Pav Bhaji Recipe

Pav Bhaji Recipe | Pao Bhaji

Pav Bhaji Recipe

Pav bhaji is a fast food dish that originated in Maharashtra, India. “Pav” = Bread and “Bhaji” = Vegetable curry. The origin of this dish has been traced to the textile mill workers in Mumbai in 1850’s. The demand for food by traders, merchants and mill workers, working late and at unusual time created a unique supply. The traders were served by street stalls that invented a late-night special: Pav Bhaji. Leftover vegetables were cooked in a tomato gravy and served with buttered loaves. Over a period of time, pav bhaji has been neatly absorbed into Indian fast food. It now has universal appeal.

My first tryst with “Pav Bhaji” was on my first ever trip to Mumbai, back in 1998. Pav Bhaji is synonymous with Mumbai! You get the B E S T Pav Bhaji on the streets of Mumbai!! Traditionally, pav bhaji is prepared on a big tawa/griddle. I have tried to recreate this quick, simple, pocket friendly, versatile dish in the comfort of my kitchen. Pav bhaji may be served as a snack, a light meal or even as a meal in itself! Today, I’m sharing the same old Pav Bhaji, in a new avatar with my friends at Angie’s Fiesta Friday being co-hosted by Laurie @ten.times.tea and Jhuls @The not so creative cook!

Pav Bhaji Recipe

This is how I made it!

Serves 4


  • 1 small or 2/3 cup Onions, finely chopped + more for garnish
  • 2 tsp Ginger-Garlic Paste OR 1 tsp each, finely grated ginger + garlic
  • 2 Green Chilli, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 small or 1/3 cup Green Bell Pepper, finely chopped
  • 3 medium Tomatoes, Puréed
  • 3 small (1.5″ – 2″) or 2 medium Potatoes, boiled & mashed
  • 1 cup Assorted Vegetables, chopped, boiled and slightly mashed (peas, carrots, cauliflower etc)
  • 3/4 tsp Kashmiri Lal Mirch or to taste
  • 1/4 tsp Turmeric Powder
  • 2 Tbs Pav Bhaji Masala or to taste ( I use Everest Pav Bhaji Masala)
  • 1- 1.5 cups Water or as required
  • Salt to taste
  • 1.5- 2 Tbs Butter (replace with Oil for a vegan version) + more as required
  • 6-8 Hamburger buns (small) / Pavs / Slider buns
  • To Garnish – Chopped onions, Cilantro leaves(chopped), freshly squeezed lemon juice, butter & more butter 😀


1. In a pan / skillet, melt/heat 1.5 – 2 tbs of butter and add chopped onion. Fry the onions until translucent and add ginger garlic paste. Cook the paste until the raw smell disappears. Keep stirring to make sure it doesn’t stick to the bottom and burn. Add a tablespoon of water if required.

Pav Bhaji

2. Add chopped green chillies and sauté for 15-20 seconds. Add chopped green bell pepper and fry for a minute or two. Add the spice powders** (check notes) – turmeric, Kashmiri red chili powder and Pav bhaji masala. Mix the spice powders well and roast for about 30 seconds.

Pav Bhaji

3. Add tomato purée**(check notes) and cook until tomatoes are fully cooked. To this add boiled and mashed potatoes and veggies. Season with salt** and mix well to form a homogenous mixture.

Pav Bhaji

4. Add water to the above mixture and bring to a gentle boil. Lower the heat and simmer for about 10 mins. Gently mash the veggies in the pan itself and add more water, if required, to achieve the desired consistency.

Pav Bhaji

Pav Bhaji

5. Add dollops of butter, to make it sinful and turn off the heat. Mix well! This is completely optional! Feel free to add as much butter as you like!

Pav Bhaji

6. Buttered buns / pavs : Heat a griddle / pan on medium heat and butter (as required). Once the butter melts,lay the sliced buns/ pavs and toast until crisp! The buns/ pavs are now ready to be served! Serve crisp, butter loaded pavs/buns with hot bhaji garnished with chopped onions and a fresh squeeze of lemon juice to add extra zing!

Serving Suggestion: Chop up crisp, buttered pavs into small, bite sized pieces & serve with bhaji in individual glasses! Use a wide-mouthed, easy to hold & a not so heavy glass. Use a fork, spoon or a toothpick, long enough to reach the bottom of the glass & you are good to go!

Pav Bhaji Recipe


1. Dry spices: You may alternatively prepare a spice paste by adding 2-3 tablespoons of water with the spice powder to avoid them from burning.

2. Traditionally, chopped tomatoes are added and cooked down until mushy. Feel free to replace tomato puree with chopped tomatoes.

3. Be careful while adding salt, if adding extra butter at a later stage.

4. Amul butter tastes the best! Butter makes bhaji better 😛

5. Sources: Live Mint

Enjoy your weekend!

Sonal 🙂

©Foodbound, 2014-2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material, including photographs without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Sonal Kalra and “Foodbound” with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


26 thoughts on “Pav Bhaji Recipe

  1. Hi Sonal, # Fiesta Friday, Lovely presentation of pav-bhaji, Nice to meet you in the journey of blogging.
    I am celebrating my First Blog Anniversary-
    There is a event and a give away. Please join, it is open for everybody.


  2. Pingback: Fiesta Friday #72 - Fiesta Friday

  3. I always love reading about food with a bit of history involved and this sounds just incredible! Especially with all the butter. Oh yum butter 😀 it looks very thick and rich, and so very perfect to eat on top of some buttered (I’m sure I’ve already mentioned my love of butter!) and toasted bread.

    Liked by 1 person

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