Danielle’s Foolproof Quick Injera
Well, I’ve finally done it! After three years of experimentation, I’ve come up with a foolproof Ethiopian injera recipe that is quick and easy. Granted, it does not have the complex, sourdough flavor of the long-fermented injera that takes days to prepare. But it is so close to it most people, even those who are Ethiopian aficionados, can not tell the difference.
If you are craving Ethiopian food and have some sourdough starter on hand, this is a bread you can create from start to finish in as little as 20 minutes.
Teff, a vital ingredient in good Ethiopian injera, is a very nutritious grain from Africa and is arguably the tiniest individual grain in the world. Injera is an Ethiopian flatbread with a consistency somewhere between a crepe and a pancake. It is spongy and flexible with a sour flavor which perfectly compliments the savory and spicy Ethiopian stews on which they are served. The injera not only is your plate in an Ethiopian meal but also acts as the eating utensil. You just tear off a piece and fold it over a mound of stew on your plate, pinch off a bite, and pop it into your mouth. When you finish devouring the stews, you eat the plate which has become saturated with their delicious juices!
Every Ethiopian chef I’ve met says it is virtually impossible to make Injera using 100% teff in the United States. No one seems to know the reason, but it is believed to have something to do with climate and humidity. This recipe is my version, which is quite comparable to the best injera I’ve eaten in Ethiopian restaurants.
Important! Read before proceeding!
When working with flour, it is much more accurate to measure by weight than by volume. In creating this recipe, I used a scale for each measurement, even the water. A sourdough starter may be one volume when you begin a recipe and can easily double in size by the time you add it to the batter because it is alive and actively growing as it sits on your countertop. Even though it increases in volume, its
If you do not have a kitchen scale that measures in both ounces and grams, you may use the volume measurements beside each ingredient. Use a spoon to loosely fill your measuring cup with flour. Level off the cup with the back of a knife. Do not scoop the flour from a bag or container with the measuring cup or shake the flour down into the cup to level it off. This will densely pack your cup, and you will have more flour than called for in the recipe.
Danielle's Foolproof Quick Injera
- 160 grams teff flour approximately 1 cup by volume
- 230 grams all-purpose flour approximately 1 3/4 cup by volume
- 250 grams sourdough starter approximately 1 cup by volume
- 945 grams water 4 cups by volume
- 1 tbsp baking powder 12 grams
- 1 tbsp cornstarch 12 grams
- In a blender add 4 cups water and 1 cup teff flour. Blend on slow initially just to combine ingredients. Use a rubber spatula if necessary to scrape the dough from the sides of the blender. Test the teff by rubbing a bit of wet dough between your fingers. In the beginning, it feels grainy like a fine, wet sand. Turn blender up gradually until on high speed. Blend for one to two minutes. You can tell when the teff is ready when it is no longer very grainy. It will never be perfectly smooth but will be much less grainy than in the beginning.
- Add all-purpose flour. Blend on low to combine. Turn off blender and scrape sides. Resume mixing on high only long enough to remove lumps, 15 to 30 seconds. Do not over-blend. (This will overdevelop the gluten in the flour and will result in a rubbery texture.)
- Add sourdough starter and blend to combine. While the blender is still running, add baking powder and cornstarch. Gradually increase speed to high and blend for 30 seconds.
- Allow batter or "leet" to rest for 15 minutes.
- Heat a non-stick skillet with a lid on high heat. It is ready when a drop of water on the surface of the skillet sizzles and burns off quickly.
- Pour 1/2 to 3/4 cup batter into the hot pan and tilt the pan on all sides unit the batter spreads evenly across the bottom of the pan. The amount of batter you use depends upon the size of your pan. I use a 12" flat-bottom skillet with straight sides with a lid.
