This homemade naan bread recipe is easy to make. For this traditional Indian bread, we are using essential pantry ingredients including premium Greek olive oil, Greek wildflower honey, fresh cilantro for flavoring, and Greek yogurt to give a soft texture. Follow photo instructions to learn how to make naan bread at home, find out what exactly is Naan bread, and the many different ways how to use it.
Hello my friends. Today we’re making homemade naan bread. This recipe was first published when we started blogging over five years ago. So, the recipe was asking for some updates and step by step photos. When I first made this recipe, I had never made any kind of bread before, and I was surprised that it was so easy and with the first try, I got it right. So if you’re inexperienced in the bread-making department, this recipe is perfect for you.
This homemade naan bread has a fluffy core, crispy exterior, and a savory distinctive charred flavor that is aromatic and irresistible. And it’s easier than you might guess!
What is Naan Bread & Where Did it Come From?
Did you know naan has been cooked for millennia? People cooked the flatbread over hot pebbles in Ancient Persia. Today naan is a staple in many Asian and Middle Eastern countries. If you’re not sure what naan bread is, allow me to explain.
The word naan means bread in its original Persian. Naan is an unleavened flatbread based in all-purpose wheat flour. It’s enriched with yogurt and, in our case for this recipe, infused with fresh cilantro leaves.
Naan is traditionally baked in a tandoor; a cylindrical, underground, fire-powered clay oven. But today we’re cooking ours in a frying pan. (I am still unsuccessful convincing my husband to set up a tandoor on our 41st floor balcony. One can dream, right?)
When it comes to flatbreads, there seems to be a whole universe of them! Naan bread differs from other baking treats like pita bread and roti because the naan dough is enriched with yogurt, which make the bread softer and fuller. Naan is also richer than chapati bread, which is usually paper thin.
Beyond it’s wonderful taste and versatile use, naan is an act of love, so I recommend using high-quality ingredients. I’m using our favorite organic Melies Greek Extra Virgin Olive Oil and adding a hint of Trea Greek Wildflower Honey to really bring the naan bread together. You can buy both from our online shop. As with everything you cook, the difference between good and great is often in the quality of the ingredients.
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How to Make Naan Bread
First, the most important part when you are baking is measuring all your ingredients and having them ready. This way you don’t stress out because baking is a therapy. Here is the list of all your ingredients:
- Melies Extra Virgin Olive Oil,
- active dry yeast,
- lukewarm water,
- TREA Greek Wildflower Honey,
- plain Greek yogurt,
- fresh cilantro,
- all-purpose flour,
- baking powder,
- Greek sea salt.
8 Steps to Making Naan:
- Proof Yeast: First you need to proof your active dry yeast. For this step you need to mix lukewarm water, honey, and the yeast in a medium bowl, and let sit for about 10 minutes until it gets foamy.
- Sift Dry Ingredients: Sift together the flour, baking powder and sea salt in a large bowl
- Mix Wet Ingredients: In the bowl with the yeast, mix in the yogurt, chopped cilantro, and extra virgin olive oil.
- Combine Dry & Wet Ingredients: In the large bowl with the dry ingredients, add the wet ingredients and mix using a fork. When the dough comes together, use your hands to finish mixing. It will look wet like it needs more flour but it’s ok. As soon as it comes together, stop kneading.
- Rest Time: Cover the dough mixture with a damp cloth; let sit in a warm place until doubles in size, about 3 hours.
- Divide the Dough: Transfer dough to a floured work surface; divide into eight balls. Note: I did six larger ball but you can make eight balls.
- Roll the Dough: Working with 1 ball at a time, using a rolling pin, roll dough into 9″x 5″ ovals about ¼″ thick. If dough sticks to your work surface, add a sprinkle of flour.
- Cook: Heat a 10″ nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat. Working with 1 piece of dough at a time, brush a little bit of olive oil on one side and cook for 45 seconds. Brush a little olive oil on the top side, flip, cover pan with a lid and cook the second side for 45 seconds. Make sure that you get some nice browned spots.
Pro Tips for Making Naan
- Cover your naan bread to prevent it from drying out
- You can brush with ghee, butter, or brown butter right after they come out of the pan. It will give you a luxurious taste.
- Dry active yeast usually has a shelf life of around 12 months. Once you open it, it's best to store it in the refrigerator.
