Homemade Vegan Naan

Stack of naan breads with rosemary twig on plate
Westend61 / Getty Images
  • Total: 75 mins
  • Prep: 30 mins
  • Cook: 45 mins
  • Yield: 8 servings
Ratings (32)

Naan, an Indian flatbread traditionally cooked in a tandoor oven, accompanies many Indian meals, but in Indian restaurants, naan often contains milk and butter or sometimes yogurt. For a vegan naan recipe, you can make at home, omit the dairy, using soy milk in its place. Add chunks of minced garlic or toasted sesame seeds if you like to the top just before you cook it. 

Though leavened with yeast, naan remains flat, so that it resembles pita bread. At traditional Indian tables, naan serves as a sort of spoon to scoop up bites of food.

What You'll Need

  • 1 tsp. active dry yeast (1/2 package)
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 3 tbsp. soy milk
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 3/4 to 2 cups bread flour
  • 1 tbsp. olive oil (or as needed for cooking plus more to brush the top of the naan)

How to Make It

  1. In a large bowl, dissolve the yeast in the warm water. Let this stand for about 10 minutes, until it turns frothy. Stir in the soy milk.
  2. In another bowl, whisk the sugar, onion powder, garlic powder, and salt with 1 3/4 cups of flour. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, and stir just until a soft dough forms. Add an additional 1/4 cup of flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, as necessary to reach the right consistency.
  1. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead it for about 6 to 8 minutes, or until it becomes smooth and pliable.
  2. Lightly oil the inside of a large bowl. Place the dough inside it, cover it with a damp cloth, and set it aside in a warm location. Let the dough rise for about an hour or until it doubles in volume.
  3. Punch down the dough, then break off chunks and roll them into golf ball-size pieces; put them on a floured baking sheet. Cover the dough balls with a towel and allow them to rise again until they double in size, about 30 minutes.
  4. Heat a cast iron or heavy non-stick skillet over high heat; use a pastry brush or paper towel to coat it with a light layer of oil.
  5. Roll or press a dough ball into a thin circle, then place it in the hot oiled skillet. Cook it for 2 to 3 minutes, or until bubbles begin to form and you can see the edges start to turn brown. Brush the top side with additional olive oil. Flip it and cook it for 2 to 3 minutes on the other side.
  6. Repeat with the remaining dough balls, oiling the skillet between each one.

Preparation Notes

  • Dust the rolling pin or your fingers with flour if the dough balls feel too sticky.
  • You can cook naan on a grill for about two to three minutes per side over high heat. Be sure to brush it on both sides with olive oil before you set it on the grate.
  • Naan tastes best eaten right off the heat. To make naan dough ahead of time, punch it down after the first rising and store it in plastic wrap in the refrigerator for up to three days. When you're ready to cook it, take it out of the refrigerator, let it come back to room temperature, then form it into balls, and proceed with the remaining steps.
    Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
    76 Calories
    3g Fat
    10g Carbs
    1g Protein
    (Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)