How to make Idli at home
Written by Jayashree
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Idli is a popular breakfast from South India. It is the healthiest breakfast that we can serve to our family.

Idli is a steamed cake made from the batter of lentil and rice or rava. It is ideal for people of all age groups from babies to old grand parents.

Idli is prepared in two ways by using rice along with lentil or rava with lentil. Today, I am sharing the second kind of recipe here.

The making of idli involves three steps:

  1. Soaking of lentil
  2. Grinding of lentil
  3. Mixing of cream of wheat
  4. Fermentation
  5. Preparation

Soaking of lentil : Wash the urad dal and soak it in water for at least two hours.

Grinding of lentil: You can either grind it in a mixer or wet grinder.

Mixing of cream of wheat : It is soaked for half an hour and later mixed in the lentil batter.

Fermentation: It should be kept in a wide vessel in a warm place to ferment  for five to six hours, preferably overnight.

Preparation: The next day, mix salt in the batter and prepare the idlis.

About the Idli Cooker and Idli Maker :

Idli Cooker and Idli Maker are available in the market. Idlis can be made in pressure cooker too but do not use the whistle. Idli can be made in different shapes too. Plate Idli (Thatte Idli), Glass Idli ( lota idli), button idli. Do you know that they are also made in moulds made of jackfruit leaves? It gives a good aroma to it.



I have many idli recipes on the blog. Some of them are Chennai Idli, Ragi Idli, Instant Ragi Idli and Sago Idli.

About the event:

This is an old post which I had written in the beginning, when I started blogging. Now I have redone with better pictures and text, sending this to Foodies_Redoing OldPost 24. This is a fortnightly event where we work on one old post regularly.

How to make Idli


  • 1 bowl of urad dal
  • 2 bowl of idli rava
  • water
  • salt to taste


  1. Wash the urad dal and soak in water for one and a half hour.
  2. Grind into a fine paste by using adequate amount of water.
  3. Soak the semolina in water for fifteen minutes.
  4. Squeeze the water out from the semolina and mix it in the batter.
  5. Keep it for fermentation in a warm place for five to six hours, preferably overnight.
  6. The next day, add salt to the batter and mix it . If the consistency is thick, add some water.
  7. Pour the batter into idli moulds and cook it in a idli  pan or pressure cooker. If using pressure cooker, do not use the whistle.
  8. For the first ten minutes, steam it on high flame, later reduce it. You need 15 -20 minutes to make a batch of idlis.
  9. Serve hot with chutney and sambar.

Take a tip:

  • Fermentation time varies from region to region. It is quicker during summer and takes longer during winter.
  • Mix the batter using hand, the heat of the human body gives a good texture.
  • Idli Rava is made from rice. It is slightly coarse in texture. This is different from Bombay Rava that is used for upma.



Idli is an ideal breakfast to serve any day. It is steamed, easy to prepare and filling. 

Course Breakfast
Cuisine Indian
Keyword healthy cooking, idli recipe, idli variety, south indian breakfast
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
6 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 50 minutes
Servings 6 people
Author Jayashree


  • 1 cup urad dal
  • 2 cup semolina
  • water
  • salt


  1. Wash the urad dal and soak it for two hours.

  2. Grind it to a smooth batter. 

  3. Soak the semolina in water for ten minutes. Mix into the batter, close and keep it in a warm place to ferment. 

  4. Next day, add salt to it. Heat a idli maker, grease the moulds (not necessary) and put batter in the cavity. 

  5. Steam it for fifteen to twenty minutes. 

  6. Serve with chutney and sambar.

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  1. Seema Doraiswamy Sriram

    Love the shape and fluffines of the idly. Is the idly semolina, the rice rava? or sooji?

    • Jayashree

      Seema, thankyou. I have used Idly rawa, that is rice sooji or rice rawa

  2. sizzlingtastebuds

    1:2 ratio of Urad to Rawa is new to me… I wd defly want to try that… these idlis are perfect breakfast anytime.. and would love to dig into them, Jayashree !

    • poonampagar

      Idlis make a wonderful breakfast any day. I also use idli rava many a times as it saves soaking and grinding time.

  3. mayurisjikoni

    Jayashree I like this fermented rave idli recipe.. the only one I have tried is the instant one. Idli look so soft and tempting.

  4. themadscientistskitchen

    Beautifully made idli. In my place if I make idli it has to be there for all meals.

  5. Renu Agrawal Dongre

    Idli look soft and fluffy. I have never made with Idli rava but would love to try it as becomes a bit instant

  6. Sasmita Sahoo Samanta

    Great one jaya ! I make instant rava idli. Using lentil and semolina to ferment and then making idli is a lovely idea …



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Hello and Welcome to my blog! I am Jayashree from India. An enthusiastic blogger, with a zest for life.  I believe in living life to the fullest.

Cooking has been my passion. I have always loved to try new recipes.  Writing has been a feel good factor and extremely  loving it. With these two passions of mine, my culinary blog was born. Read More…


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