Sabudana Vada

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Sabudana Vada, one of my favorite fasting snacks is a fried patty made with tapioca pearls (sago), potatoes, peanuts and herbs. This recipe gives you a super delicious Sabudana Vada that is crispy from outside with a soft and light texture from inside. Gluten-free and vegan.

These crisp patties are slightly sweet and spiced to taste. They are also vegan and gluten-free.

sabudana vada recipe, sabudana vada

On Hindu Fasting

In the Indian tradition, the Shravan month, Ekadashi and the Navaratri period are times when many devout Hindus fast. The food that is taken during the fast does not contain onions, garlic, wheat products, lentils or pulses. To know more you can check this compiled list of Ingredients for Navratri fasting.

Sago or Sabudana is a common ingredient that is used in some recipes made during the fasting period. Thus Sabudana Vada is one of those dishes that is made during Hindu religious fasting (vrat or upvas). Both Sabudana Vada and Sabudana Khichdi are two recipes that I make during fasting days.

Few more Sabudana recipes

About this Sabudana vada

  1. Authentic: This is a proper authentic Maharashtrian recipe of making sabudana vada which tastes too good and is exactly the way they are served in Maharashtra.
  2. Easy: The recipe is easy and can also be made by beginners.
  3. Proportions: The proportion of ingredients mainly of potatoes and sabudana is perfect and you do not end up with a soggy or broken batch of the patties. You are able to easily shape the patties without the need to add any binding flour.
  4. Scaling: You can easily halve or double the recipe.

Serving Sabudana Vada

Sabudana Vada can be made for Hindu fasting days or an evening snack too. It is crispy and delicious and thus tastes great with simple coconut chutney and even sweetened curd (yogurt). To make the sweetened curd, you will just need to add some sugar to the curd and mix it. If short of time, you can even serve with sweet tamarind chutney or homemade tomato ketchup.

In Mumbai, one will find many mithai shops selling this tasty snack. In fact, it is street food in Mumbai as well as Maharashtra and many vendors sell these.

How to make Sabudana Vada

Soaking sabudana

1. Soak 1 cup sabudana or tapioca pearls in water for 5 hours at least or overnight. I soaked the sago overnight and in the morning they had become soft. Sabudana can also be soaked for 2 hours. I get a hard quality of sabudana and soaking for 2 hours does not help. So I soak sabudana overnight. So depending on the quality of sabudana you can even soak for 2 to 3 hours or more.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

2. Then drain off all the water from the soaked sabudana. Drain the water very well. When properly soaked, the sabudana pearl should get mashed when pressed. If you feel some hardness in the center, then soak for some more time.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

3. Take the sabudana pearls in a mixing bowl and keep aside.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

Cooking Potatoes

4. Rinse 4 medium-sized potatoes well in water first. Then place the potatoes in the cooker. Add water which just about covers the potatoes.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

5. Pressure cook potatoes for 4 to 5 whistles on medium flame.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

6. When the pressure settles down on its own, open the lid and check the potatoes. Pass a knife through the center of the potatoes and it should slide easily without any resistance. Let the potatoes become warm. Then chop them or crumble them. You can even mash them.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

Roasting Peanuts

7. When the potatoes are pressure cooking, you can roast the peanuts. Heat a pan or kadai and add ½ cup peanuts in it.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

8. On a low to medium flame, stirring often roast the peanuts. Use a heavy pan, so that the peanuts do not get burnt.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

9. Roast the peanuts till you see some black spots on their husks. They should be crunchy and well roasted with no rawness from the center.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

10. Let the roasted peanuts cool down. Once they are cooled, add them in a dry grinder or spice grinder. I have removed the husks. If you want you can keep them.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

11. Grind to a coarse powder. Keep the peanut powder aside. You can even make a fine powder.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

Making Sabudana Vada Mixture

12. Add the mashed potatoes and coarsely roasted groundnuts to the sabudana in the mixing bowl.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

13. Next add 1 to 2 chopped green chilies, 1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger and 2 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves. You can also skip coriander leaves.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

14. Squeeze 2 teaspoons lemon juice or as per taste.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

15. Now add 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, 1.5 teaspoons sugar and salt as per taste. You can add less or more sugar as per your taste preferences.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

16. Mix the entire mixture very well.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

17. Now take some portion of the mixture in your hands and shape them into a flat round vada or patty. Do this till all the mixture is utilized.

