Skip to Content

Punugulu Recipe

Punugulu, an Indian dish that is deep-fried into a golden-brown crisp, is an irresistible snack.

The combination of the flavorful lentils and the crunchy exterior make this dish an irresistible snack.

The addition of spices like cumin, ginger, and chili powder give the Punugulu a unique and delicious flavor that will have your taste buds tingling!

Punugulu Recipe

What ingredients do you need to make punugulu?

To make Punugulu, you will need to start with a cup of white rice and 1 cup of green lentils.

To that, add:

  • 5-6 tablespoons vegetable oil (or ghee)
  • 2 tablespoons coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • pinch of red chili powder

We are going to shallow fry the ingredients for our Punugulu in hot oil.

Stir the spices into the lentils and rice in a big bowl.

Pour the oil into a deep pot or pan and heat it at medium-high heat.

Add the spices and stir them vigorously to coat them with the oil.

Then pour them into the rice and lentils.

Next, add 1 tablespoon of water.

How long does it take to cook punugulu?

Punugulu is very quick to prepare because it can be prepared in just under 30 minutes.

To start, you need to have the right ingredients.

Since the dish is fried, you will need vegetable oil, and if you want to impress your dinner guests with a crispy exterior, you will also need a deep fryer.

When ready to cook punugulu, simply pour the lentils into a large pan and add enough water to cover them by an inch.

Bring the water to a boil and then reduce the heat and simmer for five minutes.

Next, add the spices, lemon juice, salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper to taste.

Let this come back to a boil again and then reduce the heat and let it simmer for about 15 minutes.

While this cooks, make sure to add more water as needed as the mixture will shrink.

Remove from heat when done and let cool for about 10 minutes before serving.

The fried lentils should be crispy on the outside (you may need to reheat them in a skillet so that they are warm) but not soggy or mushy inside!

Punugulu Recipe

What is the best way to prepare punugulu?

Punugulu is usually served with masala chai (tea) in Indian restaurants.

However, when you make it at home, you can enjoy a deep-fried treat with your favorite beverage.

Punugulu is often used in Indian dishes that feature lentils, and it is a staple at many Indian weddings and festivals.

The dish will be served alongside rice and other vegetarian dishes.

In fact, the dish is part of the traditional wedding fare.

Punugulu is composed of whole-grain cracked rice and lentils (also known as dals or beans) that are lightly cooked in water and cooked until tender using spices like cumin, chili pepper, and ground ginger.

What type of oil is best for frying punugulu?

The most common was used to fry Punugulu is peanut oil, which is known for its superior flavor and high smoke point.

Many Punugulu bakers and restaurants use peanut oil to fry the dish because it gives the Punugulu a rich flavor.

In fact, many cooks even use natural peanut oil when deep-frying because it has an excellent smoke point, allowing you to fry at high heat without worrying about it burning.

If you want to try a more traditional style of cooking, though, sesame or canola oil is your best bet.

Both of these oils have a low smoking point, so they won’t burn as easily as peanut oil.

Sesame oil and canola oil are both excellent cooking oils that are suitable for deep-frying anything that requires cooking at high temperature.

Punugulu Recipe

Are there any variations in the traditional punugulu recipe?

The traditional recipe for Punugulu is more or less the same, but there are some variations that you can try to make your own Punugulu at home.

One such variation is the addition of chocolate chips.

While this may not seem like a big deal, you can actually make an absolutely amazing Punugulu with chocolate chips that it will have you coming back for more.

What is the correct proportion of rice flour and water for making punugulu?

The proportion of rice flour and water for making punugulu is:

  • 2 cups rice flour or maida (all purpose flour), plus extra for dusting
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 teaspoon salt

How do you know when punugulu is cooked perfectly?

If you have ever made Punugulu at home, then you know that it’s not a quick and easy process.

Cooking this snack takes about an hour.

But in that time, the difference between a crisp and undercooked dish can mean the difference between making a perfect or imperfect dish.

The main objective of cooking a Punugulu is to create a crisp exterior and a soft interior.

The best way to achieve this is to cook the Punugulu over medium heat.

The heat should be high enough to keep the sides of the Punugulu crispy, but not so high that they burn.

Also, make sure that you stir the Punugulu frequently so that it cooks evenly.

What is the best way to serve punugulu?

Punugulu is traditionally served as a street snack in India and is also a popular vegetarian dish at Indian restaurants in the United States.

The best way to serve punugulu is fresh and hot, either topped with chutney, or cut into small pieces and eaten with your fingers.

What is the best accompaniment to have with punugulu?

The best accompaniment to have with Punugulu is Seafood, curries and Indo-Chinese food.

Punugulu is also a wonderful snack to have on road trips during long drives where you can’t stop at the usual fast food joints.

Are there any health benefits associated with eating punugulu?

The best part about this perfect combination of rice and lentils is that it’s low in calories and high in fiber.

A serving of this dish will give you about 300 to 400 calories and 40 to 45 grams of fiber.

This high fiber content along with the protein from the lentils will help give you a healthy dose of energy, which means you can feel great about yourself after snacking on the delicious Punugulu.

Punugulu Recipe


Punugulu is high in proteins, which are required for cell repair and growth. They are also low in fat, implying that even dieters can consume them in moderation.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Course: Snack
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Punugulu
Servings: 2
Calories: 252kcal


  • Pan


  • 1 cup Idli Batter or dosa batter or uttapam batter
  • 1 tablespoon rava semolina – optional
  • ¼ cup onion chopped
  • 6 curry leaves chopped
  • ½ inch ginger finely chopped
  • 1 green chilies chopped
  • 3 teaspoons coriander leaves chopped
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • salt as required only to be added it you have not added salt to the batter before
  • oil for deep frying


Punugulu Recipe Preparation

  • In a mixing bowl, combine 1 cup idli batter or dosa batter. Allow the batter to come to room temperature if it has been refrigerated.
  • 1 tbsp rava (optional), 1 small onion, chopped or 1/4 cup chopped onion, 5 to 6 curry leaves, chopped or 1 tsp chopped curry leaves, 1/2 inch ginger, finely chopped, 1 or 2 green chilies, chopped, 2 to 3 tsp chopped coriander leaves, and 1 tsp cumin seeds.
  • If necessary, season with salt. Mix thoroughly.

Frying Punugulu

  • In a kadai or pan, heat the oil for deep frying. A small amount of batter should be tested in medium hot oil.
  • The exterior should be crisp, while the interior should be soft and fluffy. If the outside is too crisp and absorbs too much oil, add more rava or rice flour. If the texture is dense, more water should be added to the batter.
  • The punugulu batter should be slightly thick rather than thick or thin. You don’t need to add water or rava/rice flour if the batter is the right consistency.
  • If the batter is too thick, a few tablespoons of water can be added.
  • If the batter is too thin, add a few tablespoons of rice flour or rava.
  • When the batter has reached the desired texture after frying, drop spoonfuls into medium hot oil.
  • Turn over when the sides are pale golden and crisp.
  • Fry them in medium hot oil, turning them a few times to ensure even browning.
  • Fry them until they’re crisp and golden.
  • Using a slotted spoon, remove the fried punugulu and drain the excess oil.
  • Soak up any excess oil with kitchen towels.
  • Punugulu can be served hot or warm with coconut or peanut chutney.



Calories: 252kcal | Carbohydrates: 55g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 0.2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.05g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 3mg | Sodium: 267mg | Potassium: 55mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 137IU | Vitamin C: 64mg | Calcium: 27mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Follow me