Onion Pakoda (Kanda Bhaji, Indian Onion Fritters)

5 from 4 votes

Crispy Onion Pakora (Kanda Bhaji, Indian Onion Fritters) is one of the favorite Indian snacks during the monsoons or winter days. Use my easy recipe to make the best onion pakora.

You may like more pakora recipes: Punjabi Bread Pakora, Chawal Ke Pakode, Moong Dal Pakoda, Corn Pakoda, and Palak Pakoda.

Onion pakoda served in a bowl.
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About Onion Pakoda (Kanda Bhaji)

Onion Pakoda (Onion Pakora, Kanda Bhaji, Pyaz Pakora) are Indian onion fritters made using chickpea flour (besan), onions, and spices. They are a popular North Indian tea-time snack, especially during the monsoons.

Crispy on the outside and soft on the inside, onion pakoras are an all-time favorite in Indian homes.

You will also find many street carts and roadside tea stalls selling piping hot onion bhaji, kadak masala chai, and green chutney.

Kanda Bhaji is also perfect for serving at tea parties, get-together snacks, monsoon snacks, or even for a game or movie night.

Make the crispiest onion pakora recipe using my easy recipe.

Ingredients

Onions are the star ingredient of this kanda bhaji recipe. Use red onions to make the pyaz pakora. They are slightly pungent in taste, making the pakoda very flavorful. Yellow or white onions also work fine.

To Make The Batter – You will need chickpea flour (besan, gram flour) and rice flour. I add rice flour to the batter to make the pakoda crispier, but you can replace rice flour with cornstarch.

You will also need salt, Kashmiri red chili powder, ginger, cilantro (fresh coriander leaves), green chilies, asafetida (hing), oil, turmeric powder, and chaat masala powder to make the batter.

Oil – Fry the pakoras in neutral-flavored oil, such as light olive, rice bran, or canola oil. You can also fry them in mustard oil, giving them a unique taste.

Skip adding asafetida to make the pakora gluten-free.

Adjust the green chilies as per your liking.

Add chopped curry leaves, fennel seeds (saunf), mint, sesame seeds, crushed coriander seeds, and carom seeds (ajwain) to the batter for a taste change.

How To Make Onions Pakoda (Kanda Bhaji)

Peel 2-3 medium red onions, rinse them with water and drain well. Remove ½-inch from the top and bottom and cut the onions into even, thin slices.

Add the following ingredients to a large mixing bowl.

  • 2 cups of thinly sliced onions
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder
  • 2 teaspoon finely chopped ginger
  • 2 teaspoon finely chopped cilantro
  • 2 teaspoon finely chopped green chilies
  • ¼ teaspoon asafetida
Onions, salt, chli powder, ginger, cilantro, green chilies and asafetida added to a bowl.

Mash the ingredients using your fingers until they all come together.

Keep the bowl aside for 10 minutes.

Note – The onions will release some water during this time. This is a crucial step in making crispy pakoras.

Mixed well.

Now add the following ingredients to the bowl and mix well.

  • 1 cup chickpea flour
  • 2 tablespoon rice flour
  • 2 tablespoon oil
Chickpea flour, rice flour and oil added to the bowl.

Add ⅛ teaspoon turmeric powder and 1-2 tablespoon of water and mix well to make a thick pakoda batter. The batter should feel like a sticky dough.

Note – The consistency of the batter is critical to making crispy pakora. Add water just enough to bring the ingredients together. If the batter is thin, the pakoras will not turn out crispy.

Turmeric powder and water added to the bowl.
Ready pakoda batter.

Heat 3-4 cups of oil for frying in a pan over medium-high heat.

Once the oil is hot, reduce the heat to medium flame.

Note – The temperature of the oil is critical for frying crispy pakoras. It should neither be very high nor very low. Fry The pakoras on medium flame.

Drop small pakoda in the hot oil using your fingers and fry until they are golden brown and crisp. Flip the pakoras using a slotted spoon a few times while frying to ensure even browning.

Note – Do not overload the pan while frying the pakodas. I fried this amount of batter in 3 batches. If the pan is overloaded, the oil temperature will decrease, and the pakoras will not turn out crispy.

Onion pakora added to hot oil.

Drain on a plate lined with paper towels.

Ready onion pakoda sprinkled with chaat masala.

Sprinkle chaat masala on top and serve immediately.

Chaat masala sprinkled on the onion pakoda.

Pro Tips By Neha

Slice the onions into thin, even slices. If the onion slices are thick, they absorb more oil, making the pakoras oily.

Do not fry the onion pakoda on low heat. They will absorb excess oil and will become soggy.

Do not fry on too high heat, either. They will turn brown on the outside and remain uncooked on the inside.

Always use good quality fresh gram flour. Taste the flour before making the pakoda, as it can get bitter if it is too old.

