How to Start an Idly and Dosa Batter Business

Introduction to start an Idly and Dosa batter business

There is a saying that there is no sincere love than the love for food, especially if it’s a traditional food and nutritious like idly and dosa. However, preparing the batter before night and let it leave for a night to get fermented is a big task for today’s generation. That is why the Ready-To-Cook industry comes into the picture.

Ideas to start an Idly and Dosa Batter business

I guess every south Indian has the talent of making awesome dosa and idly at their own and they will have idly/dosa batter business ideas. And with the world turning health-conscious, whole breakfasts are turning to be the trend. Surprisingly, the good old dosa and steamed idly fit in perfectly in this health-conscious new-age. Well, even if you are not a south Indian, but know how to make an idly-dosa batter, you can start selling off some as a good business.

This business is low on investment and high on returns every day. The raw material supply is not a big deal. The main key to get success in this business is “Quality”. The brand is not much required in this business.  Our fourth idea in the series is idly and dosa batter business. The idly/dosa batter business is a profitable model that can be emulated on a small scale, especially when people are more tuned into traditional ways of eating.

Why starting Idly/Dosa batter business

As discussed nowadays, people are not interested in preparing the batter which needs the process like soaking rice and lentils overnight and grinding them to a smooth batter. They prefer going to the nearest shop and buying readymade idly/dosa batter.

  • The market for ready-mixes is increasing day-by-day due to increasing development, the number of working women is also increasing and increasing the middle-income group families
  • These provide low calorie which will fit in today’s health-conscious
  • Huge scope in exporting to other countries
  • The processing of idly/dosa batter is a low-cost venture relative to other food products

How is Idly/Dosa batter made?

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Idly/Dosa making process.
Idly/Dosa making process.
  • In a bowl take 1 cup of Idly rice and 1 cup of regular rice which we use for daily routine. Instead of this proportion, you can also use overall 2 cups of idly rice or 2 cups of parboiled rice
  • Rinse both the rice 2 or 3 times, drain and keep aside
  • Take little amount of flattened rice in a bowl
  • Wash the flattened rice once or twice with water
  • Then add the flattened rice to the rice. Add 2 cups of water. mix very well and keep aside covered to soak for 4 to 5 hours
  • In a separate bowl take ½ cup urad dal along with ¼ teaspoon fenugreek seeds
  • Rinse a couple of times
  • Add 1 cup of water. Cover and soak for 4 to 5 hours
  • Before grinding, drain the urad dal, but don’t throw away the water. Reserve the soaked water
  • In a wet grinder jar, add the urad dal. initially add ¼ cup of the reserved water
  • Grind the urad dal for some seconds. Then add ¼ cup water and continue to grind. The batter should be fluffy when grinding is completed
  • Pour the urad dal batter in a bowl
  • Add flattened rice and rice in a wet grinder jar and grind them
  • Use the urad dal strained water or regular water to grind the rice and flattened rice too. add water in parts and grind
  • Now pour the rice batter in the bowl containing the urad dal batter
  • Add 1 teaspoon rock salt. Mix very well with a spoon or spatula
  • Cover the bowl or container with a lid and keep the batter in a warm place. It should be left undisturbed for 8 to 9 hours. Don’t use an air-tight lid. In a colder climate, keep the batter for a longer time – from 12 to 24 hours
  • The batter the next morning. It will ferment and double in size

Difference between Idly batter and Dosa batter

Both idly and dosa batter are made from rice and lentils. Idly batter is thicker in consistency than a dosa batter. To make dosa, the batter is spread on the Tava and thus needs to have a slight flowing and spreadable consistency.

  • For idly batter, the ratio to be used is 4:1 of rice and lentils. From this 4:1 ratio of idly batter, you can even make dosa. The proportion of rice and urad dal should always be in the correct quantity. You can experiment with different types of rice and come to your standard measurements which will give you perfect idly.
  • For dosa, the ratio that is generally used is 3:1 of rice and lentils. Also do not use that for making dosa batter.

How do you preserve Idly/Dosa batter?

Someone doubts how to preserve idly/dosa batter, you can keep the rest in an airtight container in the refrigerator. If you have ground and fermented the batter more than you need, then you can store it in the refrigerator by keeping aside the required quantity for cooking. This way, the already fermented batter will not get sour and will stay good for about 3-4 days.

How to start with Idly and Dosa batter business?

