Masala Dosa (with Savory Potato Filling)


Masala dosa recipe with step by step photos. Masala dosa is crispy rice & lentil crepes that are stuffed with a spiced and savory potato filling.

masala dosa recipe restaurant style

It is made by soaking and grinding lentils and rice batter. This ground batter is then fermented overnight to give the dosa its characteristic soft and crispy texture.

This masala dosa recipe will give you a restaurant-style or hotel style masala dosa, where the dosa is crisp and served with delicious potato masala. The recipe post shares both the method of preparing batter as well as the savory potato filling.

Masala dosa is a famous South Indian tiffin snack popular not only in India but outside India too. Masala dosa is on the menu list of many North Indian restaurants too. Though making masala dosa is a long process, but its worth it.

Tips for making best masala dosa

1. To prepare this hotel style masala dosa, I have used idli-dosa rice. You can also use parboiled rice. In case you do not have idli rice or dosa rice, use any short grained rice like sona masuri. Even using regular rice like sona masuri or parmal rice gives crisp dosas.

2. Addition of thick poha (flattened rice) makes the dosa crisp and also makes it soft. So you get a crisp texture outside with a nice soft texture inside. I always add some thick poha to get this texture in masala dosa. Poha also helps in giving a golden color to the dosa.

3. Some chana dal is also added to make the dosa crisp and it gives a nice golden crust.

4. Methi seeds are added to aid the fermentation process. Methi seeds also give a nice taste to the masala dosa.

5. The proportion I use is 3:1 of the rice and lentils for making crisp dosas. In this masala dosa recipe I have used 1.5 cups dosa rice with ½ cup of urad dal. These recipe proportions yield crisp masala dosa, but one which is still soft. I use the same recipe proportions to make Ghee roast dosa.

6. The potato masala recipe shared here is truly restaurant style and tastes delicious with dosa. This potato masala or potato sabzi recipe is the way I make it. I add a lot of onions that impart a subtle sweet taste to the potato masala. Some soaked chana dal is also added. The taste of the potato masala is similar to the ones we get in hotels.

7. To get golden crisp dosa, the pan should be hot. But the flip side is that if the pan is very hot, then you cannot spread the batter nicely. Either sprinkle water on the pan and then wipe it. This brings down the temperature of the pan. Do this method on a cast iron pan. Don’t do this on a nonstick pan. It might affect the nonstick coating. Or you can heat the pan first, then reduce the flame to a low. Then spread the batter. Increase the flame to medium and then cook the dosa.

8. Also if using a nonstick pan than as soon as one dosa is done, reduce the flame. Spread the batter on the pan. Now increase the flame and let the dosa cook.

9. The batter has to be fermented well. if you live in a cold region, then keep the batter in a warm place or keep the batter for more time to ferment well.

The regular masala dosa is the dosa served with potato masala with a side of sambar and coconut chutney.

However, in a regular masala dosa, many changes can be made. E.g in the potato stuffing you can add vegetables like carrots, peas, cauliflower, green beans and make a vegetable masala dosa.

Add some grated paneer and you get paneer masala dosa. So many variations can be made in a basic masala dosa. You could use butter or ghee instead of oil. The leftover batter can always be refrigerated and used when required.

I have divided the entire hotel style masala dosa post into three steps So that it is easy to understand and follow:

  • Making batter
  • Making potato masala
  • Making masala dosa

How to make Hotel Style Masala Dosa

A) making masala dosa batter

1. First take all the ingredients in three bowls:

  • 1.5 cups idli rice or parboiled rice in one bowl
  • ½ cup urad dal + 1 tablespoon chana dal + 20 methi seeds (fenugreek seeds) in a second bowl
  • ⅓ cup thick poha (flattened rice) in a third bowl.

rice and dal for masala dosa recipe

2. Rinse the lentils and methi seeds a couple of times. Then soak them in 1 cup water for 4 to 5 hours.

dal for masala dosa recipe

3. Rinse the rice a couple of times and keep aside.

rice for masala dosa recipe

4. Rinse poha once or twice and then add to the rice.

poha for masala dosa recipe

5. Pour 2 cups water. Stir and soak both rice and poha together for 4 to 5 hours.

poha for masala dosa recipe

6. Before grinding, strain the water from the soaked lentils+methi seeds and keep it for grinding urad dal.

making masala dosa recipe

7. Add the lentils in the grinder jar. Also add ½ cup of the soaked and strained water to the dal.

making masala dosa recipe

8. Grind the urad dal, chana dal and methi seeds till you get a batter which is light and fluffy. The urad dal has to be ground really well, so that the batter ferments well.

batter to make masala dosa recipe

9. Remove the batter in a bowl or pan with a spatula. Here is a pic showing the consistency of the batter.

batter to make masala dosa recipe

10. Strain the rice well. Then in the same grinder, add the soaked rice and 1 cup fresh water. You can grind rice in one batch or in two to three batches. This will depend on the size of the grinder jar. I ground in one batch and added 1 cup water for grinding. You can even add ¾ cup water while grinding. Addition of water will depend on the quality of rice.

preparing batter for masala dosa recipe

11. Grind the rice till you get a fine grainy consistency in it. The rice batter should have a fine rava like consistency in the batter.