How to Store Homemade Naan Bread
- Room temperature: Store in a Ziploc bag and try to squeeze all the air out. It should last around 5-7 days.
- Refrigerator: Store in a Ziploc bag and try to squeeze all the air out. It should last around 10 days or more.
- Freezer: Wrap the naan in aluminum foil first to prevent freezer burn. Then place it in a freezer-safe Ziploc bag. It should last up to three months in the freezer.
How to Use and Serve Homemade Naan Bread
Naan is one of those side dishes that make dinners comfier. You might assume this is just bread, but you’d be surprised to know it’s more than that; it’s super useful. In India, flatbreads like naan are more than bread; they substitute forks and knives. They’re present in every meal on all tables, and here are a few ways it can be used:
- Naan bread is traditionally served with Indian dishes like curry
- Since naan is thick and fluffy, it’s easy to stuff. Cut it lengthwise halfway and add grilled veggies, seasoned ground or cut meat, lamb kebab, or anything you like.
- Make yourself a naan-wich. Again, there are no limits here. From egg to chicken, to a BLT combo, naan lends itself for the softest, yet crispiest sandwiches.
- Top your naan with a fried egg and make it a hearty breakfast. Add a few spoonfuls of your favorite sauce, and enjoy.
- Naan mini pizzas are a fabulous last-minute lunch option. Spread on some tomato sauce, lots of mozzarella and add your favorite toppings, just like pizza.
- Tear your naan bread into pieces and scoop away. It’s perfect for soups, broths, slow-cooked meat, and curries.
Naan bread is a great ace to have up your sleeve; it’s incredibly versatile and friendly with other foods, a superb addition to your bread repertoire. Get your ingredients together and roll up your sleeves. You’ll end up with a nice pile of tasty flatbread before you know it, so let’s get started!
I hope you get a chance to make this easy homemade naan bread recipe. Did you make a recipe? Tag @Spoonabilities on Instagram so we can find you! And we love to hear from you in the comment section below.
Your Recipe Concierge!
This homemade naan bread recipe is straightforward and flavorful. The main ingredients for this Indian bread recipe are extra virgin olive oil, honey, fresh cilantro, and other essential baking ingredients. Follow the step by step photos instructions for easy preparation. We also add Greek yogurt which helps to achieve a smooth and soft texture. This simple Naan bread turned out beautiful! So, if it’s your first time attempting flatbread, this is the recipe for you!
- 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
- ¾ cup lukewarm water (100 degrees F.)
- 1 Tablespoon TREA Greek Wildflower Honey Click to buy in our online shop
- 2 Tablespoons Melies Extra Virgin Olive Oil plus some for brushing before cooking Click to buy in our online shop
- 3 Tablespoons plain Greek yogurt
- 2 teaspoons of chopped fresh cilantro or cilantro paste.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- ⅛ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon Pure Greek Sea Salt Click to buy in our online shop
- In a bowl, add the lukewarm water, honey, and the yeast and let sit for about 10 minutes until it gets foamy.
- In a large bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder and sea salt.
- In the bowl with the yeast, add the yogurt, chopped cilantro, and extra virgin olive oil. Mix to combine.
- Pour the wet ingredients into the bowl with the dry ingredients, and combine using a fork. When the dough comes together, use your hands to finish mixing. It will look wet like it needs more flour but it’s ok. As soon as it comes together, stop kneading.
- Cover the dough with a damp cloth; let sit in a warm place for about 3 hours until it doubles in size.
- Transfer dough to a floured work surface; divide into 8 balls.
- Working with 1 ball at a time, using a rolling pin, roll dough into 9″x 5″ ovals about ¼″ thick. If dough sticks to your work surface, add a sprinkle of flour.
- Heat a 10″ nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat.
- Working with 1 piece of dough at a time, brush a little olive oil on one side and cook for 45 seconds. Brush a little olive oil on the top side, flip, cover pan with a lid and cook the second side for 45 seconds. Make sure that you get some nice browned spots.
Cover your naan bread to prevent it from drying out
You can brush with ghee, butter, or brown butter right after they come out of the pan. It will give you a luxurious taste.
Dry active yeast usually has a shelf life of around 12 months. Once you open it, it's best to store it in the refrigerator.
- Prep Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: 8 minutes
- Category: Side Dish
- Method: frying
- Cuisine: Indian
Keywords: flatbread, Indian bread, making bread, oven-baked flatbread, unleavened bread
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