Making Sabudana Vada Recipe

Frying Sabudana Vada

18. Heat oil for deep frying in a kadai. Check a small portion of the mixture. It should come up steadily and gradually in the oil. In case it breaks, then there is more moisture in it. So you can add some kuttu ka atta (buckwheat flour), singhare ka atta (water chestnut flour), ragjira atta (amaranth flour) or some more boiled potatoes. If not fasting, then you can add some rice flour in the vada mixture. Mix again and shape in patties. Ideally, do this step before you fry these patties.

making sabudana vada recipe

19. Gently place the patties in hot oil. Fry them at medium flame. Do not overcrowd while frying.

making sabudana vada recipe

20. When one side is light golden, turn them over with a slotted spoon.

making sabudana vada recipe

21. Turn over again when the second side is golden.

making sabudana vada recipe

22. Continue to fry turning over a couple of times till the vada are uniformly golden and crisp.

making sabudana vada recipe

23. Remove fried sabudana vada with a slotted spoon draining the extra oil.

making sabudana vada recipe

24. Place them on kitchen towels to remove excess oil. Fry all the patties this way.

sabudana vada recipe

25. Serve Sabudana Vada hot with sweetened curd or phalahari chutney or coconut vrat chutney. You could also serve them with homemade tomato sauce.

sabudana vada recipe

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Sabudana Vada Recipe, Sago Vada Recipe
Sabudana Vada
4.87 from 22 votes
Sabudana Vada are crisp fried patties made with tapioca pearls, peanuts and mashed potatoes. They are slightly sweet and spiced to taste.
Prep Time 5 hrs
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 5 hrs 30 mins

Cuisine Maharashtrian
Course: Breakfast, Snacks

Servings 18 vada


  • 1 cup sabudana (tapioca pearls)
  • 4 medium-sized potatoes
  • ½ cup peanuts
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds - optional
  • 1 to 2 green chillies - finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ginger - finely chopped
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves, - optional
  • 1.5 teaspoon sugar or as required
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons kuttu ka atta (buckwheat flour) or amaranth flour - optional
  • rock salt or sendha namak - a kind of salt used food made during fasts. you could use regular salt if the recipe is not being made during the fasting period.
  • oil for frying


Soaking Sabudana

  • Soak the sabudana or sago in water for 5 hours at least or overnight. I soaked the sago overnight and in the morning they had become soft.
  • Drain of all the water completely very well from the soaked sabudana.

Preparing Sabudana Vada Mixture

  • Add the sabudana in a mixing bowl. 
  • Boil the potatoes. Peel and then mash them. Mix the mashed potatoes and sabudana together.
  • On a skillet or in a shallow pan, roast the groundnuts/peanuts till they become crisp and crunchy. Cool and then coarsely powder in a mortar-pestle or in a dry grinder. You can even make a fine powder.
  • Add the powdered peanuts, rock salt, cumin seeds, sugar, ginger, green chillies, coriander leaves and lemon juice to the sabudana . Mix the entire mixture very well.
  • Now take some portion of the mixture in your hands and shape them into flat round vada or patty. 
  • Do this till all the mixture is utilized.

Making Sabudana Vada

  • Heat oil for deep frying in a kadai. Add a tiny ball made from the mixture.
  • Fry it on medium flame. If this ball does not break while frying, then you are good to go. 
  • If it breaks, then add 1 to 2 tablespoons of rajgira atta (or amaranth flour) again to the mixture and mix well.
  • Now gently place the vada in the oil. Keep the flame to medium while frying. If the oil is cold, sabudana vada will absorb a lot of oil and become soggy.
  • Add the vada for frying depending on the size of the kadai. Do not crowd the kadai or pan.
  • When one side gets golden, then only flip the vada. Otherwise, don't even touch as they might break if not cooked.
  • Turn over a couple of times so as to fry the sabudana vada evenly.
  • Fry till they are crisp and golden
  • Remove them with a slotted spoon. Place on kitchen paper towels to absorb excess oil. Prepare vada with the remaining mixture this way.
  • Serve sabudana vada with sweet curd/yoghurt or green chutney. You could also serve them with tomato sauce.