- Cook on high heat for 15 seconds or until holes form on the top of the pancakes and the batter begins to firm. Cover and continue cooking until the edges of the pancake begin to lift from the sides of the pan and begin to curl. Depending on the heat of your stove, the entire process should take 1 1/2 to 3 minutes. As moisture accumulates on the inside of the lid, wipe it off with a paper towel or a clean cotton cloth so the moisture does not drop onto the injera and cause gummy spots. The pancake should be filled with little holes the Ethiopians call "eyes". The injera should also easily slide in the pan when shaken.
- Slide onto a clean cloth on a countertop or table. I like to use flour sack towels (I also use one for wiping the moisture from the pan's lid). While the injera is cooling begin another in exactly the same manner. When the injera has cooled completely, you may stack them on top of each other. The injera must be completely cooled, not room temperature but rather cool to the touch, before they are stacked. Otherwise they will stick together and become unusable.
- This recipe should make eight to ten 12-inch injeras, depending on how thick you make them. One should be used as a the plate for Ethiopian stews. The rest should be rolled up like cigars and served on the side. These will be used to eat the stews by pinching the stews between pieces of injera. Then just pop it into your mouth! No utensils, no problem!
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Danielle, thank you so much for developing and sharing this recipe. I’ve made it several times now and really enjoy how easy it is to put together. Regarding getting a more sour or fermented taste, I wanted to share that I recently made a batch replacing 1/3 of the water with a dark beer (porter). I thought that created a flavor closer to traditional injera, plus it also created a beautiful color. I wondered if you have any tricks or suggestions for getting more eyes. I do have them, but they aren’t quite as nice as yours are and are on the smaller side.
What a great idea! Thanks for sharing. I’ll try the beer trick myself soon. I’m having guests over for an Ethiopian meal in the coming weeks.
I’m stumped by the lack of eyes. I would think that the beer would encourage more eyes to form. Have you checked the expiration date of your baking powder? That may be your culprit. You can also let the batter rest for 15 minutes before making your injera. That gives the sourdough starter time to become active.
I’m excited to try your addition of beer. That’s a clever solution to improve the sourness of the leet.
Thanks for your excellent suggestion!
Hi Danielle, thanks for the great, quick recipe. I’ve made traditional injera (yes, fermenting it for days) once like 3 years ago. Very tasty but the look wasn’t quite perfect. Plus, it took so long, I just kept the leftover red in my container.
Yours is so easy, I’ll definitely treat ourselves to Ethiopian food a lot more often!
Having said that, I’d love some more tang if possible.
Have you thought or heard about using more sourdough starter and much less all purpose flour? If so, what ration would you use?
if I keep the same ratio for liquid and flour (the starter being 1 part water and 1 part flour), would it work do you think?
Or a bit of citric acid or lemon juice results in better results do you think?
Or leaving the batter on the counter for a day or so….?
Or just add extra acid in the stews and forget about forget about experimenting? 😅
Let me know your thoughts.
When I do these experiments myself, I’ll let you know.
Hi, Marie, Thank you for your comments and questions. I’ll answer them in the order asked. First, I have made injera using just the starter, substituting some of the white flour with teff. While it makes perfectly good injera, it isn’t any sourer than the original recipe. Letting the batter (leet) sit on the counter for a day may make it slightly more sour, but it defeats the purpose of the recipe, that is, making injera whenever you want it, without the wait. I am having guests over soon (within the next few weeks) and will be preparing an Ethiopian feast for them. I plan to try the citric acid when I make this batch and see how it works. I have been considering the addition of citric acid for some time. I suspect that will do the trick. I’ll let you know how it works out. Please do not add acid to your stews! That would be a travesty, lol! Another thing: I discovered you could substitute whole white wheat, or pastry flour, for the all-purpose flour in this recipe. That will give you an injera that is 100% whole grain while continuing to have the soft, pillowy texture of the original recipe. I think that covers your questions. Good luck and happy cooking! Danielle
This is totally 💯 wrong information injera never make this short time Why injera is sour ? Because the dough have be at least 3 to 4 days old that is why be coming sour
Yes, I quite agree this is not the traditional way to make injera. That’s the point of this recipe. Most native Americans do not want to wait 3 to 4 days to enjoy injera. This is a quick recipe that allows busy cooks to serve injera on the day that you want to eat it that is perfect in every way except for the lack of a sour flavor. I personally prefer my injera to be less sour, so this recipe suits me fine. If you want to make sour injera, there are plenty of traditional recipes for you to choose from.
