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Kanda Poha | Easy Breakfast Recipe (V & GF)

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Kanda Poha is a popular Maharashtrian breakfast recipe and a must in our house on Saturday Morning. Our weekend seems to be incomplete without this quick, easy and delicious Kanda poha or onion poha.

Kanda poha served in a blue plate. Seen in the background is a cup of tea and a book

It is a completely vegan and gluten-free breakfast that can be made in a jiffy. 10-15 minutes is all that is needed to make this hearty and wholesome breakfast or mid-evening snack. This also goes perfectly as travel food or to pack in your kid’s lunch box. This is also a perfect bachelor’s recipe or a beginner’s recipe for those who are starting to learn to cook.

What is Poha?

Poha is flattened rice. Rice is flattened into flat, light, dry flakes. These dry rice flakes swell when liquid is added to them. It is normally used to prepare snacks or light and easy fast food in a variety of Indian cuisines.

Thick, Medium, and Thin Poha

As said the rice is flattened to make poha. Depending on the thickness, it is either thick, medium, or thin poha. Generally in India thick and thin is common also called Jada poha or Patla Poha.

Which Poha is used to make Kanda or Batata Poha?

The thin poha when soaked in water gets mushy. Thick or medium poha is used to make kanda poha. I use the medium poha we get here. So any variety from medium to thick poha can be used.

Dadpe Poha is another common Maharashtrian Breakfast recipe that uses thin poha. The difference here is that the poha is not soaked prior to cooking as done in Kandar or Batata Poha.

Kanda poha served in a blue plate. Seen in the background is a cup of tea and a book

Red & Brown Poha

Now Red Rice Poha, or Brown Rice poha is also quite common and considered to be healthier than the white variety. I have not used it so cannot comment much on this.

Variations to Poha recipes

Indori poha or pawa is very famous and I remember we ate this poha at Indore Junction always during our summer vacations to North India. It uses a special type of masala called Jeeravan masala or Indori Poha masala to make this poha.

As with many Indian recipes, there are different versions of this poha. Few even add potato to the poha. At my mom’s place, it is made without onion and with potato, peanuts, and green peas.

I now make it with onion and peanuts. The peanuts add a nice crunch to this. I also add a tiny bit of sugar to give it the khata mitha taste. I know many don’t like it but give it a try, I am sure you would like it.

Dudh Poha or Sweetened Milk Poha is also quite common. It is a quick and easy breakfast or a snack. Poha can also be eaten by soaking in plain water.

Gur Poha is another common and healthy recipe made using poha. Gur (Jaggery), along with coconut and poha is very common across southern India, West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh.

Kanda poha served in a blue plate. Seen in the background is a book

Recipes with Poha

One of my favorites is this Roasted Poha Chivda (Flattened Rice Trail Mix). I do make a non-fried version and hence is perfect for snacking or your mid-evening snacks. It uses a thin variety of poha.

Another common use of poha is to add it while making the Idli Dosa batter. It is said to help the fermentation process and the Idli comes out nice and soft. Yes, I have tried this many times and it does give the perfectly nice and soft Idlis as well as help fermenting the batter and especially in cold climate.

And when it is such a common breakfast you would definitely have leftovers. Though the leftovers can be eaten by just warming it a bit, at times we get bored. I like to make this Poha cutlet or tikki from leftover poha.

Kanda Poha | Easy Breakfast Recipe
Old Pic from April 2019

Why does my Poha gets sticky or dry?

The key to getting the perfect poha is the time the poha is soaked and cooked for a proper amount of time. Poha should be cooked such that each and every flake should be separate. It should not be mushy and at the same time too dry. Though there are personal preferences and this is where the amount of water and how it is cooked makes the recipe.

I make it in such a way that they are not dry but have a softness to them and at the same time are not soggy or sticky. Difficult to explain, but I am trying my best. Each and every flake of poha should be separate but should not be dry.

Recipe process of Kanda Poha

I clean the poha and then give it a quick rinse. Then I soak it in a colander so that the excess water is removed and the poha absorbs just enough water so that the rice flakes absorb water but at the same time do not get mushy or sticky. By following this process each and every flake is separate.