To start this business you must have that enthusiasm to do something and have to earn some money on your own. Initially, before getting into the business, check with your neighbors whether they are willing to buy yours or not. Even if there is only one person to buy you can go ahead and start the business.

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Gradually word of mouth will get you more customers from one to another and you might have to grind it every day. You can even check with the shops nearby for more customers.

We can use 2 types of processes for idly/dosa batter. One is for instant use and the other is for long-lasting. This will include:

Wet batter process

The batter production is simple. These will include the following:

  • Rice and black gram are soaked overnight.
  • Grind both the rice and black gram separately in a grinder to a specific consistency with a pinch of salt.
  • The coarsely ground rice, dal and methi seeds are then combined.
  • The mixture is allowed to ferment.
  • After fermentation, packets are filled, weighed, and air-sealed.
  • These packets are then frozen.

These packets are commonly filled into 1-kilogram packs which could be used to make 22-24 Idly or dosa.

The packs can be marketed with a simple pack without labeling or can be marketed in multi-color packs. This packed batter can be stored in a refrigerator for up to 4 days or can be stored at room temperature for one day.

Dry batter process
  • In case of dry batter mix, Roast the rice and dal first
  • These should be dried till moisture content reaches
  • It is then blended with lactic acid, sodium bicarbonate, and salt
  • The shelf life of dry batter is up to 1 year

Small-scale entrepreneurs can find their market easily. Transportation is difficult to transport the batter to all the customers even though we have enough customers. They can maximize profit if they can distribute the batter themselves. They have to ensure that the sales outlets are equipped with refrigerating facilities to keep the batter.

Key factors of Idly/Dosa business

  • The quality of raw materials of the idly/dosa batter business has a proportional impact on the final batter. So, good quality cereal and pulses must be procured
  • Although the ingredients are simple, it is their perfect proportion that makes the best product
  • The supply chain for distribution to retailers needs to be sorted so that the shelf life of the product is maintained

How to make your idly-dosa batter business a bigger commercial venture

You need to follow the step-by-step process

  1. Study the market: Where ever you are idly and dosa is part of our life. From a business preservative, you need to know the demand in your area. Just do the small research and talk to the people then you will understand if there is such a strong or not. If there are already suppliers existing, ask, and learn the quantity and pricing from them.
  1. Purchase the infrastructure: You will need a wet grinder if the demand is more than 2 liters every day. You need a big container to store the batter. People need ready batter so make sure the batter fermented perfectly and add the required amount of water and salt. You need a measuring scale so that you can measure and sell it as packs as 2l, 1l, or ½l. You will also need a cold storage nothing but a refrigerator to store the batter remains. And ensure that you need a better power supply too.
  1. Buy Raw Materials: You will need rice, urad dal, flattened rice, and methi seeds as the raw materials. If your business is increased then you can buy them as bulk from wholesalers. So as you can get the profit. You will also need a good water supply to wash the rice and urad dal. Make sure grinding premises must be hygiene.
  1. Packaging: After the batter is properly fermented do the packing instantly to maintain the same consistency in all the packets. For packing, you need zip lock covers or food-grade polythene and you can use a rubber band to tie them. To make it more professional, get the heal sealers and labels to show the manufacturing date and expiry date. You can also show your contact details for any bulk orders in future use.
  1. Transportation: To deliver bulk orders of idly-dosa batters you have to arrange for transportation too. It might be rickshaw, auto, or mini trucks, etc.
  1. Understand the cost involved and do the pricing: Have a fair idea of prices in the market and then charge accordingly. This will include the price of raw materials, power usage, water usage, and transportation cost, labor costs. Once the costs are identified, do the pricing accordingly so that you enjoy a handsome profit too.

The conclusion to start an Idly/Dosa batter making business

This very much profitable business and one can earn good money from home, and this is especially suitable for housewives who want to make extra money. You may also check Black Gram Cultivation.


  1. Dear Jagdishwar G , I am having a small shop of 10 X 25 sq ft in commercial space near residential area at Dera Bassi, Mohali Punjab. I am planning to start low cost risk free business from that shop. Do you think , starting of IDLI/DOSA shop at that place is good ides. If YES then how much will be the initial cost of setting the business and other legal formalities?

  2. Thanks for the INSIGHTS
    Need to know more about the PRODUCT STABILITY & MARKET RESEARCH
    Need to also know about the PROJECT REPORT for BANK LOAN
    Thanks & Regards


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