Bellam Garelu – Jaggery Flavored Vadas

I’m not sure if many of you have heard of sweet flavored ‘vada/garelu’. Dear reader, I’m talking of bellam (jaggery) garelu where deep fried crisp vadas are sweetened with jaggery syrup, a traditional sweet in our parts. Sometimes, during festivals or special occasions, when garelu are prepared, if there is any left over urad dal or garelu batter, sweet flavored vadas are prepared and usually served during tea time. I can eat them at time of the day, though..:)

No onions or green chillis go into this vada batter – just whole urad dal soaked in water, drained, ground to a fine paste with salt, beaten till fluffy and white, shaped into vadas, deep-fried till crisp and golden brown and dropped immediately in warm jaggery syrup till they absorb the syrup. The resultant vadas are absolutely delicious with the first bite having that hint of crispiness when eaten hot and puffy off the stove.

The sweet richness of jaggery countered by the earthiness of urad dal, leaves a pleasant mouth-feel, very earthy and sweet – a fine balance of flavors. Best eaten hot when the crust still retains the crispiness and believe me, savoring these teepi (sweet) garelu is pure pleasure guaranteed!

Bellam (Teepi) Garelu Recipe

Prep & Cooking: 45 mts, Soaking time: 2 hrs

Makes: 12-14 vadas

Cuisine: Andhra



1 cup whole urad dal (black gram dal, minappappu)

salt to taste

oil for deep frying

1 cup grated jaggery, add water, cook to prepare a syrup that is sticky on touch

1 1/2 cups water

1 Soak whole black gram dal in water for 2 hours.
2 Strain the water, and grind the dal to a paste sprinkling little water and salt. Use small portions of dal to grind batch wise as its easier to grind into a soft paste. Beat till fluffy.
3 Heat water, add the jaggery and let it melt and form a syrup which is sticky to touch. While the jaggery is forming a syrup, deep fry the vadas.
4 Take a deep frying vessel, add enough oil and heat till piping hot.
5 Wet your hands with water, take a lemon-sized ball of batter and flatten it into a vada on a greased sheet or banana leaf. Make a hole in the centre of the vada so that it cooks evenly all over.
6 Slowly drop the vada into the hot oil carefully and fry it on both sides on medium heat to a golden brown color. Deep fry 4-5 vadas per batch depending on the size of the vessel.
7 Immediately dip these fried vadas into the jaggery syrup. Let them sit in this syrup till the next batch of vadas are deep-fried. Remove them onto a serving plate and drop the next batch of vadas into the syrup.
8 Drizzle some left over syrup over vadas before serving and serve hot while the crust is still crisp.


Add a pinch of cardamom pwd to the syrup or for a savory touch to this sweet, add a pinch of freshly ground pepper pwd to the syrup. Its your choice. Ensure that the jaggery syrup doesn’t become thick, it should just melt and feel sticky. You will know when the vadas have absorbed the syrup and done as they will be heavy. Be careful they don’t become too soggy.

This recipe is my contribution to VKN’s group book project ‘You can cook for FAHC campaign. Thank you, VKN, for providing an opportunity to contribute to a worthy cause and appreciate the efforts of the entire team of FAHC.

For more information on this project, visit Feed A Hungry Child.

Bellam Garelu – Jaggery Flavored Vadas

  Prepare time:
 Serves: 2

 Main Ingredients:

  •  jaggery
  •   urad dal


  • Lera

    Bellamgarelu (sweet udhin vada as we call here) is looking yummmmmmmmm!!!A nice sweet dish to relish ,my grandmom makes this with sugar syrup .

  • asha

    Never heard of this although my grandmother makes similar sweet with rice flour or something like that,called Kajjaya. It dark brown when fried and dipped in sugar syrup for a minute.
    This dish looks great, Uddin Vada dipped in sugar syrup!:))

  • sra

    Good recipe to resuscitate, Sailu!

