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Monday, 6 September 2021

Ukadiche Modak / Steamed Modak Recipe


Ukadiche Modak is a traditional Maharashtrian delicacy and a quintessential Naivedhyam for Ganesh Chaturthi festival. Basically, it is steamed dumpling with an outer covering made up of rice flour dough and a delicious coconut jaggery stuffing. Here, i am sharing the traditional method of pleating and shaping the modak with hands without the use of mould. Beautifully pleated Ukadiche modak served piping hot with a dollop of sajuk tup (ghee) is a delightful treat any day.

Ganesh Chaturthi Festival:

Ganesh Chaturthi also known as Vinayaka chaturthi is one of the most sacred and major traditional festivals celebrated in India with great enthusiasm and devotion. The festival marks the birth of lord Ganesha; the lord of knowledge, wisdom, prosperity and good fortune. The festival is observed in the Hindu calender month of Bhadrapada , starting on the shukla chaturthi ( fouth day of waxing moon period) and last for 10-12 days ending on Ananth Chaturdashi (14th day of waxing moon period). People bring home murti (idol) of Lord Ganesha and celebrate the festival by worshiping the Lord in a special way for a day and a half , 3 days, 5 days , 7 days or 11 days depending on the family tradition and commitment of each individual.

To please Lord Ganesha, various kind of food is offered as Naivedhyam during the Pooja. Modak and Ladoo are supposed to be Lord Ganesha's favorite sweets. We have Lord Ganesha for 5 days at my place during the festivity. There is an atmosphere of enthusiasm and excitement days before the arrival of lord Ganesha. The entire house is cleaned and decorated. A Makhar ( throne) for Ganesha is prepared. The place is decorated with flowers, lighting and rangoli. And last but not the least is a long list of food items that is prepared to be offered to Ganesha during this 5 days. Onion garlic free satvik food is cooked during the entire festival and is offered to lord before consuming it. From last 2 years, i have been preparing the eco-friendly clay idol of lord Ganesha at home.

Our Bappa during Ganesh Chaturthi Festival 2020

What is Modak ?

Modak is a small dumpling, that is usually stuffed with sweet coconut and dry fruit filling. Modaks can be made in a variety of ways. Traditioanlly, we Maharashtrians make the Ukadiche Modak (steamed rice flour dumplings stuffed with fresh scrapped coconut, jaggery and nuts) and Talniche Modak  (deep fried ones with outer covering made up of whole wheat flour). Apart from these 2 traditional modaks, i also make Chhena (Paneer ) modakChocolate Modak, and Panch Khadya Modak during the Ganesh Chaturthi Festival.

Video Recipe for Ukadiche Modak What is Ukadiche Modak? 

Ukadiche means steamed in Marathi language, so basically, ukadiche modak are the steamed dumplings with rice flour dough as outer covering and sweet coconut , jaggery and nut filling. Ukadiche modak is different from other modak varieties as it is steamed at 2 stages. First the rice flour dough for the outer covering is made by steaming the rice flour. Once the modaks are stuffed with coconut and jaggery filling and shaped, they are steamed again before serving. Steaming the modaks twice, gives it a soft, moist and melt-in-mouth texture.


Preparation Time: 25 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minute
Serves: 11 Ukadiche modak

Ingredients: Measurements used - 1 cup = 250 ml

For the Outer Covering of Modak
  • 1 cup / 150 grams rice flour
  • 3/4th cup water
  • 3/4th cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon ghee
  • Pinch of salt
For the stuffing / Inner sweet filling of Modak
  • 1/2 cup fresh grated coconut
  • 1/3 cup grated or powdered jaggery
  • 1 teaspoon poppy seeds
  • 2 tbsp chopped nuts of your choice
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom powder
  • 1 teaspoon ghee
Other Ingredients:

Few saffron strands soaked in hot water. (optional)



To make the inner sweet filling of Modak
  1. Heat 1 teaspoon ghee in a pan over medium flame. 
  2. Add poppy seeds to it and fry the seeds for around a minute on low flame.
  3. Next, add the chopped nuts and fry for another 1 minutes.
  4. To this, add the scrapped fresh coconut followed by grated jaggery.
  5. Give a good mix and allow the mixture to cook on low to medium flame for around 4-5 minutes.
  6. The jaggery will melt and make the filling runny but gradually as we cook it further the mixture will become dry but soft as it  still holds some moisture.
  7. Do not cook the mixture further as the jaggery will harden and make the filling chewy.
  8. Put off the flame and add cardamom powder to it.
  9. Allow the filling to cool down completely.
  10. Meanwhile, we will make the outer covering.

