How would you like a 100% Whole Wheat Chapati Recipe you can count on? These fabulous tasting 2-ingredient tortillas are a dream come true. If you value the extra flavor and nutrition of whole grain flat bread, but don’t want to compromise on a pliable wrap this is your lucky day. You can enjoy these perfectly speckled soft whole wheat chapati with Indian, Mexican, and Middle Eastern cuisine. They are ideal for roll-ups because they remain soft even when they have cooled off and are refrigerated for several days. I think I enjoy them even more after they are a day old.
Maybe you have tried making whole grain roti or tortillas before and been disappointed. I will venture they had a great taste but were tough or dry. In that case, they were only passable when they were warm or brushed with ghee. As your meal went on, they tended to stiffen up. Forget about enjoying them a day or more later.
All these things used to happen to me. But now I know the technique to making chewy, moist, soft whole wheat chapatis. I still can’t get over how I can grab a cold chapati straight from the fridge and have it flop gracefully in my hand. They are so convenient for meals in a snap. This morning I spread peanut butter on one and topped it with a banana, a drizzle of honey, and a sprinkle of hemp hearts. I had such a yummy breakfast.
That’s why I am excited to pass on my fantastic chapati cooking secrets to you. You’ve probably figured out by now that the difference doesn’t lie in the recipe’s simple ingredients. Yep, all you need is fresh whole wheat flour and water. I recommend organic, stone-ground flour for the best flavor. I also like to add some Himalayan pink salt, but that’s optional and up to you.
The two things that make these delicious chapatis so tender and chewy are mixing the flour with boiling water, and the way the dough is kneaded. The boiling water part sounds weird, right? Well, it softens the whole wheat flour and keeps the flatbreads moist over time. Kneading the high-hydration dough for 3 minutes on low speed with a stand mixer makes it soft and elastic.
The dough for this recipe is too sticky to knead by hand. That’s why letting a stand mixer do the work for you is especially handy. Don’t worry however if you don’t own a stand mixer. I have an alternate method for you. The solution is actually very simple. Let the uncooked chapatis rest under a damp towel for one hour before rolling them out. This way they will soften and relax. The stretchy strands of gluten will develop on their own. So, you can skip the kneading all together.
I love the way steam captured from the wet dough magically puffs up the chapatis into round balloons when you cook them. Your chapatis won’t balloon up quite as easily when the dough is rested in place of kneaded. You’ll have to coax them more while cooking. However, they are just as good in every other way as the ones worked in a stand mixer.
Are you ready for these fragrant, soft, delicious wraps? Make this Soft Whole Wheat Chapati Recipe and you can spread or fill them with anything your heart desires.
Soft Whole Wheat Chapati Recipe
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 tsp. Himalayan pink salt
- 2 1/3 cups whole wheat bread flour
Mix Chapati Dough
- Place flour in large bowl. You can use the mixing bowl of your stand mixer if using a machine.
- Put water and salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove water from heat as soon as it boils. That way it won't evaporate.
- Pour boiling water over flour. Mix with a heavy spoon. A sturdy wooden spoon works great. You should be able to moisten all the flour and clean sides of bowl without using hands.
If Using Stand Mixer- Knead
- Knead 3 minutes on low speed with mixer. Dough will remain sticky and won't form a ball. After 3 minutes dough will be soft and elastic and will have cooled enough to touch. Kneading too long will toughen dough.
Or No Stand Mixer – Just Rest
- If you aren't using a stand mixer to knead dough, let it cool 5 minutes or until dough can be handled. Turn out onto lightly floured counter and shape into a ball just enough to make dough uniform.
Divide and Pre-Shape Chapatis
- Very lightly flour counter and hands. Use a spatula or dough scraper to turn dough out from bowl onto counter.
- Shape dough into two logs, each six inches long. Keep dough covered with a damp tea towel so it won't dry out while cutting and shaping. Cut each log into 6 equal pieces. This will give you 12 chapatis.
- Take one piece, dip it into a small bowl of flour and shake off excess. Flatten with hands to a 4-inch disc. Place on a large piece of parchment paper or non-stick surface. Keep shaped chapatis covered with damp towel as you finish all 12.
- If dough has been kneaded in a mixer, roll out and cook chapatis right away.
If dough is not kneaded in a mixer, let shaped discs rest one hour under moistened towel before rolling out.
Roll Out Chapatis
- Pre-heat a cast iron skillet to medium temperature.
- Give yourself plenty of elbow room and use a smooth rolling pin. Take a chapati and rub both sides with flour. Use flour as needed with each flip and turn of dough to keep from sticking to counter. Scrape counter clean as needed while working.
- Begin by rolling firmly from center of chapati towards the North. Roll again from center of chapati to South. Roll dough to about 6 inches long. Dust top side of chapati very lightly with flour again and flip over. Dust new top side of chapati with a bit more flour than bottom. Turn dough 45 degrees and repeat rolling from center North to South. Now you should have a nice round chapati.
- The ideal size chapati for this recipe is 6 1/2 inches. Chapatis that are rolled too thin tend to stiffen and dry out while cooking.
- Cook chapatis one at a time immediately after rolling out. Don't let them rest on counter after rolling out or they will stick to surface.
- Lay a chapati in skillet and let cook about 1 minute. Watch for bubbles. When the first 1/2 inch bubble is forming, flip chapati. Chapati should be lightly flecked with brown spots. Adjust temperature of pan if necessary.
- Press around outer edge of chapati and lightly stroke a spatula across top. When a large bubble begins forming, apply gentle pressure with flat side of spatula to coax bubble to expand. Rocking and stroking helps pocket to grow. Once chapati makes a balloon it's ready.
- Stack cooked chapatis in a dry tea towel and cover. Towel will absorb some moisture and keep chapati from getting soggy.
- Continue cooking chapatis one at a time until all 12 are done. With practice, you can find a nice rhythm alternating between rolling out successive chapatis and flipping them in the skillet.