//Oats Idli

Oats Idli

Top shot of four round oats idli arranged on silver plate with coconut chutney in a silver bowl.

These easy oats idli are light, fluffy, cakes perfect for a quick Breakfast or healthy on-the-go Snack. Made with oats, curd (yogurt), semolina, herbs and spices, this instant oats idli recipe requires no fermentation and is quick to prepare.

Top shot of four round oats idli arranged on silver plate with coconut chutney in a silver bowl.Top shot of four round oats idli arranged on silver plate with coconut chutney in a silver bowl.

About Oats Idli

This instant idli recipe, made with your choice of oats, is another favorite oats recipe of mine. Similar to my Rava Idli Recipe, this oats idli recipe includes rava (sooji, semolina or cream of wheat) in the batter, as well as oats of course.

Perfect for when you’re in a time crunch, oats idli is an instant version unlike the traditional South Indian Idli Recipe that is made with time-intensive method of soaking rice & lentils, grinding them and fermenting.

This instant oats idli recipe, however, does require very less time than traditional idli recipe because it requires no fermentation process.

The recipe is very simple and also customizable. Because you can choose how many or how few veggies to add to your batter, this recipe is also easy to customize to suit many different diets and tastes.

Personally, I do enjoy adding a few veggies to the batter most of the time, but then there are certainly other times when I decide to make the idli without any vegetables at all.

If you like these instant oats idli, then you will love some of my other Oats Recipes, like Oats Dosa and Oats Upma.

Step-by-Step Guide

How to Make Oats Idli

Make Oat Flour

1. First place 1 cup of quick cooking oats or rolled oats in a grinder or blender.

Closeup shot of rolled oats in bowl.Closeup shot of rolled oats in bowl.

2. Then grind or blend the oats to a fine flour and set aside.

Closeup shot of ground oat flour in bowl.Closeup shot of ground oat flour in bowl.

Grate Carrot

3. Next, peel and grate 1 small to medium carrot.

Grated carrot in small yellow bowl.Grated carrot in small yellow bowl.

Get Your Herbs And Spices Ready

4. Now, set aside all the herbs and spices you will needing. Make sure you add these ingredients (pictured below in clockwise order):

  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 teaspoon chana dal (husked and split bengal gram)
  • ½ teaspoon crushed black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon of chopped coriander leaves (cilantro)
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped curry leaves
  • 1 teaspoon of finely chopped ginger
  • 1 teaspoon chopped green chilies
  • 8 to 10 cashews that have been chopped
Herbs and spices for oats idli recipe organized on round white plate.Herbs and spices for oats idli recipe organized on round white plate.

Make Tempering

5. Next heat ½ to 1 tablespoon of oil in a pan on a low heat. Then when the oil is hot, add the ½ teaspoon cumin seeds, ½ teaspoon mustard seeds, and 1 teaspoon chana dal.

NOTE: If you are using urad dal (½ teaspoon), then you can add with this mixture, as well.

Seeds and lentils sautéing in oil in black skillet.Seeds and lentils sautéing in oil in black skillet.

6. Now stir.

Seeds frying in oil in black skillet.Seeds frying in oil in black skillet.

7. Then continue to fry until the mustard seeds crackle and both the chana dal and urad dal become golden.

Seeds and lentils frying in oil in black skillet.Seeds and lentils frying in oil in black skillet.

Sauté Spices, Nuts and Herbs

8. Now add the 1 teaspoon of chopped green chilies, 1 teaspoon of chopped ginger, 1 teaspoon of finely chopped curry leaves, 8 to 10 chopped cashews, ½ teaspoon of crushed black pepper and just a pinch of asafoetida (hing).

Ginger, nut, and seasoning mixture sautéing in black skillet.Ginger, nut, and seasoning mixture sautéing in black skillet.

9. Then continue to sauté for another minute.

Ginger, nut, and seasoning mixture sautéing in black skillet.Ginger, nut, and seasoning mixture sautéing in black skillet.

