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Sri Lankan Pol Roti Recipe (coconut roti)

Sri Lankan Pol Roti

Sri Lankan pol roti is such a delicious dish that doesn’t use any leavening ingredients such as baking powder or baking soda, its easy to whip up in no time. if you are making a curry, this amazing and simple dish is a must-have.

What is Sri Lankan pol roti?

Sri Lankan Pol roti is basically flatbread with coconut, it has inclusions such as chopped red onion and chilli. You can also make it plain but the inclusions make it really tasty and gives a good crunch.

We as Sri Lankans eat pol roti a lot for breakfast, but you can definitely eat it for lunch and dinner as well. because it’s very easy to make it is definitely an easy dish to whip up in the morning.

I remember my mum always made pol roti for breakfast and I loved it so much. My mum used to have a ‘roti thatiya‘ which means a flat pan to cook the coconut roti and we don’t call it pan-frying the coconut roti we call it ‘ roti puchchanawa‘ which directly translates to burning the roti. the reason being, it’s actually not pan-fried, a traditional roti would have a few burnt bits on the roti. No oil is used to cook these Rotis hence why a few burnt spots which also adds flavour.

What to serve with sri lankan pol roti

Lunu miris ( red onion sambal) is a must to serve with coconut roti.
Seeni sambol ( caramelised sweet onion)
Pol sambol ( coconut sambal)
Chicken curry
Dhal curry

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Pol roti with curry

Most of the time you can use coconut roti as a slice of sandwich bread and fill it with either a lunu miris, seeni sambol or coconut sambol and eat it as a sandwich, which is soooo delicious as well.

Coconut roti ingredients

It’s so simple to make coconut roti, you only need a few pantry staple ingredients.
Coconut ( either desiccated coconut or fresh coconut)
inclusions such as red onion, curry leaves, green chillies

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Pol roti dough (coconut roti dough)

Fresh coconut vs desiccated coconut

When I was Sri Lanka I always used fresh coconut, but since moving abroad it’s always been desiccated coconut as I cannot access fresh coconut very easily. we do get the frozen coconut, which I do use often as well. any coconut is fine for this recipe.

How to make pol roti

Pol Roti (Coconut roti) is so easy to make all you have to do is, combine, flour, coconut, water, inclusions such as red onion and chilli and form a dough, flatten and cook. Isn’t that simple?

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Pol roti steps

Is coconut roti suppose to be thin or thick

Everyone makes it very differently, some make it thin and crispy, some make it thick. I prefer it thin, so it is actually a bit crispy. All depends on the way you flatten it, so if you want thick roti don’t flatten too much if you want it thin then flatten it very thin.
Also if you make it thick, then it needs to be cooked longer as the dough will take much longer to cook

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Pol roti (Coconut roti)

Can I make coconut roti in advance

Yes, you definitely can make them in advance, unlike normal roti this one is not supposed to be extra crispy, so you can make them in advance and reheated in the microwave until heated.

You can also check my other Sri Lankan dishes.

Watch how to make Sri Lankan pol roti

Step by Step recipe how to make Sri Lankan pol roti 

Sri Lankan Pol Roti

Sri Lankan Pol Roti Recipe

Coconut flat bread
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes

Servings: 2 people


  • Pan


  • 300 g All-purpose flour
  • 200 g Coconut Desiccated or fresh
  • 180 g Water Tap water
  • 1/2 Red onion Chopped
  • 1 Green chilli Chopped
  • 6 Curry leaves Chopped


  • Place all ingredients in a medium bowl and gradually add water, mix well until well incorporated.
    This does not have to be kneaded, it just needs to be well incorporated
  • Portion the dough into 10 portions ( you can make 10 small rotis with this recipe)
  • On a separate plate and add 2 tbsp of oil then place the roti on top of the plate and with your palm and fingertips, flatten the dough until stretched and round-shaped
  • Heat a pan on medium heat, do not add oil, place the roti on the pan and cook until one side is cooked, then flip the other side and let it cook through (repeat with the rest of the coconut roti)
    It is normal to have a few burnt bits on the roti


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