Demuth’s Onion Bhajis

Known as pakoras in India but as bhajis in the UK, these tasty morsels are made by coating chopped onions in a spiced besan flour batter and deep frying until crisp. Best served with Indian chutneys such as green chutney and tamarind chutney, but good old tomato ketchup is also great!

This recipe is one we made during an Indian Street Food cookery class at Demuth’s cookery school in Bath, and is shared with their permission.

Fresh Onion Bhaji / Pakora

These make a great snack and are also good as a starter before an Indian meal.

Fresh Onion Bhaji / Pakora

You can use the same batter recipe for other vegetables, but make sure you cut them small enough that the vegetables cook through in the time it takes for the batter to crisp up and brown.

Demuth’s Onion Bhajis

Servings 4 servings
Author Demuth's


  • 2 large onions, sliced
  • 1 tbsp masala spice mix
  • Good pinch of salt and black pepper
  • 150 g gram flour, sieved plus a little spare
  • beer or fizzy water to make a light batter
  • sunflower oil for deep frying


Tip: Dip other vegetables such as cauliflower or leeks into the batter and deep fry in the same way.


  • Mix the spices and seasoning into the sieved gram flour. Add enough beer or fizzy water to make a batter the consistency of double cream. Add the sliced onions.
  • Heat the oil in a wok or use a mini deep fryer, test that the oil is hot enough by dropping in a teaspoon of batter and it should bubble straight to the surface and colour up.
  • Fry in batches, about the size of a large tablespoon, spooning the mixture into the oil, until dark golden, you need to make sure that the bhajis are cooked all the way through. 
  • Drain well on kitchen paper and serve warm with tamarind chutney.

Cooking Onion Bhaji / Pakora

They can be fried in a deep fat fryer or in a large heavy pan on the hob.

Fresh Onion Bhaji / Pakora


Kavey Eats attended the class as a guest of Demuths and this recipe is shared with permission. 

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