Medu Vada Recipe (Black Gram Fritters)

Medu vada recipe with step by step photos – Crispy, fluffy and delicious vada that goes very well with coconut chutney or sambar. These urad dal vada are also known as Garelu in Andhra, Uzhunnu Vada in Kerala and Medhu Vadai in Tamil Nadu.

These doughnuts shaped fritters are made with black gram, herbs, coconut and spices. Even though the main ingredient is urad dal (black gram) but the herbs and spices can vary. You can also add vegetables like onions or grated carrots or grated beetroot.

Get My Secrets to Great Indian Food

Sign up for my FREE Beginners Guide to Delicious Indian Cooking
medu vada recipe

Medu vada is one of my favorite snack. It is one snack I loved as a kid and still do. I especially like the crispy and fluffy medu vada dunked in hot sambar with coconut chutney by the side.

The combo of vada sambar with coconut chutney is very famous and tastes awesome. You can enjoy them with any variety of sambar.

Whenever we would go to any Udupi or Kerala restaurants in Mumbai, I would order either vada sambar or Masala dosa. these two were always on my top list of South Indian snacks.

I love all South Indian snacks and back with mom and dad, I am having a good time to have my favorite South Indian breakfast tiffin snacks like dosa, Rava dosa, Appam and of course my top favorite these urad dal vada.

Mom made this for brunch and I happily captured the pics. We had medu vada with the sambar and coconut chutney.

Medhu Vadai is one of the easiest snacks to make. If you have leftover sambar and don’t know what to do… Just make the Medu vada… Dip into the sambar and enjoy…

If there is no sambar, then too you can have the Medu vada with coconut chutney or even with mint coriander chutney or tomato sauce. You could use any dip of your choice… May be even a tahini dip or any cheesy dip will be great.

medu vada recipe

How to make medu vada

1. Soak 2 cups urad dal (husked and split black gram) for 4 to 5 hours. You could also soak them overnight.

medu vada recipe

2. Later drain the water. Add the soaked urad dal in a grinder jar. Add 2 to 3 tablespoon water or as required. But just make sure that not to make the batter very thin. You can grind in parts and add water as required.

medu vada recipe

3. Grind the urad dal to a smooth batter. The batter should be fluffy, thick and not liquidy. A quick tip is to add a few drops of batter in a bowl of water. The batter drops should float. If they float and do not get dissolved, then that’s the right consistency. if the batter becomes watery or thin, then the instant relief would be to add some semolina or urad dal flour to it. Otherwise also you could add some semolina to the batter. But best is to have the right consistency of the batter.

medu vada recipe

4. Remove the batter into a big bowl or vessel.

medu vada recipe

Making medu vada batter

5. Measure and keep all the ingredients ready for making the batter.

medu vada recipe

6. To the batter, add ⅓ cup finely chopped onion, 1 or 2 sprig of curry leaves (chopped) and 2 to 3 tablespoons of chopped coriander leaves (optional).

medu vada recipe

7. Next add 1 or 2 finely chopped green chilies, 1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger and ⅓ cup chopped fresh coconut pieces (optional).

medu vada recipe

8. Also add 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, 1 teaspoon crushed black peppercorns and salt as required. The addition of black pepper gives a good taste but its optional and you can skip adding it.

medu vada recipe

9. Mix the batter well with the herbs, spices and salt. You do not have to ferment the batter. You can use it right away.

medu vada recipe

10. Take a bowl of water. Apply some water from the bowl on both your hands.

medu vada recipe

11. Take some batter in your right hand from the bowl. Give it a round shape.

medu vada recipe

12. With your thumb make a hole in the center. You can also use banana leaves or zip lock bags to give the medu vada its doughnut shape.

medu vada recipe

Frying Medhu Vadai

13. In a kadai heat oil. Keep the flame to medium. Once the oil becomes hot, Slid the medu vada into the hot oil. if you really do not care about the appearance of the doughnut shape of the medu vada, then just drop spoonfuls of the batter directly in the oil.

medu vada recipe

14. Once the vada are slightly golden then gently turn over with a slotted spoon and continue to fry.

medu vada recipe

15. Fry the medhu vadai till crisp and golden. the oil should be not very hot, but medium hot. you want the vadas to be cooked from inside. very hot oil will quickly brown the vadas from outside but they will remain uncooked from inside. Less hot oil will make the vada to absorb too much oil. Even if the batter is thin then also the vada will absorb too much oil.

medu vada recipe

16. Once the medhu vadai is crisp and golden, then remove with a slotted spoon draining the extra oil. Fry the rest of vadas in the same manner.

medu vada recipe

17. Drain them on kitchen tissues to remove extra oil.

medu vada recipe

18. Serve medu vada hot or warm with sambar and coconut chutney. enjoy.

 medu vada recipe

More South Indian snacks

STEP BY STEP PHOTOS ABOVEMany of my recipes have detailed step by step photos and useful tips to help you make it easily and perfectly.