Thank you for sharing this recipe, Danielle! In order to get a more sour taste, I wonder if you’ve experimented with mixing the teff, water, all-purpose flour, and starter in the evening, and letting the mixture sit at room temperature to ferment for 12-24 hours (and adding the baking soda and cornstarch only before cooking). I think that would result in a more authentically sour taste, but I’m not sure about the texture. I might experiment with that and report back.
That’s an excellent idea!! I think you’re onto something. If you try it, let us all know how it turns out. I’ll also try it the next time I make injera. Great job!
Thank you for your ultra thorough western injera recipe. You saved the day… 12 coming for Ethiopian dinner and my injera supplier decided to no longer make and sell it! I have tried other recipes which were a full disaster. These turned out absolutely perfect. 👍👍👍
Thank you, Ruth. I’m so glad this recipe worked out for you. It really does take the hassle out of making perfectly acceptable injera. Now you’ve got me salivating for some good Ethiopian food!
I made this today for an Ethiopian cooking class tonight and I love it!! I agree with your comment in the recipe about it not having the tang of traditional injera. I noticed there was no salt in the recipe so I added a little, and I wonder if you could add some sourdough flavor (the King Arthur stuff) to get a tangier taste. Thanks so much for this recipe, I love it!
Hi, Tiss, I’m so glad you are enjoying this recipe. You’re right, I don’t add salt. I’ve yet to meet an Ethiopian who does. I really don’t think it needs it, but you may certainly add salt if you like. I try to limit sodium intake whenever I can. I don’t have any experience with King Arthur Sourdough Flavor, why why not try it? Experimentation is half the fun of cooking. Let me know if that works for you. Happy Cooking! Danielle
Hi, Tiss, I’ve been mulling over your comment about the lack of tang in my injera recipe and I’ve come up with what I think may be a solution. I admit I haven’t tried this yet because, frankly, I like my injera the way it is. It occurs to me you could try a pinch of citric acid in your batter. I think that may give you the tang you are looking for.
Hello. I used 4 cups of Teff flour as suggested and I had basically a disaster. I read afterwards that you should not use all Teff flour. I guess that’s why the ripped, tore, stuck to pan. They did taste good though but I can’t keep that huge pile of small pieces.
Yikes! We’ve all had that kind of disaster. Time to toss out the error and begin again, Kim. I’ve never been able to get decent results using 100% teff. Don’t give up. Once you conquer this recipe, you’ll be glad you hung in there.
Good luck, Kim!
I spent time with the owner of Axum restaurant in San Francisco. He met me at his second place, and took me into the kitchen before the restaurant opened, and he uses a mixture of Teff and wheat and corn, because it is cheap and it gives the right texture, and he said even in Ethiopia nobody uses pure Teff because it is too expensive.
I guarantee this person with the pile of pieces did not follow the recipe at all.
They did not ferment the flour correctly, and they did not use the right pan, and they did not cook it correctly. It is not at all a hobbyist activity.
If you don’t want to spend the time, and get the right equipment, then just buy it from the Ethiopian restaurant. When I was in DC even Ethiopians were buying their injera from Habesha at 9th and U.
Thank you for your comments.
You can indeed buy ready-made injera from stores that supply Ethiopian ingredients and cooking supplies, but where is the fun in that? My recipe allows you to make injera at home, using a non-stick pan you probably already own, and in very little time.
It also takes time to travel to an Ethiopian market, if you are lucky enough to have one in your city, or wait multiple days to receive stale injera after ordering it online. I have traveled to DC on numerous occasions and have visited nearly all the markets there. The market owners have loved my injera. After seeing my injera, one Ethiopian woman exclaimed over and over, “You’re a wonderful woman, you’re a wonderful woman!”
