Naan step-by-step recipe with video and photos.
About this recipe
Naan needs no introduction and is probably one of the most ordered items in Indian restaurants. It is one of the easiest bread to make at home and pairs perfectly with your favorite curries.
This recipe for no-knead naan is made without eggs. The enriched dough has yogurt, melted butter, and milk. I am using an Instant Pot to make and proof the dough which gives perfect fermentation, making the naan soft and fluffy. Follow this recipe to get the fluffy, bubbly, chewy, and perfect elasticity you get in restaurants.
The traditional naan is made in a tandoor oven or clay oven and is slightly charred from the high heat of the tandoor. In this recipe, I am using a cast iron skillet to cook them, which also creates the crumbs and char that you get when it is straight out of a tandoor.
Make pillowy naan with perfect air pockets to soak up the flavors from your favorite curry with this amazing yet ridiculously simple recipe that uses basic ingredients. Read on for ingredients, variations, and useful tips to make the BEST no-knead naan bread at home.
Flour: Bread flour works best for this recipe. However, if it is not available, use all-purpose flour.
Yeast: I have used instant dry yeast which does not need dissolving or blooming. If you use active dry yeast, bloom it first in sugar and lukewarm milk.
Melted butter: Use unsalted melted butter. It can be replaced with olive oil.
Dairy: Use whole milk and full-fat yogurt. You can also use greek yogurt.
Other ingredients: Salt and sugar. I have used raw sugar here, however, white sugar can also be used.
In the inner pot of the Instant Pot (or a large mixing bowl), add milk, sugar, instant dry yeast, yogurt, and melted butter. Mix well until the sugar dissolves. Add salt and mix.
Add flour in batches and mix using a wooden spoon. Combine the flour and bring it together making sure there are no dry bits.
Form a slightly sticky, soft dough that will come together like a ball. Place the inner pot in the Instant Pot and set it to 'Yogurt' mode for one hour. If you are mixing flour in a large bowl, transfer it to the inner pot of the Instant Pot.
The dough is ready when it is almost double in size. Transfer it to a lightly floured surface or board. Divide it into 8 equal portions.
Bring each part into a ball and place it on a tray. Cover with a clean and damp tea towel (or plastic wrap) and let it sit for 15 minutes.
After 15 minutes, take one ball of dough and gently spread it into oval discs using your fingers. Alternatively, roll it using a rolling pin into a teardrop shape. Optionally, you can top it with nigella seeds, garlic, or cilantro.
Heat a large cast-iron skillet. Place the rolled dough on the hot skillet. Bubbles begin to appear as it cooks. Let it cook for about 2 minutes on medium-high heat or until the underside is charred.
Flip and cook on the other side for one more minute. The naan is done when bubbles will turn brown.
Brush with melted butter before serving.
In this recipe, I use dried instant yeast that does not require blooming. If you use active dry yeast, take yeast in a small bowl along with lukewarm milk (or warm water) and sugar, mix and let it bloom before using the yeast mixture.
Bread flour works better in this recipe. However, if it is not available, use all-purpose flour.
The dough has to be soft yet not very sticky. If the dough is too dry, add 1-2 tablespoons of milk and if it is too sticky, add enough flour (not more than ¼ cup).
Proofing the dough in the Instant Pot is the best way to do it. It saves time and the dough rise is quick, and it is ready in one hour. Alternatively, keep the dough in a warm place at room temperature until it doubles.
Hand stretching the dough ball where possible is great to get those beautiful crumbs. If you want to use a rolling pin, then roll by applying a little pressure. Rolling the naan dough with too much pressure may toughen the dough.
Make sure the cast iron pan is very hot. To check, add a few drops of water to it. If it evaporates immediately, it is ready.
When rolling one part of the dough, keep the rest of the dough balls covered in the kitchen towel. This will help in preventing the dough from getting dry.
While we need the pan to be very hot, do not cook the naan on very high heat. Reduce it to medium heat before placing the dough.
There are so many variations you can make to this basic naan recipe. Here are some ideas for your inspiration to use the dough in different ways.
Topped with seeds: You can top the rolled dough with nigella seeds, poppy seeds, or sesame seeds. Add the seeds and gently press them using the rolling pin before cooking.
Garlic naan: Add finely chopped or minced garlic on top of the dough and gently press them using the rolling pin before cooking.
Garlic butter naan: Top the cooked naan with garlic butter.
Cheese naan: Use grated cheese as a stuffing to make cheese naan. Add some finely chopped chili peppers to make chili cheese naan.
Pudina naan: Top the rolled dough with chopped mint leaves and cilantro. Press it gently before cooking.
Paneer naan: Season grated or crumbled paneer and stuff it in the dough before rolling. Make sure that there are no big pieces of paneer or the dough will tear when rolling.
Keema naan: Cook minced meat with spices and cool it completely. Use it as a stuffing to make keema naan.
Atta naan: Use whole wheat flour or a mixture of all-purpose flour and whole wheat flour to make whole wheat naan.
Naan paired with your favorite butter chicken or chicken tikka masala is the ultimate comfort food. Here are some more Indian recipes for inspiration.
This happens if the skillet is not hot enough when cooking, or if the dough is too dry. Heat the skillet before you place the dough on it.
While both are leavened flatbread and are made using flour and leavened using yeast, they are quite different in taste and texture. Naan dough is enriched with milk, butter, and yogurt. It is large, soft, and lighter whereas the pita is small, dry, and used as a pocket for fillings.
This homemade naan recipe:
- gives you soft and fluffy naan just like restaurants,
- uses pantry staples,
- pairs perfectly with Indian food.
Naan Recipe (Easy No-knead)
- 2½ cups bread flour or all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoon instant dried yeast see notes
- 2 teaspoon sugar
- ½ cup milk (plus 1-2 tablespoons)
- ¼ cup melted butter
- ½ cup yogurt
- 1 teaspoon salt
Make and proof the dough:
- In the inner pot of the Instant Pot, add milk, sugar, yeast, yogurt, and melted butter. Mix well until the sugar dissolves.
- Add the salt and give it a good mix.
- Add the flour in batches. Mix using a wooden spoon.
- Combine the flour and bring it together making sure there are no dry bits.
- The moisture from the liquids is sufficient to make the dough.
- Form a soft and slightly sticky dough that will come together like a ball.
- If the dough is too sticky, add ½ cup of flour. If it is too dry, add one tablespoon of water.
- Cover the Instant Pot and set it to 'Yogurt' mode for one hour.
- The dough is ready when it is almost double in size.
Making the naan:
- Once the dough is ready, transfer it to a lightly dusted surface. Divide it into 8 equal parts.
- Bring each part into a ball and place it on a tray. Cover with a clean kitchen towel and let it sit for 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, start heating a cast iron pan or skillet.
- After 15 minutes, take one ball of dough and gently spread it into oval discs using your fingers. Alternatively, roll it using a rolling pin.
- Sprinkle nigella seeds, finely chopped garlic, and cilantro.
- Place it on the hot skillet. Bubbles begin to appear as it cooks. Let it cook for about 2 minutes or until the underside is charred.
- Flip and cook on the other side for one more minute. The naan is done when bubbles will turn brown.
- Remove from the skillet and set it aside.
- Repeat with the rest of the dough balls.
- Serve hot with curry of your choice.