting bengal gram (chana dal) flour batter for hours, but in this instant version, we get soft and spongy khaman within minutes.
Khaman is made up of chickpea flour (besan), whisked with water to make a soft thick paste which has a cake-batter like consistency. Gram flour, semolina (rava/suji), lemon juice, ginger-chili paste, salt, sugar, fruit salt are some of the main ingredients used in this recipe. Then this batter is steamed in a cooker or steamer or microwave.
For the final touch a tadka is made using mustard seeds, sesame seeds, curry leaves, hing (asafoetida), chillies, sugar, salt, water. The steamed cake is then cut into small pieces and tempered with prepared tadka and topped with fresh coriander and grated coconut.
Difference between Dhokla and Khaman Dhokla?
Khaman is the instant one. Its made with either soaked chana dal or chickpea flour. It’s yellow in color and is soft, spongy, fluffy and airy in texture.
Dhokla preparation requires fermentation. The fermented batter is made with chana dal and rice. Chana dal and rice grains are soaked overnight, then grinded into smooth batter and later steamed to create a delicious snack. Dhokla is white in color and is a bit dense in comparison to khaman.
Tips for making Spongy Khaman Dhokla
- Whisk/Mix batter well to incorporate more air into the batter. This will make the dhokla fluffy. Do this before adding baking soda or fruit salt.
- Whisk the batter in one direction – either clockwise or anti-clockwise.
- Let the batter rest for 15-20 minutes before steaming.
- Make sure that steamer is properly heated before placing the batter otherwise it will not turn spongy.
- Add Eno, mix the batter and immediately pour the batter to the baking tin. And then it should go to the steamer right away.
- Steam over medium flame, if you will steam it on high flame then it will not cook from inside and on low flame it will become dense.
- You can substitute citric acid with the double amount of lemon juice. I personally find that citric acid works great. (In this post I have not used citric acid.)
- Always add water to the tadka with little sugar and salt.
- Can be gluten-free too, if you skip Asafoetida in the batter.
To make Instant Khaman Dhokla at home follow the detailed step by step recipe posted below.
Do try other similar recipes :
- Doodhi Muthia
- Mango Shrikhand
- Gujarati kadhi
- Methi paratha (Thepla)
- Beetroot Paratha (Thepla)
- Palak Thepla
- Sabudana Vada
Preparation Time: 10mins ∏ Cooking Time: 15mins ∏ Servings: 3-4 persons
Level: Beginners (Easy) ∏ Measurement: 1 Cup ≡ 250 ml ≡ 250gm
For tempering (tadka)
How to make Khaman Dhokla:
Step1: To make this easy Khaman Dhokla recipe, take 1-1/2 cup gram flour (besan or chickpea flour) and pass it through to sieve. This will help in breaking any lumps.
Step2: Add 2 tablespoon semolina (sooji/rava), 1 teaspoon sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt (or as required), 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder and a pinch of Asafoetida (skip to make a gluten-free version). Avoid adding too much of turmeric powder as then the fruit salt or baking soda reacts with the turmeric powder and makes it red in color.
Step3: Using whisk mix all the dry ingredients very well. Then pour water in parts and keep mixing to make a thick batter. I have used around 1 cup water to make thick yet flowing batter. The amount of water required depends on the quality of flour, so add as required.
Step4: Then add 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 2 tablespoon oil, 1 teaspoon ginger-chili paste. Mix well.
Step5: Stir to a smooth thick batter without any lumps. Keep whisking in one direction for about 3-4 minutes.
Step6: The batter should be thick yet flowing. If the batter thin then add 1 to 2 tablespoon sooji/rava or besan. And if the batter is thick then add 1-2 tablespoon of water and adjust the consistency.
Step7: Cover the bowl with a lid and allow the batter to rest for 15-20 minutes.
Step8: In the meantime, heat water in a pot or steamer on medium-high heat. And grease the pan in which you are going to steam the batter with oil.
Step9: After resting the batter for 15-20 minutes. Now you have to work very fast so keep the steamer and greased pan ready. Add a pinch of baking soda and 1 teaspoon Eno fruit salt. Pour 1 teaspoon water on top of Eno and whisk again.
Step10: Whisk briskly in one direction for about 1 minute or until batter doubles in size. The batter will turn very frothy and soft. The fruit salt should be mixed evenly with the batter or else you get uneven texture in the khaman dhokla.
Step11: Pour the dhokla batter immediately in the greased pan and level it with a spatula or spoon so that the batter evens out in the pan. Khaman Dhokla batter ready to be steamed.
Step12: Carefully put pan in the pan, cooker or steamer. The water should already be boiling or hot when you place the pan with the dhokla batter. (Here I am using a large pot for steaming so I have kept a little katori or steel bowl at the centre then kept the batter tin so that the base of the tin is not touching the water.)
Step13: Cover and steam for 15-20 minutes or till the dhokla is cooked.
Step14: After 15-17 minutes, open the lid.
Step15: Insert a toothpick or a clean knife to check if Dhokla is cooked if it comes out clean then dhokla is ready. If not, steam for a few more minutes.
Step16: Take out the plate from the steamer and let it cool for a few minutes. When a little cool, flip the dhokla onto a plate.
Step17: Using a greased knife, slice the khaman dhokla into square or diamond shapes and keep aside.
Step18: Heat a large skillet or pan over a low-medium flame. When the pan is hot, add the oil. Once the oil is shimmering, add black mustard seeds, sesame seeds, a pinch of Asafoetida, curry leaves and slit green chili. Reduce the heat to low and cook until seeds pop for one minute.
Step19: Pour 1/2 cup water along with 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice, 1 teaspoon sugar, 1/4 teaspoon salt. Be careful while adding water as the mixture sizzles.
Step20: Stir and allow the tempering mixture to come to a boil for 2-3 minutes until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat, and let it cool for a few minutes.
Step21: Then pour this tempering mixture evenly on the Khaman dhokla until each dhokla is coated well.
Step22: Garnish with 2 tablespoon chopped coriander seeds and 2 tablespoon grated coconut.
Step23: Khaman Dhokla is ready. Serve it with Green Chutney. Enjoy!
- For making perfect Khaman Dhokla measure the ingredients correctly and use fresh Eno and baking soda.
- Whisk the batter well in one direction. The more you beat the mixture, the more air is incorporated in the batter, resulting in soft-spongy khaman.
- Once the batter rested for atleast 15 minutes then add Eno right before transferring the batter into the steamer. After adding Eno, do not whisk the batter for too long. Mix until the batter is just combined with Eno.