Simple Indian Recipes...
Delicious and healthy dishes that can be made even by first timers.

Adai (Mixed Lentil Crepes)

 Published 2009-Feb-17   Updated 2017-Aug-27

- Submitted by Dahlia

(Adai Aviyal, Vegetable Adai, Whole Grain Adai)

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Has there been a time, when you have forgotten to make chapatti dough or your dosa and idly batter and is seriously lost on what to make for dinner, here is another authentic traditional recipe from the Tamil Kitchen. I am talking about the ADAI. 

Indian vegetarian food in general, mainly comprises of the rice consumed with dhal or lentils, which makes the meal wholesome, balanced, filling and nutritive. Adai is a combination of the rice and multiple lentils but in a completely varied form. Adai is a protein rich dosa variety made from rice and a mix of lentils. It needs to be soaked for less than an hour, ground and can be made immediately. It’s lovely orange appearance with crispy corners and spicy taste will only make you ask for more and more. Adai is nutrient filled as we have the Red gram (toor dal) and Bengal gram (channa dal) as the main ingredients equal to the proportion of rice that makes it healthy. As we all know that lentils are rich in proteins and is an importance protein source for people following the vegetarian or vegan diet. These lentils when added with rice not only make it wholesome but also reduce the Glycemic index in rice (GI). Hence the adai can be safely relished by diabetic and weight conscious individuals. The vegetables added into the adai batter will also increase the taste quotient and also the fiber content in adai. Adai is also made as a prasadam or offering to the God by Hindus during the Karthigai deepam festival. Set out to make this protein rich and lip smacking dish for your breakfast or dinner. Cheers!!!

Recipe for Adai

Preparation time: 1 hour
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Serves: 4-6


  • Rice - 1 cup (Idli Rice/ Raw rice / Combination of both)
  • Toor dal (Tuvaram Paruppu) - 1/2 cup
  • Channa dal (Kadalai Paruppu) - 1/2 cup
  • Moong dal (Paasi Paruppu) - 2 tbsp (optional)
  • Urad dal (Ulitham Paruppu) - 2 tbsp
  • Salt - as needed
  • Dry red chilies - 4
  • Asafoetida - 1/4 tsp
  • Ginger - 1 " piece
  • Fennel seeds - 1 tsp
  • Curry Leaves - few
  • Oil - for making adai

Optional Ingredients

  • Onion - 1 (chopped)
  • Grated coconut - 2 tbsp
  • Cilantro - handful (finely chopped)


  1. Wash the rice and lentils couple of time. Soak it with just enough water along with dry red chilies for 1 hour.
  2. Take it along with the soaked water in a mixie or blender. Also add the ginger, fennel seeds, asafoetida, curry leaves and salt.
  3. Grind it to a thick coarse batter. You could make the batter thinner if you prefer but traditionally adai is thick and coarse. Mix in chopped onions or chopped coriander leaves or grated coconut if you prefer. You could also make plain adai without adding anything.
  4. Heat a cast iron dosa griddle or a non stick pan. Take a spoonful of the batter and pour in the center. Spread the batter using circular motion with the back of the spoon. Traditionally fingers were used to spread the batter.
  5. Pour some oil in the center of the adai and also in the sides. Cover with a lid and cook for couple of minutes.
  6. Flip and cook until both the sides are done. Usually it takes 2 minutes on each side. Leave the adai little longer on the tava uncovered if you prefer crispy adais.

Serving Adai

  • Adai is traditionally served with Aviyal in restaurants and homes. It is a best taste combination of eating hot spicy dish with the fermented, tangy and nutty taste of aviyal. The vegetables in aviyal with protein in adai makes the meal very nutritive and balanced.
  • Adai can also be served with morkuzhambu or morkoottu. It also goes well with coconut chutney.
  • Adai taste heavenly with a dollop of butter on top.
  • Kids love to eat Adai with sugar. You could also have it with Jaggery (Gud) or Naattu Sakkara (brown sugar).