You’ve actually made my point for me. If you want an easy injera recipe, you don’t have to wait four days for the batter to ferment. This recipe will give you a very nice result that allows you to have injera anytime you like.
If you want to buy pre-made injera, there’s certainly no shame in that. Whatever makes your life easier and more enjoyable is always the way to go. But, if you like experimenting with traditional dishes to make them easier and more accessible for everyone, you can’t go wrong with my injera recipe.
Kim it’s 4 cups of water… not teff flour
Fast and smart creation. even though is not 100% teff injera
Thank you, Sadi mo! I appreciate your positive feedback.
I decided to make smaller injera because I recognize the technique of pouring evenly would challenge me. Still tricky . My question is: what should the back side of the injera look like? Mine is uneven either tiny ridges. Top looks fine. Taste good, though I am no expert in Ethiopian food.
Thank you for your question. I don’t think anyone has ever asked me this before! From your description, it sounds like you are doing it right. There should be tiny circular ridges and also holes on the backside that are much smaller than the injera “eyes” on the front.
Don’t be afraid of making them larger. It’s really quite easy if you are using a non-stick sauté pan, or something similar. Just pour the batter onto the center of the heated pan and tilt the pan in all directions until the batter (or leet) is evenly distributed. You may ruin one or two in the process, but you’ll get the hang of it before you know it.
Good luck, and happy cooking!
Helpful reply. I have no holes on back; just on front. Back looks a bit like a cantaloupe skin. Will try again.
Hmmmmm…. I don’t think it should look like cantaloupe skin. They should be concentric ridges with small holes, almost like pin pricks.
Sara again. I DO have great and numerous small holes on back but with the ridges . I inspectedcleftover loaves just now.?
Then you are heading in the right direction! Congratulations!!
You are kind. They taste good and function beautifully . Will try a different pan next time .
Be brave, you’ll get there!!
Finally i can make injera at home. Not quite the same but close enough. This recipe is a winner. Thank you!!!!
Thank you, Trixi, for your lovely compliment. (darned spellcheck changed your name to Tricia) You’re more than welcome. Enjoy!
Amazing! Thank you so much. This recipe is great and I will continue to experiment with the Sourdough starter.
Thank you, Jennifer. Enjoy!! Danielle
Hello! Thanks for your injera recipe and video. My problem is with the pan you use, and your cooking temperature. I cannot use any non-stick surface pan. I don’t trust that any of those surfaces are good for anyone’s health. Different studies come to many conclusions. I trust my feelings. I have tried the Aluminum Bethany Heritage Griddle. Terrible: Only one heating element, and that leaves cold spots all over the place, and injeras with uncooked areas. I am now using a cast iron griddle. Pretty good, but, on a gas range top, the center of the injera gets done before the outer area, leading to a lightly burned middle. The mitad on your site is no longer available. Anyway- – What temperature do you cook at? With your use of a scale, which I also use, I would think that you could use a laser temperature gauge to let your readers know how hot your pan is when you pour your batter. I certainly want to know. Thanks!
I can feel your frustration. I have the same issues with non-stick cookware as you, but I’ve yet to find anything that works as well. I’m surprised you had trouble with the Bethany Heritage Griddle. Many Ethiopian cooks I’ve met have used that griddle with no problems at all. It’s possible you have a lemon. I returned my first Mitad because of a malfunction. I share your concerns. I would love to have a product that is safer than the non-stick pans on the market. I too have tried cast iron with no success. As to temperature, I can only say I cook on medium to medium-high heat, adjusting the temperature until I reach the sweet spot that works most of the time. When a drop of water sizzles on your heated pan, it is time to pour the batter. On my Mitad, I believe I cook at 320ºF. If you find another product that works as well as non-stick, Please let me know. I’ll stand in line for that one!
