Besan Dosa with Carrot

February 10, 2013

Besan Dosa Carrot

Besan dosas are a fantastic gluten-free alternative to regular flatbreads. They can be made simple or filled with different vegetables, used as sandwich wraps or as accompaniment for curries.

The one person who enjoys besan dosa more than I do is my mom. While recently making a batch of Zucchini-filled Besan Dosa (see previous post), she had the idea of using carrot instead of zucchini. Being a ginger fan, she added some to the batter and the taste was incredible. Carrot keeps the dosas soft and gives them a delicate sweetness.

They are really easy to make and the whole preparation and cooking process takes no more than half an hour. I greatly enjoyed my mom's version and when I made it myself I added a little turmeric to give them a gorgeous golden colour.

Besan Dosa Carrot

This recipe makes 7-8 thin dosas. If made a little thicker, they would be great for Quesadillas. Besan dosas are excellent for breakfast - rich in fiber and protein, they are filling and satisfying, providing slow-release energy. Besan (chickpea flour) is also packed with minerals and vitamins (great source of iron, folate, magnesium and manganese). You can read more about the health benefits of chickpeas and fiber in my Chickpea Nuggets and Burgers post.

Besan Dosa with Carrot
  • 1 cup chickpea flour (besan; gram flour)
  • 1/4 cup rice flour
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely grated
  • 2 tsp finely grated ginger root
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1/8 tsp turmeric
  • 1/8 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp salt (I used Himalayan)

  • 1/2 - 3/4 cup water
  • 1 cup finely grated carrot (1 large carrot)

  • 1/4 cup oil, for cooking the dosas (I use sunflower oil)

Note: 1 cup = 250 ml. I use a 16.5 cm/6.5'' pan. If you use a larger pan and wish to make large dosas, simply increase the amount of batter for each.

Mix the ingredients in a bowl. Add 1/2 cup water and whisk to obtain a smooth paste. Add the grated carrot and mix it in with a spoon. Check the consistency and add more water if needed (I usually need another 2-3 Tb). The batter should be runny enough to spread it easily in the pan. Thinner batter makes softer dosas. The type of rice flour is also important, choose the powder type (if slightly grainy, it will absorb more water, so you need to add extra).

Heat a non-stick pan on medium. Add a couple of drops of oil and spread it around. Lift the pan off the burner, drop a little less than 1/4 cup batter in the centre of the pan and quickly spread it around with the back of a spoon, going in circles from the centre outwards. Put the pan back down and smooth the surface while the batter is still wet. Once dry (less than half a minute) drizzle 1/2 tsp oil over and spread it around the top. With a spatula loosen the edges and then flip the dosa over and let it cook for half a minute or so until brown spots appear.

Besan Dosa Carrot

The dosa should remain golden on both sides. Reduce the heat if they turn brown. If serving right away, you can stack and cover them with a kitchen towel to remain soft and warm. When making them in advance, cover the inside of a pan with a large kitchen towel letting the edges hang over the pan, place the dosas inside as you make them, cover them with the towel and place the lid on top. When all dosas are done transfer them to an airtight container. Eat within 1-2 days. If they become too dry, you can steam them.

Besan Dosa Carrot

For a little heat you can add cayenne pepper, chili powder or finely chopped fresh chilis to the batter.

Besan Dosa Carrot

I like dosa sandwiches with fresh veggies like cucumber, tomato, red pepper, iceberg lettuce and lemon juice (combine the dosas with vitamin C-rich veggies to better absorb the iron), but also spread with hummus and rolled up like cigars.

Besan Dosa Carrot

Update 14 Feb 2013: A few Indian friends were kind enough to explain to me the difference between Dosa and Cheela - dosa is basically a fermented crêpe made from rice and urad dal (black lentils); cheela (also chila or chilla) is made from besan (chickpea flour) and doesn't require fermentation (so this recipe is in fact Besan Cheela). While the preparation is different for dosa and cheela, the cooking method is similar. In parts of India the terms are used interchangeably.

Enjoy and spread the magic!:)

If you've tried these wraps I would greatly appreciate your feedback. Thank you!


Veena Theagarajan

Looks good. never tried this before


Looks delicious! I will try them tonight...

Vegan Magic

Veena, thank you. This is your chance:)

Vegan Magic

Kate, I hope you enjoy them. Thank you!

Lynda B

I am definately going to try these soon. i have been trying in vain to come up with a good substitute for glutenous breads for my children to no avail! So i am optimistic this may be "The One"!

Vegan Magic

Thank you, Linda! I'm very happy you like them and hope they are everything you expect:) They're sweet enough to be enjoyed by kids;) I'm going to try other versions as well.


Wow! I love dosas, and yours look so good and very creative! I can't wait to give the palak and beet ones a try! Thank you!

Vegan Magic

Thank you so much for your kind words:) I hope you enjoy both. There are more versions coming up soon, I hope you like them too:)

Allan Hall

Unlike the previous commenters, who were enthusiastic but hadn't actually tried making these when they posted, I can say that they are easy to make and very tasty. I am very fond of besan - and as it happens these were eaten with a chickpea (and aubergine and potato) curry, a very good pairing. Thanks for the recipe!

Vegan Magic

Allan, thank you kindly for your feedback. The curry sounds super delicious and I'm sure it was great with the dosas. Hope you try the other colourful ones as well:)

Leland Stone

Dosas are delicious but the fermentation is time-consuming. Thanks for a quick and very tasty looking alternate! :)

Vegan Magic

Leland, thanks for the comment. I love these dosas for being easy and quick to make...and super delicious) Give them a try...

Disha Bhatia

I tried this recipe today and it tasted great! Thank you so much! I now have another successful gluten-free recipe under my belt.

Vegan Magic

Disha, thank you so much for the feedback, I'm so happy you enjoyed the dosas.

Chef Deb

Thank you for posting this recipe. I struggle to find vegan-gluten free recipes and this one ticked all the boxes. I switched up the flavouring and used my evoo sprayer instead of repeatedly brushing oil in the pan. I found a 3-oz ladle made a perfect 6" dosa and a single recipe yielded 7 dosa.

Vegan Magic

Deb, thanks so much for the feedback, so happy the dosas came out great and you found a quicker way to get them done.


Just made this. Yummy! Too good!! Ate in plain. Shall try with hummus & veggies later. Thank you! :-)


Used ghee (clarified butter) instead of oil. Mixed chopped onions and a few curry leaves to the last portion of the batter. Tasted good.

Vegan Magic

Thank you so much for the feedback! The idea of adding curry leaves sounds amazing! Need to try it:)

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