Chuda Bhunja, Bihar’s Household Favourite Evening Snack Recipe

We Indians love our snacks, and the varieties made across the nation are a testament to this! Every region, nay every household, has a favourite evening snack ranging from samosas and chops to sundals and jhalmuri. Flattened rice is a key ingredient that is turned into a wide range of evening snacks across the country. There’s the quintessential poha and its immeasurable versions across state lines. Then there’s the Gujarati chivda, prepared with a generous sprinkling of fried corn flakes, peanuts and sev. But did you know that the understated Bihari cuisine also has a yummy, crunchy flattened rice-based evening snack that can give poha and chivda a run for their money?

Chuda Bhunja, which roughly translates into flattened rice fry, is prepared in every Bihari household—and also in some households in Uttar Pradesh. Just like the Gujarati chivda, the flattened rice in Chuda Bhunja is dry roasted until it puffs and crisps up. This bit is simple enough. What makes the Chuda Bhunja special is the addition of a few special ingredients. 

When I first tasted this snack, it was in its most popular form—with a generous mix of dry roasted peanuts, onions, green chillies and salt. Introduced to this snack by my partner and his family, I then came to know that many families choose to store the dry roasted or lightly fried flattened rice and peanuts in airtight jars. The addition of fresh ingredients like onions, green chillies, etc. is an evening ritual that pairs perfectly with a cup of tea. 

But that’s not all. There are seasonal versions of the Chuda Bhunja that make this dish even more interesting, and perfect for your evening snack as winter is waning. Instead of the addition of peanuts, or with it if you like, green peas are fried (or dry roasted, depending on your choice) and added to the Chuda Bhunja during the winter months when the ingredient is in season. Another winter-special ingredient that is often added to the Chuda Bhunja is green chickpeas, also known as cholia, hare chaney and jhingra. 

What makes this evening snack from Bihar tick? Yes, it’s the crunch factor. But with the addition of peanuts, peas or green chickpeas, the dish also turns filling. When prepared by a dab hand, Chuda Bhunja is the perfect blend of crunchy, salty and spicy flavours. What more do you need in an evening snack? Here’s a basic Chuda Bhunja recipe for you to try out this evening. Feel free to add your own flair to it.


1 cup flattened rice

¼ cup peanuts

½ onion, chopped or thinly sliced

1 green chilli, chopped 

Salt, to taste

1 tsp oil, optional


1.    Place a heavy-bottom pan or wok on a medium flame. 

2.    Add a teaspoon of oil if you want, then add the peanuts. Roast or fry the peanuts until they are golden-brown and crunchy. Remove and set aside in a large bowl.

3.    Now add the flattened rice and dry roast it. Keep stirring the flattened rice for an even roasting. Once the flattened rice puffs up and turns crispy, remove it from the pan.

4.    Place the puffed flattened rice in the same bowl as the peanuts. (You can mix these ingredients and store it for later consumption.)

5.    Add the onions, chillies and salt. Mix well and serve immediately while the Chuda Bhunja is still warm.