Holi recipes: traditional Indian sweets and snacks in 2023

Holi recipes: Holi is a Hindu festival of colors celebrated in India and other parts of the world.

It is a time for family and friends to come together, share food, and have fun.

Holi recipes refer to the traditional dishes and snacks that are prepared and enjoyed during this festival.

These recipes are often sweet or spicy and are made using a variety of ingredients such as lentils, spices, nuts, and dairy products.

Best places to celebrate Holi in India

Holi festival India: traditions, history, and celebrations

What is holi and Why is it Celebrated in India?

Some popular Holi recipes include thandai (a refreshing drink made with nuts and spices), gujiya (a sweet pastry filled with khoya and dry fruits), dahi bhalla (lentil fritters topped with yogurt and chutney), puran poli (a sweet flatbread made with lentil filling), and papdi chaat (a crispy snack topped with potatoes, chickpeas, yogurt, and chutney).

Holi recipes vary from region to region in India and are an important part of the festival’s celebrations.

Best Holi Recipes

1. Gujiyas

gujiya traditional indian food sweet dumplings made during holi festival 612834 100

Gujiya is a traditional Indian sweet pastry that is often made during festivals and special occasions such as Holi, Diwali, and weddings. It is a crescent-shaped pastry that is filled with a sweet mixture of khoya (milk solids), coconut, and dry fruits. The pastry is deep-fried until golden brown and then sprinkled with powdered sugar. Here’s a recipe for gujiyas that you can try at home:

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup ghee (clarified butter)
  • Water (as required)
  • 1 cup khoya
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup desiccated coconut
  • 1/4 cup chopped mixed dry fruits (such as almonds, pistachios, and raisins)
  • Oil (for deep-frying)

Instructions:

  1. In a mixing bowl, add the all-purpose flour and ghee. Mix well until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
  2. Add water little by little and knead the dough until it is soft and smooth. Cover the dough and let it rest for 30 minutes.
  3. In another mixing bowl, crumble the khoya and add powdered sugar, desiccated coconut, and mixed dry fruits. Mix well to form a smooth mixture.
  4. Divide the dough into small balls and roll out each ball into a circle about 4-5 inches in diameter.
  5. Place a spoonful of the khoya mixture in the center of the circle and fold it into a half-moon shape. Use a fork to press the edges of the gujiya to seal them.
  6. Heat oil in a deep frying pan. Once the oil is hot, gently slide in the gujiyas and fry them on medium heat until they turn golden brown. Drain on a paper towel.
  7. Sprinkle powdered sugar on the gujiyas while they are still warm.

Your delicious gujiyas are ready to be served. Enjoy them with your family and friends during festivals or as a sweet treat anytime.

2.Malpuas

indian sweet food malpua white 55610 3364

Malpua is a popular Indian sweet dish that is often made during festivals such as Holi, Diwali, and Ramadan. It is a pancake-like dessert that is made with flour, milk, and sugar, and is flavored with cardamom and saffron. Here’s a recipe for malpua that you can try at home:

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup semolina
  • 1/2 cup milk powder
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom powder
  • A pinch of saffron
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • Oil or ghee (for frying)

Instructions:

  1. In a mixing bowl, add all-purpose flour, semolina, milk powder, sugar, baking powder, cardamom powder, and saffron. Mix well.
  2. Add milk little by little and whisk the batter until it is smooth and lump-free. The batter should be thick but pourable.
  3. Heat oil or ghee in a frying pan. Once the oil is hot, pour a small ladleful of batter into the pan and spread it out into a circle.
  4. Cook the malpua on medium heat until it turns golden brown on both sides. Remove from the pan and drain on a paper towel.
  5. Repeat the process with the remaining batter.
  6. Serve the malpuas hot or cold, garnished with chopped nuts and a drizzle of honey or syrup.

Your delicious malpuas are ready to be served. Enjoy them with your family and friends during festivals or as a sweet treat anytime.

3.Bhaang ki Pakori

indian spicy street food dal vada also know as moong pakoda pakode pakore pakora bhajiya served green chutney onion 159073220

Bhaang ki pakori is a popular snack that is often made during Holi festival in India. It is made by deep-frying besan (gram flour) coated bhang (cannabis) leaves or buds. The bhang is known for its intoxicating effects and is traditionally used in the preparation of sweets and snacks during Holi. Here’s a recipe for bhaang ki pakori that you can try at home:

Ingredients:

  • 10-12 bhang leaves or buds (cleaned and dried)
  • 1 cup besan (gram flour)
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1/4 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp cumin powder
  • Salt (to taste)
  • Water (as required)
  • Oil (for deep-frying)

Instructions:

  1. In a mixing bowl, add besan, turmeric powder, red chili powder, cumin powder, and salt. Mix well.
  2. Add water little by little and whisk the batter until it is smooth and lump-free. The batter should be thick enough to coat the bhang leaves or buds.
  3. Heat oil in a deep frying pan. Once the oil is hot, dip the bhang leaves or buds in the batter and coat them well.
  4. Gently slide the coated leaves or buds into the hot oil and fry them on medium heat until they turn golden brown. Drain on a paper towel.
  5. Serve the bhaang ki pakori hot, garnished with chopped coriander leaves and a sprinkle of chaat masala.

