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All About Indian Breads! (PART 2)

Updated on August 24, 2015


As mentioned in the previous Hub, all the breads are a very important part of the Indian Cuisine. Almost each meal has at least one of these breads. Their diversity portrays the diversity of India. Through this Hub I have tried to compile all the important breads I know of, though I'm sure I've missed out on a lot of them. I hope you will find this informative.


Papad is a thin, crisp circle of black gram and spices. It is traditional to India and Pakistan. The dough is made of black gram, lentils, chickpeas or potato. The thick dough is rolled into extremely thin discs, which are usually dried under the sun. The dried papads are cooked by deep frying roasting or microwaving. Typically served with meals as an appetizer or snack, papad is a must with every meal for me. They are also served with toppings such as chopped onions and other dips. The dough is flavored with a number of spices like chili, salt cumin, garlic and black pepper.

Papad is a big part of empowerment of women in India. Many papad making companies are run by women. They also make pickles and other snacks. A popular organization called Shri Mahila Griha Udyog Lijjat Papad is run solely by women. Their annual income is Rs. 6.5 billion or US $ 100 million.

Papad is one of my favorite dishes ever. All of the spices fit perfectly with the dough. Although I can’t really explain the flavor, it is just perfect. If you haven’t had it, I’m telling you, you are missing out something incredibly delicious. Everyone must have it.

.In a 100 grams of Papad,

371 Calories

3.2 g Fat

4 mg Cholestrol

.60 g Carbohydrates



Paratha is a flatbread traditional to the Indian Subcontinent. It is most prevalent in Northern India. The dough of whole wheat is rolled out, stuffed with any desired stuffing and then shallow fried on a griddle. They are much thicker than chapattis, not only because of their stuffing, but also because they are layered with ghee or butter. Parathas are usually eaten for breakfast. The stuffed breads can simply be eaten with butter on top. But a lot of other chutneys and pickles, curd and curries are enjoyed with them. They can be round, hexagonal or triangular.

Parathas are stuffed with a variety of ingredients, the most common one being spiced potatoes, called aloo ka paratha, where aloo means potato. Numerous other alternatives exist,

Anda Paratha, stuffed with Anda, or egg.

Dal Paratha, stuffed with boiled, spiced pulses.

Gobhi Paratha, stuffed with spiced cauliflower. This is another famous variant of parathas.

Lachha Paratha, a multilayered flatbread, interspaced with ghee, or clarified butter.

Lasuni Paratha is flavored with garlic.

Matar Paratha, stuffed with boiled, mashed and spiced peas.

Paneer Paratha is stuffed with cottage cheese, and is also very popular.

Pyaz ka Paratha is stuffed with spicy onions

Queema Paratha is stuffed with minced mutton.

In one paratha,

319 Calories

11 g Total Fat

49 g Carbs

0 mg Cholesterol



Pathiri is a rice pancake. It is found in Southern India, mainly in Kerala. The white dough is baked on special pans called oadu. After baking, it is often soaked in coconut milk to improve the flavor. Today, the dish is very popular among Muslims living there, and is regularly served during iftar during Ramadan. The stuffing of Ichari Pathiri is made with cooked meat, shredded to small pieces, onions, green chillies and chilli powder. Different variants of pathiri are-

Neypathiri, which is made with ghee.

Meen Pathiri is stuffed with fish.

In one serving,

290 Calories

1 g Fat

0 mg Cholesterol

64 g Carbs



Pesarattu is a dish traditional to Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. It is served in almost all of the restaurants there. It is simply a dosa made with whole green gram lentil. Another variant of this dish is pesarattu upma. In this, the green gram dosa is stuffed with upma. Even though they are two separate dishes, they are frequently eaten together as pesarattu upma. This is a much healthier and nutritious version of dosa, as whole green gram is used. The delicacy is served with sambhar, coriander chutney and ginger chutney.

