Mushroom Pakora is quick and easy to make, full of flavour, and fun to eat! Here's how to make the popular Indian snack.
About a decade ago, I posted 3 pakora recipes over on Celebration Generation, eventually transferring them here, as they’re all inherently gluten free.
I HAD intended to post a few other pakoras at the time, but kinda dropped the ball. Whoops.
During a recent pakora making marathon, I decided to finally photograph everything and get those new recipes posted.
... and here we are!
If you’ve ever had battered, deep fried mushrooms (a favourite side dish at a fish ad chips house we like!), then this delicious recipe should be right up your alley.
Mushroom pakora -or mushroom pakoda - is battered mushrooms, as you can get them in an Indian restaurant.
Rather than using a wheat flour batter - with or without beer - as the fish and chip places do, this delicious recipe involves a traditional batter made of chickpea and rice flours (gluten free!), with Indian spices.
As a bonus, this tasty pakora recipe involves very little in terms of preparation time!
It’s a big flavor and texture payoff, for very little effort.
Let’s get to it!
This recipe uses simple ingredients that should be readily available in most grocery stores.
I have a few ingredient notes for you:
I like to use crimini mushrooms and button mushrooms for this - one, the other, or (as pictured), half and half.
That said, you can use whatever mushrooms you like, really. Oyster mushrooms, chestnut mushrooms, even shiitake.
You’re basically just making battered, deep fried mushrooms here, so go with whatever you like the flavour / texture of, when cooked.
Pakoras tend to be inherently gluten free, using a mix of Chickpea Flour / Garbanzo Bean Flour and
White Rice Flour to make the batter, rather than a wheat based - or even GF all purpose flour - at all.
As a note, the bean flour is also called besan, besan flour, and gram flour, when purchased at an Indian or South Asian grocery store.
Both flours should be readily available in the gluten free section of most grocery stores, though!
I look at this recipe as a base, and tend to add other spices depending on my mood. At the absolute minimum (and it’s a tasty minimum!), I use:
Sometimes I’ll toss in a Tablespoon - or two - of Ginger Garlic Paste, which goes well with the mushrooms.
If I want to go more spicy, sometimes I’ll finely chop some green chilies ro add to the batter, but I generally prefer pepper powder - Red Chili Powder, Kashmiri Chili Powder, and/or Cayenne Pepper are great options.
Oil for Deep Frying
I like to use vegetable oil for deep frying - it’s cheap, easy to find, and has a nice neutral taste.
That said, any high smoke point oil will work well. Sunflower oil, canola oil, and peanut oil are all good options for deep frying.
Beyond the basics - measuring cups, bowls, etc - you’ll want something to fry these in.
Before moving home to Canada - and into a house with a TINY kitchen - I used a regular deep fryer for making pakora.
Now that I no longer have the counter space for that, I just use a heavy bottomed pot.
Because the pot doesn’t have the temperature control/monitoring that an actual deep fryer has, I also use an IR Thermometer .
A candy or deep frying thermometer would also work!
How to Make Mushroom Pakora
The full recipe is in the recipe card at the end of this post, this is a pictorial walk through with step by step instructions.
Start heating your oil to 350 F – you’ll want at least 2-3″ of oil in your pot or deep fryer.
In a large bowl, combine flours, spices, salt, and baking powder.
Add water, stir well to form a thick batter. Allow batter to sit for 5 minutes or so, to soften the bean flour.
Note: If the pakora batter is too thick, you can add a little water. Use just enough water to make it the consistency of pancake batter.
Fry for a few minutes on each side, until golden brown and crispy.
Note: Allow the temperature of the oil to come back up to 350 between batches.
Leftover mushroom pakora can be cooled to room temperature before being transferred to an airtight container an stored in the fridge.
They will keep for around 4-5 days, best when reheated in an air fryer.
More Gluten-Free Indian Recipes
Craving some curry, pakoras, and chutney? I’ve got some delicious Indian Recipes for you!
Chicken Shahi Korma
Mango Lassi Popsicles
Mixed Vegetable Pakora
... I even have a few diet friendly adaptations on my low carb blog, Low Carb Hoser:
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- Deep Fryer Or heavy bottomed pot
- Oil for deep frying
- 1 ¼ cups Garbanzo (chickpea) flour
- ¼ cup White rice flour
- 1 teaspoon Curry powder
- 1 teaspoon Cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- ½ teaspoon Coriander powder
- ¼ teaspoon Baking Powder
- 1 cup Water
- 1 lb Button or Crimini mushrooms
- Start heating your oil to 350F – you’ll want at least 2-3″ of oil in your pot or deep fryer.
- In a large bowl, combine flours, spices, salt, and baking powder. Add water, stir well to form a thick batter. Allow batter to sit for 5 minutes or so, to soften the bean flour.
- One by one, dip the mushrooms in the batter, allowing excess batter to drop off before carefully transferring to the heated oil
- Fry for a few minutes on each side, until golden brown and crispy
- Use a slotted metal spoon to transfer fried mushrooms to paper towels.
- Serve hot, with cilantro-mint chutney.