  • Healthy Whole Grain Adai: We can make the adai more healthy by using whole grains. Use the same recipe as above but use whole grains instead. I have shared the ideas to make whole grain vegetable adai in detail here.
  • Vegetable Adai: You could also increase the nutritional value of adai by adding any vegetables of your choice to the adai batter. One way to add the vegetables is to mix finely chopped or grated vegetables to the adai batter (like onion, spinach, grated carrot, chopped beans, zucchini, bottle-gourd etc). Another way is to grind the vegetable along with the rice and lentils while preparing the batter. You can prepare different types of vegetable adai each time like onion adai, spinach adai, carrot adai, tomato (thakkali) adai, zucchini adai, bottlegourd (surakkai) adai, pumpkin adai etc. I have shared about vegetable adai in detail here.

More Adai Recipes

Adai Idli Adai Idli (Mixed Dal Idli) Mix Sprouts Adai Mix Sprouts Adai Potato Adai Potato Adai Ragi Adai Ragi Adai
See more ⟩⟩

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Comments (19)

Person   ()
Came out very well nd tasty....i also added cumin to it nd its tastes great....thank you for the recipie
Person   ()
Thats great to hear. Have a great day.
Person   ()
Nicerr loking forward fr nutritional values as well..
Person   ()
Will be adding it in future.
Person   ()
Lovely recipe, my favourite. But if we consider it for older people it is too heavy an item.

So here I present a slight variation called the 'adai dosai'.

Here you start with a larger portion of the lightest dal, ie, moong dal, (whole green or yellow), then urad dal in a lesser quantity and channa and tur dal in the lowest quantity. Other things remain the same. You grind it with a small amount of raw rice (for crispness) as well as red chillies according to individual requirement of spice. Grind to a fine paste ( not coarsely as in adai). Add, coriander leaves, curry leaves, heeng and salt to taste. You can also add, finely chopped methi and onions. But with onions you would lose the crispness.

Then prepare as mentioned above on a tawa. Served with chutney, coconut or tomato.
Person   ()
Thank you so much for sharing your variation Rukmani.
Person   ()
Hi anyone knows wat we call the ragi grain in tamil pls?.. and pls tell me also wat we call Asafoetida in tamil... pls help me translate those words in tamil because i dont understand..
Person   ()
Ragi is called kelvaragu and asafoetida is perungayam....

Check this link for other doubts..
Person   ()
For hajjis and pakoras use real hot oil two tablespoons in the bason Flour instead of baking soda. It will be very crispy. For some people baking soda may not suit their stomach.
Person   ()
Thanks for sharing ur tip.
Person   ()
Hi..liked all the adai recipes here..can i prepare & refrigerate d batter overnight? Thanks..
Person   ()
yes u can..
Person   ()
what is cilantro
Person   ()
cilantro is dhanya or corriander leaves
Person   ()
I was wondering too..... Never heard of it before.... Thanks for asking and for replying....
Person   ()
You are welcome.
Person   ()
Corainder Leaves
Person   ()
i tried it and it tasted well and was crispy too... loved it... thank u :)
Person   ()
its healthy too...

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Old Comments

Comment by Swagata Chowdhury
    Hi, sounds like an easy but healthy recipe...thanks for sharing it
Reply :-
    Yes very healthy and tasty. Try it.

Comment by sivaranjani t
    hi,,, wt is channa dal?
Reply :-
    channa dal is split chikpeas or kadalai paruppu

Comment by Cynthia Samuel
    Nice recipe. Also filling food. Good that no fermentation Needed. ThankyouNice recipe. Also filling food. Good that no fermentation Needed. Thankyou
Reply :-
    Yes, thats right. You don't have to decide ahead to make it. Simple, tasty, healthy and filling.

Comment by rekha gupta on 20 December 2009 07:52AM
    very superb, something new and according to the taste of children and also helpful in taking care of their health
Reply :-
    Hi Rekha, Yes it is really healthy and tasty. Kids will love it.

Comment by Tanushree Uchil on 15 November 2009 06:40AM
    Do we need to ferment it overnight?
Reply :-
    No Tanu, You dont have to ferment it. You can make the adais as soon as you make the batter.

Comment by PRABHA PRABA on 31 July 2009 05:55AM
    very super
Reply :-
    Thanks Prabha

 Published by on and last updated on 2017-08-27.