How to Make Vada Pav, a Tasty Indian Street Food

Updated on April 23, 2020
ShailaSheshadri profile image

I like to cook and eat natural, healthy, and tasty foods. I use minimal oil and don't use artificial colors or preservatives in my cooking.

Vada pav is a popular Indian street food.
Vada pav is a popular Indian street food.

What Is Vada Pav?

Vada pav is a popular Indian street food that consists of a spicy potato dumpling (vada) in a bun (pav). Originally hailing from Mumbai, the snack quickly spread all over India. It is nutritious, delicious, and filling—and it also happens to be my favorite snack.

The potato dumplings are made with boiled potatoes, ginger, garlic, green chilies, and other spices. They are extremely flavorful and a bit spicy. The pav bun is a soft, white roll, spread with a tasty garlic chutney powder, the recipe for which I have also included below.

In addition to being a fantastic snack, vada pav makes for a great party appetizer, too. I must note here, however, that weight-watchers may need to minimize the number they consume because the dumplings are deep-fried.

Now, let's take a look at the recipe for this absolutely heavenly snack.

Rating:

5 stars for Vada Pav, a Tasty Indian Street Food

Cook Time

Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 25 min
Ready in: 45 min
Yields: Serves 4 people

Ingredients

For the Batter:

  • 1 1/2 cups besan (chickpea flour)
  • 2 pinches red chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon hing powder (asafoetida powder)
  • 1/2 teaspoon oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

For the Stuffing:

  • 1/2 inch ginger, roughly chopped
  • 3 to 4 garlic cloves
  • 2 green chilies
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 3 potatoes, boiled, peeled, and mashed
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar (optional, to balance the taste)
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 2 tablespoons fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped

Other Ingredients:

  • Oil for deep frying
  • Pav buns
  • Garlic chutney powder (recipe below)

Instructions

  1. In a mixing bowl, add chickpea flour (besan powder), red chili powder, asafoetida powder, oil, and salt. Mix them well.
  2. Little by little, add water in order to make a smooth and thick batter. The batter should have the consistency of idli batter. Set aside.
  3. In a mixer or blender, add ginger, garlic cloves, and green chilies. Pulse 2 to 3 times to get a paste. Set aside.
  4. Heat oil in a deep-bottomed pan. Add mustard seeds. Allow them to crackle. Add curry leaves and ginger-garlic-green chili paste. Reduce the heat to a minimum.
  5. Saute for a few seconds or until you get a nice aroma from the roasted spices. Add mashed potatoes, salt, sugar, and turmeric powder. Mix well. Add chopped coriander leaves. Gently mix until well blended.
  6. Turn off the heat. The potato stuffing is ready.
  7. Heat oil for deep-frying.
  8. Divide the stuffing into tennis-ball-sized portions. Shape them into balls. Dip each ball into the batter, one at a time, and then slide each ball into the hot oil.
  9. Keep the heat medium-high. Fry 2 to 3 vada per batch so that they don't overcrowd. Turn them occasionally to ensure uniform frying. Reduce the flame once they become crispy. Fry them until they become golden brown.
  10. Remove the cooked vada and place them on an absorbent paper towel. Repeat the same process with the remaining balls.
  11. Now it's time to assemble the vada pav. Slit the pav buns horizontally, but do not slice them completely through (one side of the bun should still be attached). Generously spread garlic chutney powder inside the slit. Place a vada on the chutney powder. Close the upper portion of the pav bun.
  12. Now vada pav is ready to eat. Hold it like a sandwich and start eating the exposed portion, with the uncut section of the pav bun facing away from you. It is undoubtedly a heavenly experience to eat this delectable snack!