Note: Bhang is a potent substance and should be consumed in moderation. It is not recommended for children or pregnant women.

Your bhaang ki pakori is ready to be served. Enjoy it with your family and friends during Holi festival.

4. Thandai

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Thandai is a refreshing milk-based drink that is popular during Holi festival in India. It is made with a blend of almonds, pistachios, fennel seeds, cardamom, saffron, milk, and sugar. Thandai is a perfect beverage to beat the heat and to celebrate the festival. Here’s a recipe for thandai that you can try at home:

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup almonds (blanched and peeled)
  • 1/4 cup pistachios
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds
  • 1 tbsp poppy seeds
  • 1 tbsp melon seeds
  • 4-5 green cardamom pods
  • A pinch of saffron
  • 1 liter milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • Ice cubes (as required)

Instructions:

  1. In a blender, add almonds, pistachios, fennel seeds, poppy seeds, melon seeds, cardamom pods, and saffron. Grind them into a fine powder.
  2. In a saucepan, heat the milk over medium heat. Once it starts to boil, reduce the heat and add the ground powder. Stir well.
  3. Add sugar and continue to stir until the sugar dissolves completely. Remove from heat and allow the mixture to cool.
  4. Once the mixture has cooled, strain it through a fine-mesh sieve or cheesecloth to remove any solids.
  5. Chill the thandai in the refrigerator for at least an hour.
  6. Serve the thandai in glasses over ice cubes.

Your delicious thandai is ready to be served. Enjoy it with your family and friends during Holi festival. You can also garnish it with a sprinkle of chopped nuts or rose petals for an extra touch of flavor and beauty.

5. Gol Gappe / Paani Puri

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Gol Gappe, also known as Paani Puri, is a popular street food in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Nepal. It consists of small, hollow, crispy spheres made of semolina or wheat flour, which are filled with a mixture of mashed potatoes, chickpeas, onions, and spices, and then dipped in flavored water (known as “pani” in Hindi) before being eaten in one bite.

The flavored water used to fill the Gol Gappe can vary depending on the region and the vendor, but common options include mint and coriander water, tamarind water, and spicy water made with chaat masala and chili powder. Some vendors also offer sweetened water made with jaggery or sugar.

Gol Gappe is a popular snack and a favorite among people of all ages. It is often served as a street food, sold from small carts or stalls on the roadside, and is especially popular during the hot summer months.

Ingredients:

For the dough:

  • 1 cup semolina (sooji) or wheat flour (atta)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Water, as needed

For the filling:

  • 1 cup boiled and mashed potatoes
  • 1 cup boiled chickpeas
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup chopped coriander leaves
  • 1 tsp roasted cumin powder
  • 1 tsp chaat masala powder
  • Salt, to taste

For the flavored water:

  • 3 cups water
  • 1/2 cup mint leaves
  • 1/2 cup coriander leaves
  • 2 green chilies
  • 1 tsp tamarind paste
  • 1 tsp chaat masala powder
  • 1/2 tsp black salt
  • 1/4 tsp cumin powder
  • Salt, to taste

Instructions:

  1. To prepare the dough, mix together the semolina or wheat flour, salt, and enough water to form a smooth and pliable dough. Knead the dough for a few minutes and let it rest for 20 minutes.
  2. To prepare the filling, mix together the boiled and mashed potatoes, boiled chickpeas, chopped onion, chopped coriander leaves, roasted cumin powder, chaat masala powder, and salt. Mix well and set aside.
  3. To prepare the flavored water, blend together the mint leaves, coriander leaves, green chilies, tamarind paste, chaat masala powder, black salt, cumin powder, and salt with 3 cups of water in a blender.
  4. Strain the flavored water through a fine mesh strainer and transfer it to a serving bowl. Chill in the refrigerator until ready to use.
  5. Divide the dough into small balls and roll them out into small circles. Heat oil in a deep frying pan over medium-high heat.
  6. Once the oil is hot, gently place the rolled-out dough circles into the oil and fry until they are puffed and golden brown. Remove from the oil and drain on a paper towel.
  7. To assemble the Gol Gappe, use a fork or your fingers to make a small hole in the center of each fried dough ball. Fill the hole with the potato and chickpea mixture and dip the filled Gol Gappe into the chilled flavored water.
  8. Eat the Gol Gappe in one bite, enjoying the burst of flavors and textures in your mouth. Repeat with the remaining Gol Gappe and flavored water.