I went to an injera factory in my town. The owner gave me a tour, and let me watch her make perfect injeras, over and over. Yep, she had Heritage Griddles, but they were not plugged in. Instead, all six sat directly over large gas burners. They were the non-stick tops. She told me that she uses teff and self- rising flour in a 1:1 ratio, which I’ll try, next. Also, her batter was definitely thicker than yours, so I’m going to try reducing the water to 3.5 cups, instead of four. I’ll let you know how things turn out, for me. Watching your video, there’s no doubt your recipe works very well, for you. It’s weird how different people, using the exact same recipe, get different results. I’ve seen that phenomenon time and again. (Unfortunately, I forgot to bring my infrared temperature gauge. I really want to zero in on the exact cooking temperature needed for perfect injeras.)
That’s great!! I’ve been in an injera factory as well and they used Heritage Electric Griddles. I’ve seen the stovetop versions online.
I use my Wass mitad when I am making platters for a lot of people and my stovetop non-stick saute pan when I’m cooking just for my family. They both work well for me. Their batter was similar to mine, though the owner was paranoid that I would steal her recipe. Ethiopian commercial injera makers are often very cautious about sharing their recipes. When this lady saw a picture of the injera I had made, she squinted her eyes, glared suspiciously at me, and barked, “WHO taught you how to make injera?” When I told her I taught myself, she exclaimed, “You’re a wonderful woman, you’re a wonderful woman!” It was a rather surprising conversation. After that, she told me anything I wanted to know.
I met another Ethiopian chef who made very good injera. She told me she does a 1:1 ratio with teff and whole white wheat flour. That seems to me to be an excellent option since you end up with a product that is 100% whole grain. I’ve also talked to chefs who used sparkling water to make their injera. I used to scoff at that, but I’ve since learned that sparkling water makes a great egg replacer in vegan cooking and I’ve had a lot of success with quickbreads using sparkling water. So, it makes sense to me now that it could be used to help develop the pillowy texture of good injera.
I don’t know where you live, but elevation has a lot to do with temperature and how much water you should use.
Keep experimenting. In my opinion, recipes are just guidelines. You can change them to suit yourself. I’ll be curious to see how happy are with your final product.
I have a new batch of batter aging in the oven. I leave the light on, inside, and that keeps things warm enough to get the souring done. I love the mornings when I open my bedroom door, and the scent of ready to go, aged batter, hits my nose. Usually takes three days.
This time around, I cheated: I added a packet of yeast to my unsweetened yogurt ‘starter.” I’ll see what happens.
Marcus Samuelson includes Club Soda in his injera recipe. He’s Ethiopian, by heritage, so I figure he may be on to something. Since you mentioned it, I’ll probably try it, eventually.
The stove top Heritage Grills the chef was using were the electric ones, just placed directly over the gas burners, with no electrical feed unit connected.
I bought an 11″ stainless steel ring, with rolled edges, and a 12″ glass lid, with a round handle. I’ll see how that works with the Heritage Grill. I want to make smaller injeras. I did marvel at how the Ethiopian chef used a thin cutting board to simply slide it under a large, finished injera, and then lift the injera from the grill, with half of it hanging down. Then, she placed the injera on a long folding table with a white cloth on it. By the time she was done with twelve, everything was cool enough, on the table, to stack the new injeras right on top of the previous ones.
I know that making injeras, full time, surely gives the chef incredible skills that I’ll need to work hard to master.
Hi again, Miles!
You sound like me when I was first learning to make injera. I tried everything. The oven light is a good idea, though I’ve found that it is too warm for proofing some doughs/batters. I use a seedling mat that has never failed me. I’m not sure I’d use the yeast, but whatever works for you.
The cutting board you mentioned sounds like a doable solution. I bought the woven mats from Ethiopia, which are used exactly the same except they are more flexible. You can buy them at most Ethiopian grocers. They are easily slipped underneath the injera to be moved to a cloth surface. It’s easy to do, you do not need a full-time injera-making job to learn the technique quickly.
In any case, you seem to be having fun with it. Onward and upward!