preparing batter for masala dosa recipe

12. Now pour the rice+poha batter in the same pan or bowl containing the urad dal batter.

batter for masala dosa recipe

13. Add ½ teaspoon rock salt or add as per taste.

batter for masala dosa recipe

14. Mix the salt very well with the batter. Also, mix both the batters very well. Cover and keep aside to ferment for 8 to 9 hours. You can keep for less or more time and this will depend on the temperature conditions in your city.

batter for masala dosa recipe

15. The batter the next day. I kept for about 13 hours and 35 minutes as it is cold during monsoons here.

batter for masala dosa recipe

Making potato masala for masala dosa

1. First rinse and then boil 4 medium sized potatoes in 2 cups water for 5 to 6 whistles in a pressure cooker. You can also boil potatoes in a pan. The potatoes have to be completely cooked.

potaotes for masala dosa recipe

2. When the potatoes are cooking, soak the chana dal in hot water for 30 minutes. Then drain the chana dal and keep aside.

chana dal for masala dosa recipe

3. When the pressure settles down on its own in the cooker, remove the lid. Drain the potatoes and let them become warm.

potaotes for masala dosa recipe

4. Then peel them and chop them. Also, slice the onions and chop the green chilies, ginger and coriander leaves.

potaotes for masala dosa recipe

5. Heat oil or ghee. If using cashews, then fry cashews at this step and keep them aside. Lower the flame and add mustard seeds and let them splutter. You can add ½ teaspoon cumin seeds while tempering in the potato masala.

mustard for masala dosa recipe

6. Then add the chana dal.

chana dal for preparing masala dosa recipe

7. Saute the chana dal for 2 to 3 minutes on a low flame or till they turn light golden or golden.

chana dal for preparing masala dosa recipe

8. Now add the sliced onions, curry leaves, green chilies and ginger.

onions for preparing masala dosa recipe

9. saute the onions till they soften and turn translucent.

onions for preparing masala dosa recipe

10. Add the turmeric powder and asafoetida.

preparing hotel style masala dosa recipe

11. mix very well.

preparing hotel style masala dosa recipe

11. Now add water.

preparing hotel style masala dosa recipe

12. Again mix well and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes or till the mixture thickens a bit.

making hotel style masala dosa recipe

12. Next add the boiled chopped potatoes.

potatoes for masala dosa recipe

13. Mix very well.

potatoes for masala dosa recipe

14. Season with salt. Also add ¼ teaspoon sugar for a slightly sweet taste. You can add more sugar if you prefer.

making masala dosa recipe

14. And stir again.

potatoes for masala dosa recipe

15.  simmer on a low flame to medium-low flame for 3 to 4 minutes stirring occasionally.

potatoes for masala dosa recipe

16. Switch off the flame and then add chopped coriander leaves. also add fried cashews now (if you have fried the cashews earlier as mentioned in step 5 above). Mix well.

making masala dosa recipe

15. Stir and keep the potato masala aside. the potato masala should be moist and easily spreadable on the dosa. Make sure there is no water in the potato masala. It should not be of a curry or gravy consistency. This is your basic potato masala for the masala dosa.

potato masala for masala dosa recipe

Making masala dosa

1. Now lightly stir the batter, before you begin to make dosa. you will also see tiny air pockets in the batter.

batter to make masala dosa recipe

2. Heat a cast iron pan or a flat non-stick pan. The pan should be medium hot. Smear some oil if using an iron pan or griddle. Don’t smear oil on a non stick pan, as then you won’t be able to spread the batter.

batter to make masala dosa recipe

3. Keep the flame to a low, while spreading batter.

dosa batter to make masala dosa recipe

4. Spread the batter in a circular way on the pan. on a medium flame, cook the dosa.

dosa batter to make masala dosa recipe

5. Sprinkle some oil on top and edges.

making dosa - masala dosa recipe

6. cover the dosa with a lid and let it cook.

cooking dosa - masala dosa recipe

7. Cook the dosa till its base becomes golden and crisp.

cooking dosa - masala dosa recipe

8. when you see the base has become golden, place a portion of the potato masala on the dosa. You can spread it a bit if you want.

cooking dosa - masala dosa recipe

9. Now fold the dosa and serve.

cooking dosa - masala dosa recipe

10. Serve crisp restaurant style masala dosa hot with sambar and coconut chutney.

masala dosa recipe hotel style

More awesome dosa varieties

  1. Oats dosa
  2. Neer dosa
  3. Set dosa
  4. Rava dosa

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Masala dosa are crisp rice & lentil crepes stuffed with spiced and savory potato filling.

Prep Time 9 hrs

Cook Time 30 mins

Total Time 9 hrs 30 mins

Cuisine South Indian

Course: Breakfast, Snacks

Servings 20 masala dosa


ingredients for potato masala

  • 300 grams potatoes or 4 medium sized potatoes or 2 cups boiled & chopped or crumbled potatoes
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 1 tablespoon chana dal (husked & split bengal gram) soaked in ¼ cup hot water for 30 minutes
  • 150 grams onions or 2 medium to large onions, thinly sliced or 1.25 cups thinly sliced onions
  • 1 inch ginger, finely chopped or 1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger
  • 8 to 10 curry leaves
  • 1 to 2 green chillies, chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 pinch of asafoetida (hing)
  • ½ cup water
  • 3 tablespoons chopped coriander leaves
  • 8 to 10 cashews , optional
  • ¼ teaspoon sugar, optional
  • salt as required

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