Add Rava

10. Now add ½ cup of rava (sooji or cream of wheat) to the sautéed mixture. Use fine textured rava or sooji.

Rava added on top of ginger, nut, and seasoning mixture sautéing in black skillet.Rava added on top of ginger, nut, and seasoning mixture sautéing in black skillet.

11. Then on a low heat stir and sauté the sooji for another 2 minutes.

Closeup shot of sooji sautéing in black skillet.Closeup shot of sooji sautéing in black skillet.

Add Oats Flour

12. After that, add the oats flour.

Closeup shot of oat flour added to sooji sautéing in black skillet.Closeup shot of oat flour added to sooji sautéing in black skillet.

13. Then, mix very well and combine. Continue stirring often while the oats flour is roasting on a low heat.

Wooden spoon stirring oat flour mixture in black skillet.Wooden spoon stirring oat flour mixture in black skillet.

14. Stirring often roast for a total of about 4 to 5 minutes on a low heat.

Closeup shot of oats flour roasting in black skillet for oats idli recipe.Closeup shot of oats flour roasting in black skillet for oats idli recipe.

Cool the Mixture

15. When finished, transfer the flour mixture into a mixing bowl and let it cool completely.

Oats idli flour mixture piled in black bowl.Oats idli flour mixture piled in black bowl.

Add Ingredients to Oatmeal Idli Mixture

16. While the oatmeal idli mixture cools, prepare the vegetables. First, grate the carrots and then chop the coriander leaves.

You can also steam peas or french beans to add to the batter. Then, when your mixture has cooled, add these ingredients and mix into the oatmeal idli mixture.

NOTE: You can skip adding any vegetables if preferred.

Grated carrots and coriander leaves added to oats idli in black bowl.Grated carrots and coriander leaves added to oats idli in black bowl.

17. Now add ½ cup curd (yogurt).

Curd added to oats idli in black bowl.Curd added to oats idli in black bowl.

18. Then add 1 cup of water.

Curd and water added to oats batter in black bowl.Curd and water added to oats batter in black bowl.

19. Next stir and mix the oatmeal idli batter well.

oats idli batter being stirred by silver spoon in black bowl.oats idli batter being stirred by silver spoon in black bowl.

Allow Batter to Rest

20. Now make sure the batter has a medium consistency. It should be neither too thick nor thin. When the consistency is right, cover and allow the batter to rest for 5 to 6 minutes.

oats idli batter in black bowl.oats idli batter in black bowl.

Prepare Idli Moulds

21. Meanwhile, grease the idli moulds with some oil or ghee (clarified butter).

Place a small trivet/perforated plate in a 5 to 6 litre pressure cooker, large pot, Instant Pot or electric rice cooker.

Add 1.5 to 2 cups water in the pressure cooker, pan, electric cooker or Instant pot and heat until the water comes to a boil.

You can also use the traditional idli steamer to steam oatmeal idli.

Closeup shot of idli moulds greased with oil.Closeup shot of idli moulds greased with oil.

22. After the resting time, your oatmeal idli batter should have a medium and moist consistency. If the batter looks thick, add a few tablespoons of water and mix to combine.

Silver spoon in oatmeal idli batter in black bowl.Silver spoon in oatmeal idli batter in black bowl.

Add Final Ingredients to Batter

23. Now add salt to taste and mix well.

Salt added on top of oatmeal idli batter in black bowl.Salt added on top of oatmeal idli batter in black bowl.

24. Then add 1 teaspoon of fruit salt (eno) or ½ teaspoon of baking soda.

fruit salt added on top of oatmeal idli batter in black bowl.fruit salt added on top of oatmeal idli batter in black bowl.

25. As soon as you add the fruit salt, quickly begin to stir the whole batter.

Person using spoon to stir oats idli batter in black skillet.Person using spoon to stir oats idli batter in black skillet.

26. Be quick and stir very well so that the eno is mixed evenly in the oatmeal idli batter.

Oats idli batter in black skillet.Oats idli batter in black skillet.

Steam Oats Idli

27. Now pour the oats idli batter into the greased idli moulds.

Idli mixture filling four greased moulds.Idli mixture filling four greased moulds.

