Thursday, July 30, 2020

Vattayappam - Kerala Style Steamed Rice Cakes

Vattayappam is a very soft and spongy steamed rice cake popular in Kerala. 

Vattam in Malayalam means "round" and appam translates to pancake. Hence the name 'Vattayappam' for these round spongy cakes.  This traditional snack is a oil free, vegan and gluten-free. It is made by grinding rice and coconut. The batter is fermented and then steamed. Sugar is added for sweetness and cardamom for flavoring. This sweet cake is usually eaten as an evening snack or dessert. It can be made savory by omitting the sugar and can be served with curries. 

  1. Raw rice/Sona Masoori - 1 cup
  2. Coconut grated - 1 cup
  3. Cooked rice - 1/4 cup
  4. Instant Yeast - 1/2 teaspoon
  5. Sugar - 3 tablespoon
  6. Cardamom - 3
  7. Salt - 1/2 teaspoon
  8. Oil for greasing
  1. Wash and soak raw rice for at least 4 hours. 
  2. Grind soaked rice, grated coconut, cooked rice and cardamom into smooth paste. The batter should be thick as that of idli batter.
  3. Add salt, sugar and instant yeast to the batter and mix well until sugar dissolves.
  4. Set aside the batter for fermentation for around 3 hours.
  5. Use a round vessel for steaming the vattayappam. Grease it well with oil (preferably coconut oil).
  6. Pour the batter in a round vessel and place it in a steamer. Steam for 20 mins or until a toothpick inserted at the center comes out clean.
  7. Cool for 15 mins and then invert the vessel to remove the vattayappam.
  8. Cut into wedges and serve.
  1. The round vessel to steam can be either a deep steel plate, wide mouthed steel tiffin box, round pyrex box or even a cake pan. 
  2. You can replace cooked rice with thin poha. Soak the thin poha for around 5 minutes before grinding.
  3. With 3 tablespoon of sugar, this snack is mildly sweet. You can adjust the sweetness according to your preference. 
  4. For the sweet version, you can sprinkle cashews and raisins to the batter before steaming. 

I made this recipe as part of the "Sshhh Cooking Secretly" event. This is an event started by Priya of Priya's Versatile Recipe. At the beginning of the month a theme is chosen by one of the participants and all the participants are grouped in pairs. The participants will exchange 2 secret ingredients with their partners who are suppose to prepare a dish that matches the theme of that month. 

I got the opportunity to choose this month's theme and I selected "Steamed Foods". 

My partner for this month is Archana Gunjikar Potdar and she shared me coconut and cardamom as my secret ingredients and I gave her flour and water as her ingredients. She made "Kankiche Dive". Do visit her blog to check out an amazing collection of recipes. She also has a wide variety of exotic desserts like Easy Mocha Semifreddo, Popcorn Rocky Road Dessert, Layered Angel Cake the British Version to name a few. 


  1. Beautiful traditional recipe! The Vattayappam looks so soft and spongy, and very delicious. Sounds quite interesting and very inviting!

  2. Have heard about vattayappam but never knew it is so easy to make . It looks so soft and spongy .

  3. Steamed Rice Cake looks so soft and spongy.. when I saw the pic thought it is some idli variation. but it seems a different recipe only with rice.. Wonderful share.

  4. Never tasted this sweetened rice cake. Looks so soft fluffy and yummy. I think it will be taste great if I can make it savory with some spices and coriander leaves. Lovely recipe. I will surely try it soon.

  5. Vattayapam is an entirely new dish to me. Loved the soft fluffy and spongy texture. Lovely traditional share.

  6. This steamed rice cake looks really good. Though Vattayappam is a new dish for me, it does remind me of the Swahili cuisine rice cake Makate Sinia. Only difference is that its baked but the ingredients are same.

  7. Wow the steamed rice cake looks so soft and yum. The texture is so fully and I am going to make this soon for our breakfast or my kids lunch box

  8. Very nice and spongy. Quite similar to thattai idli.

  9. Vattayappam looks very spongy and fluffy. Loving your Kerala recipes, bookmarked many of your recipes to try soon. This vattayappam looks similar to thattai idli, but its very interesting.

  10. Vatayappam, heard it many times but never tried. It looks so soft and spongy. I can make it now at home.

  11. Love this Soft and fluffy vattayappam. Had it at a friend’s place ages back . Would love this tray this soon. Nutritious breakfast option.

  12. Simply love this rice cake and it looks so fluffy and soft. First I thought it is a dhokla.

  13. such a new and awesome recipe for me... looks so spongy and soft... with rice and coconut, I think keralites can make zillions of yummy dishes...

  14. Such a beautiful name vattayappam! Absolutely love it and I definitely want to try making it sounds like the Goan sanna but some home more doable. I absolutely love the dish and will try making it for curry. Sounds like one awesome way to eat spicy food.

  15. I have not had vattayappam for four years now!!! I couldnt believe this fell off my recipe list for so long. The vattayappam here looks so fluffy.

  16. I got a chance to taste this when I was in Kerala but never tried at home. Looks amazing and super spongy.

  17. Wow. Heard about this in Sri Lanka from my mother. Looks so soft and delicious. Would love to try it sometime

  18. Always traditional dishes are awesome and interesting.Vattapppam is super soft and spongy.

  19. Orupadu ishtamayi.. address thannal parcel ayachu tharumoo ?