In the meantime, I do the takda with oil, peanuts, and onion. It will take around 7-8 minutes to get the mixture cooked. And this is the perfect time for the poha to get soaked without getting dry completely or being on the mushy side. Rest the poha is mixed, and a dash of lemon is added and garnished with coriander. At times I even like to garnish it with some barik sev or bhujiya sev.

Follow the recipe and you would get the perfect Kanda Poha every time in 10-15 minutes.

Kanda Poha | Easy Breakfast Recipe

Few more Easy Breakfast recipes on my blog:

get the complete list of Breakfast recipes here.

Kanda poha served in a blue plate. Seen in the background is a cup of tea and a book

Kanda Poha | Easy Breakfast Recipe

Kanda Poha is a quick and easy popular breakfast recipes which can be made in 10-15 minutes, from the state of Maharashtra, made using flattened rice.
5 from 3 votes
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Course: Breakfast, Snacks
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Breakfast, Gluten Free, Kids Food, Lunch Box, Rice, Vegan
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Soaking Time: 8 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 2
Author: Renu Agrawal-Dongre


  • 1 small onion finely chopped
  • 8-10 Curry leaves
  • 1-2 green chilly as per taste
  • 1 teaspoon Mustard seeds
  • 2 cup Poha – Thick or Medium Variety
  • Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • ½-1 teaspoon Red chilli powder As per taste or optional
  • 2 tablespoon Red peanuts
  • 2 tablespoon Oil
  • ¼ teaspoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoon Lemon Juice Juice of half lemon
  • ¼ cup Chopped Coriander


  • Clean, Rinse and the poha well.
    2 cup Poha – Thick or Medium Variety
  • Remove any extra water. Let the poha rest for 7-8 mins. Best to drain in a colander.
  • In the meantime, add oil in a kadai/wok or a pot.
    2 tablespoon Oil
  • Once the oil is a bit hot add the peanuts.
    2 tablespoon Red peanuts
  • On Medium, shallow fry the peanuts for 1-2 minutes, until they start turning brown.
  • Once they start changing colour, add mustard seeds, curry leaves, green chillies, onion.
    8-10 Curry leaves, 1-2 green chilly as per taste, 1 teaspoon Mustard seeds, 1 small onion finely chopped
  • Saute this until the onion is translucent.
  • Now add the turmeric and Red chilli.
    1/2 teaspoon turmeric, ½-1 teaspoon Red chilli powder
  • Add the soaked poha, salt, lemon juice, sugar.
    Salt, 2 tablespoon Lemon Juice, ¼ teaspoon sugar
    Kanda Poha | Easy Breakfast Recipe
  • Give everything a nice mix.
  • Make sure the sugar is absorbed or dissolved completely.
  • Add in the chopped coriander and serve.
    ¼ cup Chopped Coriander
  • One can garnish with crushed peanuts, coriander, grated coconut or sev.



  • 1 Cup =235 ml
  • 1 tablespoon =15 ml
  • I have added a bit more lemon juice, as I like it sour. You can reduce it to 1 tablespoon if required.
Tried this recipe?Share your feedback @cookwithrenu_ad or tag #cookwithrenu_ad
Disclaimer: I am not a nutritionist. The nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and is an estimate only. It varies depending upon the product types or brands.


The recipe was first published on April 30, 2019. Today I am updating the contents and pics of this post and sharing it with Foodies_RedoingOldPost

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Recipe Rating

Poonam Bachhav

Tuesday 20th of July 2021

Poha is our all time favorite breakfast. Though we love it with loads of onions and Peanuts, I occasionally make it without onions too, especially during festivals, when we refrain ourselves from eating onion and garlic.

Mayuri Patel

Monday 19th of July 2021

kanda, bateta or mixed veggie poha is my all time favourite breakfast or light evening meal option. Love how quickly the recipe comes together. Healthy and filling too.


Friday 16th of July 2021

Kande pohe are my goto breakfast dish especially when my I have nothing planned. Loved the delicious kanda pohe you have here but I do not add peanuts. I know I should it will give a lovely taste n texture.

preeti garg

Monday 3rd of June 2019

Kanda poha is one of mine fav option for breakfast and i cant eat this non-stoply.


Saturday 1st of June 2019

Another one of our favourite breakfast item. I add onions to it and a pinch of sugar .. Wew add lots of namkeen top ot it and have it with a dash of lemon.. The poha bowl looks so delish , perfectly made poha just like the way we like it..khila khila!!