In one Pesrattu,

133 Calories

4.9 g Fat

16.9 g Carbohydrates

6.3 g Protein



Pithas are a cake found in Bangladesh and India. The dimsum is mainly found in Odisha, West Bengal, Jharkhand and the northeast states. They are typically made with rice flour and wheat flour. The batter is shaped, though this is optional. The pouch is called akhol. The akhol is filled with sweet of pungent ingredients, called pur.

The spicy ingredients includefried, baked or steamed cauliflower, cabbage and potato. Sweet pithas are stuffed with a variety of ingredients like sugar, jiggery, palm syrup or grated coconut, cashews, sweetened vegetables and fruits. They are also often flavoured with cardamom. Pithas can be fried, slow roasted or steamed. They are usually eaten for breakfast and snacks.

Different types of pithas are-

Manda Pitha

Kakara Pitha

Chakuli Pitha

Pakan Pitha


Tekeli Pitha

There are numerous other varieties of this dumpling.

In one serving of Pitha,

185 Calories

8 g Fat

0 mg Cholestrol



Puri, or Poori is a deep fried bread eaten in all of Indian Subcontinent. Usually eaten foe breakfast, it can be enjoyed as a snack too. It is prepared with whole wheat flour. Cumin seeds are also added to enhance the taste. The dough of flour and salt is made into small balls then rolled into small circles, the deep fried in ghee or oil. While deep frying, the puri puffs up like a round ball due to the moisture inside the puri. The moisture turns into steam on heating.

The puffs are served with a lot of curries, both sweet and spicy. Potato curries like bhaji and sweet dishes like halwa and kheer (prepared with milk and rice), which can also be eaten otherwise. Even puris can be stored for long periods and eaten as snacks.

In one serving of Puri,

107 Calories

3.3 g Fat

16.8 Carbohydrates



Sheermal is a flatbread traditional to Iran, Pakistan, Bangladesh and some parts of India. Sheermal is basically naan, but sweetened. The leavened bread is baked in an oven. It was traditionally made with warm water, but now it has been replaced with warm milk, flavoured with saffron. The sweet bread probably came to India due to Persian influence, and is served with meat. Sometimes, it is also served with Lucknow kebabs.

In one serving of Sheermal,

420 Calories

23 g Fat

60 mg Cholesterol

45 g Carbohydrates



Taftan is a leavened bread made with flour. It is traditional to Persian, Pakistani and Uttar Pradeshi cuisines. Taftan is a Persian word. The small bread is made with milk, yogurt and eggs, and is flavoured with saffron, cardamom powder and poppy seeds.

In one serving of Taftan,

715 Calories

33 g Fat

92 g Carbs

0 mg Cholesterol



Thalipeeth is popular in western India, especially Maharashtra. The dough of this pungent pancake is by coriander and cumin seeds, wheat, rice, chana daal and whole black lentil (Urad daal). So in short it is a multi grain pancake. Other elements include coriander leaves, onions and spices.

The pancake is usually served with butter of buffalo’s milk, ghee or curd. This dish is very popular amongst Maharashtrians

In one Thalipeeth,

135.3 Calories

3.4 g Total fat

23.1 g carbohydrates



Theplas are an intrinsic part of Gujarati cuisine. They can be eaten hot, or can be stored for relatively long periods of time. This way they are frequently eaten as snacks. They are also regularly eaten with curd. The dough of whole wheat and gram flour can be enhanced by adding other ingredients like fenugreek, spinach and cumin seeds, though theplas are most popularly made with fenugreek.

In one Thepla,

70 Calories

3 g Total fat

12 g Carbs



A dosa like dish with the same batter, Uttapam is popularly termed as Indian Pizza as it has toppings. But unlike dosa, which is thin and crisp, this is thick. The outer layers may be crisp, but the inside is soft. Uttapam has been traditionally made with toppings like onions, tomatoes, capsicum cabbage and coconut. All of these can also be put together. Again like dosa, it is extremely popular. And though it has originated from the southern states, it is eaten all over India.

In one Uttapam,

170 Calories

7 g Fat

2 g Saturated

0 g Polysaturated

0 g Monosaturated



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