Pholourie is a classic Trinidadian recipe.

Pronounced puh-law-ree, this authentic Trinidadian snack is a well loved food in every part of Trinidad. Traditionally, Pholourie is an East-Indian delicacy that is made with split peas powder. Ground yellow split peas or dhal is mixed with spices, seasonings and flour to create a soft runny batter.

This batter is rounded into small balls using your hands or a small spoon and deep fried. The batter puffs up and floats to the top of the oil, resulting in a delicious fritter that is crunchy on the outside and soft and light on the inside.

This tasty treat is an easy vegan snack that can be made for any occasion. It is such a crowd pleaser that your guests, whether vegan, vegetarian or omnivore will love it! This is my family’s favourite appetizer and whenever we get together I always end up in the kitchen helping make these – and eating them hot out of the pot!

Wet your hands and scoop up a little of the batter in your fingertips. Round the batter before gently putting it into the oil. 

I am going to give you a basic recipe that can be doubled if you are making for a larger group. My advice when doubling recipes is to always write down the new measurements before you start combining your ingredients. It is very easy to forget you are doubling a recipe and go back to the measurements you are reading off the screen!

The pholourie puffs up and rises to the surface of the oil.


1 cup flour

1/3 cup split peas powder

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon ground geera (cumin)

1/4 teaspoon saffron powder

2 cloves of garlic, minced

4 leaves shadon beni, chopped

fresh pepper to taste

salt to taste

1 cup of water

vegetable oil for frying


  1. Combine the flour, split peas powder, baking powder, ground geera, saffron powder and salt. Mix well.
  2. Stir in the fresh seasonings- the garlic, shadon beni and pepper.
  3. Make a well in the middle of your dry ingredients and add half of your water. Stir the mixture and slowly add the rest of the water. Your batter should be soft-a consistency that allows you to easily scoop up a bit of the batter in your hands (see picture above).
  4. Cover and let the mixture rest for 15 minutes.
  5. Heat a pot of vegetable oil on medium high. Your oil must be hot enough so that the batter starts cooking as soon as it enters the oil. If the heat is too high, the pholourie will look cooked on the outside but be raw inside. Therefore, before starting, test your oil with some of the batter and adjust the heat accordingly.
  6. When you put the batter into the oil, it will rise and puff up. Stir the oil frequently so that the pholourie is cooked evenly. Fry until golden brown, then remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.


    Perfect golden colour!

    Served with spicy chutney. Yum!


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