28. Next gently place the moulds on the trivet/perforated plate inside the large pot, electric rice cooker, Instant Pot or pressure cooker. Then cover and steam the oats idli until they are done, for about 10 to 12 minutes.

If using a pressure cooker, remove the vent weight (whistle) from the lid before sealing the cooker tightly with the lid.

For Instant pot, keep the valve at the “venting position”. Press the steam button and steam on high pressure for 10 to 12 minutes. Keep a track of the time with a timer.

NOTE: Your oatmeal idli are cooked well when a toothpick inserted in the center of the idli comes out clean.

Filled idli mould cooking in electric cooker.Filled idli mould cooking in electric cooker.

29. Remove the idli stand from the pot, cooker or Instant pot carefully using a kitchen towel or oven mitts.

Now allow the steamed idli to stand in the moulds for a few minutes. Then remove them with a spoon dipped in hot water.

Serve oats idli. So that they remain soft and moist, place the oatmeal idli in a covered container or inside a roti box.

Top shot of four round oats idli arranged on silver plate.Top shot of four round oats idli arranged on silver plate.

Serving Suggestions

Serve oats idli hot or warm with Coconut Chutney, Tomato Chutney, Idli Podi or Sambar. These instant oats idli also make for a good tiffin box or lunchtime snack.

Storage and Leftovers

Keep leftover oatmeal idli in a covered container in the refrigerator. Reheat in a microwave sprinkling a few drops of water on them or you can steam them for 1 to 2 minutes in a pan or pot.

You can even pan fry or shallow fry them until crispy and golden. Serve the fried oatmeal idli with any dip like a tomato ketchup or schezwan sauce or coriander chutney.

Tips

Expert Tips

  • For a less soapy alkaline aroma, you can add ½ teaspoon of fruit salt or ¼ teaspoon of baking soda. In this case, the texture will be less fluffy and soft.
  • Try to use all the batter in one steaming lot. If you keep the batter for the second round of steaming, then the oatmeal idli won’t become that soft.
  • The recipe of these instant oats idli gets done quickly. When the idli are steaming, prepare the coconut chutney, then you will have a healthy breakfast at your table in less than forty-five minutes.

FAQs

What is idli?

Idli is a South Indian traditional breakfast food of steamed, savory, round, soft cakes made from fermented rice and lentil batter.

What is oats idli?

Oats idli is an instant version of idli that is made with oats flour, semolina, yogurt, tempered spices, herbs and leavened with fruit salt or baking soda.

What kind of curd should I use for oats idli?

You can add either fresh or sour curd.

What can I substitute for curd?

You can use a vegan yogurt like cashew yogurt or almond yogurt. Cashew yogurt will taste better.

Can I omit curd from this recipe?

You can skip adding curd and add about ½ to 1 teaspoon of lemon juice to get a slight sour taste and also to help in the acid alkaline reaction.

More South Indian Breakfast Recipes to Try!

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These easy oats idli are light, fluffy, cakes perfect for a quick breakfast or healthy on-the-go snack. Made with oats, curd (yogurt), semolina, herbs and spices, this instant oats idli recipe requires no fermentation and is quick to make.

Prep Time 25 mins

Cook Time 15 mins

Total Time 40 mins



Servings 16 oats idli

Prevent your screen from going dark while making the recipe

Preparation

  • Take rolled oats or quick cooking oats in a grinder or blender jar. Blend to a fine flour.

  • Peel and grate 1 small to medium carrot.

  • Finely chop the ginger, curry leaves, coriander leaves and green chilies.

Making tempering

  • Heat oil in a pan. On a low heat, add the mustard seeds, chana dal and urad dal. 

  • Stir and fry till the mustard seeds crackle and both the urad dal and chana dal become golden.

  • Now add the green chilies, ginger, curry leaves, cashews and a pinch of asafoetida. Saute for a minute.

Making batter

  • Add sooji (rava or cream of wheat). Stirring often roast for 2 minutes on a low heat.

  • Then add the oats flour. Stir very well and keep on stirring often while roasting the flour.

  • Roast for a total time of about 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer this mixture in a bowl and let it cool completely.