  • Sandeepa

    Looks great Sailaja and you have served them so nicely on the green banana leaf, looks totally ras bhare

  • Padmaja

    hai sailu!!!woh!!!!!
    u’r bellam garelu looks amazing and i now wonder how u’r family enjoyed eating those!!!!
    i should try one day!!!

  • Latha

    Hi Sailu,
    Yummy looking bellam garelu! I still prefer the ulli garelu but your pictures can make anything look good ๐Ÿ˜‰
    I loved your post on watermelons! Oh how I miss India!

  • sia

    i have seen them at some wedding function but never tasted. uddin vada dipped in jaggary syrup sounds really good. my hubby usually likes his dosas with jaggary syrup which we call rave. i guess he might like this one too. will give it a shot very soon and let u know:)

  • Ashwini

    They look like better donuts ๐Ÿ™‚ Loved the second photo.

  • Jayashree

    Dear Sailaja,
    Bellam garalu , looks so yummy,
    we made a similar sweet Ros Boda with urad dal and the syrup with Jaggery (we call it Khejurer gur )..
    Loved all the pics for vada, and the watermelon, OMG looks so colourful. How is the weather in Vizag, its raining here a lot ..
    Its always a treat coming here..
    hugs and smiles

    Guess what, it rained here too yesterday, very unusual..otherwise the weather is pleasant as of now.

  • Mishmash !

    Sweet Vadas!!! Never heard of it! vadas on banana leaves look good:)

    Happy V-DAY ๐Ÿ™‚

  • swapna

    hi sailu
    this is one of my favorite mouth is watering for them.can i take one?mmmmmmm!!!!!!!!

  • swapna

    hi sailu
    this is one of my favorite dishes…looks yummy…with sugar also we will make.

  • Mandira

    Sailu – the ras-bhare vadas look delicious. Woud love to try this over a weekend…

  • preethi

    the vadas look delicious .yummy recipe…….will try it.

  • Linda

    Sailu… it snowed all morning here, then for seven hours it’s been raining ice pellets on top of the snow. I have just come from fighting it with a shovel, and this is the first photo I see. Surely you know how utterly DELICIOUS these look… thank you for sharing this lovely sweet warm dish ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Menu Today

    Hi Sailu,
    I tasted this in my friends place , they made this with sugar syrup.. Your vada looks healthy with vellam.
    Thanks for sharing.

  • sumitha

    Now this is an absolutely new snack to me.looks so good!

  • Rajani

    Hi Sailu garu
    Manchi recipe blog chesaru. Chudataniki chala bagunnayi and yes I have tasted them befor too.

  • Lisa

    The pictures look so beautiful. I feel I can taste the vada only by seeing them… ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Rosa

    That looks delicious! Great!

  • Jyothsna

    Beautiful picture, vadas served on a banana leaf! Never heard of sweet vadas, but sounds mouth watering!:)

  • sowmya

    Hello Sailu,

    All recipes in ur site r excellent, I tried few receipes of urs n they came out very good. Every month I wait for ur new release.
    Keep going we all will support u.


  • Anjali

    This is a cousin of our koli ghari, I guess due to appearance, so I peered at the recipe but the ingredients are different. Look yummy.

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  • Timmy

    Damn.. I found this website by accident and I am amazed by how good Andhra Food is……so many goodies I want to try out…..thanks!!!

  • SOM

    madam sailaja garu .. photo chooste noru vurutunid .. kani emi cheyyadam .. bachelors miss alot.

  • Amit

    it is good.

  • shaikhmohammed

    madam sailu, i believe it is great idea but can i ask u that instead of giving wada shape just simply roundels can be prepared withough having hole in between? thanks

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  • vaishu

    very nice recipe

  • shirley

    i did this . But unfortunately the batter was black en was not in the consistency of making the vada. the jaggery syrup remained thin … wh
    at are the alterations i need to do ?

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