Bele Holige: Sweet Chana Dal Puris From Karnataka

The craving for sweets and healthy food rarely go well together, blaming much on the sinful refined sugar. What if there exists a sweet delicacy in the form of mundane puris, without that dark and dangerous white sugar? Bringing to the fore with little fanfare, Karnataka's Bele Holige, where Holige means sweet-stuffed flatbread. But Bele, which means lentils, and in this case, chickpea is the true protagonist and the filling of this sweet puri. These puris may seem to be sweeter counterparts of salty Chana Dal puris widely consumed in North Indian households. The chickpea cooked and mashed with jaggery and cardamom is stuffed in the puris and toasted with ghee to make for a super fulfilling and thoroughly healthy chana dal puris.

Picture Credit : Instagram - @gobbledstories

Bele Holige or Bele Obbattu which means sweet flatbread filled with dal stuffing is a favourite and staple food item of Karnataka. The Bele Obbattu is a sweet dal stuffed puri and is eaten with Rasam, Holige Saaru, especially during Udupi celebrations. It is considered filling and deliciously sweet. They are also offered at festivals to feed a large crowd.

They are also relished with a cup of boiled and cooled unsweetened milk. This Holige is similar to the Puran Poli of Maharashtra. However, Karnataka’s Holige is slightly different from Maharashtra’s Puran Poli which is cooked in more oil and is slightly thicker.

Preparation: 1 ½ hour

Cooking: 25 minutes

Servings: 4-5


  • 1 ½ cups chana dal
  • 1 ½ cups wheat flour 
  • ½ tsp salt
  • Water to knead the dough
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • 1 ½ cups jaggery
  • ¼ tsp cardamom powder
  • Ghee to  make puris 


  • In a pressure cooker, transfer the thoroughly rinsed chana dal and add a tsp of oil and water and cook it until 1 whistle. Open the lid only when it depressurizes completely.
  • Meanwhile, knead a soft dough, pour a tsp of oil and spread it all over it. Let it rest for 30-45 minutes.
  • Then take the cooked chana dal in a pan, add jaggery into it followed by cardamom powder and cook them on medium to low flame until the jaggery starts to melt.
  • Keep stirring all along and when jaggery melts completely, start mashing the chana dal with a masher while it's still cooking.
  • Take out the chana dal and jaggery paste and let it cool down.
  • Make small balls of it and keep them aside.
  • Make small balls of the dough and stuff them one by one with the balls made of chana dal paste.
  • Seal the edges of the dough completely after filling the jaggery chana daal paste.
  • For rolling, apply a little oil to the surface.
  • Place the stuffed ball and press it gently with palms and roll it into small chapatis.
  • Cook these chapatis on tawa by applying ghee on either side.

Put to rest all your doubts and apprehensions about trying new food items with this extremely simple sweet puri made with a handful of ingredients. This sweetness of Chana dal may remind you of Chana dal halwa with this one being sweetened with jaggery.