Tawa Pulao

Tawa Pulao

Spicy rice loaded with veggies and flavors, Mumbai’s another popular street food.. Tawa Pulao. If you are a Mumbaikar or have been to Mumbai then you know how much it is relished there. It is called Tawa Pulao as it is made on the Tawa or big griddle on which bhaji (Pav Bhaji) is prepared. I had my first taste of this spicy treat years back when I was a teenager and visited Mumbai for the first time. We had gone to Mumbai’s famous beach Juhu Beach and there you can find endless stalls serving Pav Bhaji, Vada Pav and Tawa Pulao along with other Chaat(snack) items or fast food items as these are popularly known there. Since we had heard so much about Pav Bhaji and Vada Pav that we were eager to taste these and we relished too but what came as surprise to us was this Tawa Pulao, a spicy treat full of flavors. That day I discovered two of my favorite dishes at Mumbai’s beach.. Pav Bhaji and Tawa Pulao!! The overcrowded beach, the noise of the waves and the spicy treat of Pav Bhaji and Tawa Pulao is my first memory of Mumbai and of course Kala Khatta who can forget that!! After the spicy treat, we had something similar to Ice-Cone known as Kala Khatta Gola.. a sweet and tangy shave ice cone!!😋🙂 .. While I am writing this, how much I want to go back there and have a taste of that famous street food!!

Coming back to Tawa Pulao the ingredients that make Tawa Pulao special are Butter and Pav Bhaji Masala. So whenever you make Tawa Pulao don’t forget to add a generous amount of butter and Pav Bhaji Masala. Again this recipe I learned by watching the Pav Bhaji vendors while they made Pulao and Pav Bhaji. Pav Bhaji Masala as I have mentioned in my Pav Bhaji post also, is a blend of Indian spices, available in Indian grocery stores, outside India. For tawa pulao, we need steamed rice, choice of veggies, butter and Pav bhaji masala. I don’t have any big Tawa so I make it in a pan, you can also make in a big pan or kadhai if you don’t have tawa. Tawa Pulao is one of the best ways to use leftover rice. My teenager loves spicy food loves this and many times I pack this for her lunch. My 7 year old can’t have spicy food, so I make less spicy rice for him then I add more masala to the rest of Pulao. It is also an easy dish to prepare when guests are coming or for a gathering like potlucks. The best accomplishment with Tawa rice is any yogurt preparation like Raita. I serve it with boondi and pomegranate raita(soon will update the recipe). Let’s see how I make this spicy treat.

Tawa Pulao

A spicy treat of cooked rice with veggies in butter and Pav Bhaji masala. Mumbai's another favourite street food after Pav Bhaji and Vada Pav. Wholesome and delicious Learn how to make Mumbai's famous Tawa Pulao 
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Main Course, Rice Dish
Cuisine Indian
Servings 4 people


  • 3 Cups Cooked(Steamed Rice)
  • 1 no. Onion Finely chopped
  • 2-3 no. Tomatoes Pureed
  • 1 Tbsp Ginger-Garlic-Green Chilli Paste
  • 1 Carrot Finely chopped
  • 1/2 Capsicum Finely Chopped
  • 1/2 Cup Peas
  • 1/4 Cup Sweet Corn
  • 1 Tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1-2 Tbsp Pav Bhaji Masala
  • 2-3 Tbsp Butter
  • 1 Tsp Oil


  • In a wide pan/kadhai/tawa heat, heat oil  and 1 Tbsp of butter, add cumin seeds, when the seeds crackle add the ginger-garlic and green chilli paste. Saute for a minute till the raw smell garlic goes away.
  • Add onions and saute till these start turning light brown. Add finely chopped capsicum and saute for another 2-3 minutes. Add veggies and saute for 1-2 minutes.
  • Add tomato puree. Add pav bhaji masala and 2-3 tbsp water, mix. We want the crunch in the veggies so don't cook for too long. 
  • Add cooked rice, mix well but gently. Add a generous dollop of butter and green capsicum if you want more crunch(optional), cook tawa rice in butter for 2-3 minutes.
  • Before serving squeeze some lemon and have it any raita of your choice.


  • You can french beans, cauliflower or boiled potatoes. Peas, beans can be boiled for a while in the water, before adding to the pulao. I have used frozen peas and corn, so I kept these in warm water for a while and then added directly.
  • If are making steamed rice for pulao, keep cooked the rice in the refrigerator once it cools down, this will prevent sticking of rice grains. Don't overcook the rice, take off from the flame when it is just done. The grains should not be very soft but little grainy when pressed between index finger and thumb.
  • You can add chopped tomatoes instead of tomato puree. Add tomatoes after onion and capsicum and add other veggies after the tomatoes are soft and cooked.
  • Butter adds on to the flavor of Tawa Pulao, you can avoid it if following a low-fat diet or are vegan.
  • Tawa Pulao is gluten-free and can be consumed by those who have gluten allergies.
Keyword Rice Dish, Tawa Pulao, Mumbai's Food

img_8326_ezy watermark_10-12-2018_07-21-21pm

I am taking this spicy treat to #FoodieMonday Blog Hop Potluck Party. Yes, our group where every week a theme is decided by a fellow blogger and we all make our dishes as per the theme. The theme for this week is #PotluckRecipes as suggested by fellow food blogger Preethi of Preethi’s Cuisine. 

Taking my Spicy Rice dish to Angie’s #253 Fiesta Friday co-hosted this week by  Liz @ Spades, Spatulas, and Spoons and Mila @ Milkandbun.

Make this spicy treat to tickle your taste buds. Do give me your feedback and whenever you make this do post a pic on any of my social media pages.. FB page or tag me on Instagram. You can also Pin the recipe for later use. You can also find my recipes on  Google+It will a small token of your appreciation for my work and keeps me motivated to bring good, authentic, tried and tested recipes to you.

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Thanks for stopping by. Keep coming back for more such yummy recipes 😋!!

Author: Swati

Some who believes 'EAT WELL, READ DAILY, TRAVEL OFTEN AND LAUGH KHUL KE'!!! Hi!! Swati here!!! Chef, Chocolatier, food admirer, reader, love to travel, listen to music, Bollywood and shoot nature and food pics!! Welcome to my Foodtrails and join me in my food adventure!!

18 thoughts

  1. Mumbai’s Tawa Pulao looks so attractive swaty !!! I am just drooling over here   SO so yum

  2. Love this spicy delicious pulao. Perfect way to use left-over rice. It would be a hit at potluck for sure !

  3. Tava pulao was the first things I loved about mumbai altho pav bhaji was the king ! My kids love this as a lunch box and u have made it perfectly , Swati

  4. Swaty, let me tell you something, the day we meet up in Mumbai, we shall have a blast eating. Our food choices are so so similar. The Kala Khatta especially! Haha. Loved the Tava Pulao and like a true Mumbaikar, this one has my heart!

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