Wow, glad to see you’re still active on here. Wondering if you have some advice for me. I’m married to an Ethiopian and started experimenting with injera when we were dating 3 years ago. I’ve had help along the way from friends and his family. I have come pretty close to a great 100% teff injera, which I prefer. My husband just likes it thin and soft. I like to do huge batches of injera as it goes quickly and we could eat almost every day.
Teff is so pricey. Do you think it’s possible to make like a 10% teff injera and 90% wheat that still has a strong sourdough flavor? It seems that teff and wheat ferment differently. I do have an active sourdough.
Any tips or scientific explanations are appreciated! Thanks.
Thank you for your interesting question. Sadly, I’m not a scientist and have no insights into the chemistry of sourdough batters. I only know what works and what doesn’t. I’m surprised that the wheat ferments differently from teff because I am able to achieve very sour sourdough bread using wheat. If you want to replace most of the teff with wheat, I suggest you try 100% white wheat flour or whole wheat pastry flour. I know an Ethiopian chef who does that and she achieved beautiful pillowy injera, though hers was not as sour as traditional whole teff injera. I believe that time is a big factor in achieving a sour flavor with both wheat and teff. It is my understanding that it is the slow fermentation of the leet over several days that gives injera it’s sour taste, not the teff itself. I know if I’m making sourdough bread, I have to let rise slowly for two days in my fridge to achieve a really tart flavor.
I agree that teff is quite expensive. You can get a much better price if you buy it in bulk. I can’t remember what I paid for it, but I purchased it at Kare Baltena International Wholesale and Retail on Picket street in Alexandria, VA. in a 25-pound bag for a significant discount. Samuel, a co-owner of the store, is very helpful. If you live near a major metropolitan area such as Washington, DC, or Atlanta, GA, where there are lots of Ethiopian markets, that’s your best bet for finding teff at a reasonable price.
I hope this is helpful to you. Good luck with your experimentation!
Thank you for your explicit instructions and “hand-holding” through making this recipe! It turned out great and was such a pleasant surprise to me. We love Ethiopian food, and since we’d rather not go to restaurants right now, this really was the crowning touch to the WFPB Ethiopian meal that I made. I’m glad that the recipe made so much since I was able to have some for leftovers and made the crackers for later. I even refrigerated some of the batter and cooked it the next day which came out fine, still spongy and tasty. It’s definitely a big hit in my house!
Thank you for the lovely, easy to follow recipe and directions to this delicious injera!
Thank you, Maureen, for your kind comments. I’m so glad you were successful in making my injera recipe. I often use the leet the second day and dirkosh (the crackers or chips) with the remainder. They are excellent when seasoned with berbere or mitmita. If you have a dehydrator, you can easily dry the seasoned wedges or squares of injera in there without having to babysit them. This is a perfect time to enjoy Ethiopian food when we are all staying indoors and cooking more than usual.
In step 8 you suggested letting the injera cool on the countertop until it gets cool to the touch, below room temperature. That’s not how physics works. The injera will not get cooler than the room while sitting on the counter.
Hahahaha… Thank you, Jafar, for so aptly addressing my impending senility. Obviously, I misspoke. I catch myself saying stupid things all the time. This one slipped past me. Take care, Danielle
Hi, I will definitely give you a 5 star for the look of the injera and the precision of your recipe and explanation.
The problem is once you add anything besides water, teff and maybe yeast, it’s not authentic injera anymore. Especially adding the all purpose flour will pretty much erase the excellent nutrients that you get from pure teff injera.
I think if anyone can pull off making injera with 100% teff while keeping it’s authenticity, it’s you! Keep experimenting with your teff starter technique and you will get there!
The secret is is getting the right type and amount of bacteria in the starter. That’s why most Ethiopians are struggling to make injera out of 100% teff grain. In Ethiopia is the easiest thing to make because of the friendly temperature, humidity level, altitude, and the types of bacteria to the starter.
There are some people who are successful making it here in North America and I think you can be one of them.
Thank you for posting!
Thank you so much for the five stars and for taking the time to discuss injera-making with me.
