Mangalore Buns, The Perfect Indian Style Breakfast

Mangalore buns are deep fried sweet little breads made with bananas, yogurt, and cumin seeds. They are commonly served with a lentil curry for breakfast.

It was our favourite breakfast on our recent trip to South-West India. Usually, we take advantage of the amazing local fruits and have them for breakfast whenever we travel. But this was just irresistible. We rode our scooter past a raggedy little street stall one morning. Many locals were standing in queue and even more where in the back eating, so we stopped to see what it’s all about.

There was a man and his wife selling various foods. They had samosas, banana buns, daal, and masala chai. The smells coming from that place were amazing, so we bought a few buns and samosas along with the daal and went to the near-by beach to have our breakfast there.

To say that the scene was perfect would be an understatement. Sitting on a beautiful beach early in the morning while the weather is nice and mild. Looking out to the calm ocean and enjoying the super soft and sweet buns dipped in spicy daal. This ritual was repeated several mornings ?

Good job I asked the man what those buns were. The only word of his answer that I understood was ‘banana’, but that was enough to find out what they were using a few google searches.

You don’t need to be on a beach to enjoy this delicious breakfast. It will taste amazing no matter where you eat it.

There is no yeast in this recipe, so there is no need to worry about fermentation. The dough is made in the evening and left in the fridge overnight which makes this recipe extremely convenient.

The lentil curry or daal can be customized to you liking and it can also be made a day ahead of time and reheated in the morning.

Don’t worry too much about spices and things if you don’t cook much Indian food at home. You can make the daal with just a ready mixed Indian curry powder if you like. It goes well with many spice mixes.

This recipe will feed 2 very hungry people.

Watch the video down below for detailed instructions.


For the dough

250g (8.8oz) white bread flour

25g (0.88oz) sugar

5g (0.17oz) salt

4g (0.14oz) cumin seeds

5g (0.17oz) baking powder

180g (6.35oz) bananas

50g (1.75oz) yogurt


Oil for frying


For the daal –

100g (3.5oz) onion, finely chopped

20g (0.7oz) garlic, finely chopped

10g (0.35oz) ginger, finely chopped

Fresh chilli to taste

3g (0.1oz) ground turmeric

3g (0.1oz) ground coriander

4g (0.14oz) garam masala

4g (0.14oz) salt

20g (0.7oz) clarified butter (ghee) You can use oil instead.

70g (2.5oz) red lentils

140g (4.9oz) cooked chickpeas

250g (8.8oz) chopped tinned tomatoes or passata or fresh tomatoes

50g (1.75oz) creamed coconut


Water to adjust the consistency


Shredded fresh ginger, chillies, and coriander to serve

Lime or lemon to serve


  1. Make the dough. In a large bowl combine the banana, yogurt, salt, sugar, baking powder, and cumin seeds. Mash until smooth. Add the flour and mix to a dough.
  2. Mix the dough in the bowl until it becomes smoother. Transfer to a clean bowl. Rub some oil on the surface.
  3. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  4. Make the daal. Heat up the ghee or oil in a pan. Add the onion, garlic, ginger, and chilli. Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes stirring occasionally. Add the spices and salt. Stir well. Add the tomato, lentils, and chickpeas. Pour in half a cup of water to adjust the consistency.
  5. Bring up to a simmer, turn the heat down and cook for 30 minutes or until the lentils are soft. Finish with the creamed coconut. Adjust the consistency with water as needed. It can be as thick or as runny as you like.
  6. Fry the buns. Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces and shape into round balls. Flatten them into patties.
  7. Pre-heat the oil to 160C – 170C (320F – 340F). Flatten the patties even more before frying. Drop them in the oil and fry for around 2 minutes. Splash the buns with hot oil as they fry. This will make them puff up and cook better. BE SUPER CAREFUL AS IT IS DANGEROUS TO SPLASH HOT OIL AROUND. TRY AND USE A DEEPER POT.
  8. Drain the buns on a rack or on kitchen paper.


Fry one bun at first to check the thickness. The thicker it is the less it will puff up. If you want the inside to be nice and open, them make them flatter. If you prefer a doughier bun, then make then thicker.

Garnish the daal with fresh ginger, chillies, coriander, and give it a good squeeze of lemon or lime. Tear off a piece of banana bun, scoop up some of the daal and enjoy!

Watch the video here

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