Rice Pakora | Chawal Ke Pakode | Leftover Rice Pakora

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Pakoda/pakora or fritters is a favorite kind of fried food for us Indians. And then there’s rice, which is also quite the staple food in India. So, when we bring these 2 together, it is only fireworks! Thus, just like the other evergreen Pakora Recipes, the Rice Pakora or Chawal Ke Pakode also is a scrumptious snack option. All the more special because this is a Leftover Rice Pakora, made with leftover cooked rice, gram flour, herbs and spices. Easy, vegan and just lovely!

rice pakora served on a wooden plate with a mug of tea kept on the left side and text layovers.

About Rice Pakora

The best thing about this Rice Pakora is that it is made with leftover cooked rice. So, no more racking your brains over what more to do with the cooked rice that is left from today’s lunch or dinner meal! Just mash it up, combine it with the rest of the ingredients, drop in hot oil and fry away to glory.

These Chawal Ke Pakode have a crisp texture from the outside and are soft within. In fact, these are so good that you wouldn’t even come to know that these pakoras are really made with rice. These pakoras are absolutely one of those ways I love using up the leftover rice, and not wasting them.

Since I’m too particular when it comes to using leftover rice, that is, I usually don’t use a day-old cooked rice as it is best and healthiest to consume freshly cooked rice. So, whenever there is some rice left after lunch, I opt to make this Leftover Rice Pakora on the same day as an evening tea time snack.

More on Rice Pakoda

Rice Pakoda is a really easy recipe and can be prepared quickly for a nice brunch and a fun evening snack, as I mentioned above. These pakoras are also quite a hit with the kids. So, you can adjust the spices accordingly if you are preparing these for the young ones.

Other than these Chawal Ke Pakode, I make a lot of other dishes with leftover cooked rice like idlis, cutlets, appams and kheer to name a few. In case you want to try these, Leftover Rice Recipes is your place to be. Check out the link and enjoy preparing these lovely dishes at home.

Rice Pakora is best relished when served immediately after frying with a chutney of your choice – green, mint, coriander, tamarind, dry garlic chutney etc. You can also enjoy it with tomato ketchup or sauce, with a side of roti or bread.

Step-by-Step Guide

How to make Rice Pakora

Making pakora mixture

1. Take 1 cup of cooked rice in a small bowl or pan. Mash the rice with your hands or with a spoon. Mashing the rice gives a soft texture to the pakoras.

It is always better to use rice which is cooked really well. If the rice appears dry after removing it from the refrigerator, just sprinkle some water on it and heat it for a few minutes.

cooked rice added to a bowl.

2. Then, add the following ingredients to the cooked rice:

  • 5 tablespoons gram flour (besan)
  • 1 medium size finely chopped onion (or ½ cup finely chopped onion)
  • 1 inch finely chopped or grated ginger
  • 1 chopped green chili (or ½ teaspoon red chili powder)
  • ¼ cup chopped coriander leaves
  • ½ teaspoon carom seeds (ajwain) – optional)
  • ½ teaspoon cumin powder
  • ½ teaspoon coriander powder
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 pinch asafoetida (hing)
  • salt as required
gram flour, finely chopped onion, finely chopped ginger, chopped green chili, chopped coriander leaves, spices and salt added to the cooked rice.

3. Stir and mix well. Keep aside for 8 to 10 minutes. The onions will release their juices and make the mixture a bit soft.

ingredients mixed well with the cooked rice.

4. Once the onions have released their juices in the mixture, add water as needed.

adding water to the cooked rice mixture.

5. Stir and mix very well. The batter should be medium-thick to medium consistency as shown in the below photo.

mixing the water well in the cooked rice mixture.

Frying Rice Pakora

6. In a kadai or frying pan, heat oil. You can use any neutral-flavored oil with a high smoking point. Keep the heat to medium or medium-high.

When the oil becomes medium hot, take spoonfuls of the pakora mixture and drop it in the oil. Depending upon the size of kadai, you can add more or less mixture while frying. Don’t overstuff the kadai and keep some space between the pakodas.

frying chawal ke pakode in hot oil.

