Parippu Vada (Chana Dal Vada) with Beetroot

Paruppu vadai or chana dal vada is a classic South Indian snack recipe with dal/ lentils. These vegan lentil cakes combine the goodness, color and flavor of beetroot with the traditional parippu vada to give you an irresistible all-time snack.

About the recipe

Paruppu vadai literally means fritter (vada) with lentils (paruppu/dal). In Indian cuisine, vadas are made with different dal or even a combination of two or more types of dal. The recipe and also the name varies depending on the place it comes from: chana dal vada, parippu vada, masal vadai, and so on. A festive occasion always calls for these yummy snacks, but we often make it a teatime snack whenever possible!

Naturally vegan and gluten-free, paruppu vada is a favorite among kids and adults alike. Adding a vegetable like beetroot makes it more flavorful and nutritious. Though the masala vada is a deep-fried snack, you can indulge with half the guilt since there’s a vegetable hidden inside and is full of fiber and protein from lentils. So HEALTHY, so TASTY!

beetroot chana dal vada in a white plate served with coconut chutney


You’ll need just 9 ingredients and 30 minutes to make this unique masal vadai:

  • beetroot
  • chana dal (split chickpeas or yellow lentils)
  • ginger
  • green chilies
  • cinnamon
  • cumin seeds
  • fennel seeds
  • curry leaves
  • rice flour

This parippu vada recipe can also be made with whole lentils like green or brown ones. They have to be soaked longer, for about 6 hours minimum or if time permits, soak overnight.

How to make dal vada: step-by-step photos

(You can find the exact measurements and instructions in the recipe card at the end of this page.)

Soak chana dal in water for about 2 hours.

Drain water completely. Keep aside 2 tablespoons of the soaked dal and blend the rest of the dal in a food processor with beetroot, ginger, chilies and cinnamon to a coarse paste.

Mix the paste with cumin and fennel seeds, rice flour, chopped curry leaves, salt and the soaked lentils that you have kept aside.

Mix the dough well and shape into patties. Grease your palms with oil or use baking paper to shape the vadas. Deep-fry in hot oil until the fritters turn reddish-brown. Serve with coconut chutney or any of your favorite sauces.

Tips to make the best paruppu vadai

  • The secret to achieving an amazing reddish tint and earthy flavor lies in blending grated beetroot along with the lentils.
  • Drain the soaked lentils completely before blending. Dry them on a kitchen towel for best results. This prevents the dough from getting soggy.
  • Blend to a coarse paste to get crispy vadas. Blending the dough smooth will result in soft vadas.
  • Adding rice flour and a handful of soaked whole lentils to the dough also helps make the fritters crispy.
  • If you don’t like whole spices (cumin and fennel) in your fritters, blend them with the lentils. But they definitely add to the crunchy texture of the vadas.
paruppu vadai in a white plate served with coconut chutney

Love dal? Why don’t you try out my other dal recipes:

Looking for more snacks/starters?

beet lentil fritters in a white plate served with coconut chutney

Parippu Vada (Chana Dal Vada) recipe with Beetroot

Paruppu vadai or chana dal vada is a South Indian snack recipe with dal. These vegan lentil cakes combine the goodness of beetroot with the traditional parippu vada.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Soaking time 2 hrs
Total Time 2 hrs 30 mins
Course Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine Indian
Servings 12 masala vada
Calories 66 kcal


  • 1 cup chana dal/ yellow lentils
  • 1 cup beetroot grated
  • 2 green chilies
  • 1 inch ginger chopped
  • 1 inch cinnamon (or 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon)
  • curry leaves (a handful)
  • 2 tablespoons rice flour
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil for frying


  • Wash and soak chana dal/ lentils for 2 hours.
  • Drain the dal completely. Keep aside 2 tablespoons of soaked lentils and place the rest in a food processor or blender. Add grated beetroot, cinnamon, ginger and chilies. Blend to a coarse paste.
  • Transfer the blended paste to a large mixing bowl. Add rice flour, curry leaves, salt, cumin and fennel seeds and the reserved whole lentils. Mix until well combined.
  • Heat oil in a deep pan or wok. Make 12 balls out of the dough. Grease your palm with oil (or use a small piece of baking paper) and flatten the balls into small discs. Deep-fry in batches in hot oil on medium heat until the vada turn reddish-brown.
  • Serve these masala vadas with a simple coconut chutney, tomato sauce or any other sauce of your choice.



Tips to make the best beetroot masala vada
  1. Drain water from the soaked dal completely before blending.
  2. Blend the lentils and beetroot to a very coarse paste. Alternatively, you can pulse a few times. 
  3. Grated beets can be added as is, but blending them along with the dal gives the enticing color and flavor to the masala vada.
  4. If your vada dough is not firm enough, add a little more rice flour or besan.
Finely chopped onions and coriander leaves can be added for more flavor. Add onions just before frying, since they tend to make the dough more moist over time.
Leftover fried parippu vada can be refrigerated overnight and reheated the next day. It doesn’t keep longer than that. They can be frozen for about a month, but won’t be as crispy when thawed and reheated.
Make-ahead option
This dal vada dough can be made ahead and refrigerated for up to 4 days or frozen for a month. Do not add onions if you’re making ahead.
Parippu Vada (Chana Dal Vada) with Beetroot
Keyword chana dal vada, dal vada, lentil patties, masal vadai, parippu vada, paruppu vadai, vegan lentil cakes

★★★★★Did you try this recipe? Please give a star rating in the comments below.★★★★★

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– Sheeba.

Health benefits of beetroot

  • Beets are naturally low in calories and high in nutritional content.
  • Help regulate blood pressure.
  • Beets can increase oxygen use by up to 20% and hence can enhance athletic performance.
  • Contain pigments that have potential anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Beet is a good source of fiber and can improve digestive health.
  • Its low calorie and high water content may help in weight loss. (source)
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8 thoughts on “Parippu Vada (Chana Dal Vada) with Beetroot”

  1. 4 stars
    I have not gone beyond juicing the beet so far ! Fritters looks an yummy idea to try. Nice pictures . Thank you

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