101 alternative flours: ragi or finger millet waffles with jaggery and ginger syrup

Cooking or baking with alternative flours is a bit tricky most of the times. The millet flours, the nut flours and the pseudo grains all behave differently when mixed with liquids or when cooked. One has to know them well before working on complex recipes but making simple flat breads, pancakes is easier. If you are one of those people who are scared of using millet flours, use them for rotis and other flat breads to start understanding these flours and then make pancakes to know how they would rise when combined with leavening agents. Most of them behave alright.

Ragi is also called Mandua in the hills as well as central plains of India. In Maharashtra it is called Nachni but the English name is Finger millet and most people would be able to find this flour in health food stores of those who stock organic flours.

I made waffles with ragi flour some time ago and have repeated it a few time already. Ragi flour does not make a good batter that can rise much, but addition of eggs or plain buttermilk solves the problem
and it cooks just like any other pancake or waffle. Gluten free waffles are so easy to do.

If you don't have a waffle iron I recommend you make a pancake and let the pancake get crisp on the surface. Ragi flour is dark in colour so you wont see the colour of the surface changing mush but you would get the idea as soon as the pancake or waffle starts leaving the cooking surface. Knock it using a knife and you would feel a thud that indicates the waffle or pancake is crisp on the surface.

(for 3 waffles)

ragi (finger millet flour) flour 1 cup
3 eggs separated
whole milk 1/2 cup
grated jaggery or raw sugar 1/4 cup
dry ginger powder 1 tsp
butter 2 tbsp
baking powder 1/4 tsp
baking soda 1/4 ts

for the syrup

dry ginger powder 1 tsp
grated fresh ginger root 2 tsp (optional)
grated jaggery or raw sugar 1/4 cup
water 1/4 cup
pinch of nutmeg powder


Make the syrup first. Simmer everything mixed together till you get the syrup consistency that can be poured or drizzled easily over the waffle. It takes about 10 minutes on low flame.

Add nutmeg and mix, pour in a small milk pot with beak.

Mix the flour with the baking soda and baking powder, sieve the flour mix so it gets mixed nicely.

Now whip the egg yolks, milk, butter and grated jaggery together. Add the flour mix slowly using a sieve and keep whipping. Add a little more milk if required to get a thick batter.

Now whip the egg whites (placed in an absolutely dry bowl, using dry whipping blades) till soft peaks. Fold into the batter with gentle strokes and make the waffles immediately.

To make the waffles, pour 1/3rd of the batter over preheated and greased waffle iron and cover with the lid. Bake till the cover comes out clean and the surface is crisp. Repeat to make the other 2 waffles as well. Serve hot.

You can serve this waffle cut into quarters or whole, drizzled with the jaggery and ginger syrup. Some clotted or whipped cream on the side will be great if you don't have reservations.

Waffles can be served like desserts in small servings, with whipped cream and fruit preserves to garnish.

Let me know if you try this ragi waffles with jaggery and ginger syrup. Of course you can make pancakes too as I mentioned. Keep using more millets in your everyday food.

Note: if you want to make egg less ragi waffles, make the batter using buttermilk and whip the wet mix with a little flax meal (1 tbsp) slurry. The results will be good.


  1. i had to forgo eating waffles. But now I don't have to! I am so glad , thank you so much for this amazing recipe :) I will get back to you after trying it out.

  2. Sangeetha! I'm texting you with a happy heart and a tummy full of those yummy waffles! A heartfelt thanks from my family and me for this great recipe which I was initially doubtful abt :D Ragi n waffles? It tastes so good! Thank you! Will get in touch with u soon!

    1. Thanks for the wonderful feedback Ranjini. I am so glad your family loved this ragi waffles recipe. Keep in touch.


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