Step-by-Step Photo Guide

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Step 1: In a bowl, add the batter ingredients. Prepare a thick and smooth batter by adding water as needed. Set aside.The batter should look like this.Step 2: Add chopped ginger, garlic cloves, and green chilies to a mixer or blender. Pulse 2 to 3 times to get a paste.The ginger-garlic-green chili paste will look like this.Step 3: Heat oil in a deep pan. Throw in the mustard seeds. Let them crackle. Add curry leaves and the ground ginger-garlic-green chili paste. Keep the heat medium-low.Saute until you get a nice aroma from the roasted spices. Add mashed potatoes. Add turmeric powder, salt, and sugar. Mix well.Add chopped fresh coriander leaves. Saute for a few seconds or until the mixture in the pan blends well with the spices. Turn off the heat.The potato stuffing should look like this.Step 4: Divide the stuffing into tennis-ball-sized portions. Shape them into balls. Dip the balls into the batter and deep-fry in  medium-hot oil.Fry 2 to 3 balls at a time. Don't overcrowd them! Turn them occasionally to ensure uniform frying. Reduce the heat once they become crispy. Fry them until they become golden brown.Remove and place on an absorbent paper towel. Repeat the same process with the remaining stuffing and batter. Slit a pav bun horizontally but do not cut all the way through. Spread garlic chutney powder in the slit and then place a potato vada inside.
Step 1: In a bowl, add the batter ingredients. Prepare a thick and smooth batter by adding water as needed. Set aside.
Step 1: In a bowl, add the batter ingredients. Prepare a thick and smooth batter by adding water as needed. Set aside.
The batter should look like this.
The batter should look like this.
Step 2: Add chopped ginger, garlic cloves, and green chilies to a mixer or blender. Pulse 2 to 3 times to get a paste.
Step 2: Add chopped ginger, garlic cloves, and green chilies to a mixer or blender. Pulse 2 to 3 times to get a paste.
The ginger-garlic-green chili paste will look like this.
The ginger-garlic-green chili paste will look like this.
Step 3: Heat oil in a deep pan. Throw in the mustard seeds. Let them crackle. Add curry leaves and the ground ginger-garlic-green chili paste. Keep the heat medium-low.
Step 3: Heat oil in a deep pan. Throw in the mustard seeds. Let them crackle. Add curry leaves and the ground ginger-garlic-green chili paste. Keep the heat medium-low.
Saute until you get a nice aroma from the roasted spices. Add mashed potatoes. Add turmeric powder, salt, and sugar. Mix well.
Saute until you get a nice aroma from the roasted spices. Add mashed potatoes. Add turmeric powder, salt, and sugar. Mix well.
Add chopped fresh coriander leaves. Saute for a few seconds or until the mixture in the pan blends well with the spices. Turn off the heat.
Add chopped fresh coriander leaves. Saute for a few seconds or until the mixture in the pan blends well with the spices. Turn off the heat.
The potato stuffing should look like this.
The potato stuffing should look like this.
Step 4: Divide the stuffing into tennis-ball-sized portions. Shape them into balls. Dip the balls into the batter and deep-fry in  medium-hot oil.
Step 4: Divide the stuffing into tennis-ball-sized portions. Shape them into balls. Dip the balls into the batter and deep-fry in medium-hot oil.
Fry 2 to 3 balls at a time. Don't overcrowd them! Turn them occasionally to ensure uniform frying. Reduce the heat once they become crispy. Fry them until they become golden brown.
Fry 2 to 3 balls at a time. Don't overcrowd them! Turn them occasionally to ensure uniform frying. Reduce the heat once they become crispy. Fry them until they become golden brown.
Remove and place on an absorbent paper towel. Repeat the same process with the remaining stuffing and batter.
Remove and place on an absorbent paper towel. Repeat the same process with the remaining stuffing and batter.
Slit a pav bun horizontally but do not cut all the way through. Spread garlic chutney powder in the slit and then place a potato vada inside.
Slit a pav bun horizontally but do not cut all the way through. Spread garlic chutney powder in the slit and then place a potato vada inside.

Garlic Chutney Powder Recipe for Vada Pav

Ingredients

  • Fistful of peanuts
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar

Instructions

  1. Dry-roast the peanuts. After they have cooled down, remove the skins by rubbing them with your fingers.
  2. Add the peanuts to a blender. Add red chili powder, garlic cloves, and cumin seeds. Pulse 2 to 3 times.
  3. Add salt and sugar. Pulse once again to make a coarse powder.
  4. Transfer the chutney powder to a bowl. Store it in an airtight container. Use as a condiment whenever you desire. For a longer shelf life, store it in the refrigerator.

Nutritional Information

Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1
Calories 196
Calories from Fat27
% Daily Value *
Fat 3 g5%
Carbohydrates 32 g11%
Sugar 1 g
Fiber 3 g12%
Protein 6 g12%
Cholesterol 0 mg
Sodium 12 mg1%
* 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.

© 2019 ShailaSheshadri

Comments

Submit a Comment
  • ShailaSheshadri profile imageAUTHOR

    ShailaSheshadri 

    9 months ago from Bengaluru

    Hi Prantika, thanks for reading my article. Pav Bhaji is different from Vada Pav. However, Pav bun stands common in both the dishes; the combinations differ. I have posted recipes for both the snacks. Please, do try them!

  • ShailaSheshadri profile imageAUTHOR

    ShailaSheshadri 

    9 months ago from Bengaluru

    Thanks for your encouraging comment.

  • hmkrishna profile image

    Halemane Muralikrishna 

    9 months ago from South India

    Nice recipes

  • Prantika Samanta profile image

    Prantika Samanta 

    10 months ago from Kolkata, India

    Pav Bhaji is delicious and easy to make. I love to eat it but had never thought of preparing it. Will follow your recipe and give it a try. The festive season is on and this is the best time to try it. Thank you for such a wonderful recipe.

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