Diabetes-friendly besan chilla (chickpea flour pancake)

Photo of diabetes-friendly besan chilla (chickpea flour pancake).

Besan chilla (a.k.a. besan ka cheela) is a flavourful Indian pancake made from besan (chickpea flour), onions, spices, and herbs. Diabetes-friendly, it’s great for a quick breakfast, brunch, or late-night snack. And if you want some extra nutrition, simply add some grated vegetables.

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 15 minutes

Serves: 6

Serving size: 1 chilla (pancake)


  • Besan (chickpea flour), 1 cup (200g)
  • Green onion, (20g) finely chopped
  • Fresh coriander, (15g) chopped
  • Ginger powder, ½ tsp (2.5g)
  • Cumin seeds, ½ tsp (2.5g)
  • Turmeric powder, ¼ tsp (1.3g)
  • Paprika or mild chilli powder (optional), ¼ tsp (1.3g)
  • Water, (250ml) adjust as needed
  • Salt to taste
  • Olive oil for cooking, 1 tbsp


  1. Mix the chickpea flour, onions, ginger, cumin seeds, coriander, turmeric, paprika, and salt in a bowl.
  2. Gradually add water, mixing steadily to make a smooth batter.
  3. Heat a non-stick pan over a medium heat, and grease it with oil.
  4. Pour a ladleful of batter onto the pan, spreading it thinly.
  5. Cook until golden brown (4-6 minutes), then flip and cook the other side (2-4 minutes).
  6. Remove the pancake from the pan, and repeat with the remaining batter.
  7. Serve hot with mint chutney or yoghurt.

Storage: Best served hot and fresh. If storing, use an insulated container to keep warm.

Nutritional information

Per serving:

Calories - 100kcal

Fat - 3g

Carbohydrate - 14g

Protein - 5g

Sodium - 120mg

Sugar - 2g

Fibre - 3g

Profile photo of dietitian Sarah Khan, contributor of the diabetes-friendly besan chilla (chickpea flour pancake) recipe.
Sarah Khan

Sarah Khan is CEO of Virtual Clinic Dietitian-cell and a prominent dietitian. She's a specialist clinical dietetic, with a focus in global diabetes management. She's passionate about crafting diabetes-friendly recipes that are both tasty and healthful, and collaborates with major healthcare organizations and health periodicals.

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