To make the outer covering of Modak and steaming them
  1. In a sauce pan heat 3/4 cup water. Add 3/4 cup milk, 1/2 teaspoon ghee and a pinch of salt to it.
  2. Once it comes to a rolling boil,add the rice flour gradually while stirring it continuously with a spatula. 
  3. The flour will immediately absorb all the moisture and become dry. Cover cook it for 1-2 minutes on low flame and put off the flame.
  4. Allow it to stand covered for another 5 minutes.
  5. Once the flour is cool enough to handle , remove it onto a large plate or bowl and start kneading it. 
  6. The dough would be hot, just wet your palms and sprinkle few teaspoons of water and knead the dough really very well. There should be no cracks on the dough if you roll a small portion of it between your palms.
  7.  Divide the dough into gooseberry size equal balls. Roll out each dough ball till smooth in your palms. 
  8. Now, flatten the dough balls into a disc or a shallow bowl shape.
  9. Fill 1 tablespoon of stuffing in the center of the flattened dough ball. 
  10. Now pinch out as many pleats as possible on the dough ball. 
  11. Carefully gather the edges and secure them in the center.
  12. Make all the modaks similarly. Refer the video for better understanding.
  13. Make sure you keep the dough balls and the shaped modaks covered with a moist cloth while working to prevent them from drying.
  14. Set the steamer, line the steamer basket with muslin cloth, turmeric leaves or banana leaves.
  15. Arrange the shaped modaks on to it without overcrowding,
  16. Add few drops of saffron water over each modak.
  17. Cover the steamer and steam the modaks for 10 -12 minutes.
  18. Offer the Ukadiche Modak to lord Ganesha and further distribute it as prasad.
  19. Serve the healthy and delicious Ukadiche Modak piping hot topped with sajuk tup (ghee) and enjoy with your loved ones!



Recipe Notes:

  • Use good quality rice to make "pithi" rice flour for the outer covering of the modak.
  • To make pithi at home, take 1/2 kg "Ambe Mohar" variety of rice. Wash it thouroughy, drain and then spread it on a clean kitchen towel and allow it to dry in shade. Now, grind it to a fine flour in flour mill.
  • The quantity of water and milk used to make the dough for outer covering of the modak may vary depending upon the quality of rice flour used.
  • Ensure you do not add more water or milk while cooking the rice flour. This will make the dough sticky.
  • Do not overcook the stuffing as jaggery will harden on further cooling.
  • The same jaggery coconut filling can be used for making karanji or gujiya.
  • Make sure you keep the dough balls and the shaped modaks covered with a moist cloth while working to prevent them from drying.
  • If you do not have time and patience to shape the modaks with hands, you may use ready made modak moulds to shape the modaks.
  • You can dip the shaped modaks in a bowl filled with water and milk just before steaming, to ensure they are not dried out while shaping all the modaks.
  • There should be no cracks in the dough before shaping the modaks or else the modak will tear. Adding less water will result in dry dough. Also do not add more ghee then the amount mentioned in the recipe, or the dough will get cracks.
  • Do not flatten the dough ball too thin or too thick. Too thin dough will tear while shaping the pleats and too thick dough will take time in cooking and will taste doughy and unpleasant.


Would love to hear from you !

I hope you would love trying out this healthy and delicious Ukadiche Modak at home. If you do so, feel free to share your feedback with us in the form of likes and comments in the section below this post.

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See you soon with yet another healthy and delicious creation from my Kitchen. Until then Stay safe and eat right !


Happy Cooking !

Happy Eating !



Poonam Bachhav       


  1. Steamed Modak with coconut and jaggery stuffing is so addictive . I made this without poppy seeds. Absolutely delicious. Beautifully explained and presented Poonam. May Bappa bless us all.

  2. Your Ukadiche Modak look so soft and perfectly made! We make these modaks without milk, and I'm sure the addition makes them all the more softer and flavourful. Love the eco-friendly idol of Bappa that you have made at home!

  3. Modak look so perfectly made and tempting..I have bookmarked your recipe, since a long time I am thinking of trying out these tradtional modaks.. whenever I make this will let you know..

  4. Steamed Modak looks absolutely delicious. We odias also make similar dish but the shapes are round, we call as Sijha Manda Pitha.