6. Dal Kachori

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Dal Kachori is a popular North Indian snack that consists of a crisp, flaky pastry shell filled with a spicy mixture of lentils, onions, and aromatic spices. The pastry shell is made from refined flour or wheat flour, and is deep-fried until it turns golden brown and crispy.

To prepare the filling, yellow lentils (also known as chana dal) are soaked and then cooked until they become soft. The lentils are then mashed and mixed with spices such as cumin, coriander, red chili powder, garam masala, and turmeric. Chopped onions, ginger, and garlic are also added to the mixture for additional flavor.

The filling is then stuffed into the pastry shell and sealed tightly. The kachoris are then deep-fried until they are crisp and golden brown on the outside, and hot and spicy on the inside. They are typically served with a spicy mint or tamarind chutney.

Dal Kachori is a popular snack and is commonly found in street food stalls and restaurants across North India. It is also a popular dish during festivals and special occasions. The combination of crispy pastry and spicy filling makes it a delicious and satisfying snack.

Ingredients:

For the pastry:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (maida)
  • 1/4 cup ghee or vegetable oil
  • Salt to taste
  • Water, as needed

For the filling:

  • 1 cup chana dal (yellow split lentils)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2-3 green chilies, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp ginger paste
  • 1 tsp garlic paste
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala powder
  • Salt to taste
  • Oil, for frying

Instructions:

  1. To prepare the pastry, combine the flour, salt, and ghee or oil in a mixing bowl. Mix well using your fingers until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
  2. Slowly add water to the mixture and knead into a smooth dough. Cover the dough with a damp cloth and let it rest for 10-15 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, prepare the filling by washing the chana dal and soaking it in water for 2-3 hours. Drain the water and grind the dal in a mixer to a coarse paste.
  4. Heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds. When they start to splutter, add the chopped onions, green chilies, ginger paste, and garlic paste. Saute until the onions turn golden brown.
  5. Add the ground chana dal, coriander powder, red chili powder, garam masala powder, and salt to the pan. Mix well and cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring continuously, until the mixture becomes dry.
  6. Let the filling cool down to room temperature.
  7. Divide the dough into small balls and roll them into thin circles. Place a spoonful of the filling in the center of the circle and bring the edges together to seal the kachori.
  8. Heat oil in a deep frying pan over medium heat. Once the oil is hot, gently slide the kachoris into the oil and fry until golden brown and crisp.
  9. Remove the kachoris from the oil and drain on a paper towel.
  10. Serve hot with mint or tamarind chutney. Enjoy your delicious Dal Kachori!

7.Paapri Chaat & Dahi Bhalla

dahi puri chat is indian road side snack item which is especially popular state maharashtra india 466689 73908

Paapri Chaat and Dahi Bhalla are popular Indian street foods that are loved for their tangy, spicy and sweet flavors.

Paapri Chaat

Paapri Chaat is a crispy and crunchy snack made with a base of crispy fried dough wafers called “paapri”. It is topped with a flavorful mixture of boiled chickpeas, potatoes, onions, tomatoes, green chilies, and a variety of spices such as roasted cumin powder, chaat masala powder, and black salt. This mixture is then drizzled with sweet and tangy tamarind chutney, mint chutney, and yogurt. Paapri Chaat is a refreshing and satisfying snack that is perfect for a hot summer day.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup paapri (crispy fried dough wafers)
  • 1 cup boiled chickpeas
  • 1/2 cup boiled potatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • 1/2 cup chopped tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup chopped coriander leaves
  • 2-3 green chilies, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp roasted cumin powder
  • 1 tsp chaat masala powder
  • 1/4 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp black salt
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • Tamarind chutney, to taste
  • Mint chutney, to taste
  • Yogurt, whisked, to taste

Instructions:

  1. In a mixing bowl, combine the boiled chickpeas, chopped potatoes, chopped onions, chopped tomatoes, chopped coriander leaves, green chilies, roasted cumin powder, chaat masala powder, red chili powder, black salt, and salt. Mix well.
  2. Arrange the paapris on a serving plate.
  3. Spoon the chickpea and potato mixture over the paapris.
  4. Drizzle tamarind chutney and mint chutney over the mixture.
  5. Top with a generous amount of whisked yogurt.
  6. Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve immediately.

