My favorite breakfast is these Easy Instant Pot Uttapams. It’s a savory Indian pancake that’s easy to make and actually is inexpensive too. My recipe uses whole grains and lentils that we ferment into a flavorful batter!
What is an Uttapam?
It’s a savory south Indian pancake that’s traditionally made from a batter of urad dal (a type of skinned and split lentil) and rice that’s fermented overnight.
You can make dosas, an Indian crepe, from the same batter. But it takes less time and skill to ladle out the batter like a pancake, so that’s why it’s my favorite method.
What’s in an Uttapam?
In my recipe we change up the grain from plain white rice to brown rice, millet, and quinoa to make this a whole grain powerhouse.
Other than the batter, you can add shredded or minced raw veggies. Remember they will only be cooked once the pancake it flipped over, so the smaller the better. You can also add chopped cilantro or vegan shredded cheese. Try Julie and Kitee’s homemade vegan oil-free cheese recipe if you haven’t – it’s awesome.
How Do You Make Uttapam Batter?
You will soak the urad dal with the grains in water for about 8 hours. Then you’ll puree the mixture in your blender, in batches.
The next step is to naturally ferment the batter. We’re going to use the yogurt function which is on most IP models except the LUX. You actually don’t have to have an Ip to ferment it, but why not use what we already have?
Easy Instant Pot Uttapams: Savory Indian Pancakes
It will take some time and planning to get the batter ready, but once it's done you can cook these Indians pancakes in about 10 minutes!
- 1 cup urad dal (skinned split urad) , you can get online or at Indian markets
- 1 cup brown rice
- 1 cup millet
- 1 cup quinoa , washed well to remove the seed coating 5 cups (1.2 L) water
- 5 cups water
Mix the urad dal, rice, millet, quinoa and water in a large bowl. Cover and let soak to soften for 8 hours.
After the soak, puree the mixture (including the soaking water) in your blender in batches and add to your Instant Pot liner.
Place the liner in your Instant Pot, cover and press the yogurt setting. Leave it at the default 8 hours for it to ferment.
Note: You can store the fermented mixture in your fridge for up to 1 week or you can cook up all the pancakes at once and freeze them to heat for later.
Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Once hot, add ½ cup (120 ml) of the batter per pancake and shape into a circle. Cook until bubbles begin to form.
Sprinkle the topping you choose over the top of the pancake and press in a little with your spatula. Flip the pancake and cook until both sides are browned.
Place on a plate and cook the next one. You could also have more than one skillet going at a time.
What Do I Eat with my Uttapam?
Traditionally, they are served with various chutneys, like coconut and tomato. Sometimes they are spicy but I have an easy one for you that’s mild. You could blend in some fresh hot pepper in the recipe below to spice it up if you want.
Coconut Cilantro Chutney
This is my go to quick and easy chutney to make for my uttapams.
- 1 cup 93 g shredded coconut
- ½ cup 120 ml water
- ½ cup 8 g fresh cilantro (leaves and stems)
- 1 tbsp 6 g grated ginger
- 1 tbsp 6 g curry leaves (optional)
- 2 tsp 10 ml lemon juice
- ⅛ tsp mustard powder
- salt , to taste
Place all the ingredients except for salt to your blender. Blend until mostly smooth.
You will need to scrape down a few times and may need to add an additional tablespoon or two (15 or 30 ml) of water to get it smoother.
Store in the fridge for up to 1 week.
More Recipes to Try
- Instant Pot Yellow Split Peas with Tomatoes (Tarka Dal)
- Plant Based Instant Pot White Beans with Tomatillos and Poblanos
- Vegan Instant Pot Split Pea Soup with Sweet Potatoes and Navy Beans
- Easy and Inexpensive Recipe Online Class with Instant Pot and Slow Cooker Instructions