Naan vs Roti: What Is The Difference?

Naan and roti are both Indian flatbread. However, they are made from different ingredients. Naan is made up of refined flour (maida), while the latter is made from whole wheat flour.

Aside from this primary difference, naan and roti bread differ in so many aspects. Let’s go over these main differences.

Naan vs Roti

Naan and Roti: What's the difference?

NAAN and ROTI: What’s the difference?

These two Indian breads have lots in common. But in this post, we will show you how they differ from each other.

TEXTURE

Naan is soft in texture, while roti is coarse and less flexible. Naan’s exterior is also crispy and fluffy. Naan is also thicker than roti.


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NUTRITIONAL VALUE

Roti is a good source of fiber, proteins, minerals, potassium, and iron. It has no saturated and trans fat and cholesterol. Naan is less dense in nutritional value. It has more cholesterol content, calories and fat. 

Naan should only be consumed in a single meal per day while roti can be a staple meal.

Roti and naan are two conventional Indian flatbreads and among the best Indian cuisine one must try. But if you are on a healthy diet, you must choose roti as it is quite healthier than naan.


TYPES

Naan has a filling inside. It can be stuffed with fresh desiccated coconut, curd, butter, nigella seeds, and raisins. Roti has no fillings but can be served with vegetables, meat, and pulse. Both of these conventional flatbreads have different versions, but roti is always made in a circular shape and naan is made in various shapes.


PREPARATION

Another difference between roti and naan is the preparation.

Naan is cooked in a tandoor oven while roti is cooked in a flat skillet or a Tawa.

Roti is easier to make than naan. Preparing naan is time consuming compared to roti.

Now that we already know their main differences, let’s explore more about these two Indian cuisines.


Naan

NAAN

Naan is one of the most popular breads in India. It is soft and chewy, and is usually served with saucy curies, dals, and other saucy dishes. The main ingredients used in making this leavened flatbread is white flour, yogurt, and yeast. 

Naan is traditionally cooked or baked in a clay oven, also known as tandoor. Though this bread is undoubtedly delicious, too much consumption is not advised as it has high cholesterol content and fat. However, naan is a good source of protein and fiber. This flatbread is also high in calories.

These Indian flatbreads are not only popular in Indian households but also in restaurants.

Naan bread’s flavor has been improved by the use of different seasonings and spices such as chili powder, mint, and turmeric. Thus, this leavened flatbread is composed of different varieties. 

Garlic Naan

1. GARLIC NAAN

Garlic naan bread is a popular side dish in Northern India. It is known for its unique and indulging flavor. It is made with sugar, salt, yeast, and yogurt. The cooking method that you’re going to use for this bread is baking.

To prepare this popular version of naan, bake the dough in a hot tandoor oven, then remove the bread once its color turns golden. Brush the bread with ghee or butter and topped with minced garlic.

Most diners prefer to dip garlic naan into a creamy curry. This Indian flatbread is best served with curries, dal makhani, shahi paneer, or butter chicken.


Kulcha Naan

2. KULCHA NAAN

This type of naan is made with refined white flour instead of wheat flour. Other ingredients being used to prefer this bread are water, a pinch of salt, and a yeast or old kulcha dough for leavening. Mix all ingredients using bare hands until it becomes a tight dough.

Compared to the traditional Indian plain naan bread, kulch is not that fluffy or soft. Hence, this bread is known to be flaky. Due to its texture, kulcha naan bread can be filled with daal or potatoes.


Paneer Naan

3. PANEER NAAN

Another version of naan is this traditional Indian flatbread called paneer naan. The leavened dough is made with a mixture of yeast, sugar, salt, yogurt, and flour. After rolling the dough, stuffed it with homemade freshly grated paneer cheese, masala spices, cumin, and coriander onions.

Unlike the plain naan which is traditionally baked in a tandoor, paneed is usually baked in a tava pan. Once the dough puffs and turns to golden brown, remove it from the pan. Then brush with melted ghee or butter,

This type of naan is best served while hot. It is also a best side dish for curries and dal makhani.


Butter Naan

4. BUTTER NAAN

This is known to be the most famous version of naan, and is the ultimate favorite of every Indian. Among the different versions of naan, this is the only naan being served in weddings. 

Butter naan has a soft dough.

Aside from the above-mentioned versions, there are still other naan form such as the laccha naan, pudina, keema naan (minced mutton), chili cheese naan, Nawabi Naan, Amritsari Naan, Aloo Matar Naan, Oven Baked Naan, Onion Naan, baby naan, and more.


Roti

ROTI

Roti is a round unleavened flatbread native to India, and is made from whole wheat flour known as gehu ka atta, and water that is mixed into a dough. 

This bread that is popular in north India is traditionally eaten with curry and other saucy Indian foods. This bread, which is made with just plain flour and water, is also known by the name Chapati. The common ingredients used in making roti are bread flour (can be substituted with all-purpose flour), salt, and water.

Roti is usually cooked in a flat griddle or a tawa.

Similar to naan, roti has different versions.  Here are some of the different types of rotis.

Tandoori Roti

1. TANDOORI ROTI

As the name suggests, tandoori roti is baked in a tandoor, a type of clay oven. This flat bread has crisp edges but is soft in the center part. It is also thicker compared to regular rotis. Fluffy tandoori roti best paired with curries and creamy dals.


Missi Roti

2. MISSI ROTI

Missi roti is a type of roti that has a savory and nutty flavor. It is usually made with a combination of wheat or chickpea flour, gram flour, and spices. This popular Punjabi dish is a perfect match for vegetable side dishes and curry dishes. This unleavened flatbread version is also nutritious and healthy.


Roomali Roti

3. ROOMALI ROTI

Roomali roti, also known as manda, is a flatbread native to the Indian subcontinent. It is not only popular in India, but also in Punjab, Pakistan. The term rumal is an Indian language which means handkerchief. Hence, the name roomali (rumali) roti literally means handkerchief bread.

The main ingredients in making this bread are maida and atta flour.


Thalipeeth Roti

4. THALIPEETH ROTI

This easy-to-prepare type of roti is made with three types of flour, the jowar, besan, and whole wheat flour. Combine all these ingredients in a deep bowl, add water, and mix carefully to make a thick batter. 

Pour the mixture on the tava and cook on a medium flame. Add a little oil and cook until the color from both sides turn to golden brown. 

Thalipeeth roti is best eaten with green chutney or curds. Eat it while it’s still hot.