Vada (food)

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Vada 2.jpg
Place of originSouth India
Main ingredientsLentils, potatoes, onions
Cookbook:Vada  Vada
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Vada 2.jpg
Place of originSouth India
Main ingredientsLentils, potatoes, onions
Cookbook:Vada  Vada
Masala vadai
Thayir vadai with chili powder, chaat masala, and coriander leaves
A plateful of Uzhundhu vadai

Vade, also known as wada or vade (in Sri Lanka) or vadai or bara (pronounced "vah-daa", "vah-dey", "baraa" or "vah-die"), is a savoury fritter-type snack from South India.[1]


Vadas can vary in shape and size, but are usually either doughnut- or disc-shaped and are between 5 and 8 cm across. They are made from dal, lentil, gram flour or potato.

The Vada is a traditional South Indian food known from antiquity.[2] Although they are commonly prepared at home, Vadas are as well a typical street food in the Indian Subcontinent and Sri Lanka. They are usually a high calorie morning food, typically about 300 Kilocal each,[citation needed] but in street stalls and in railway stations, as well as inside the Indian Railways, they are available as a snack all day. It is known as Vades in South Africa, where a large south Indian population is found .


The general way of preparing vadai is to make a paste or dough with gram flour or mashed or diced potatoes and/or dal lentils. This mixture may then be subsequently seasoned by mixing with black mustard seeds, onion, curry leaves, which are sometimes previously sauteed, and salt, chilies and/or black pepper grains. Often ginger and baking soda are added to the seasoning. The individual vadais are then shaped and deep-fried. Certain types of vadai are covered in a gram flour batter before frying.

Although battered and deep-fried, the finished product should not be too oily if prepared correctly, since steam build-up within the vadai pushes all oil away from within the vadai.


ulundhu vadai boiling

Vada is typically and traditionally served along with a main course such as Dosa, Idli, or Pongal. Nowadays it is also ordered as an À la carte item but is never the main course and is had as a light snack or on the side of another dish and usually not separately as a meal. Vadas are preferably eaten freshly fried, while still hot and crunchy and is served with a variety of dips ranging from Sambar to chutney to curd.

Vadai is almost always served with a helping of coconut chutney.


The main vadai types are:

Other types of vadai are:

Bhajani Cha Vadai: Vadai made from a flour made from Bajri, Jawar, Wheat, Rice, Channa Dal, Cumin, Coriander Seeds Etc. A speciality of Maharashtra, very nutritious too:

ulunthu vadai


See also[edit]