Tips & Suggestions
  • Sabudana: The sabudana (sago) has to be really soaked well. Not even a little hardness should be left in the sago.
  • Moisture: The water needs to be drained well. Use a seive or a colander to drain the water. If there is moisture in the mixture, then you won't get a proper shape of the vada and they will become soggy from inside.
  • Frying & Oil Temperature: The oil has to be neither too hot nor warm. If it's hot, the patties will burn from outside leaving the inside portion uncooked. If warm, then patties will absorb oil, making them loaded with oil and soggy. 
  • Browning: If you want the sabudana vada to be crisp from outside, you need to brown them a little more.
  • Ready roasted peanuts: You could use roasted peanuts which are unsalted. Only if the peanuts are not roasted, then you need to roast them. You can also roast the peanuts a couple of days before and then use them in the recipe. 
  • Removing the peanut skins: If they are roasted, then on roasting the skin becomes flaky and you can remove the skin easily from the peanuts with your fingers.
  • Helpful tip: If the patties breaks or bursts while frying, then add some flour (buckwheat, amaranth, water chestnut flour) in the vada mixture. If not fasting, then you can add rice flour. 

Nutrition Info Approximate values

Calories: 120kcalCarbohydrates: 14gProtein: 2gFat: 6gSaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 143mgPotassium: 227mgFiber: 1gVitamin A: 5IUVitamin C: 5.9mgCalcium: 21mgIron: 1.9mg

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Dassana Amit

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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. I love your recipes!! Your blog is my go to place every time i want to cook something new.
    Sabudana vada soak up a lot of oil, in order to reduce oil consumption, can we bake these vada?

    1. thank you kratika. yes you can bake sabudana vada. bake at 180 degrees celsius till they get a golden crust on top. brush with some oil before baking. timing will vary with the type, make and size of the oven.

  2. Hi Dassana../
    Is there a way to keep the vada crisp until the next day? I’ve made a batch tonight to be taken to the office tomorrow.. already some of them have turned soft on the outside..5 stars

    1. nishita, sabudbana vada are best served hot as they are crisp when served hot. after a few hours they turn soft and do not remain crisp. so there is nothing that can be done. actually this happens with most fried goods. to make them less soft, let the vada become warm or cool at room temperature. then you pack them in tiffin. when packed hot, the heat releases when the sabudana cools and condenses. this makes them more soft.

  3. Big fan of yours..Detailed recipe with tips leave no room for favourite is your Besibele bhath recipe..
    Thank you for making life simpler in kitchen????????5 stars

  4. As I have got married recently and my father in law is fasting for Navratri so I have used your recipe,vada is come out super well and it tastes yum ❤️ thank you so much !

    1. thanks priya. i am not sure if sabudana vadas can be baked. but to cut down on the oil, you can make them in an appe pan or paniyaram pan.

  5. Hi Dassana,
    I’ve written in earlier on a few occasions praising your recipes. However this time it’s not for telling you how well a particular recipe has come / thanks for sharing the recipe, but to let you know that there seems to be some problem with your website. It takes a very long time to load (sometimes even as long as 5 minutes), and even after refreshing again and again, going back to the google page and trying again, it still does not load. I don’t have this problem with other sites, (including other blogs/ recipe websites I follow), which are loading immediately (in fact before writing to you I checked that first thinking it may be a problem with my internet but it’s working fine for other sites). So it seems to be a problem with your hosting service provider or the website/blog itself. In order to write this message itself I had to wait a long time and refresh a few times before it loaded.

    Just thought I’d drop in and let you know in case you don’t know of this issue.

    Could you please look into it as we don’t want to miss your awesome recipes!

    Deepa5 stars

    1. hi deepa, thanks for letting me know about this issue. no other readers has yet told us about this problem. also from our end on laptops and mobiles we can easily access the website. i am not sure why this happening at your end. could be your isp provider is blocking the website or some program/app/software in the website. so difficult to find out. it could be a local issue with your isp provider or computer. for me it will be difficult to find out and the server guys are not very responsive and helpful. so i do not know what can be done. anyways thanks for letting me know.

