Vegan Indian Corn Pakoras
January 17, 2024
By Elizabeth Palmer Califano

These crispy and savory fritters are the perfect start to all your winter celebrations. Conveniently made with canned corn and dried spices, you can easily keep the ingredients on hand and have them ready for guests in 30 minutes. Pakoras are a popular celebratory appetizer throughout India, originating in the 1100s. They are an integral part of Indian street food culture and festivals and are enjoyed by Indian families at home throughout the year. You can easily adapt the vegetables to your preference or include a mix of what you have on hand. Chickpea flour, which binds the pakoras, is an excellent plant-based source of protein and fiber and is gluten-free, making these pakoras a superb option for guests with varying dietary preferences. The spices included here also boost your immune system and lower inflammation, making this a dish to enjoy happily all winter.

Serves 2-4 as an appetizer
Total Time: 30 minutes


  • 1 Can corn kernels, rinsed and drained
  • ¾ cup chickpea flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon ground turmeric
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon dry mustard
  • ¼ cup chopped scallions (plus more to garnish if desired)
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil for cooking
  • Chutney, for serving


  1. In a food processor, blitz the corn kernels until roughly chopped. Add the remaining ingredients to the coconut oil and blitz a few times until combined.
  2. In a large, shallow skillet, melt the coconut oil over medium heat. Add the pakora batter in generous tablespoonfuls and cook for 1-2 minutes per side until puffed and barely golden brown. 
  3. Transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel and cook through the remaining batter. 
  4. Serve garnished with a sprinkling of chopped scallions, with a bowl of chutney on the side for dipping.

About the Author

Elizabeth Palmer Califano
Elizabeth is a graduate of Hamilton College and The French Culinary Institute, as well as an avid world traveler and dinner party hostess. For more information, visit her website: