This homemade samosa recipe makes delicious deep fried samosas... but also works fantastically in the air fryer! I'll show you both ways to cook them!
Because I’m low carbbing at the moment, it’s going to be a while before I have one, LOL.
Anyway, I decided to live vicariously through my husband, and make a batch of traditional samosa for him. It’s been a very, very long time since I’ve made non-GF samosas - probably more than 10 years at this point - but they’re not hard to make.
I first learned how to make Indian samosa when I was in Junior High home Ec class.
This is an Aloo samosa recipe - a spiced potato filling (Aloo = potatoes). These delicious samosas have a comforting filling, a flaky crust, and are actually vegan samosas, at that!
This is an easy samosa recipe, in the sense that it’s all fairly basic technique. Even a Jr High student can make these, after all!
That said, “easy recipes” don’t necessarily mean “low effort” - these do take a bit of work to make. It’s a great recipe for a cosy rainy day at home, or to whip out for special occasions, though!
Air Fryer Samosas
This time around, we decided to air fry some of them. We love our air fryer, after all ... and I HATE deep frying things.
Yes, I know that's the traditional way to make these, so I deep fried also - grudgingly, LOL. I don't like babysitting oil, or the cleanup, etc. I like the crispiness, but in general? Not a fan of deep fried foods.
My husband is the same way, AND he's the one doing dishes, AND he's on a health kick... so he was 100% seeing how air frying would work.
They turned out beautifully! Crisped up nicely, had a great texture - he didn't miss the oil at all.
When he tried the deep fried version, he said that there was a difference - the deep fried ones puffed up a bit more.
That said, he actually ended up preferring the air fried ones! I wanted to make sure that was a legit statement, but he said even if healthiness and cleanup weren't issues, he'd prefer the air fried.
Your mileage may vary, of course ... but these were definitely very convincing. I've used both photos of deep and air fried versions throughout thist post, labelled with the cooking method.
The ingredients for this recipe are relatively simple, and can be looked at in 3 groups: The samosa filling recipe, the samosa dough recipe, and the oil for frying.
This filling started out as the one I created for my Gluten-Free Samosa Recipe.
It does make slightly too much filling for the dough recipe in this case, but I like the proportions of everything, so we just dealt with the leftovers.
Then, once it was all done, we decided to add a bit more kick to the flavour. The original was pleasant, but I think might have been influenced by our environment - I was living in MN at the time!
So, this time around, I added cumin seeds, fennel seeds, and some crushed chilies. SO GOOD!
Salt & Ground Black Pepper
... yes, it’s a bit of a laundry list... but samosas need FLAVOUR!
Crispy Samosa Dough
Compared to the filling, the dough looks pretty sparse for ingredients, LOL. You will need:
All purpose flour
Carom seeds (Ajwain seeds)
Oil for Frying
You’ll want to use one of the vegetable oil options - like canola oil, corn oil, or sunflower oil - for deep frying. Peanut oil is another great option.
These are all great oils for frying - neutral flavours, high smoke point, low cost.
Olive oil is NOT appropriate for deep frying, but can be used as a spray if you’re baking or air frying these (more on that in a bit).
Coconut oil and avocado oil also aren’t great for deep frying, but work well as sprays for baking and use in the air fryer.
How to Make Samosas
The full recipe is at the end of this post, in the recipe card. This is a pictorial walk through, as I find that step by step photos definitely help when folding samosas!
Make the Samosa Dough Recipe
Measure flour, carom seeds, and salt into a large bowl, stir to combine.
Add oil to the bowl of flour mixture. Using clean or gloved hands, mix by hand - rubbing the oil into the flour - until it’s well incorporated, evenly distributed through the flour, and looks like relatively uniform crumbs.
Add about half of the water, and gently work it into the dough.
Add a little water at a time, until a firm dough comes together. You may need slightly more or less water than called for - use just enough water to make it workable.
Note: for best results use COLD water. Ice water is best.
Do NOT overwork the dough - you don’t want to develop the gluten, you want a flaky pastry dough!
Wrap the dough ball in plastic wrap and let the dough rest at room temperature for an hour. As the dough is resting, make your potato filling:
Make the Samosa Filling Recipe
Peel potatoes, cut into large chunks. Boil potatoes until just tender, about 15 minutes.
While potatoes are boiling, sauté onion, carrot, and olive oil in a large skillet or frying pan over medium heat until tender. Add garlic and ginger, cook for another minute or so.
Add potatoes, spices, lemon juice, and water; mash lightly, stir to combine everything.
Add peas and cilantro, season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
How to Fold Samosa
Divide the dough into 8 equal pieces.
Scatter some flour over your - clean! - work surface.
Using a rolling pin, roll one piece of dough out to a 6-7" square-ish piece. Cut in half, diagonally, forming 2 half-moon shapes.
Working with one of the two cut pieces, lightly wet the straight edge you just cut.
Fold the dough in half along that straight edge, so the wet edge meets up with itself. Press and crimp to seal.
