Thepla or Paratha?
For foodies like me, it’s quite easy to differentiate these two Indian flatbreads.
However, I have seen many people get confused when they see Thepla and Paratha on a restaurant’s menu.
Many of them order Theplas thinking they’d get nice and hot Parathas on the plate.
Well, if you are also struggling to understand the difference between these two delicacies, you’ve landed on the right page!
In the following post, I’m going to share all possible similarities as well as differences of both these Indian flatbreads.
So, let’s get started!
The Key Difference
Well, the key difference between Thepla and Paratha is the preparation method.
Thepla is made using chopped Methi leaves whereas Paratha is made using a stuffing of different ingredients.
When you make Theplas, you need to chop Fenugreek leaves and mix them with the Thepla flour and other spices.
For Paratha, you need to make dough and stuffing separately.
And once the stuffing is ready, you can stuff it inside a dough and roll it into a Paratha.
Here’s how you can make stuffed Aloo Paratha – Aloo Paratha Recipe
Of course, there are more differences between these two flatbreads too.
And I have talked about them in details below.
So, do check out the following sections.
What is Thepla?
Thepla is a simple and rustic flatbread, which is also a part of traditional Gujarati cuisine.
Whole Wheat Flour and Gram Flour are the two main ingredients of this recipe.
You can also mix some other flours (Sorghum Flour, Pearl Millet Flour, etc.) while making different types of Theplas.
Thepla should be served as a breakfast dish, but you can have it for lunch, dinner as well as snacks.
For the accompaniments, you can serve Aam ka Chunda, Mango Pickle or Mixed Pickle with it.
It also tastes good with Indian vegetable dishes and curries.
What is Paratha?
Paratha is more like a rich brother of Thepla and many other Indian flatbreads!
Jokes apart, it is a popular North-Indian delicacy, which requires All-Purpose Flour (sometimes Whole Wheat Flour) or combination of both flours.
There are mainly two types of Parathas in India –
- Plain Paratha
- Stuffed Paratha (made using spicy Potato stuffings)
You can enjoy it with numerous accompaniments including Yogurt, Punjabi Chole, Chana Masala, Kala Chana, Pickles, Raitas, etc.
Tip: If you are super-hungry and craving for some delicious Indian comfort food, order yourself a stuffed Paratha!
In North India, many farmers prefer to have their homemade Parathas and Lassi for breakfast.
History of Parathas
The origin of Parathas is still a debatable topic, as some researchers believe it may have traveled from Arab countries through the ancient Silk Road.
Did you know?
India’s hot-selling Biryanis have also traveled through the same route.
The Silk Road used to be an integral part of the trade in the early era, which connected many Arab and European countries to India, China, and other South East Asian countries.
On the other hand, many suggest Paratha is an authentic India-originated flatbread. Some ancient documents apparently indicate similar references from the past.
Such a fascinating story, right?
Being a passionate foodie, I always love to find such stories behind various delicacies.
It tells you a lot about how a particular dish may have traveled and evolved over the period.
If you know any such stories regarding Parathas or Theplas, do share them in the comments section below.
Now, let’s take a look at the differences and similarities of these flatbreads.
Thepla vs. Paratha: The Differences
In the following table, I have shared the important distinguishing factors of these two dishes.
|Ingredients||Whole Wheat Flour, Gram Flour, Leafy Vegetables, and Indian Spices||All Purpose Flour or Whole Wheat Flour, Stuffing Mixture, and Indian Spices.|
|Taste||More like a spiced version of Chapati or Phulka||Depends on the stuffing|
|Pungency||Less or no spicy||Moderately spicy|
|Size||Mostly medium-sized (5-6 inch)||Medium or Large sized; depends on restaurant/dhaba|
|Color||Yellow-Orange Shades||Mostly Yellow-Light Brown Shades|
|Thickness||Flat like Chapati or Phulka||Similar to different stuffed flatbreads|
|Veg. or Non-Veg.||Veg. only||Veg. and Non-Veg.; can be made with both type of ingredients|
|Use of Mixed Vegetables||Rare||Common|
|Preparation Time||30 mins||40-45 mins|
|Preparation Method||Similar to Chapati||Varies with different varieties|
|Cooking Method||Roasting with Ghee or Oil||Roasting or Shallow Frying with Ghee or Oil|
|Accompaniments||Aam ka Chunda, Gorkeri Pickle, Mango Pickle, Murabba, Yogurt, Ketchup||Mango Pickles, Yogurt, Boondi Raita, Chole, Chana Masala, Fried Green Chilies, Ketchup|
|Calories (if prepared without Ghee)||Moderate||High|
|Easy To Make||Yes||Depends on your cooking skills (especially for Stuffed Parathas)|
|Perfect for Long Journeys||Yes||No|
|Availability||Seasonal; due to availability of Methi Leaves||All year round|
|Price (in Restaurants & Cafes)||₹ (Cheaper than Parathas and Stuffed Breads)||₹₹ (Mostly costlier than Theplas and Rotis)|
|Most Popular Variety||Methi Thepla||Aloo Paratha (Veg.) and Kheema Paratha (Non- Veg.)|
So, these are the main differences between a typical Indian Thepla and Paratha.
Now, I hope it’ll be easier for many of you to order the appropriate Indian flatbread whenever you visit a restaurant.
Thepla vs. Paratha: The Similarities
In this table, I have shared the similarities between these popular Indian flatbreads.
|Dough Resting Time||15-20 minutes||15-20 minutes|
|Cooking Time||less than 5 minutes||less than 5 minutes|
|Cooking/Roasting Ingredients||Ghee, Oil or Butter||Ghee, Oil or Butter|
|Can Be Served As||Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner||Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner|
|Perfect for Lunchbox||Yes||Yes|
|Cooking Tool||Tawa (Griddle)||Tawa (Griddle)|
Over To You
If I have missed any point in the above differences or similarities, do let me know in the comments section below.
I really enjoyed writing this informative post on Theplas and Paratha, and I hope you find it useful as well.
You can also check out my detailed guide on the difference between Atta and Maida.
I will be covering many such topics in the near future.
So, do share your thoughts below if you want me to cover any specific topics of your choice.
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