Masala Idli

This is the best, tasty and easy way to eat idli other than the normal idli sambhar and idli chutney!!

Normally whenever I make idlis, I used to have leftover from previous night or from the morning. There are many recipes to make from leftover idli’s.

This is the best recipe to refresh those leftover idli’s with onion, tomato, spices along with idli podi. The total preparation time is 15 to 20 minutes.

Masala idli can be made with leftover idli’s or fresh one’s too. I have shared separate instruction for using both when making this recipe. Please go through the step-by-step picture along with instructions below.

This is perfect for breakfast, evening snacks along with tea/coffee, best lunch box dish for kids or a simple, quick dinner for the whole family.


The below measurement is perfect for 4 people.

  • Idli- 12
  • Onion- 2 ( medium sized, finely chopped)
  • Tomato- 1 ( big, finely chopped)
  • Green chilli- 1 (big, finely chopped)
  • Ginger- 1 tsp ( finely chopped)
  • Garlic- 3 cloves ( finely chopped)
  • Cumin- 1 tsp
  • Chilli powder with coriander powder mix- 1 tbsp
  • Asafoedita powder- 1/4th tsp
  • Idli podi- 1 tbsp
  • Mustard seeds- 1/2 tsp
  • Urad dal- 1 tsp
  • Curry leaves- 10
  • Salt- as needed
  • Coriander leaves- little.


Keep the leftover idlis in refrigerator for atleast 2 hours before starting to cook. I have used the idlis from morning. Take it out and cook them into pieces.
Heat 2 tbsp oil in a pan and roast the idli pieces so that it becomes golden yellow colour. Keep it separate.
Heat 2 tbsp of oil in a pan and add mustard seeds. Once mustard seeds splutter, add urad dal, ginger, garlic, green chillies, cumin seeds, curry leaves.
Add the finely chopped onions and saute till it gets translucent. Then add the finely chopped tomatoes.
Wait for the tomatoes to turn soft and mushy.
Now add all the spices and the salt. Mix everything together.
Add the idli podi.
Add required water and cook everything together. If using fresh one’s, do not add water.
Once the masalas are cooked and oil gets separated, turn the flame to low and add the idli pieces. Mix it in low flame and cook for 2 minutes. Idli absorbs the water along with masala and gets soft.

Garnish with coriander leaves.


  • Use sesame oil or coconut oil for better taste.
  • The spice can be increased or decreased.
  • Idli podi gives good taste to this recipe.