Deutsch: Chapati / Español: Chapati / Português: Chapati / Français: Chapati / Italiano: Chapati

Chapati is a type of unleavened flatbread originating from the Indian subcontinent. It is a staple in many households, particularly in India, Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka, and is known for its simplicity, versatility, and nutritional value. Chapati is also commonly referred to as roti, though there can be regional differences in preparation and thickness between chapati and roti.


Chapati is made from a simple dough consisting of whole wheat flour, known as atta in the Indian subcontinent, water, and optionally a small amount of salt and oil. The dough is kneaded until smooth, divided into small portions, and rolled out into thin, flat rounds. These are then cooked on a hot griddle called a tawa until they puff up and are lightly browned on both sides.

Application Areas

Chapati is consumed in various ways:

  • As a Staple Food: Often eaten with cooked vegetables, curries, meats, and dals (lentil dishes), serving as a utensil to scoop up other foods.
  • In Breakfast Dishes: Sometimes used as a base for wraps with various fillings for a quick breakfast or snack.
  • Health-Conscious Diets: Regarded as a healthy carbohydrate source, especially when made from whole wheat flour.

Well-Known Examples

  • Plain Chapati: The most basic form, eaten daily in many households.
  • Buttered Chapati: A variation where butter or ghee is brushed on the chapatis while they are still hot.
  • Masala Chapati: Includes spices and sometimes herbs kneaded into the dough for additional flavor.

Treatment and Risks

Chapati is a healthy food option that can be part of any balanced diet:

  • Whole Grains: Made with whole wheat flour, chapatis are a good source of fiber, which is beneficial for digestive health.
  • Low Fat: Chapatis are low in fat, especially if cooked without oil.
  • Allergies: As it is made from wheat, chapati contains gluten, which can be problematic for those with celiac disease or gluten sensitivities.


Here’s a simple recipe for making chapati:

  • Ingredients:

    • 2 cups whole wheat flour (atta), plus extra for rolling
    • Water (approximately 3/4 cup, adjust as needed to form a soft dough)
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
    • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil (optional)
  • Method:

    • In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour and salt. Gradually add water to the flour, mixing with your hand to form a soft, pliable dough. If using, add the oil and knead into the dough.
    • Cover the dough and let it rest for at least 30 minutes.
    • Divide the dough into equal portions, roll each portion into a ball and flatten slightly. Dust each ball with flour and roll out into a thin circle approximately 6-8 inches in diameter.
    • Heat a tawa or skillet over medium-high heat. Place the rolled-out dough onto the hot tawa, cook for about 30 seconds or until the surface is bubbling, then flip and cook the other side, pressing gently with a cloth or spatula to encourage even cooking and puffing.
    • Flip again and cook for a few more seconds on the first side. Remove from heat and optionally brush with butter or ghee. Serve hot.

Similar Terms

  • Flatbread
  • Roti
  • Naan
  • Fulka
  • Indian bread


Chapati is an essential element of cuisine in the Indian subcontinent, celebrated for its health benefits and cultural significance. This simple flatbread pairs wonderfully with a variety of dishes and continues to be a nourishing, integral part of daily meals for millions of people.


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