I’m fully aware that this isn’t authentic injera, and it isn’t intended to be. Americans do not eat injera daily, so it isn’t cost or time-efficient to keep a batter going in the fridge. It’s much easier to keep a sourdough starter that requires little maintenance. So, this recipe is designed to satisfy the needs of busy Americans who do not have the time nor desire to maintain the leet (batter for those of you who don’t know what this is). As long as you have a sourdough starter going in the fridge, you can make injera whenever you want it, rather than waiting the three or four days for the leet to ferment. It isn’t as sour as real injera, but it is very close in texture and taste to the real thing.
I actually do know how to make traditional injera, using 100% teff and stirring in absit. I have not been particularly successful with it, though. It always comes out rubbery. Interestingly, though, I have visited many Ethiopian markets where they make injera to sell to the local Ethiopian restaurants. Many of the restaurants no longer make their own injera. What I discovered from those who do is that they don’t make authentic injera either. They use a combination of teff and self-rising flour, and sometimes barley flour. Many of the markets that mass produce injera use this recipe as well. They import the 100% teff injera to sell to their customers from Ethipia. Not all of them admit to adding barley flour, but it is obvious from the color to anyone experienced in using barley that this is what is happening. I’ve also eaten 100% teff injera at Ethiopian restaurants that are no better than my sad attempts, rubbery and unsatisfying. I think you are right that the yeast floating around in our environment just isn’t the same as that of Ethiopia, and that makes all the difference.
To those who prefer a whole grain option, I’ve learned since making this video that you can substitute whole wheat pastry flour or whole white wheat flour for the all-purpose flour in this recipe, and you will have injera with 100% whole grain. I actually learned this from an Ethiopian restauranteur in Johnson City, TN. Still, it isn’t authentic, but it’s delicious! That’s what I’m going for.
Thank you for your insightful comments and your encouragement. I’ll keep plugging away at it and perhaps one day I’ll make the perfect authentic injera!
Points well taken Danielle.
The trend here in the States is trying to make that 100% teff, since the Ethiopians who moved here since the early eighties are getting older and becoming health conscious. There are bunch of YouTube videos that claim recipes from 100% teff, and I don’t think they’re being honest, there’s self rising flour somewhere! Like you said, it’s time consuming to get the “leet Irsho” right, and it’s not suitable for busy life, but once you get it right, you can pretty much keep it as long as you want!
I still think you should still experiment. If you manage to get that secret sauce, maybe we’re looking at Danielle the millionaire!!
Thank you again, I’m going to be a big fan of yours.
I will continue to experiment, though I doubt becoming a millionaire is in the cards for me, lol! Who needs money when I can make new friends like you.
I absolutely love Ethiopian food and have been looking for an approachable injera recipe for a long time. Thank you so much for sharing this well- researched recipe! Can’t wait to try it.
Thank you, Sara,
I really love Ethiopian food too. I hope you enjoy making the injera. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out. If you wouldn’t mind rating it once you’ve made it, I would really appreciate it.
I made this recipe today with a rye flour sourdough starter. The injera came out absolutely delicious, and it was such a thrill after several failed attempts. I’ve tried a whole lot of recipes and was just about to give up when I came across this your recipe, so thank you so much for sharing your knowledge! Tonight I am going to be cooking up the rest of the batter with some shiro, miser wat and some other dishes I have been unable to enjoy without nailing the injera. So exciting! I am sure the batter will get even more sour, being left a few extra hours on the counter.
That’s great, Nina!
I don’t believe I’ve ever heard from someone who has made my injera recipe with rye. Congratulations on your success! I remember when I finally nailed that recipe, I was so excited. Please remember to rate it if you haven’t already. Enjoy your shiro and miser wat. You have me craving it now. Time to pull out my Ethiopian spices, lol!
Yeah its definitely a 5 star recipe 🙂
Amazing recipe! Thank you for all the detailed, the tips, and the voiceover on the reason certain things are done the way they are. For example the moisture on the lid top will cause gumminess. from First time my injera came out perfect and not gummy in the least bit. Even though my sourdough wasn’t rising to double. Also I used all gluten free flour – sourdough starter as well as the batter. And I messed up the quantities a bit. Thank you!
