You Can Take It With You: Zucchini Pakoras

Lunchtime: unequivocally the best part of the day. But could it be better? Yes sir, it can. You don’t have to spend gobs of money going out, but you also shouldn’t be packing the same peanut butter sandwich year in and year out; there is a middle way. The path to becoming a lunch box buddha isn’t so hard. All you need is a good balance of inspiration and improvisation. Every week, we’ll make one or two packable recipes so that you have something new to fill your lunch box and your stomach.

Are you ready for some real talk? Okay. Pakoras are not real food. That’s right, they’re really just extra-delicious fritters. But sometimes you’re having a stressful week and the only thing that can get you through each day is the promise of fried food and fruit at during your lunch break.

Pakoras are easy to make and taste great on their own, wrapped in flatbread, or dipped a sauce like tamarind or cilantro chutney.

Zucchini Pakoras


2 cups gram (garbanzo or chickpea) flour
1 cup of water
1/2 teaspoon of salt
2 teaspoons of cumin
1/2 teaspoon of chili powder
2 cups of zucchini
1 cup of cilantro, chopped


1. Slice the zucchini into small pieces or grate it.

2. Stir the flour, salt and spices together and then add the water. Stir until it forms a dough.

3. Add the cilantro and zucchini to the dough.

4. Drop spoonfuls of the dough into hot oil to fry them. When they’re finished, let them cool on a paper towel.

+ Storage and eating: Since I like my fried stuff to stay crispy, ideally I freeze these and heat them up in a toaster oven or regular oven. If that’s not possible, I use a microwave. If none of that is possible, I let them sit at room temperature and eat them that way as well.

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Laura is a tiny girl who wishes she were a superhero. She likes talking to her grandma on the phone and making things with her hands. Strengths include an impressive knowledge of Harry Potter, the ability to apply sociology to everything under the sun, and a knack for haggling for groceries in Spanish. Weaknesses: Chick-fil-a, her triceps, girls in glasses, and the subjunctive mood. Follow the vagabond adventures of Laura and her bike on twitter [@laurrrrita].

Laura has written 308 articles for us.


  1. I swear just yesterday I was looking up recipes for pakoras but I didn’t use any of them because they were so complicated. This recipe looks easy, and delicious. If I want Indian food from a restaurant I have to drive 20 moles and eat by myself because everyone I know is a carnivor and afraid to try ethnic food. Can’t wait to try this.

  2. thanks so much…nice to see something that doesn’t have meat in it…looks perfect for camping too….!

  3. Zucchini! Such an underrated veggie. ((Am I the only one who likes eating them even uncooked w/ a dash of salt)?)) Great recipe! :)

    • man, i know! i love zucchini in just about everything. (although i’ve never had them raw, ill have to try it)

  4. It’s amazing how lately autostraddle has basically been making my grocery list for me. These look divine.

  5. You guys,I have to get this out…

    I am so hungover after the long weekend that I actually had to google what a zucchini is. Now that I have reminded myself, courgette pakoras are totally on my work menu this week!

  6. Laura, these pakoras looks so good…thanks for sharing. I just planted a bunch of zucchini and I am stoked to make this with some of the first harvest!

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