7. Let the Chawal Ke Pakode get cooked, browned lightly and then you turn them over and continue to fry.

You will have to flip them a few times for even cooking. Deep fry till the pakoras have become crisp and golden. Once done, then using a slotted spoon, remove the pakoras draining the extra oil in the kadai.

Then, place the fried fritters on kitchen paper towels so that they absorb any extra oil. This way fry the remaining fritters in batches.

removing fried leftover rice pakora with a slotted spoon.

8. Serve Rice Pakora hot or warm with green chutney, tomato sauce, mint chutney or coriander chutney. We also like to have these with ginger tea.

You can also have them hot with roti or bread slices. Best to have them hot, as on cooling these fritters won’t taste so good.

rice pakora served on a wooden plate with a mug of tea kept on top side and text layovers.

Expert Tips

  1. It is best to use rice for this recipe, which is soft, tender and cooked really well. Don’t use al dente cooked rice. If you feel that the cooked rice is dry after removing it from the refrigerator, sprinkle some water on it and heat it in a pan for few minutes. This will make the rice moist and soft.
  2. In case the pakora batter becomes thin, add 1 or 2 tablespoons more of gram flour (besan). If the batter appears thick, then add a few teaspoons of water and mix again.
  3. You can reduce the quantity of green chilies and red chili powder when making for small kids.
  4. You can fry the pakodas in any neutral-flavored oil. Depending on the size of kadai/pan, fry the pakoras in batches. Don’t overcrowd the kadai and keep some space between the pakodas while frying.
  5. Scaling of the recipe is possible, for making larger batches.

More Pakoda Recipes To Try!

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rice pakora

Rice Pakora

These Rice Pakoras are crisp and soft fritters made with leftover cooked rice, gram flour, herbs and spices.
4.84 from 18 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Cuisine Indian
Course Snacks
Diet Vegan, Vegetarian
Difficulty Level Easy
Servings 2 to 3


  • 1 cup cooked rice (can be freshly cooked rice which has cooled down or leftover cooked rice)
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped, or ½ cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 green chili chopped or ½ teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1 inch ginger – finely chopped or grated
  • ¼ cup chopped coriander leaves
  • ½ teaspoon ajwain (carom seeds) – optional
  • ½ teaspoon cumin powder
  • ½ teaspoon Coriander Powder (ground coriander)
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder (ground turmeric)
  • 1 pinch asafoetida (hing)
  • 5 tablespoon besan (gram flour or chickpea flour)
  • 5 to 6 tablespoon water or as required
  • salt as required
  • oil for deep frying


making rice pakora batter

  • Take the rice in a small bowl or pan. Mash the rice with your hands or with a spoon. Mashing the rice gives a soft texture to the pakoras.
  • Its always better to use rice which are cooked really well. 
  • If the rice appears dry after removing from fridge, then just sprinkle some water on it and microwave for a few minutes.
  • Add all the rest of the ingredients to the rice – besan/gram flour, chopped onions & ginger, coriander leaves, green chilies and all the spice powders. Add salt.
  • Mix well and keep aside for for 8 to 10 minutes. The onions would release their juices and make the mixture a bit soft. Then you can add water as required.
  • After adding water, stir and mix very well.

frying rice pakora

  • Heat oil for frying in a kadai or pan.
  • When the oil becomes medium hot, then take spoonfuls of the pakora batter and drop it in oil. Keep the temperature to medium to medium-high heat.
  • Let the rice pakora get cooked & browned lightly and then you turn them over and continue to fry. You will need to flip them a few times so that they are evenly cooked.
  • Deep fry till the rice pakoda are crisp and golden. Then remove them using a slotted spoon draining extra oil in the kadai.
  • Drain on kitchen paper towels so that any extra oil is absorbed.
  • Serve rice pakora hot or warm with green chutney or tomato sauce or tamarind chutney or mint chutney. They can also be served with roti or bread.


  • If making it for kids, then skip the green chilies or red chili powder.
  • In case the pakora mixture becomes thin, then one or two tablespoons of of gram flour (besan).
  • If the mixture appears thick, then add a few teaspoons of water and mix.
  • The recipe can be doubled or tripled.