Enjoy your delicious Paapri Chaat!

Dahi Bhalla

Dahi Bhalla is a popular snack made with deep-fried lentil dumplings that are soaked in water until soft, and then served with a generous amount of yogurt mixed with spices such as roasted cumin powder, red chili powder, and salt. The dish is topped with sweet and tangy tamarind chutney, mint chutney, and a sprinkle of roasted cumin powder, red chili powder, and chopped coriander leaves. Dahi Bhalla is a refreshing and cooling snack that is perfect for a hot summer day.

Ingredients:

For the vadas:

  • 1 cup urad dal (split black gram)
  • Salt, to taste
  • Oil, for frying

For the yogurt mixture:

  • 2 cups plain yogurt
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp roasted cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp red chili powder
  • Salt, to taste

For the toppings:

  • Tamarind chutney, to taste
  • Mint chutney, to taste
  • Roasted cumin powder, for sprinkling
  • Red chili powder, for sprinkling
  • Chopped coriander leaves, for garnish

Instructions:

  1. Soak the urad dal in water for 4-5 hours. Drain the water and grind the dal to a smooth paste using a little water.
  2. Add salt to the batter and mix well.
  3. Heat oil in a deep frying pan over medium heat.
  4. Once the oil is hot, wet your hands and shape the batter into small balls. Gently drop the balls into the hot oil and fry until golden brown.
  5. Remove the vadas from the oil and drain on a paper towel.
  6. Soak the vadas in water for 15-20 minutes until they become soft.
  7. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the yogurt, sugar, roasted cumin powder, red chili powder, and salt.
  8. Squeeze the excess water from the vadas and add them to the yogurt mixture. Mix well.
  9. Arrange the vadas on a serving plate and pour the remaining yogurt mixture over them.
  10. Drizzle tamarind chutney and mint chutney over the vadas.
  11. Sprinkle roasted cumin powder, red chili powder, and chopped coriander leaves over the top.
  12. Chill in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours before serving.

Enjoy your delicious Dahi Bhalla!

8. Masala Channa with Baked Kachori

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Masala Channa with Baked Kachori is a popular Indian dish that is enjoyed as a snack or as a main course. Masala Channa is made with boiled chickpeas cooked in a spicy and flavorful tomato-onion gravy. It is usually served with rice, roti or any Indian bread.

Baked Kachori is a savory pastry filled with spiced lentils. It is a healthier version of the traditional deep-fried kachori. Baking the kachori instead of deep-frying it reduces the amount of oil used in the recipe, making it a healthier option.

Together, Masala Channa and Baked Kachori make a perfect combination of flavors and textures. The spicy and tangy Masala Channa pairs well with the crispy and flaky Baked Kachori, making it a delicious and satisfying meal.

Masala Channa with Baked Kachori is a delicious Indian dish that is perfect for a satisfying meal. Here’s how you can make it:

Ingredients:

For Masala Channa:

  • 1 cup chickpeas (channa), soaked overnight and boiled
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 green chili, chopped
  • 1 tsp ginger garlic paste
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp coriander powder
  • 1 tsp garam masala powder
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • Salt, to taste
  • 2 tbsp oil

For Baked Kachori:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • Water, as needed
  • 1/2 cup moong dal (split yellow lentils)
  • 1 tsp ginger, grated
  • 1 tsp green chili, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 tbsp coriander leaves, chopped
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • Oil, for brushing

Instructions:

  1. To make the Masala Channa, heat oil in a pan and add cumin seeds. When they start spluttering, add chopped onions and sauté until golden brown.
  2. Add ginger garlic paste and chopped green chili. Sauté for a minute and add chopped tomatoes. Cook until the tomatoes turn mushy.
  3. Add all the dry spices (turmeric powder, coriander powder, garam masala powder, and salt) and mix well. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
  4. Add boiled channa and 1/2 cup of water. Mix well, cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
  5. To make the Baked Kachori, combine all-purpose flour, salt, and oil in a bowl. Mix well until crumbly. Add water as needed and knead to form a smooth dough.
  6. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a pan and add cumin seeds. When they start spluttering, add grated ginger and chopped green chili. Sauté for a minute and add moong dal. Cook for 5-7 minutes or until the dal is cooked.
  7. Add salt and chopped coriander leaves. Mix well and let the filling cool.
  8. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F.
  9. Divide the dough into equal-sized balls. Roll out each ball into a small circle.
  10. Place 1-2 tbsp of the filling in the center and bring the edges together to seal. Flatten it slightly and brush with oil.
  11. Place the kachoris on a baking tray and bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.
  12. Serve the Masala Channa hot with Baked Kachori.

