Healthy Recipes: Semolina Dumplings (Rava Idli)

Updated on January 13, 2019
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Cooking is one of my passions. Though I am working, I make nutritious and tasty food at home. I use minimal oil and no artificial colors.

What Is Rava Idli?

Rava idli, or semolina dumplings, is one of the most popular breakfast dishes in India. They are soft, aromatic, and easily digestible. The accompanying side dish or chutney should be spicy because rava idli itself is fairly bland.

To make rava idli, roasted semolina is mixed with thick curd to make the batter. Grated carrot is mixed with the batter to make it more healthy. Sometimes, idlis are topped with fried cashew nut pieces, chopped tomato, or other garnishes. Unlike other idlis, rava idli batter does not need fermentation. Making this dish takes about 30 minutes. Hot idlis are served with potato curry and coconut chutney.

Rava idli (semolina dumplings)
Rava idli (semolina dumplings)
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Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 15 min
Ready in: 30 min
Yields: Serves four people
  • 2 cups medium semolina
  • 1/6 cup carrot, grated
  • 2 tbsp coriander leaves, finely chopped (optional)
  • 8 curry leaves
  • 1 tsp ginger, grated
  • 1/2 tsp Eno fruit salt, or 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt, or as per taste
  • 2 tsp oil or ghee
  • 1/2 tsp ghee, for greasing idli moulds
  • 2 cups thick curd or yogurt, medium sour
  • 1 tbsp cashew nut pieces, for topping (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds


  1. Heat ghee or oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds. Let them crackle. Throw in curry leaves. Add semolina. Roast on low fire for 3-4 minutes or until you get a nice aroma. Turn off the fire. Transfer the contents to a mixing bowl. Set aside for cooling.
  2. Grease the idli moulds and keep a steamer or cooker ready.
  3. To the roasted semolina, add grated ginger, chopped coriander leaves, curd or yogurt, and salt. Mix well. Leave for 5 minutes.
  4. If the batter is too thick, add water and adjust the consistency. For rava idli, the batter should be thick like any other idli batter.
  5. Add Eno fruit salt or baking soda. Quickly give a stir. The batter will rise in volume. Pour the batter into the greased moulds. Keep the moulds inside the steamer or cooker. Steam for 10 minutes on medium-high flame. Turn off the fire.
  6. Sprinkle some water on the steamed hot idlis. This will help moisten them.
  7. Remove them from the moulds, using a spoon when they are warm.
  8. The rava idli is ready to serve. Serve hot idlis with potato curry and spicy coconut chutney. Enjoy!

Photo Tutorial

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Ingredients kept readyRoasted semolina mixed with other ingredientsAdd curd and Eno fruit saltPour the batter into the idli mouldsCooked rava idlisArrange semolina dumplings on a serving plateRava idli and chutneyRava idli batter with carrot, cashew nuts, and tomato topping
Ingredients kept ready
Ingredients kept ready
Roasted semolina mixed with other ingredients
Roasted semolina mixed with other ingredients
Add curd and Eno fruit salt
Add curd and Eno fruit salt
Pour the batter into the idli moulds
Pour the batter into the idli moulds
Cooked rava idlis
Cooked rava idlis
Arrange semolina dumplings on a serving plate
Arrange semolina dumplings on a serving plate
Rava idli and chutney
Rava idli and chutney
Rava idli batter with carrot, cashew nuts, and tomato topping
Rava idli batter with carrot, cashew nuts, and tomato topping

Important Tip:

  • After mixing cooking soda or Eno fruit salt, quickly steam the dumplings to get soft, fluffy idlis. Any delay may cause the idlis to become flat and hard.

Semolina Dumplings (Rava Idli)

Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1
Calories 70
Calories from Fat18
% Daily Value *
Fat 2 g3%
Saturated fat 1 g5%
Unsaturated fat 0 g
Carbohydrates 14 g5%
Sugar 0 g
Fiber 0 g
Protein 2 g4%
Cholesterol 0 mg
Sodium 100 mg4%
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.


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