Naan Bread with Cheese and Chiles

Naan bread with cheese and chiles took a good thing and made it incredible. Warm, chewy, and easy to make, you don’t need more than flour, baking powder, and yogurt for the dough. Fill it with green chiles, cheddar and mozzarella. A sprinkle of sea salt and you’re ready to tuck in.

Three cheese and chile naan bread, drizzled with butter, in a metal dish on a wooden table, beside pieces of naan.

Adapted from Chetna Makan | Chetna’s 30-Minute Indian | Mitchell Beazley, 2021

Naan is such a versatile bread, gorgeous plain but you can also add so many different flavors and textures to it. You really don’t need anything else with this naan, but you can always pair it with a curry of your choice.–Chetna Makan

Video

Naan Bread with Cheese and Chiles

Three cheese and chile naan bread, drizzled with butter, in a metal dish on a wooden table, beside pieces of naan.
I have made these cheese and chile naan many times—they're absolutely scrumptious served warm slathered with butter.
Chetna Makan

Prep 30 mins
Cook 10 mins
Total 40 mins
Sides
Indian
4 large naan
429 kcal
No ratings yet
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Ingredients 

For the dough

  • 1 1/2 cups (7 ounces) all-purpose flour plus more for rolling
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/3 cup (2 1/2 oz) store-bought or homemade plain yogurt
  • 4 to 5 tablespoons water
  • A few drops mild vegetable oil

For the filling

  • Scant cup (3 1/2 oz) Cheddar cheese grated
  • Scant 1/2 cup (1 3/4 oz) mozzarella cheese grated
  • 1 green chile* such as jalapeño or serrano, finely chopped
  • Handful of fresh cilantro finely chopped
  • Salted butter to serve

Directions
 

Make the dough

  • In a large bowl, mix together the flour, salt, sugar, baking powder, and yogurt. Gradually add just enough of the measured water, or a little more if needed, to bring the mixture together into a dough.
  • Knead the dough on a work surface for a few seconds. Put a few drops of oil in the palms of your hands and knead the dough for a final time, then return to the bowl, cover, and let rest for 10 minutes.

Make the filling

  • Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, mix the Cheddar and mozzarella cheese, chile, and cilantro together.
  • Preheat a grill, grill pan, or broiler to medium.
  • Divide the dough into 4 portions. Roll out each portion to form a 3-to-4-inch (7.5 to 10 cm) circle. Place one-quarter of the filling (about 1/3 cup) in the center of each circle, then gather up the edges and pinch together to seal in the filling.
  • Roll each naan in a little flour and gently press flat with your fingertips, then roll out into 9-to-10-inch (23 to 25 cm) circles, or any shape you like of equivalent size. Place on a rimmed baking sheet.
  • Cook on the grill or under the broiler until golden, 1 to 4 minutes, then turn the naan over and cook until golden on the other side, 1 to 4 minutes more. Spread some salted butter on top and serve warm.
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Notes

*Can I used dried chile powder?

Actually, you can. One of our testers tried it and the recipe came out just fine. You might find that you miss the pop of heat that a diced, fresh pepper gives you, but in a pinch or just for preference, it will work. This is especially good to know if you have a particular kind of chile that you’d like to try—come on, we all have our favorites.

Show Nutrition

Serving: 1naanCalories: 429kcal (21%)Carbohydrates: 71g (24%)Protein: 16g (32%)Fat: 8g (12%)Saturated Fat: 4g (25%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gCholesterol: 26mg (9%)Sodium: 577mg (25%)Potassium: 148mg (4%)Fiber: 3g (13%)Sugar: 2g (2%)Vitamin A: 219IU (4%)Vitamin C: 1mg (1%)Calcium: 216mg (22%)Iron: 4mg (22%)

Recipe Testers' Reviews

Four cheese and chile naan breads in a textured bowl on a blue table cloth.

Fresh hot naan made right in your kitchen in just about 30 minutes. This recipe for naan bread with cheese and chiles is what I call a “refrigerator door recipe”—it wouldn’t have a chance to be filed away! Biting into the supple, slightly chewy flatbread filled with gooey cheddar and mozzarella (I used whole milk low-moisture, not fresh) is so addictive it is tempting to stamp this recipe “serves one.” The naan is delicious with or without salted butter, but it’s exceptional with ghee made from cultured butter. (I highly recommend making it yourself. It’s very easy and very special.)

A few pointers to note:
First, to speed things up, grate the cheeses and chop the green chile and cilantro while the dough rests for 10 minutes—no need to do this prep work in advance.

Second, have a small dish of oil nearby when kneading and rolling out the dough. If it’s too sticky, see if you can remedy it by using more oil on the palm of your hands instead of using flour. If you must flour your work surface, be very conservative. This is not a lot of dough, so it doesn’t take very much added flour to end up with drier naan. (Trust me on this. I made multiple batches because, as I said, the recipe serves one in my house...)

Third, as you pinch the filled dough, try to squeeze out as much air as possible, or you’ll risk bursting large air pockets when you roll out the dough the second time. To keep from disturbing the filled dough too much, I rolled it out mostly just in one direction to four ovals that were about 4 inches x 8 inches. (You may have some filling leftover. It’s lovely folded around an omelet.)

Lastly—and the best discovery for me personally—don’t fret if it’s too cold outside to grill or you don’t have a special indoor grill. The broiler in your oven is basically an upside-down indoor grill and it works very well here. I set the baking sheet on the highest rack, about 4 inches from the element. About 1 minute to 1 minute 15 seconds per side under the broiler (i.e., do NOT walk away) the naan cooked to perfection with beautiful slightly charred spots.

My family loves naan, it is a versatile bread to serve at mealtime and I was excited to give this recipe for naan bread with cheese and chiles a go. As a first-time naan baker, I was pleasantly surprised by the success of this recipe. For a brief moment, I thought it would be wise to attempt a plain naan before this version. I'm so glad I tried this recipe first—adding in cheese, chiles, and herbs opened up my mind to the possibilities with this bread and I will definitely make naan at home again.


Originally published July 13, 2021

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Comments

  1. Anyone try this with gluten-free flour? What does Chetna have to say about gluten-free flours in naan? Thanks.

    1. Suzi, we didn’t try it with gluten-free flour, so we can’t say how it would turn out. As with other gluten-free breads, it wouldn’t have the same elasticity, but if you have a reliable all-purpose gluten-free flour that you are comfortable using, give it a try. You may need to adjust the amount of liquid.

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