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top angle view of Mini Masala Idli in a small kadai with a tray full of curry leaves on the side
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Mini Masala Idli | Tadka Idli | Masala Steamed Cakes

Mini Masala Idli is an alternate fun way to enjoy idli. These steamed cakes are seasoned with molagapudi/gunpowder & make a delicious vegan appetizer/snack.
Course Appetizer, Breakfast, Snack
Cuisine Asian, Indian, South Indian
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings 4 people


  • Idli cooker


To make Idli batter

  • 2 cups idli rava
  • 1 cup urad dal
  • 1 tsp methi/fenugreek seeds
  • water as required
  • Salt

To make Mini Masala Idli

  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tbsp urad dal
  • 4-5 curry leaves
  • 2-3 tbsp milagai pudi
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro


To make Idli batter

  • Soak urad dal for at-least 2 hours. Add methi/fenugreek seeds in it.
  • In another bowl, soak Idli Rava for the same amount of time. Add just enough water for the rava to be submerged.
  • Grind them both together along with salt and little water.
  • Cover the pan and leave the batter to ferment overnight in a warm place. The batter should rise and should be of pouring consistency resembling a pancake batter.
  • Now take the mini idli molds, spray cooking oil over it and pour a spoonful of batter into all the molds.
  • Steam in Idli cooker for 8-10 minutes. Once its done, wait for the steam to escape. Open the cooker and scoop out the mini idlis out of the molds.

To make Mini Masala Idli

  • In a pan, heat sesame oil. Temper mustard seeds and urad dal  and fry till the lentils turn golden.
  • Then add and fry the curry leaves and half of the chopped cilantro for 15 seconds.
  • Next add Mulagapudi and fry for a minute.
  • Add the mini idlis and salt, mix it all well. Ensure that the masala coats the idlis well.
  • Sprinkle cilantro to garnish. Serve immediately.


If you want, grind urad dal and idli rava separately.
Idli Rava is easily available at any Indian grocery stores.
You can substitute idli rava with rice.
Do not add too much water while grinding, the batter needs to be neither too thick nor too thin. 
Adding methi seeds ensures that the idli turns soft.