Indian Spiced Cheese Fritters (Masala cheese pancakes)

Indian spiced cheese fritters = heaven in my mouth

Imagine how good a warm, gooey chocolate chip cookie hot and fresh from the oven is.  Now, imagine that instead of being sweet, it is cheesy.  Instead of chocolate chips, there are bits of green chilies and scallions.  This is the best way to describe Masala Cheese Pancakes-a warm, gooey and slightly spicy Indian cheese fritters. My mouth waters just thinking about it.


Indian spiced cheese fritters on a plate garnished with chopped cilantro


The origin story: sadness without my cheeseballs

One of my favorite dishes in one of my favorite restaurants in Kuala Lumpur is Masala Cheese Balls at the Gem Restaurant in Little India. I just can’t get enough of them and having to share a serving of these delicious morsels with my dining partners is just devastating to me.

So, you can imagine my enthusiasm and heartbreak when I went to the Gem to celebrate my birthday and the waiter sadly told me that they were all out.




a hand holding a half eaten fritter


The grief process

At first, I felt anger.  How could they?

It was then followed by shock. I can’t believe they don’t have my cheese balls! 

AND of course, that was followed by denial. Surely, they must be joking.

After the sadness set in, I came to the realization that I have no balls. 

NO BALLS…what a sad and demoralizing fate that is.


However, like a ray of sunlight after the thunderstorm, an epiphany came upon me.  If God takes away your balls, the powers that be open up a window of opportunity for you to try and create your own. That’s precisely what I did and although not exactly the same dish, what resulted was equally as delicious and addictive-my very own version of Indian cheese fritters.


a stack of fritters on a plate garnished with chopped cilantro



Eat alone or with company

Deliciousness aside, these are fairly easy to throw together and great for impressing guests. Perfect as a starter for a dinner party, cocktail hour or holiday get-together.  Pair with a nice glass of wine or a citrus cocktail and you’ll be set.  Serve with your favorite tomato chutney or a spicy cucumber Indian-inspired salsa for an added kick of spice.  Who needs balls anyway?


uncooked fritter dough in a mixing bowl


fritters frying in a pan


golden Indian cheese fritters frying in a pan


Indian spiced cheese fritters on a plate garnished with chopped cilantro, spices, chili peppers and chutney


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Indian spiced cheese fritters on a plate garnished with chopped cilantro, chutnery, chili peppers and spices

Indian Spiced Cheese Fritters (Masala cheese pancakes)

  • Author: Spicepaw
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 12-24 fritters 1x
  • Diet: Vegetarian


Cheesy and gooey with just a touch of spice, these Indian cheese fritters are a great alternative to a cheese board and highly addictive. #cheese #spicy #fritters #appetizer #starter #partyfood #spicy #recipe



1 cup flour

1 /2 tsp sea salt

1 tsp ground coriander

1 garlic powder

1 /2 tsp ground cumin

1 /4 tsp ground turmeric

1 /2 tsp ground mustard

1 chopped green chili

2 tbsp chopped scallions

250 g shredded sharp cheddar cheese (about 2 cups)

1 cup plain yogurt

oil for frying


In a medium to a large mixing bowl, combine flour, salt and spices together. Mix well.

Mix in chopped green chili and chopped scallions.

Add shredded cheese and mix so as to incorporate the shredded cheese with the dry ingredients.

Add yogurt and mix together. The dough should be sticky and wet.  If you find it a bit on the dry side, add a spoonful or so of yogurt or a splash of milk.

Let sit for 10 minutes.

In a nonstick frying pan, add 1 tbsp of batter into the pan.  Cook until golden brown on the underside (this should take about 5-7 minutes).

When nice and golden, remove from the heat and serve with your favorite dipping sauce.  I find that a tomato or mango chutney works well with these fritters.


If you are without mustard powder, just substitute 1 /2 tsp of spicy mustard instead.  Dijon or Colman’s work well for this recipe.  Just mix the mustard into the yogurt before adding it to the dry ingredients.

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Category: Appetizer, Starter
  • Method: Pan Frying
  • Cuisine: Indian, Fusion

Keywords: Cheddar cheese, cheese, fritters, recipe, green chili, spices, coriander, cumin, mustard, yogurt, vegetarian, starter, appetizer

This post was updated on December 18th, 2020.


Recipes for the cheese fiend:

Non-Traditional Cheesy and Foolproof Carbonara

Chiles Rellenos (Fried Chilis stuffed with Cheese)

Chili Paneer with Sweet and Sour Garlic Sauce


Author: Natasha

I'm just a busy expat mom who has a psychological need to feed people. I enjoy learning about new cultures, (especially the food) and enjoy experimenting with new ingredients and spices

2 thoughts

  1. Okay, I never could have imagined this recipe, but now that I’ve seen it, I’ve got to try it!

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