7 Steps to Make Rava Idli Recipe: The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide to Quick, Easy, and Delicious Breakfast

Rava idli recipe is a delicious and easy breakfast dish that originated in the state of Karnataka in India. It is made with semolina (rava or suji), yogurt (curd), spices, herbs, and a leavening agent. Unlike the traditional idli, which requires soaking, grinding, and fermenting the rice and lentil batter, rava idli can be made instantly without any hassle. In this beginner’s guide, you will learn how to make rava idli with step-by-step instructions, tips and tricks, variations, and serving suggestions.

rava idli recipe

What is Rava Idli ?

Rava idli recipe is a variation of the traditional idli, which is a steamed cake made with rice and lentil batter. Rava idli uses semolina (rava or suji) instead of rice, which gives it a different texture and flavor. Rava idli is also flavored with spices, herbs, cashews, and curry leaves, which add more taste and aroma to the dish. Rava idli is usually served with coconut chutney and potato sagu (a spicy potato curry) or sambar (a lentil-based vegetable stew).

Benefits of Making Rava Idli Recipe

Rava Idli Recipe offers several advantages over traditional idlis, making it a preferred choice for many. Here are some benefits of choosing Rava Idli:

  • It is quick and easy to make. You don’t need to soak, grind or ferment anything. You just need to roast the rava, mix it with yogurt and water, add some spices and herbs, and steam the batter in an idli mold.
  • It is healthy and nutritious. Rava idli is low in fat and high in carbohydrates and protein. It also contains calcium from yogurt and iron from semolina. It is easily digestible and keeps you full for longer.
  • It is versatile and adaptable. You can customize the rava idli batter according to your preference and the availability of ingredients. You can add vegetables, nuts, cheese or paneer (cottage cheese) to make it more wholesome and interesting. You can also experiment with different types of rava, such as fine or coarse, roasted or unroasted, etc.

How to Make Rava Idli Recipe?

To make rava idli, you will need the following ingredients:

– 1 cup semolina (rava or suji)
– 2 tablespoons ghee (clarified butter)
– 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
– 1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
-Split yellow peas (chana dal), 1/2 tablespoon)
– 1 tablespoon cashews (chopped)
– 10 curry leaves
– 2 green chilies (chopped)
– 3/4 teaspoon ginger (grated)
– 1/3 teaspoon salt
– 3 tablespoons coriander leaves (chopped)
– 3/4 cup yogurt (curd)
– 1/2 cup water
– 3 tablespoons water
– 1 teaspoon lemon juice
– 1 teaspoon fruit salt (eno) or baking soda
– 1 teaspoon oil (for greasing)
– 4 cashew nuts (halved)
– 1 teaspoon carrot (grated)

You will also need an idli steamer or pressure cooker with an idli stand and molds.

The steps to make rava idli are as follows:

Step 1: Roast the Rava

Heat ghee in a pan over medium-low heat. Add mustard seeds and cumin seeds. When they start to crackle, add chana dal and cashews. Fry until golden brown. Add curry leaves, green chilies, and ginger. Saute for a few seconds until fragrant. Add rava and roast for about 10 minutes on low heat, stirring occasionally. The rava should become crunchy and lightly aromatic. Do not brown the rava. Transfer the roasted rava to a large mixing bowl and let it cool completely.

Step 2: Make the Batter

To the cooled rava, add salt, coriander leaves, and yogurt. Mix well. Add half a cup of water and mix again. The batter should be thick but pourable. Cover the bowl and let it rest for 30 minutes.

Step 3: Prepare the Steamer

Fill an idli steamer or pressure cooker with water up to an inch level. Heat it on high until it bubbles rapidly. Grease the idli molds with oil. Place a halved cashew nut in each mold.

Step 4: Add the Leavening Agent

After 30 minutes of resting time, add lemon juice and fruit salt or baking soda to the batter. Mix gently until bubbles form. Do not overmix or the batter will lose its airiness.

Step 5: Steam the Idlis

After oiling the idli molds, put the batter in them until they are filled to 3/4th of their capacity.Do not overfill as the idlis will rise on steaming.Put the idli stand inside the steamer or pressure cooker. Cover with a lid and steam for 10 to 15 minutes on high heat. Avoid using the whistle when cooking in a pressure cooker. To check if the idlis are done, insert a toothpick in the center of an idli. It should come out clean.

