Crispy Begun Bhaja | Brinjal Fry

Begun Bhaja Recipe | Baingan Bhaja – This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may earn a small commission if you purchase through these links. This comes at no extra cost to you and helps support the content creation process. Thank you for your support!

Perfectly seasoned, crispy pan-fried brinjal slices, Bengali Begun Bhaja is a traditional, flavorful, and easy-to-make delight! A delicious snack or side dish, it is simple yet satisfying!

begun bhaja recipe pin

Begun Bhaja, also known as Baingan Bhaja – a crispy and perfectly seasoned pan-fried brinjal slice is a true gem of Bengali home cooking. It is often served as a delicious side dish or a snack.

Fresh, firm brinjals sliced and perfectly marinated in an aromatic spice mix and coated with flour for that irresistible crunch, then fried to perfection.

The star ingredient of this recipe is the special spice mix, a combination of cumin, coriander, and fennel powder, known as Bengali Begun Bhaja Masala. It gives a unique and authentic Bengali flavor to this dish.

Have a look at the brief description of the ingredients used in the recipe below!

begun bhaja image

Brinjal – Choose fresh, firm brinjals with fewer seeds. There are two types of brinjals: male and female. To identify the type of brinjal, look at the indentation at the bottom.

Female brinjals have a deep and elongated indentation, while male brinjals are shallow, round, and seedless. Try to find male brinjals for this recipe.

Rice Flour – is used to make the coating for the bhaja. If you don’t have rice flour, you can substitute it with chickpea flour, gram flour (besan), or all-purpose flour.

Powdered Spices – such as red chili powder, turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, and fennel powder.

The spice mix made of cumin, coriander, and fennel powder is known as Bengali Begun Bhaja Masala.

Sugar & Salt – Salt not only adds flavor but also helps soften the brinjal slices. Powdered sugar is added to the marinade to add a hint of sweetness and get a golden-brown caramelized color during frying.

Step 1 – Prepare the Brinjal

To begin, wash the brinjal (eggplant) and cut off the stalk. Slice the brinjal into discs with a cross-section cut, each approximately 2 cm thick.

begun bhaja recipe step 1

Step 2 – Make the Marinade

To make the marinade, in a shallow bowl or plate combine rice flour, red chili powder, turmeric powder, cumin powder, coriander powder, and fennel powder.

begun bhaja recipe step 1

Add salt and powdered sugar. Mix everything well.

begun bhaja recipe step 2

Step 3 – Coat the Brinjal Slices

Next, add the brinjal slices and coat them with the marinade.

Cover and let them set aside for 5 minutes. This will let the brinjal slices soften and help the flavors mingle. So, don’t skip this step.

step 3

Step 4 – Fry the Slices

Heat a pan on low flame and add oil to it. Place the marinated brinjal slices one by one.

The sugar added to the marinade can burn easily, it is important to flip them occasionally for even browning on both sides.

This usually takes about 2-3 minutes on each side.

step 4

Fry the marinated brinjal slices until they are golden brown on both sides.

When the brinjal slices are golden, lift them and hold them against the pan for a few seconds to drain the excess oil.

You can also also drain them on paper towels.

step 5

Preheat the air fryer to 375°F (190°C) for about 5 minutes. Place the marinated brinjal slices in the air fryer basket. Cook for 12-15 minutes, flipping them halfway through and lightly spraying or brushing oil for extra golden crispy texture. Adjust the time based on your air fryer model.

Bake the marinated brinjal slices in the preheated oven for about 20-25 minutes. Adjust the cooking until the slices are golden brown and crispy. Make sure to flip the slices halfway through for even browning on both sides.

Serve the Baingan Bhaja hot and crispy! For a comforting and wholesome meal, you can serve the bhajas with steamed rice, dal or khichdi, and some pickle or yogurt raita.

You can also serve it as an evening or tea-time snack.

begun bhaja recipe

1. Is it possible to fry Begun Bhaja using other flours?

Absolutely! You can substitute rice flour with chickpea flour or gram flour (besan). Additionally, you can experiment with using all-purpose flour (maida) or semolina (rava). If you prefer a gluten-free option, omit the semolina (rava).

2. Can I cook Begun Bhaja in advance?

Begun bhaja is best enjoyed hot and fresh. You can store the leftovers in an airtight container and reheat them before serving, though note that the taste and flavor may be altered.

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begun bhaja recipe pin

Begun Bhaja Recipe

Bengali Begun Bhaja – A delightful crispy snack or a delightful side dish! Sliced eggplants marinated in spices, fried to perfection. Try this easy peasy recipe!
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Bengali, Indian
Servings 3 people


  • 1 flat pan
  • 1 plate


  • 1 no brinjal (eggplant)
  • 1/4 cup rice flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder adjust to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon fennel powder
  • salt to taste
  • oil as required


  • Wash and dry the brinjal. Cut it into thin slices, about 2 cms thick.
    1 no brinjal (eggplant)
  • Take rice flour, salt, sugar, and all the powdered spices in a bowl and combine them well. Add the sliced brinjal.
    1/4 cup rice flour, 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder, 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder, 1/2 teaspoon powdered sugar, 1/2 teaspoon coriander powder, 1/2 teaspoon cumin powder, 1/4 teaspoon fennel powder, salt
  • Coat evenly on both sides of the brinjal slices.
  • Let them sit for about 5 minutes to allow the flavors to penetrate. If you are in a hurry you can skip this step.
  • Heat oil in a frying pan or skillet over medium heat. Make sure there's enough oil so the brinjal slices won't stick to the pan.
  • Once the oil is hot, carefully place the seasoned brinjal slices into the hot oil. Be cautious as the oil may splatter.
  • Fry the brinjal slices until they turn golden brown and crispy, flipping them occasionally to ensure even cooking. This usually takes about 2-3 minutes on each side.
  • Once they are crispy and golden, remove the fried eggplant slices from the oil and place them on a plate lined with paper towels to drain excess oil.
  • Serve the Begun Bhaja hot as a side dish with rice, dal, and pickles!


  1. Select firm and fresh brinjal for better taste and texture.
  2. For authentic Bengali flavor, use mustard oil for frying the brinjal slices.
  3. Adjust the spice level according to your preference.
Keyword Baingan Bhaja, Baingan Fry, Begun Bhaja, Bengali Dishes, indian side dish, side dish

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