Maize meal dumplings (Instant Idli)

Cornmeal idli2


These dumplings are an alternative to famous Idli’s from south India. Idli’s are made with a white rice using fermented batter. This is the easiest way of making dumplings without any fermentation. These are double cooked so they are hearty and filling. They can also be cooked in stew/soup gravy for an induced taste instead of pressure cooker.

Serves: 2-3
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes

  • White maize meal-1 cup
  • Salt- as per taste
  • Water- 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 cups


  • In a heavy saucepan bring water to boil, add salt stir and then gently add corn meal/maize meal stirring continuously with a long ladle to avoid lumps from forming.
  • Reduce the heat to low and add coconut and continue to stir well.
  • If the mixture will appear to be too smooth and paste like just continue to simmer for few minutes.
  • When the mixture begins to leaves the sides of the pan, remove it from the heat and transfer onto the plate. Allow it to cool a bit may be for 4-5 minutes.
  • Then by dabbing your fingers in a bowl of warm water Or Oil.
  • Make a lime sized portions of the mixture and roll them to smooth balls and using your thumb form an impression in the centre of each dumplings.

Cornmeal idli9

  • Once the dumplings are done it has to be steamed in the steamer/cooker:
  • Prepare the steamer- place sufficient water in a idli/dhokla steamer and bring the water to a boil.
  • Grease idli plate and place the dumplings on it and place the plate inside the steamer cover the lid and steam for 8 – 10 minutes. (even if you don’t have a stand use a regular steel bowl to arrange the dumplings and place in the cooker)

Cornmeal idli11

  • When done remove carefully

Serve hot with Cabbage Chutney.

Cabbage chutney1


  • It can also be steamed In the microwave- arrange the dumplings in a single layer without merging and cook for 2-3 minutes (time may vary as per the power) and when the toothpick inserted comes out clear then you can stop cooking.
  • Corn meal OR Ground rice OR Semolina can used instead of Maize meal

About Chitra Jagadish

My passion is Cooking & love exploring healthy recipes. This blog is all about sharing 'Recipes for Healthy living', which are my experiments at home.

Posted on August 4, 2014, in Breakfast, Indian, Main dish and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 68 Comments.

  1. Instant Idli:-) that’s awesome


  2. You have some very innovative recipes up your sleeve, Chitra.


  3. Definitely wanna try this healthy dish 🙂


  4. When you mean Desiccated coconut is it koppari?


  5. unique recipe Chitra. Maize meal means corn flour


  6. Foodie Adam & Cookie Eve

    What is that maize meal 😮 totally new to me! Such a twist in idlis?! watte innovation


    • Jofy maize meal form of corn is both flour and it is choosen from corn. Just like wheat flour and maida both from wheat.

      Please use the corn meal which is coarse, similar to Rava used for Upma. The powder form of corn is called corn flour


  7. easy and healthy idly


  8. You’re so innovative


  9. These are so beautifully snow white and I just love that they are instant!


  10. They look like cloud dollops 🙂


  11. oooh .. i was away and i have missed so much foooooooddddddddddd 🙂


  12. Instant idli great idea shall try this recipe…


  13. Learned something new! Thanks for sharing!


  14. Innovative and healthy too.I will have to try it.


  15. very healthy and looks delicious!


  16. Very nice recipe .will try it out.


  17. wow…. Loved your dumplings…sounds very delicious n Innovative ! Thanks for sharing 🙂


  18. Great di…. its very quick recipe…yummy


  19. Sounds yummy. delicious and tempting dumplings..


  20. hi chitra, idly looks so soft and fluffy…very innovative idea…appreciate it..


  21. Nice and will try soon


  22. Interesting Recipe Chitra…great idea..healthy too.Very helpful for working women.Thanks for sharing.I would love to try this!


  23. Reblogged this on Chitra's Healthy Kitchen and commented:

    A 2 ingredient Instant Idli…Re-made


  24. They can be made gluten free! Outstanding. We are really enjoying your kitchen.


  25. Mr. Militant Negro

    Reblogged this on The Militant Negro™.


  26. Wow!!! Easy and healthy recipe dear.. love it


  27. wow! loving this! 😀


  28. Ciao Chitra! I’d love to try these – you say add coconut….I guess that’s grated coconut rather than coconut milk? & how much? Grazie!

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Do they come out soft Chitra?


  1. Pingback: Garlic Chutney | Chitra's Healthy Kitchen

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