Naan is a leavened flatbread that’s often served with Indian recipes. It can also be served as an appetizer with dipping sauces, such as a cilantro-yogurt sauce or sweet chili pepper sauce. You can find naan bread at most grocery stores, but it’s not hard to make at home. Just follow the step-by-step guide below.
How to Make Naan
Though traditionally cooked in a tandoori oven (a clay oven that can reach very high temperatures), this naan bread is made in a hot skillet on the stovetop.
This recipe makes 6 servings.
- 3/4 cup warm 2% milk (70° to 80°)
- 1 package active dry yeast (about 2 teaspoons)
- 4 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 cup plain yogurt
- 1 large egg, room temperature, beaten
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- Freshly chopped cilantro, for garnish
Step 1: Activate the yeast
In the bowl of a stand mixer, sprinkle the active dry yeast over the warm milk. Whisk gently to combine. Let sit for 5-10 minutes, or until bubbles appear. Attach the dough hook to the mixer.
Editor’s Tip: This recipe can also be made using a bread machine.
Step 2: Combine the dry ingredients
In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, salt and baking powder.
Step 3: Add it all together
Turn the mixer on low speed and slowly add the flour mixture. Then add in the yogurt, beaten egg and vegetable oil. Turn the speed to medium-low and mix for another two to three minutes, or until the dough forms a smooth ball. The dough will be slightly sticky.
Step 4: Let it rest
Wipe the mixing bowl clean and spray with cooking oil. Turn the dough out into the bowl. Cover with a damp dish towel and set in a warm place for one hour, or until the dough has doubled in size.
Step 4: Roll it out
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Divide the dough into six equal balls. Use a rolling pin to roll each ball into a 1/4-inch thick oval. Brush each oval with the melted butter.
Step 5: Bake
Grease a large skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Cook the naan one at a time. Place the buttered side down in the skillet and cook for one minute. Then flip and cook for an additional 30 seconds, or until golden brown. Place the naan in a warm oven or warming drawer while cooking the remaining dough.
Brush the naan with additional melted butter and sprinkle with chopped cilantro before serving.
FAQs About Naan Bread
How do I store leftover naan?
Though best eaten immediately after cooking, you can store leftover naan. If you plan to eat it within a few days, store naan in an airtight plastic bag at room temperature for up to three days. Or you can place the naan in a freezer-safe container and store in the freezer for up to two months.
How do I reheat naan?
To reheat naan, first thaw if necessary, then wrap in aluminum foil and bake at 350° for 10 to 12 minutes. Brush with melted butter before serving.
What is the difference between naan and pita bread?
Though similar to pita bread, naan is made with an enriched dough—that is, the dough contains yogurt and egg.
What is the difference between naan and roti?
Roti, another traditional Indian flatbread, differs from naan in that it is unleavened (and therefore much thinner), and is typically made from just whole wheat flour, water, a little oil and salt.