Medu Vada (Uzhunnu Vada)

4.72 from 50 votes
Medu vada are crisp and fried dough nuts made from black grams, herbs, coconut and spices. These urad dal vada are also known as Garelu in Andhra, Uzhunnu Vada in Kerala and Medhu Vadai in Tamil Nadu. 
medu vada recipe
Author:Dassana Amit
Prep Time:4 hrs
Cook Time:40 mins
Total Time:4 hrs 40 mins
Cuisine:south indian
Servings (change the number to scale):8
(1 CUP = 250 ML)


  • 2 cups urad dal (husked & split black gram)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns, whole or crushed (optional)
  • 1 or 2 sprig curry leaves, chopped
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 or 2 green chilies, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped ginger
  • cup chopped coconut pieces, optional
  • few sprigs of coriander leaves, chopped (optional)
  • salt to taste
  • oil for deep frying
  • some water if needed to grind the batter


making medu vada batter

  • Soak the urad dal for 4 hours or overnight.
  • Grind the soaked dal to a smooth batter with little water if required.
  • If the batter becomes watery, then the instant relief would be to add some semolina or urad dal flour to it. Otherwise also you could add some semolina to the batter.
  • Add the spices, herbs, onions and salt. Mix well.
  • Take a bowl of water. Apply some water from the bowl on both your hands. take some batter in your right hand from the bowl. Give it a round shape.
  • With your thumb make a hole in the center. You can also use banana leaves or zip lock bags to give the medu vada its doughnut shape.

making medu vada

  • In a kadai heat oil. Keep the flame to medium. 
  • Once the oil becomes hot, slid the vada into the hot oil.
  • Once the vada is slightly golden then gently turn over with a slotted spoon and continue to fry.
  • Fry them till crisp and golden. The oil should be not very hot, but medium hot. You want the vadas to be cooked from inside. Very hot oil will quickly brown the vadas from outside but they will remain uncooked from inside. Less hot oil will make the medu vada to absorb too much oil. Even if the batter is thin then also the medu vadas will absorb too much oil.
  • Fry all the medu vada this way till they become evenly browned and crisp.
  • Drain them on kitchen tissue to remove excess oil.
  • Serve the medhu vadai, hot or warm with sambar and coconut chutney.


  • When making medu vada for fasting, then don't add onions.
GOOD KARMAAll our content & photos are copyright protected. Please do not copy. As a blogger, if you want to adapt this recipe or make a youtube video, then please write the recipe in your own words and give a clickable link back to the recipe on this url.
LIKE OUR VIDEOS!Then do follow and SUBSCRIBE to us on youtube to get the latest Recipe Video updates.
TRIED THIS RECIPE? If you have made the recipe and like it then do share the recipe link on facebook, twitter & pinterest. For Instagram mention @vegrecipesofindia or tag #vegrecipesofindia

Trending Recipes

Get My Secrets to Great Indian Food

Sign up for my FREE Beginners Guide to Delicious Indian Cooking

Dassana Amit

Dassana Amitnamaste and welcome to which i started in feb 2009 and is a pure vegetarian blog. i have been passionate about cooking from childhood and began to cook from the age of 10. later having enrolled in a home science degree greatly enhanced my cooking & baking skills and took it to a different level which i now share as foolproof recipes. i was formally trained both in mainstream indian as well as international cuisines.

Comments are closed.

144 comments/reviews

  1. Hi, I made medu vada today for evening snacks. It came out very well but I didn’t get donut shape and I can’t make hole

    • thats fine. it requires some skill to get that donut shape. if you are not able to get it, then also it is fine.

  2. Nice. I have seen a lot of videos in for making vada. But even though there is no video here, its clear and to the point. Thank you.

