Speedy Lentil and Rice Dosa with Chickpea Flour

January 18, 2018

Speedy dosa with chickpea flour, what's this nonsense? Normally dosa is made with rice and black gram, and fermented before cooking. It seems like every time I try to make traditional dosa, with the overnight ferment, they spoil on me. About a year ago I started making them as a quick and dirty version with some chickpea flour mixed in, because I always have soaked rice and lentils in jars in the freezer, and they've become a staple for us. I shared on my instagram stories several months ago and have had readers asking me to share ever since - the trouble is, I find them almost impossible to photograph! I'm sharing anyway, and you can come back to the blog tomorrow see them alongside an easy (carb-heavy!) curry recipe. 

This is a very simple, easy protein-rich pancake recipe and I often make them to have with curry, obviously, but also falafel or other patties, roasted veggies, or salad. It's a bit of a different texture than plain socca, and the amount of chickpea flour is outweighed by the rice and lentils in any case, so I wouldn't call this a socca. The only thing is that you need an okay blender to make these. I tried in a blender my omi lent me and it didn't work at all, but that blender also leaves chunks of banana behind, so it's not to be trusted. Any others I've tried have been fine and I think even a stick blender might work! I haven't tried that yet but I'll update the recipe when I do. 

There are several different dosa varieties, and this falls somewhere in the middle of crispy and soft. The batter is thin so the edges are crispy and lacy, and they come out a beautiful golden colour. Like any pancakes, they take a little while to cook as you have to make them all separately, but they're easier to make than crepes at least in terms of flipping. The only slightly time-consuming thing is the overnight soaking, and a short resting time before cooking. I usually prepare the curry or whatever while the dosa mixture rests. I have tried this with the rice and lentils soaked in hot water for a shorter period and it didn't work, so you'll have to do the 12-hour soak. That's not a bad thing as it makes them easier to digest in any case- less gas for everyone involved.

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Speedy Lentil and Rice Dosa with Chickpea Flour

Serves four

120 grams / 1/2 cup brown rice
100 grams / 1/2 cup lentils*
750 ml / 3 cups water
80 grams / 1/2 cup chickpea flour
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
Coconut oil, for cooking

Place the rice and lentils into a large bowl and cover with water to soak overnight, or for at least 12 hours. When you're ready to make the dosa, strain the rice lentil mixture and rinse well.

Place the soaked rice and lentils into a blender and add the water, chickpea flour, salt, and pepper. Blend at high speed for at least two minutes, or until fully combined. Depending on your blender it may not be completely smooth, but there should be no recognizable pieces remaining. Pour the mixture into a bowl.

Heat a large, non-stick* pan over medium heat. Add a small amount of coconut oil and ladle about 1/4 cup of dosa batter into the pan, using the ladle to spread the batter into an even thickness. If you create a hole just fill it with a little extra batter. Cook for about 30 seconds, flip, and cook for an additional 30 seconds on the other side. Repeat until all of the batter has been used, and serve immediately.

• If they're tearing when you flip then you might need to let the first side cook a little longer.
• Leftovers keep surprisingly well for a day, if you have any. I store them in a jar and eat them cold, but they're definitely not as good as fresh.

1. I have made these with both brown and red lentils, both work well.
2. This was updated 27/03/2018 to note that a non-stick pan is best and that this may not work in other pans, such as cast iron.
5 comments on "Speedy Lentil and Rice Dosa with Chickpea Flour"
  1. I have never tried dosa before but it is something I will definitely love to try out. Please check out my blog at


  2. Hi Alexandra,
    I have been loving your blog since discovering it a couple months ago!
    I tried this recipe tonight and unfortunately it did not work. We thought it might be the stove (we have vitro-ceramic and not gas) or the pan (I have cast-iron). What do you think? Dosas must be very difficult in any event, I have tried several recipes with not much success (including GKS dosa recipe in their Green Kitchen Travel book, which was a real disaster). I am curious to know what you think I could change. We love good dosas (from India) at home!
    Looking forward to continuing following you!

    1. I'm so sorry it didn't work out! Did they fail to flip or what was the problem? I have made this on several different types of stoves now, but I've only used either non stick or steel pans, unfortunately not with cast iron. If you can give me a few more details I'll try to work out what might have gone wrong and figure out a solution!

  3. Hi Alexandra! Thank you so much for the response! What happened is that the batter sticked to the pan, from the start (I have otherwise made crepes with success with this pan). All I got was scrambled dosa (which was not so bad to be honest, but not looking like dosa :-) ). And then a layer of dosa batter at the bottom of the pan... We will happy to try again if you can figure out a solution, otherwise we will just try out another of your recipes!

    1. Right, I'm going to go ahead and say that it's the pan. I did end up trying with a cast iron pan and I think it really needs to be non-stick to work properly - I've updated the recipe and I'm really sorry this didn't work out for you!