This Rice Pakoda Post from the blog archives, first published in September 2014 has been republished and updated on December 2022.

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Meet Dassana

Welcome to Dassana's Veg Recipes. I share vegetarian recipes from India & around the World. Having been cooking for decades and with a professional background in cooking & baking, I help you to make your cooking journey easier with my tried and tested recipes showcased with step by step photos & plenty of tips & suggestions.

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  1. Hello !

    I just made these! So easy and so so yummm! Perfect for this rainy morning and family was delighted to have this ‘treat’ on a busy week day morning 🙂

    Thank you for yet another simple but delicious recipe.

    Much Love!5 stars

    1. Thank you Shubhi. Yes these are yum and perfect for a monsoon snack. Most welcome.

  2. I added fresh mint leaves finely chopped also added bits of slightly crushed pomegranate seeds

  3. Just tried the roti pakodas..The pieces coated with the spicy batter and fried tasted too good…Enjoyed it as an evening snack with tea…Thanks for this innovative recipe.4 stars

    1. thank you winnie for letting me know. i am glad that you enjoyed the roti pakora. there are many recipes you can make with leftover chapatis. sometimes, i also make wraps or rolls with roti. fillings can be varied and you can have a mexican style burrito or a chinese style wrap or even a wrap suiting indian taste buds.

  4. Thanks for taking out time from your busy schedule to answer my query promptly and in detail …i have leftover rotis very often and wanted to try something new..can try this next time…Thanks once again and a big God bless!!

    1. welcome winnie and do let me know how the roti pakora turns out for you.

  5. Tried this recipe as I had some leftover rice.turned out so crispy and yummy.makes for a good evening snack with a cup of hot tea.just curious to know how pakodas are made from leftover rotis as mentioned by you in this post.4 stars

    1. yes rice makes for tasty pakora. with roti, just cut them in 1 to 1.5 inches strips. keep the length to 3 to 4 inches of the strips. dip them in besan batter so that they are coated well with the batter. then deep fry. in the besan batter, add ajwain (carom seeds), a pinch of hing, red chilli powder, turmeric powder and garam masala powder. for some spice and variation, you can add green chillies, ginger and coriander leaves.
      thanks for the feedback and rating.

  6. I feel you should publish a book with all your recipes.. I will be the first to buy.. 🙂

  7. Wow!!! what a simple recipe….we went to Tirupati in AP n ate these pakoras….really yummy.my daughter liked it very much….surely going to make….thanks dear

  8. Usually I make some kind of fried rice with my leftover rice but today I wanted something different so I tried this recipe. It’s perfect for spontaneous leftover cooking because all the ingredients are staples. The only thing I never heard of is carom… I replaced it with nigella as I love it in baked and fried stuff.
    The pakoras turned out sooo beautiful and delicious! It was my first time making pakoras and I’m so happy I found this recipe.

    Thank you for recipes – they make my life as a vegan so much brighter!

    Laura from Germany5 stars

    1. thanks a lot laura for this beautiful comment. nigella seeds can be added in pakoras. they give a very good taste. carom seeds are also known as bishops’ weeds. you can add thyme as a substitute for carom seeds.

  9. I have tried ur veg biryani n shorba recipe n both of them have turned out very well.. My hubby loved it.. Thank u so much n vl wait for ur new recipes:-) could u pls post dal bati recipe plsss?????5 stars

    1. welcome deepika. glad to know this. i have noted down the recipe request.

  10. Very easy to make.. turned out very crispy and yummyyy 🙂 thank youu soo sooo much for dis simple n nyc recipe 🙂5 stars

  11. Hey, lovely lay out and photography!! To not to mention a very straight forward and real approach to the recipes. I am sitting here torturing myself – feeling hungry after dinner 😉5 stars

  12. Tried this once and it turned out good! Easy snack and good way to use the rice too…
    Can we add some boiled american sweet corn kernels also to this for some variety?

    1. welcome rani. there is a dabeli recipe in the blog. you can have a look.