  6. Hi I make it every once in every month for my son and hubby as they love it but it never comes soft so can I add rice flour instead of the the flour u added will that make it soft5 stars

  7. Simple amazing receipes. I always come to your site when I am to try my hands in cooking. I learnt bread making from you.

    Thanks Vishal5 stars

  8. The Sabudana I have dissolves really fast. How can I prevent that if I want to soak it for that long? Is there a certain brand of Sabudana that’s better?

    1. There is no brand. Just soak sabudana for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Just check if they are soaked well after 30 minutes. If not then soak further.

  9. Just like to know my vadas are not being fried well. They are breaking in oil . what’s the reason. Kindly guide me.

    1. there must be more moisture in the sabudana. the soaked sabudana have to be drained very well of all the water. you could also add some more mashed potatoes to bind the mixture or add some more buckwheat flour or amaranth flour, which in turn will excess absorb moisture.

  10. I really love the simplicity of your recipes.
    The pictorial depiction adds such good value that there is no need to read further.
    I refer to your site every time I want to cook veg food esp to impress a guest.
    Thank you

  11. I would want to know what is “kuttu ka atta/buckwheat flour or amaranth flour”. I am a Hyderabadi and doesn’t know what we call this here, don’t understand this flour.
    I am eager to try this as it looks so yummy.
    Thanks for sharing.

  12. Hi , Can we shallow fry it ? & I think saudana pakora & vada ,are both the same ,know ? Only change of name ! I love sabudana . Had deep fried it earlier ,was thinking if I can shallow fry it this time ? Will it change the taste ?

  13. Hi , Had made sabudana vada & kheer yesterday. Wow ! It came out very well & was delicious . In order to keep the moisture dry ,I just roasted it in the pan . And then mixed it with aloo & other ingredients. Everybody loved it .Thanks soooo much .

  14. Absolutely gorgeous recipe! Made today and they were super hit… ! finally, my search for a perfect and scrumptious sabudana vada recipe has ended.5 stars

      1. Thank YOU for all the efforts you do for writing this blog after all that hard work on the cooking the meal itself! Really in love with your recipes ! keep it up !

  15. Mouth watering vadas….they just melt in the mouth!! Made it as a diwali snack and my hubby loved it. He had never tasted them before as they are not made in South India….I used to love eating them in Mumbai with sweet curd….thanks for a wonderful recipe!!

  16. I love sabudana vada, but I was not knowing hw to make it. It was my brothers birthday and i tried and made it in the party and seriously all of them liked it…. Because of u dassana i made my broz birthday special… thanks alot!!! 🙂5 stars

  17. Thanks for all ur detailed recipes. M sure it takes a lot of time n patience with all these step by step click.. Wanted to clarify as to What’s the proportion of ‘soaked’ sabudana to boiled potatoes ?

    1. i have not measured the soaked sabudana. hence cannot help you in this. as a rule, there should be enough potatoes which help in binding and also make the vadas soft. if the amount of potatoes added are less, then the sabudana vada become crispy.

  18. hye dassana,

    i have been following up your recipes.. and trust whatever i made till now following your recipes turned out very nice. one thing i wan to ask when i made sabudana vada i dont knw what went wrong when i started frying the vada in oil they started breaking. please help me out with these.

    1. i think the amount of mashed potatoes were less. the potatoes help in binding. if you add some singhara ka atta or kuttu ka atta, these also help in binding. did you drain the water very well from the sabudana. there should be no water or moisture in the soaked sabudana. the mixture has to be dry with no moisture.

    1. I think this wikipedia link mentions in detail about arrowroot powder and its ingredients:

      It is used a subsititute for corn starch and is gluten free. It is used as a thickener to thicken puddings, gravies, soups, broths and sauces. It is also used in the preparation of biscuits, cookies, cakes, waffles, pancakes and icecreams.

      I do not know where you stay, but in India, it is easily available and is called in Hindi as arraroot powder.