Varagu Arisi Adai | Millet Pancake

Kodo millet/Varagu arisi adai, thick pancake, made with kodo millet and lentils. Adai, traditionally made with rice and lentils.

Adai is a versatile recipe, that can be made with a variety of grains, like quinoa, oats, barley, white/red/black rice. At home we are big fans of whole grains. I try to include whole grains in my regular cooking as much as possible.

Millets Adai

As a south-indian we are basically rice eaters at home. But due to my personal choices, i either cook millets are quinoa for myself. Though i like the taste of millets with my regular sambar and rasam, my hubby cannot think of anything other than rice with south indian food.

If you have someone like my hubby at home then introducing whole grains in to their diet is a bit tough. I first started using millets in my regular tiffen menu like this varagu arisi idy. Idly made with millets doesn’t have any difference in taste or texture.

Upma is another delicious dish to make with millets. As the texture of millets and rava/sooji are almost similar, the texture and taste of the upma doesn’t change much.

If you are sweet lover like my husband then you can try this Sarkarai pongal with foxtail millet or Ladoos with foxtail millets.

Varagu arisi adai

Coming to today’s recipe, Adai batter doesn’t require any fermentation like dosai batter, which actually is an advantage. Soak ingredients for 4 hours minimum, grind it and use it immediately to make fresh adai/pancakes. You can make it thin and serve it for breakfast, make it thick and serve it for lunch/dinner.

I usually soak ingredients overnight, grind and use it for breakfast immediately. An easy recipe to solve the breakfast tension.

The ingredients

  • Kodo millet, varagu arisi is the main ingredient in the recipe. You can replace kodo millet with any other millets
  • Dal, I have used combination of all four dals in the recipe chana, masoor moong and toor dal.
  • Spices, i have used red chilies, curry leaves and ginger to spice the batter. As a result, the adai/pancake usually doesnt need any side dish.

Varagu Arisi Adai | Kodo Millet adai

Kodo millet/Varagu arisi adai, thick pancake, made with kodo millet and lentils. Adai, traditionally made with rice and lentils.
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Course: Breakfast, Snack
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Adai dosai, Adai recipe, Grind and pour dosa, How to make adai, How to make millets adai, Millets recipe
Prep Time: 4 hours
Grind and serve time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 4 hours 30 minutes
Servings: 4


  • Indian style mixie/heavy blender


  • 1 cup varagu arisi kodo millet
  • ¼ cup chana dal
  • ¼ cup moong dal
  • ¼ cup masoor dal
  • ¼ cup toor dal
  • ½ tsp salt or to taste


  • 4-5 nos red chilies
  • ¼ cup freshly grated coconut optional
  • ½ tsp shredded ginger
  • handful fully of curry leaves and coriander leaves


  • Wash and soak the millet and the lentils together for 4 hours minimum. I usually soak them around lunch 2 pm for 8pm dinnner. I grind it around 7 pm and rest it for 30 minutes before making it for dinner.
  • After the minimum 4 hours of soaking time, drain the excess water, take the contents into a mixer jar along with red chilies, curry and coriander leaves, coconut, ginger and grind it to a batter.  It usually needs around 1/2 – 3/4 cup of water to grind well.
  • Addition of coconut though is optional, it adds a great flavor to the adai,
  • Remove the batter to another vessel, add salt and mix well. Check the consistency, it should be little thick like idly batter.
  • Some might prefer the adai batter to dosa batter consistency. If yes, then add aother 1/4 cup of water to it and mix well.
  • Let the batter rest for 30 minutes for the spices to mingle well.

Making the adai

  • Heat a dosa pan, i use my cast iron tava for my dosa/adai.
  • Keep the flame medium, add a tsp of gingely oil to the tava, spread it well and wipe it off with a tissue or a cloth.
  • Pour a ladle of batter in the center of the tava and spread it using the back of the ladle in circular motion. We usually prefer my adai thin that its usual thickness.
  • Make a hole in the center of the adai, this ensures even cooking of the adai, dot the edges with gingely oil, once the edges turn brown, flip the adai to the other side and cook for another  minute.
  • Serve hot with jaggery/aviyal, i served mine with jaggery and coriander thokku.

Looking for interesting millet recipes

Likethis recipe, PIN IT