    • thank you. your comment has cleared my confusion of videos vs stepwise photos. i am glad that the steps and photos worked here. very few readers comment on the layout or on the structure of the post or recipe. so it does help when we get comments like yours. thanks once again.

    • How much daal needed for 200 vadas

      • you will need about 20 cups of urad dal which is 4 kg of urad dal. 1 cup weighs 200 grams of urad dal and makes for 10 to 12 medu vada.

  3. Hi dasana
    Is 2 cups urad dal not too much for 4 persons.5 stars

    • hi vijaya, you can halve the recipe and make for 4 people. this recipe was posted and made when there were 8 people living as a family. but you can easily halve the recipe by changing the servings to 4. i have now updated the servings to 8 which was a typo error. i will soon update this recipe with better pics and changed recipe ingredients ratio.

  4. Please post the recipe of veg egg curry.

    • have taken your recipe request and will try to add.

  5. Hi Dasana, The explanation is too good and perfect. I made medu vada yesterday and they came out well. It is just that they were a bit harder to break. I have gone through all the comments and now I know exactly what went wrong. Although the batter was floating,it was not fluffy enough. I will give it one more try. Thanks a lot for sharing such wonderful recipes.5 stars

    • thanks shaily. if the batter is ground very well than the vadas become soft. the batter should be light and fluffy and in resemblance look like similar to whipped cream. this consistency is achieved easily in a table top wet stone grinder. for a mixer-grinder one just need to grind the lentils till fluffy and smooth. in case the mixer or grinder gets heated up, then wait for some minutes and start grinding again. a powerful grinder also does a good job.

      • Yes Sure. I will keep this in mind next time and let you know how it turns out !!

        • sure, do let me know.

  6. Hi, i want to know if the batter can keep in fridge?? Waiting for your mail. I like ur meetu vadai recipe…. Tq4 stars

    • yes you can keep the batter in fridge, but use within 1 or days.

  7. I am a big fan of yours. If there is one website I trust when it comes to cooking, then it yours. I know for sure that the cooked item will turn out great. Thanks for all your wonderful recipes. Tried medu vada today. They came out really well. The batter was slightly watery. So I slightly fried them. Then made a hole and refried to get donut shape :D.4 stars

    • Welcome Swathi. Thanks for your kind words and the trust you have on the website. I try all the recipes before posting them. Thanks for sharing positive feedback on medu vada.

  8. Hi Dassana,
    My earlier attempts to make medu vada(not your recipe) in the past had resulted in the vadas bursting during the process of deep frying them.Since then I haven’t had the courage to try them again though my hubby loves vadas…can you think of why these would burst in hot oil?

    • ashwini, if the batter is thin the vadas will burst in oil. the batter has to be thick to medium consistency. after grinding try add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of batter in a small bowl of water. the batter should float. if the batter dissolves in water, then add some rava or rice flour to it.

  9. Hi Dassana! I’ve tried many of your recipes including this recipe for Medu Vada and they are all really tasty! Thanks for all the recipes you’ve shared and I hope you’ll continue to share! (p.s. You have the best recipes for Indian veg cuisine)

    • welcome jing yi. glad to read your positive feedback on recipes. thanks for this awesome feedback.

  10. Hi dasana,your recipes are very helpful for me,I tried your medu vada recipe,the taste n shape of vada were perfect only it was too hard to break the vada.can u help me to make soft vada’s…
    Thank you

    • afreen for making medu vadas, always use urad dal which is fresh. the more aged the urad dal is the more hard the vadas will be. also soak in enough water and when grinding, grind to a smooth fluffy batter. the batter has to be ground really well. it should look fluffy somewhat similar to whipped cream texture. in a mixer-grinder, this cannot be achieved as the grinder will get heated up. so try to grind in intervals and grind till you get a nice smooth consistency in the batter. if required, then you can add a few tablespoons of water while grinding. hope these suggestions helps.

  11. Hi dassana! I tried this recipe of ur twice it turned out good .. as my hub ND me are from.bangalore he want me to cook south Indian food coz at present we live in Qatar … so ur website helped me a lot .. can we add ginger garlic paste while grinding as I don’t have ginger??

    • thanks fazila. you can ginger-garlic paste. but when garlic is added the taste will change slightly. if you are fine with the taste, then you can add ginger-garlic paste.