Please do not make the batter and leave it for long. The onions will keep releasing water, and the batter might become loose. If you still have leftover batter, mix more gram flour before frying.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to make air fryer onion pakoda recipe?

You can also make onion bhaji in an air fryer to avoid deep-frying. Preheat the air fryer to 180°C (360°F) for about 5 minutes.

Brush or spray the basket with oil and drop small pakodas in one layer on the basket tray. Brush the pakodas generously with oil. Close the basket and air fry for 10 minutes. Flip and air fry at 200°C (400°F) for 2-3 minutes more to get a lovely brown color.

How to make oven-baked onion pakora recipe?

Make the batter as per the recipe. Preheat the oven to 180°C (360°F). Drop small pakoras on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Spray or brush oil on top. 

Bake them for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown.

Serving Suggestions

Serve these crispy and delicious deep-fried onion pakoda with your favorite chutney for a tea-time snack. My favorites are Tomato Ketchup, Green Chutney, and Sweet Tamarind Chutney.

You can also serve it with Bread or Pav. In Maharashtra, it is popularly sold under the name of Kanda Bhajiya and Pav.

In south Indian darshinis and restaurants, these crispy onion fritters are served with White Coconut Chutney.

Do not forget to serve a hot cup of Adrak Wali Chai, Masala Chai, or South Indian Filter Coffee along with these Pakoras.

Storage Suggestions

Pyaz pakora tastes the best when made fresh, just out of oil. You can keep them for 1-2 hours, but they will start to soften a bit.

You can air fry or bake the leftover pakora until they are crispy again.

I also do not recommend making the batter and storing it. It becomes watery after some time. If you still have some leftover batter, add some gram flour to correct its texture and fry the pakoras.

You Might Also Like

Crispy Onion Pakoda (Onion Pakora, Kanda Bhaji, Indian Onion Fritters) is one of the favorite Indian snacks during the monsoons or winter days. Make the best onion pakora using my easy recipe (vegan, can be easily made gluten-free).
5 from 4 votes

Crispy Onion Pakoda Recipe (Onion Pakora, Kanda Bhaji)

Crispy Onion Pakoda (Onion Pakora, Kanda Bhaji, Indian Onion Fritters) is one of the favorite Indian snacks during the monsoons or winter days. Make the best onion pakora using my easy recipe.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 40 minutes
Servings: 4 people

Ingredients 

  • 2 cups thinly sliced red onions
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped ginger
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped cilantro (fresh coriander leaves)
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped green chilies
  • ¼ teaspoon asafetida (hing) (skip for gluten-free)
  • 1 cup chickpea flour (besan, gram flour)
  • 2 tablespoons rice flour
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil (plus 3-4 cups for frying the pakora)
  • teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon chaat masala powder
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Instructions 

  • Add onions, salt, Kashmiri red chili powder, ginger, cilantro, green chilies, and asafetida to a large mixing bowl.
  • Mash the ingredients using your fingers until they all come together.
  • Keep the bowl aside for 10 minutes.
  • Note – The onions will release some water during this time. This is an important step to make crispy pakoras.
  • Now add chickpea flour, rice flour, and vegetable oil to the bowl and mix well.
  • Add turmeric powder, and 1-2 tablespoons of water and mix well to make a thick pakoda batter.
  • Note – The consistency of the batter is very important to making crispy pakora. Add water just enough to bring the ingredients together. If the batter is thin, the pakoras will not turn out crispy.
  • Heat vegetable oil for frying in a pan over medium-high heat.
  • Once the oil is hot, reduce the heat to medium.
  • Drop small pakoda in the hot oil using your fingers and fry until they are golden brown and crisp. Flip the pakoras a few times while frying to ensure even browning.
  • Note – Do not overload the pan while frying the pakodas. I fried this amount of batter in 3 batches. If the pan is overloaded, the oil temperature will come down, and the pakoras will not turn out crispy.
  • Drain on a plate lined with paper towels. Sprinkle chaat masala on top and serve immediately.

Video

YouTube video

Notes

Adjust the green chilies as per your liking.
Slice the onions into thin, even slices. If the slices are thick, they will absorb more oil making the pakoras oily.
Do not fry the onion pakoda on low heat. They will absorb excess oil and will become soggy.
Do not fry on too high heat, either. They will turn brown on the outside and remain uncooked on the inside.

Nutrition

Calories: 164kcal, Carbohydrates: 28g, Protein: 8g, Fat: 2g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 971mg, Potassium: 389mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 7g, Vitamin A: 162IU, Vitamin C: 6mg, Calcium: 35mg, Iron: 2mg
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3 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    The blog was absolutely fantastic! Lot of great information which can be helpful in some or the other way. Keep updating the blog, looking forward for more contents.