Finally, I have made it! After N number of disappointing attempts at making nankhatais, I have made the ones that fulfilled my criteria. They are soft and crumbly and most importantly have a little hollow inside, which is exactly how I liked them during my childhood. When I had first attempted nankhatais, they came out so flat that my husband rechristened them as “nan-chatai” πŸ™‚ (A mat in Hindi). I had not creamed butter and sugar properly then and the temperature was probably wrong as well. Since they tasted nice and crispy they got saved from a trip to the trash can:-) Further attempts were good but …for the missing hollow, the stubborn child inside me just didn’t give the nod πŸ™‚ Then recently my father-in-law gifted me a Sanjeev Kapoor Gas Oven Tandoor and along with this came a small recipe booklet. I followed his recipe to the T and used a lesser temperature than I would for a cookie and voila! Β They were so soft that I destroyed some 3-4 cookies in am attempt to photograph the hollow :-))

I divided the cookies into batches and made 2 batches in Microwave convection Oven and 2 batches in Sanjeev Kapoor Gas Oven Tandoor. The ones in Mic Oven have come perfectly. In Sanjeev Kappor Tandoor the first batch got burnt when I followed his instruction of baking on high heat. I made the second batch in it on low heat and they came out well (no hollow in them though :-))Β This is the measurement given in his recipe book:

250 gm gram flour (besan)
250 gums all purpose flour (maida)
500 grams clarified butter (ghee)
500 gms castor sugar, sifted
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup yoghurt
1/2 tsp cardamom powder

I have halved it and recorded the measurement in terms of cups. This measurement got me 42 small sized cookies. Seems like a big batch but these cookies have good vanishing power πŸ™‚

1 cup (pressed) chickpea flour (besan)
A little less than a cup of Flour (Maida)
A little more than a cup of clarified butter (Ghee)
1/8 cup of yoghurt
1/8 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp baking soda
1and 1/4 cup heaped castor or icing sugar
1/4 tsp of cardamom powder


  • Preheat the oven to 130C. My oven specifications lists 160C for baking cookies, hence I lowered it further for nankhatais. You may choose the temperature as per your oven setting.
  • Take ghee in a bowl, add sugar and mix well. Add baking powder, baking soda, cardamom powder and yoghurt and mix.
  • Sift gram flour and all purpose flour together. Add this to the ghee mixture in 3 batches and mix gently with hand or fold in gently with a spatula. Ensure not to over mix the dough.
  • Divide and shape the dough into small lemon sized balls such that there are no cracks in them.
  • Place them on a lined cookie tray, press the very very gently from the top (don’t flatten too much as we want the dome shape). Bake for 22-25 minutes or till slight cracks begin to appear. Take them out and cool on a rack. Store them in an airtight container.

The ones I used to get from the bakery years back had well shaped sides. Probably they were using moulds to bake them. Since my cookie tray is smaller in size and I wanted to utilize the baking time well I made my cookies in a muffin tray lined with muffin cups. They came out well rounded and look good in paper cups πŸ™‚

Sending it to the Tuesday bookmarked event jointly hosted by Priya and Aipi:
23 Responses to “Nankhatai”
  1. SinFoodie says:

    Lovely texture !!!

  2. RAKS KITCHEN says:

    Nan khatai with whole wheat flour should be very flavorful! Looks wonderful!

  3. DD says:

    wow they looks so soft and yummy!!

  4. Priya (Yallapantula) Mitharwal says:

    ok, got to bookmark it as they look superb πŸ™‚

  5. Priya says:

    Wat an incredible nan khattais, looks super marvellous and inviting..

  6. Prathima Rao says:

    Yup…htats how they should be alright…with hole inside & cracks on top…And u have mastered it!!!! I have also posted my mom`s nankatai recipe..Do check it out for a variation…And btw…how does the S. Kapoor`s gas oven tandoor work?? Looks like something that would be handy at home..:)Prathima RaoPrats Corner

  7. Anjali Bapna Shukla says:

    I've been trying hands on Nan Khatai for long but never got the hole…gotta try out your recipe for sure! πŸ™‚

  8. Inside a British Mum's Kitchen says:

    Sounds and looks great – I love cardamon – excellentMary

  9. Suman Singh says:

    These cookies are so addictive..I bet you can't have just one..looks great!

  10. Shy S. says:

    Hi …Nankhatai looks awesome.. I was just thinking of trying it out few days ago and today Isaw it on your blog. And Thanks for stopping by at my blog :)-Shy S (

  11. Mom Chef says:

    looks grt ! and perfect texture too πŸ™‚ Thanks for stopping by at my blog !!CheersKalyani New Event: Fasting Foods – Vrat ka Khaana SpecialEvent: healthy Lunchbox ideas – Carrots – all this August

  12. Ana A says:

    I had been searching for Nankhatai recipe for several days. Every website I saw, had someone commenting that they did not come out good.
    I tried your recipe yesterday and it came out perfect. I was delighted.
    Thank you!

  13. sharda says:

    looking at these nankhatai, water came in my mouth…..they seem to be very yummy. One thing I would like to ask is why use gram flour( besan) and not semolina in nankhatai. I’ve never heard besan in nankhatai…..Semolina would give it that grainy texture???????

    • Hi There! Thank you for your kind comment. Sorry for the delay in response as I have been travelling.
      Here in Delhi the Gram Flour and All Purpose flour both Nan Khatai’s are quite common. Hence I have put one of the recipes. Yes Semolina gives it that grainy texture. However I am not too sure how good would it bind if we were to use just semolina. Though I have made a cake using just Semolina, I think I might need something additional for a cookie. But you have got me thinking πŸ™‚ I will let you know if I find a successful recipe using Semolina.

  14. Anuj says:

    I made this today and they turned out perfect. Thanks a lot!!!

    • Thank you Anuj! So glad that they turned out well for you πŸ™‚ Addictive, aren’t they?

      • Anuj says:

        Yes, they are addictive, can’t thank you enough. My mom-in-law and father-in-law were so impressed, my wife patted me on my back!!!

        Can I just make the same thing with only Maida and only wheat flour? Can I use groundnut oil instead of ghee? Can I reduce the quantity of ghee? Of course, I can try all out but may be you have already tried it.

  15. Mm says:

    These turned out completely flat for me :(. How is it that they turned out well for everyone else. I even turned the temp up in my second batch to avoid the flattening.

    • I am so sorry that they did not turn out well for u. I can only take a guess, it could be that the baking powder has lost its effectiveness or the temp was high. I used to bake nan khatai at a temp 20-30 C below the normal cookies temp.

  16. jay says:

    I tried making them but the became extremely fat:(

    • Hi Jay. So sorry that it didn’t work out for u. There are two things or rather 3 things that I would stress on
      1) The effectiveness of baking powder (and soda too). (I’ll get back to you on how to do that. I have it jotted down in my cooking notes somewhere :-))
      2) The oven temp needs to be a bit lower than normal cookie temp that u use.
      3) Last but not the least, as I have mentioned at the bottom of the post, I have used a muffin tray here instead of a flat tray, which also helps preventing the cookie from going flat.
      I hope this helps.


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  1. […] Whenever I think about my visits to bakeries during childhood, I distinctively remember Nan khatais, those soft crumbly cookies which were hollow from the inside. Back then I would be amused by the […]

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