Breakfast/ Brunch · Main course · Vegetarian

Oats and Wheat Idli (Steamed Savory Cake)

Idli is a staple breakfast in South India. For some reason, PR hates regular idlis. Hence, I had to come up with a different version of idli that is added to our menu. Oats and wheat seemed as a healthy substitute to rice and lentil. Plus there is no planning ahead and fermenting the batter in this recipe. This tasted very much like rava idlis. I used carrots, but any shredded vegetables can be added to the batter.

Yields 10-12 medium sized idlis

1 cup Oats (I used Bob’s extra thick rolled oats) * Do not use steel cut/pinhead oats

1/2 cup Dalia/ Cracked Wheat * can be substituted with regular rava/ sooji/ cream of wheat

1/2 cup plain unflavored Yogurt/ Curd

1/2 cup Carrots (grated)

1 teaspoon Green chillis (finely chopped)

1 teaspoon Mustard Seeds

1/4 teaspoon Cumin powder

1/4 teaspoon Asafoetida/ Hing – 1/2 tsp

1 tablepsoon Coriander leaves (finely chopped)

3/4 cup Water or as required

1/2 teaspoon Baking soda * This leavening agent causes the expasion of the batter and gives the grainy texture. Omitting this will give fairly heavy and dense idlis with a rubbery texture

Salt to taste

1 teaspoon Oil plus to grease idli plates


  • In a skillet, roast oats for  3-5 minutes to bring out the nutty flavor. Let it cool and pulverize to a fine powder.
  • Now roast the dalia for 3 minutes on medium heat. Cool it. Take care not to burn it.
  • Heat oil in the skillet. Add mustard seeds and let it splutter. Now add the green chillies, carrots,cumin powder and coriander leaves. Saute’ for 3-5 mins. Cool it to lukewarm.
  • Mix the oats powder and roasted dalia in a bowl. Add the tempered carrot mixture to the bowl.
  • Add yoghurt, baking soda, asafoetida and salt to the rest of the mixture.
  • Add water as needed to bring the batter together. This batter is gooey than the regular idli batter. Set aside for about 10 minutes for the baking soda to work. Air percolates to leaven the batter.
  • Smear oil on the the idli plates and pour the batter to fill the mould of the idli plates. Idli batter will rise when steamed. Do not overfill as the top of the idli will touch the bottom of the plate above.
  • Steam idlis in a idli cooker (I used electric rice cooker with the smart steam option) for 12-15 minutes. Once done, remove the plates from cooker and cool it for a minute. Dip a spoon or butter knife in water. Run the spoon or butter knife around the edges and gently loosen the idlis from the moulds. Remove the idlis from the plate.
  • Serve hot with your favourite chutney and idli milagai podi. We had the idlis with peanut chutney and homemade idli milagai podi.

6 thoughts on “Oats and Wheat Idli (Steamed Savory Cake)

  1. Hey Cheryl, my family has enjoyed todays breakfast. thanks to you. i wanted to post the pictures……….i was so excited to try the new dish that i forgot to take pics 🙂

I truly appreciate your feedback. Drop me a word.

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