      • Thank you once again

        • Welcome Fazila

  12. HI

    • the batter should be thick in consistency. if its medium to thin consistency, then its difficult to shape medu vadas.

  13. Thanks for the medu vada recipe with step by step procedure.It came out excellent.I have tried many of your recipes,all of them turn out to be yummy n delicious.Your step by step explanation and note help a lot.

    • Welcome Soumya. Glad to know this. Thanks for sharing your positive feedback on recipes.

  14. All recepies r best4 stars

    • thanks durriyah.

  15. Hello Amit! It’s always a pleasure to try your recipes. I have downloaded the veg recipe app as well..anything new that I would like to make I read many recipes but finally follow yours . It’s easy, delicious, and step by step pic makes it more easy. Thanks a are helping when mom’s not around ..all the best and success to you always..god bless5 stars

    • welcome sonal. glad to know that you like the recipes and their presentation. thanks for sharing your motivating feedback.

  16. Hi Dassana,

    Most of the times (read 98%), I look up to your recipes and website, latest tried being pineapple kesari, I tripled the quantity, the final product aroma wise, consistency and texture wise, in terms of appearance and taste, was just perfect. I just don’t scratch my head for measurements (exceptions are there), work it out accordingly 🙂

    Fantastic space and job, kudos!

    One small thing that I have noticed in quite a few posts. You use ‘Udipi’. Actually, it is Udupi, we pronounce ‘du’ as in ‘do’ and not ‘di’ as in ‘dim ‘.

    • thanks a lot chetna. glad to know that tripling the pineapple kesari recipe worked very well. in mumbai, the term ‘udipi’ is used and even written on hotel signboards. thats why i use the word ‘udipi’. i know it is udupi, but i am so used to seeing udipi and thats why its gets reflected on the posts too. will make a change in the recipe names.

  17. I made vadas as per ur recipe n it turn out very was my first attempt to make medu vadas and I m extremely happy with the result. I am following u from almost a yr. I m simply love with ur teaching style ur best.

    • thanks a lot avanti. glad to know. happy cooking and i hope you like the recipes which you will try in the future.

  18. I made medu vada as per your recipe….it tasted awesome…just one thing it was really oily…on what temperature should I cook it so that it does not have a lot of oil.

    • thanks neha. if the the batter is liqiudy, meaning more water is there in it, then the vadas will absorb more oil. also if the vadas are fried on a low flame or on low heat or the oil is not hot enough, they will absorb oil.

  19. It tried it… It was amazing… Still the taste remaining in my mouth n in my mind.. thanks for the recipe..!!5 stars

    • thank you hima for this feedback.

  20. superb…you made my life easy as was difficult to make new items for kids tiffin. …keep it up and give us more recipies

    • sure we will keep posting new recipes 🙂 shweta and thanks for your positive feedback.

  21. Respected Ma’am, I prepared medu vadas again. This time I made the batter little soft and fluffy by adding little water and baking soda. I grinded it very very well. This time the vadas came out to be very soft and delicious. I realized last time my vadas were hard as I had not grinded them well, even the batter was not fluffy, I had not added even a single drop of water last time. But this time I was very careful and followed all your instructions and the results were very good. Only one problem is the grinding of batter takes toll of our patience. No matter at end all is well. Thank you once again..5 stars

    • thanks for sharing vijay. glad to know 🙂

      for the grinding, i would suggest you to invest in a good grinder with higher watts. the grinding is faster. you can also use a table top stone grinder. though lifting it and cleaning can be a task. i am using preethi blue leaf 750 watts mixer grinder and it grinds the urad dal faster, then the other mixer grinder i have used in the past.

  22. Thanks dassana for the recipe!!tomorrow goin to try my favorite vada for the breakfast..5 stars

    • surely try sowrirajan and let us know how the medu vada was? thanks.

  23. My girfriend is from south…so to impress her I made vadas according to your recipe…n guess she now love me than before…thanks a lot.5 stars

    • pleased to know this surya thankyou for trying the medu vada recipe and you are welcome.

  24. Thanks u very very much Sir. Next time I will try with ur suggestions and give u the feedback.. Thanks once again…5 stars

    • surely vijay thank you so much and you are welcome.

