Best Simple Roti (Chapati Recipe)
The Best Simple Roti Recipe
If you are a fan of Indian food, you’ve surely had thick and fluffy naan bread. But have you ever enjoyed the magic that is a thin, light Chapati?
Chapatis are a type of Indian Roti, and are a tortilla-like griddle bread made to help scoop up curries. Like naan, they are made with simple ingredients and can be quickly cooked in a skillet. But rather than becoming puffy, Roti are firmly pressed and stays flat.
I learned to make them in a small village in India, over 20 years ago, sitting in the dirt with a round wooden board and rolling pin between my legs. This recipe for the Best Simple Roti (Chapati) is inspired by my village cooking lesson all those years ago, and has been my go-to ever since!
What is the Difference Between Roti, Chapati, Naan, and Paratha?
Roti is a type of tortilla-style flat bread, and sometimes includes all-purpose flour and whole wheat flour for a slightly lighter texture.
Chapatis are type of Roti usually made with just whole wheat flour and are slightly more rustic. Both Roti and Chapatis are cooked without oil.
Paratha are a type of whole wheat Roti cooked with oil, so they have a softer interior texture with crispy edges.
Traditional Naan is made with white flour, and like Paratha is a softer and chewier bread. They are traditionally cooked on the side of a tandoori oven, but can be cooked in a dry skillet like Roti or Chapatis, on a grill, or baked in an oven to achieve their signature puffiness.
We are big fans of all these variations – heck, let’s be honest – we’re big fans of any bread. Yet because I’ve spent the most time in southern India where Chapatis are very popular, these are personally my favorite. I hope you try this traditional recipe and love these Easy Chapatis as much as we do!
What Ingredients You Need for Homemade Chapatis
As with of the best breads and tortillas, Roti only requires a few simple ingredients to make from scratch. The love and preparation are what really make these Chapatis special!
Here is everything you need:
- Whole wheat flour
- Ghee or butter
- Hot tap water
Chapatis do have a sturdy, rustic texture. This makes them great for eating with rich and thick curry dishes. If you want a softer and lighter texture, use a combination of 1 cup all-purpose flour and 1 cup whole wheat flour to make Roti.
How to Make Easy Chapatis (Roti)
The dough for Chapatis is super simple to make, and start to finish these Roti are ready in less than an hour.
You can even prep the dough beforehand, and keep it stored tightly wrapped in plastic for up to 36 hours in the fridge.
Here’s how to make the best homemade Chapati bread:
First, set out an electric stand mixer with a bread hook attachment. Add the whole wheat flour, ghee, hot water, and salt to the bowl. Turn the mixer on and let it “knead” the dough for a few minutes.
No electric mixer? No problem! You can also knead the dough by hand for 15 minutes.
Once done, wrap the dough ball in plastic and set aside to rest for 20 minutes. If you’ll be waiting longer to use the dough, go ahead and put in the fridge.
When you’re ready to make the Roti bread, set a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat. Unwrap the dough and cut it into 12 qual pieces.
One at a time, roll each piece into a small ball. Then use a rolling pin to flatten the dough ball out into a 6-7 inch circle.
Carefully place the Chapati into the hot dry skillet. Cook for several seconds per side, waiting until bubbles form before flipping.
There should be some brown color in spots, but you don’t want to burn the Chapati bread. Turn the heat down if the first couple Chapatis start to turn too dark!
Get the Complete Simple Roti (Indian Chapati) Recipe Below. Enjoy!
Continue rolling and cooking the Chapatis until you have 12 total. Stack them as you finish… They will be firm while hot, but stacking helps them to soften as they cool.
Does Homemade Chapati Bread Keep Well?
Roti are best when enjoyed the same day that they are made, but you can keep them in an airtight container at room temperature for a day or two.
How Can I Make Vegan Indian Roti?
Swap traditional ghee with your favorite plant-based ghee or butter alternative for a dairy-free Chapati recipe. These substitutes tend to be made with coconut oil, so the flavor will be slightly different but the texture should remain similar.
Looking for More Easy Side Dish Recipes?
- Homemade Naan Bread Recipe
- How to Make Corn Tortillas
- Magic Plantain Tortillas
- The Best Cloud Bread Recipe
- Honey Cinnamon Cornbread Muffins
Best Simple Roti (Indian Chapati Recipe)
- Set out an electric stand mixer with a bread hook attachment. Add the whole wheat flour, ghee or butter, hot water, and salt to the bowl. Turn the mixer on and let it “knead” the dough for 5 minutes. (You can also knead the dough by hand for 15 minutes if needed.)
- Wrap the dough ball in plastic and set aside to rest for 20 minutes.
- Set a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat. Unwrap the dough and cut it into 12 qual pieces.
- One at a time, roll each piece into a small ball. Then use a rolling pin to roll the dough ball out into a thin 6-7 inch circle.
- Carefully place the chapati into the hot dry skillet. Cook for 30 seconds per side, waiting until bubbles form before flipping. Turn the heat down if the first couple chapatis start to turn dark.
- Continue rolling and cooking the chapatis until you have 12 total. Stack the chapatis as you finish them. They will be firm while hot, but stacking them helps them to soften as they cool. Serve at room temperature.
Making this recipe? Follow us on Instagram and tag @ASpicyPerspective so we can share what you’re cooking!