Enjoy your delicious and flavorful Masala Channa with Baked Kachori!

9. Apple Kheer

greek yogurt original flavour with fresh slice red apple white plate 71919 220

Apple Kheer is a sweet and creamy Indian dessert made with grated apples, milk, sugar, and flavored with cardamom powder. It is a unique twist on traditional Indian kheer, which is typically made with rice or vermicelli.

Apples are a great source of fiber and antioxidants, making this dessert a healthier option. The milk used in the recipe provides protein and calcium, making it a nutritious dessert.

The grated apples in the kheer give it a slightly tart and fruity flavor, which is balanced by the sweetness of the milk and sugar. The addition of cardamom powder gives the kheer a warm and aromatic flavor.

Apple Kheer is typically served chilled, making it a perfect dessert to enjoy on a warm day. It can also be garnished with chopped nuts like almonds, pistachios, or cashews for added crunch and flavor.

Apple Kheer is a delicious and easy-to-make Indian dessert that combines the goodness of apples and milk. Here’s how you can make it:

Ingredients:

  • 2 apples, peeled and grated
  • 1 liter milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom powder
  • 1/4 cup almonds, blanched and sliced
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 2 tbsp ghee

Instructions:

  1. Heat ghee in a heavy-bottomed pan and add grated apples. Sauté for 3-4 minutes or until the apples are soft.
  2. Add milk and stir well. Bring it to a boil and then reduce the heat to low. Cook for 20-25 minutes or until the milk has thickened and reduced by half.
  3. Add sugar and cardamom powder. Stir well and cook for another 5-10 minutes or until the sugar has dissolved and the kheer has thickened further.
  4. Add sliced almonds and raisins. Mix well and turn off the heat.
  5. Allow the kheer to cool to room temperature. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Enjoy your creamy and delicious Apple Kheer as a sweet and satisfying dessert after your meal! You can also garnish it with some more sliced almonds and raisins, or even some grated apple for added texture and flavor.

10. Almond Malai Kulfi

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Almond Malai Kulfi is a creamy and rich Indian frozen dessert made with milk, cream, almonds, and flavored with cardamom and saffron. Here’s how you can make it:

Ingredients:

  • 1 liter whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup almonds, blanched and ground
  • 1/4 cup almond slivers, for garnish
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom powder
  • 1/4 tsp saffron strands, soaked in 2 tbsp warm milk

Instructions:

  1. In a heavy-bottomed pan, add milk and cream. Bring it to a boil and then reduce the heat to low. Simmer for 40-45 minutes or until the milk has reduced to half its original volume.
  2. Add sugar, ground almonds, cardamom powder, and saffron milk. Stir well and cook for another 5-10 minutes or until the sugar has dissolved and the mixture has thickened.
  3. Turn off the heat and allow the mixture to cool to room temperature. Pour the mixture into kulfi molds or small individual cups.
  4. Freeze the kulfi for 6-8 hours or until it is set. Once the kulfi is set, remove it from the molds by dipping them in warm water for a few seconds.
  5. Garnish the kulfi with almond slivers and serve immediately.

Enjoy the creamy and nutty flavor of Almond Malai Kulfi as a refreshing dessert on a warm day. You can also experiment with other flavors like pistachio, mango, or rose for a unique twist on this classic dessert.

11. Baked Namak Para

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Baked Namak Para is a crispy and savory Indian snack that is typically made with all-purpose flour, semolina, and a blend of spices. Here’s how you can make it:

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup semolina
  • 1 tsp carom seeds
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup water

Instructions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F (180°C).
  2. In a mixing bowl, add all-purpose flour, semolina, carom seeds, cumin seeds, red chili powder, and salt. Mix well.
  3. Add vegetable oil to the flour mixture and mix it with your hands until it resembles coarse crumbs.
  4. Gradually add water and knead the dough until it comes together and forms a smooth and firm ball.
  5. Divide the dough into equal-sized balls and roll them out into thin sheets.
  6. Cut the sheets into small diamond shapes using a sharp knife or a pizza cutter.
  7. Place the Namak Para on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  8. Bake the Namak Para for 15-20 minutes or until they turn golden brown and crispy.
  9. Remove them from the oven and allow them to cool to room temperature.
  10. Once cooled, store the Namak Para in an airtight container and enjoy as a crunchy snack with your favorite dip or chutney.

Baking the Namak Para instead of deep-frying them makes them a healthier alternative, while still maintaining their crispy and savory flavor. Enjoy them as a snack or serve them with tea as a tasty accompaniment.