  25. Dear sir, I made medu vadas as per ur recepie the taste was awesome. But one problem was there that the vadas were little hard to it. I did not add any water while grinding nor did I do frementation. Can u plz suggest me how to make them soft without fermentation.5 stars

    • medu vadas do not need fermentation. hardness could be due to the batter not being ground properly. the batter should be light and fluffy. even if you briskly stir the batter, with a spoon for a couple of minutes, the vadas will be soft. a bit if water added while grinding will also make them light and soft. before frying, check a small piece of the batter in the oil. if its soft and and light, then the batter is good. if it is hard or dense, then add 1 to 2 teaspoons of water and/or stir the batter briskly with a spoon for a couple of minutes.

  26. Good Information for break fast.5 stars

    • thankyou ramkisan 🙂

  27. Hi, thanks a bunch.
    I came across your site when I wanted to save myself from the little disaster I made.
    I had washed the lentils dried them roughly for 2 hours and ground tthem in a dry jar.
    Soaked overnight. Morning woke up to see the cconsistency gone thin.
    Your one line to add semolina saved me.
    Thanks. The batter is yet to be tried this eevening.
    I was told by my sis to add a pinch of soda to the batter 5-10 minbefore frying.

    • you are welcome ash and let is know how the vada was?

  28. Hello there,

    I’ve been cooking south Indian food for around 1 year. My husband is from Bangalore and loves when I make his “home food” (we currently live in the UK)

    Your medu vada recipe is the best I have tried so far! He tells everyone how great my vada is… I can’t take credit! Thank you so so much for providing this tasty recipes.

    Only problem is… I’m addicted to vada now haha!!!

    I was just wondering how long the batter lasts? Ive used it the next day, would it last 2 days in the fridge?

    Thanks for your time!!

    • thankyou so much elizabeth glad your husband liked the medu vadas 🙂 the batter should last for 2-3 days in the fridge just refrain from adding salt to them for a longer life shelf. hope this help’s you.

  29. Really its help a lot thanks its really worthy I mean your recipe is very simple that’s the favourite part of this

    • thankyou so much Jaipal 🙂

  30. Thank uuuuuu so much for ur recipies…….,

    • welcome and thankyou Anjali 🙂

  31. Hello…thnk u soo much fr ol d lovely receipi …u explain everything vry nicely. .n especially ur explanation with step by step images make everything easy..well m in graduation bt only bczz of ur site. .I ll able to make each n everything. .thnqqqqqqq sooo much:-):-)5 stars

    • welcome pratibha. glad to know this. thanks for sharing your positive review.

  32. Well, this is getting predictable. Oh yes, yet another brilliant success story. ? The recipe is food Luddite proof given the water floating test. It was great fun adding a few drops and grinding until finally, at last, the floating happened. If only there was such a test for the fermented batters….I could graduate the idli, dosa and appam classes with honours instantly without so much homework. Vadas are sooooooo easy, especially when you have Dassana teaching you from her virtual kitchen. With her help I now have my PhD in Vada management – after only one class!
    So were they any good? Well let’s see if the empirical evidence stands up in court. “So Dr Vada, did you or did you not serve your wife Vadas with coriander chutney? Also with yoghurt and Imli?” Yes your honour she had Dahi Vada, I drowned it in yoghurt and drenched it in imli sauce. She then proceeded straight away to drown another in coriander chutney.” “Hmmm and did you bring any Vadas for me to taste?” “No your honour they were all gone, I turned around and all 10 were missing.” Hmmm, unacceptable, I sentence you to cook 30 Vadas a month for your wife.” ?4 stars

    • thank you rohit as always. the way you write is really good and brings a smile every time i read your comment. the water floating test is the true test to check the consistency of the batter. for the fermented batters, there is no such test. its just practice and experience that is needed for the fermented batters.

  33. What is the oil used to make .which one makes less absorb .is it groundnut or sunflower oil

    • i use both sunflower and ground oil for deep frying. to make the oil get absorbed less, the oil has to be hot whenever you fry any food in it.

  34. Hello, I recently started cooking and most of my learning has come from your site as that’s the first one which pops up when I type any recipe name in Google. So thanks for your guidance.
    Anyway I made medu wadas today following your exact recipe, but they turned out hard, I had soaked whole skinned urad dal for about 11 hours, what could have gone wrong?

    • the batter needs to be ground very well and should be fluffy. if the batter is not ground well, then the vadas become hard.

  35. Thanks . Adding rava made vada yummy.

    • welcome sheetal