  • Then add grated carrots and chopped coriander leaves. You can also add steamed green peas or blanched/steamed french beans or skip the veggies altogether.

  • Add curd. You can add either fresh or sour curd.

  • Add water. Combine and mix very well. The batter should have a medium consistency. Cover and allow the batter to rest for 5 to 6 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, grease the idli moulds with some oil or ghee.

  • Place a small trivet/perforated plate in a 5 to 6 litre pressure cooker, large pot, Instant Pot or electric rice cooker. Add 1.5 to 2 cups water in the pressure cooker, pan, electric rice cooker or Instant pot and heat until the water comes to a boil.

  • You can also use the traditional idli steamer to steam oats idli.

  • Now add salt as per taste to the batter and mix very well.

  • Next add 1 teaspoon fruit salt (eno) or ½ teaspoon baking soda. For a less soapy alkaline aroma you can add ½ teaspoon fruit salt or ¼ teaspoon baking soda. The texture in this case is less fluffy and soft.

  • As soon as you add the fruit salt, quickly begin to mix it with the batter.

  • Be quick and mix very well so that the fruit salt is mixed evenly in the batter.

Steaming

  • Pour the batter in a the greased idli moulds. Try to use all the batter in one steaming batch.

  • Gently place the moulds on the trivet/perforated plate inside the pot, electric rice cooker, Instant Pot or pressure cooker.

  • Cover and steam for about 10 to 12 minutes. A toothpick inserted in the oat idli should come out clean.

  • If using a pressure cooker, remove the vent weight (whistle) from the lid before sealing the cooker tightly with the lid prior to steaming.

  • For Instant pot, keep the valve at the “venting position”. Press the steam button and steam on high pressure for 10 to 12 minutes. Keep a track of the time with a timer.

  • Allow the steamed oatmeal idli to stand for some minutes. Then remove them with a spoon dipped in hot water.

  • Serve these light, healthy and instant oats idli hot or warm with coconut chutney or sambar.

Storage and leftovers

  • Keep leftover oats idli in a covered container in the refrigerator. Reheat in a microwave sprinkling a few drops of water on the idli or you can steam them for 1 to 2 minutes in a pan or pot.

  • You can even pan fry or shallow fry them until crispy and golden. Serve the fried oats idli with any dip like a tomato ketchup or schezwan sauce or coriander chutney.

  • Leavening ingredients: For a less soapy alkaline aroma, you can add ½ teaspoon of fruit salt or ¼ teaspoon of baking soda. In this case, the texture will be less fluffy and soft.
  • Use up all the batter at once: Try to use all the batter in one steaming lot. If you keep the batter for the second round of steaming, then the oatmeal idli won’t become that soft.
  • Preparing chutney: The recipe of these instant oats idli gets done quickly. When the idli are steaming, prepare the Coconut Chutney, then you will have a healthy breakfast at your table in less than an hour.
  • Vegan option: You can use a vegan yogurt like cashew yogurt or almond yogurt. Cashew yogurt will taste better in the recipe. Or just skip adding curd and add about ½ to 1 teaspoon of lemon juice to get a slight sour taste and also to help in the acid-alkaline reaction.

Nutrition Facts

Oats Idli

Amount Per Serving (1 oats idli)

Calories 62 Calories from Fat 18

% Daily Value*

Fat 2g3%

Saturated Fat 1g6%

Cholesterol 1mg0%

Sodium 158mg7%

Potassium 64mg2%

Carbohydrates 9g3%

Fiber 1g4%

Sugar 1g1%

Protein 2g4%

Vitamin A 671IU13%

Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) 1mg67%

Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 1mg59%

Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 8mg40%

Vitamin B6 1mg50%

Vitamin B12 1µg17%

Vitamin C 13mg16%

Vitamin D 1µg7%

Vitamin E 1mg7%

Vitamin K 1µg1%

Calcium 57mg6%

Vitamin B9 (Folate) 82µg21%

Iron 2mg11%

Magnesium 15mg4%

Phosphorus 51mg5%

Zinc 1mg7%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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This oats idli recipe from the blog archives (May 2015) has been republished and updated on 20 March 2021.