Pick up the piece of dough, gently separating formed "pocket" into a cone shape.
Stuff with filling, then flip the uncut corner edge over to meet the cut edges.
Pinch the edges of the stuffed triangle to seal.
Repeat with the other cut piece, and remaining dough balls.
I like to keep the dough AND the finished samosas covered with a damp cloth, to prevent drying.
To Deep Fry Samosas
Start heating your oil to 350 F (180 C) – you’ll want at least 2-3" of oil in your pot or deep fryer.
Fry a few at a time in the hot oil, flipping them every few minutes - until crispy and golden brown, about 8-10 minutes.
Use a slotted spoon to transfer fried samosas to platter lined with paper towel .
Allow the oil temperature to come back to 350 F between batches.
Serve hot, with sweet tamarind chutney and/or green chutney (Like my Cilantro-Mint Chutney Recipe!)
How to Air Fry Samosas
Deep frying can be a pain, and sometimes I just don’t want to deal with SO much oil.
I tell you, the air fryer we bought early in 2020 has DEFINITELY been one of the best pandemic purchases that we made!
With just a little oil, the process of “frying” many things - including these samosas - got so much quicker and easier.
Once all of the samosas are assembled, preheat your air fryer to 400F.
Once heated, spray the air fryer basket with a small amount of oil, and arrange samosas in a single layer, leaving a bit of space between each. (You’ll need to do this in batches)
Air fry for about 8-10 minutes. About halfway through, re-spray the samosas, then use a pair of tongs to flip each piece. Spray the new “top” side, and continue cooking.
To Oven Bake Samosas
Heat oven to 400 F (200 C)
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper, spray with pan spray.
Arrange samosas on the pan, spray with a bit of pan spray.
Bake for 10 minutes, then flip samosas.
Spray once again with pan spray, bake for another 5-10 minutes, or golden brown and heated through.
Leftover samosas - whichever way they’re cooked - can be cooled to room temperature before being transferred to an airtight container and stored in the fridge for up to a week.
Alternatively, cooled samosas can be placed in a freezer bag and frozen for up to 3 months.
An air fryer is the absolute best way to reheat them, regardless of the initial cooking method. We like to microwave them a bit first - to heat them through - then air fry at 400 for a few minutes to crisp them up.
More Indian Recipes....
Love Indian cuisine? Be sure to check out these other fabulous Indian - and Indian inspired - recipes!
Specialty Diet Versions
Looking for gluten-free and/or low carb Indian recipes? Here are a few from my other blogs:
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Traditional Samosa Recipe
- 3 Russet potatoes washed
- 1 Onion finely chopped
- 1 Large carrot
- 1 tablespoon Olive oil
- 3 Garlic cloves minced or pressed
- 1 Tablespoon Ginger paste
- 1 tablespoon Curry powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 1 teaspoon Garam masala
- ½ teaspoon Ground coriander
- ½ teaspoon Cayenne
- 2 tablespoon Lemon juice
- 2 tablespoon Water
- 1 cup Frozen peas thawed
- 2 tablespoon Chopped cilantro
- Salt and pepper
- 2 cups All purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon Carom seeds
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- ¼ cup Vegetable oil
- ⅓ cup Water
- Oil for frying See post for options
- Peel potatoes, cut into large chunks.
- Boil until just tender, about 15 minutes.
- While potatoes are boiling, sauté onion and carrot in olive oil until tender. Add garlic and ginger, cook for another minute
- Add potatoes, spices, lemon juice, and water; mash lightly, stir to combine everything.
- Add peas and cilantro, season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
- Measure flour, carom seeds, and salt into a large bowl, stir to combine.
- Add oil to the bowl. Using clean or gloved hands, mix by hand - rubbing the oil into the flour - until it’s well incorporated, evenly distributed through the flour, and looks like relatively uniform crumbs.
- Add about half of the water, and gently work it into the dough. Add more water, a little at a time, until a stiff dough comes together. You may need slightly more or less water than called for.
- Do NOT overwork the dough - you don’t want to develop the gluten, you want a flaky pastry dough!
- Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and let it rest at room temperature for an hour.
- Start heating your oil to 350 F (180 C) – you’ll want at least 2-3" of oil in your pot or deep fryer.
- Divide dough into 8 equal pieces.
- Scatter some potato starch over your -clean! - work surface.
- Roll one piece of dough out to a 6-7" square-ish piece. Cut in half, diagonally.
- Working with one of the two cut pieces, lightly wet the straight edge you just cut.
- Fold the dough in half along that straight edge, so the wet edge meets up with itself. Press and crimp to seal.
- Pick up the piece of dough, gently separating formed "pocket" into a cone shape.
- Stuff with filling, then flip the uncut corner edge over to meet the cut edges.
- Pinch edges to seal. Repeat with the other cut piece, and remaining dough balls
- Fry a few at a time - turning every few minutes - until crispy and golden, about 8 minutes.
- Use a slotted spoon to transfer fried samosas to platter lined with paper towels.
- Serve hot, with cilantro-mint chutney