Step 6: Remove and Serve

Turn off the heat and let the idlis rest for 5 minutes. Then remove the idli stand from the steamer or pressure cooker. Cool slightly and remove the idlis from the molds. If they stick, use a knife or a wet spoon to loosen them. Serve hot or warm with coconut chutney and potato sagu or sambar.

Tips and Tricks for Perfect Rava Idli Recipe

Here are some tips and tricks to make perfect rava idli every time:

 – Use coarse rava for better texture and taste. Fine rava may make the idlis dense and chewy.
 – Roast the rava well until crunchy and aromatic. This will prevent the idlis from becoming sticky and soggy.
 – Use fresh and thick yogurt for the batter. Sour yogurt may spoil the taste of the idlis.
 – Adjust the water quantity depending on the quality of rava and yogurt. The batter should be thick but pourable, not runny or dry.
 – Rest the batter for at least 30 minutes to allow the rava to absorb the moisture and become soft.
 – Use fruit salt (eno) or baking soda as a leavening agent. They react with the acidity of yogurt and create air bubbles in the batter, making the idlis fluffy and light.
 – Do not overmix the batter after adding the leavening agent. Mix gently until bubbles form and then spoon into the moulds immediately.
 – Steam the idlis on high heat for 10 to 15 minutes. Do not overcook or undercook them; they may become hard or raw.
 – Let the idlis rest for 5 minutes before removing them from the molds. This will help them to retain their shape and softness

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Serving Suggestions for Rava Idli

Rava Idli Recipe tastes best when served hot with a variety of accompaniments. Here are some serving suggestions to enhance your Rava Idli experience:

  1. Coconut Chutney: The classic coconut chutney with its creamy texture and subtle flavors pairs perfectly with Rava Idli. Its combination of grated coconut, roasted chana dal, and spices complements the idlis.
  1. Tomato Chutney: Tangy and vibrant, tomato chutney adds a zesty twist to Rava Idli. The blend of tomatoes, onions, and spices creates a delicious accompaniment that complements the mildness of the idlis.
  1. Sambar: Rava Idli can also be enjoyed with sambar, a flavorful lentil-based vegetable stew. The aromatic spices, lentils, and assortment of vegetables in the sambar create a delightful combination with the idlis.

Tips and Variations for Perfecting Rava Idli Recipe

To achieve the perfect Rava Idli, consider the following tips and variations:

  1. Consistency: Ensure that the batter has a thick and smooth consistency. It should be of dropping consistency, neither too thick nor too runny.
  1. Resting Time: Allowing the batter to rest for 10-15 minutes helps in achieving softer idlis.
  1. Vegetables: You can add grated carrots, finely chopped capsicum, peas, or other vegetables of your choice to the batter for added nutrition and flavor.
  1. Spice Level: Adjust the spiciness of the idlis by increasing or reducing the number of green chilies or adding red chili powder as per your preference.
  1. Roasted Cashews: For an extra crunch, you can roast cashew nuts and add them to the tempering mixture in Step 1.
  1. Garnishing: Top the idlis with a sprinkle of fresh coriander leaves or grated coconut for an appealing presentation.

Storing and Reheating Rava Idli

You can store leftover rava idli in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat them, you can either steam them again in an idli steamer or pressure cooker for 5 minutes or microwave them for 30 seconds to 1 minute until hot.


Rava Idli is a versatile and delicious dish that offers a quick and convenient breakfast or snack option for all. With its fluffy texture and mild flavors, it appeals to people of all ages and culinary preferences. By following this ultimate beginner’s guide, you can master the art of preparing perfect Rava Idli and enjoy its delightful taste with your favorite chutneys and sambar. Get ready to indulge in this instant South Indian delight that will surely impress your family and friends!


Q.1. What are the benefits of rava idli for health?

Answer: It is low in fat and calories, and high in protein and carbohydrates, which provide energy and keep you full for longer.

Q.2. How to store and reheat leftover rava idli?

Answer: You can store leftover rava idli in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. To reheat them, you can either steam them again in an idli steamer or pressure cooker for 5 minutes or microwave them for 30 seconds to 1 minute until hot.

Q.3. How to make rava idli in the microwave or instant pot?

Answer: For microwave, place the molds on a microwave-safe plate and cook on high for 2 to 3 minutes or until done. For instant pot, add 1 cup of water to the inner pot and place the molds on a trivet. Cook on high pressure for 8 minutes and then release the pressure naturally.

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