Thank you, Zainab,
I’m so glad you enjoyed making my injera recipe and with such success! I’ve found it is a very forgiving recipe. I appreciate your kind comments and enthusiasm. Happy cooking!
I bought sourdough starter and it never activated and so when I made the recipe it failed. Can you explain how you made your sourdough starter?
Thank you, Anna
Can you share what gluten free flours you sub’d for 160 grams teff, 230 grams flour and 250 grams sourdough starter please (which gluten free flour here too) – I would love to know this.
Thank you for your question. I’m not gluten-free so I don’t know a lot about gluten-free flours. I have read that you can use polenta (cornmeal), millet flour, buckwheat flour, and sorghum to make both the sourdough starter and to replace the white flour. I have no personal experience in this, however, so you may want to experiment with a small batch. Teff is gluten-free so you may use it freely. In Ethiopia, I’m told they make injera with 100% teff, but I’ve never been successful doing it, nor have I met anyone who has. Good luck, I hope one of these works for you.
How long will this injera keep – and what’s the best way to keep it?
Hi, thank you for your question. You can keep injera for a few days but in my opinion, it is better to make just what you will use at one time. It is always much better when it is fresh. Even the injera you can buy at Ethiopian markets start to become grainy as they age. Some people freeze injera or buy it frozen, but I find that the quality of the injera suffers from freezing. It is quite easy to adjust the recipe to smaller portions that you will use quickly.
Having said that, if you want to refrigerate your injera, stack them and then wrap the stack of injera in plastic wrap. To freeze, fold them individually into quarters (fold in half, then again to form a quarter round), then wrap them in plastic wrap and freeze. Allow each piece to thaw, then carefully unfold. You may want to microwave each piece 10 seconds or so. Again, this isn’t something I like to do, but it is possible.
Another thing, if you have leftover injera, you can sprinkle each piece with berbere or mitmita spice blends, or leave them plain, cut them into 2-inch squares, and dry them in your dehydrator. This will create excellent chips called Dirkosh. They are sturdy enough to use as a chip that can handle thick dips such as hummus. I hope this answers your question. Happy Cooking! Danielle
Thanks! I presume I can make it a few hours ahead (so that if I fail and can come up with something else instead)?
Yes, you can make it a couple of hours ahead. Just make sure you cover the injera up with plastic wrap or a tea towel until you are ready to use them. You can stack them once they cool. But you won’t fail. I have faith in you. 🙂 Danielle
I made 1/4 of the recipe and made 5 6” rounds to begin to get a feel for the recipe. I cooled them on wax paper on a cookie rack before stacking on a plate. When I tasted the injera without a dish I though it needed salt, but then we had some left over red lentil and sweet potato curry which I warmed up to eat them with. Delicious- didn’t need salt at all. Thank you! Two of my college age grandsons are escaping the virus here while they finish classes on line. I’m going to make an Ethiopian feast next Sunday (I cook for my son and his family every Sunday) to celebrate the older grandson coming out of quarantine.
Thanks for your delightful feedback. I’m so glad you had success with my injera recipe. I’m sure you’re sons are going to love your Ethiopian feast. I’ll have to do that myself soon. I haven’t made Ethiopian food since beginning the quarantine two months ago. Great idea for quarantine food!
Please don’t forget to rate this recipe.
I have Kittee Berns Teff Love , vegan Ethiopian Cooking and have the spices. My only problem was an inability to make a good injera. This video was a revelation. I followed the recipe and video and my injera was a great success!!! We really like Ethiopian food. Now I am able to achieve it. Thank you so much. This is a big deal!!!
Thank you, Anne. Thank you for your kind comments. I, too, love Ethiopian food and make it often. My method of making injera isn’t the traditional method, but it allows you to make it on a moment’s notice without the hassle of four days of fermentation. As long as you keep a sourdough starter in the fridge, you are good to go! Congratulations on your success!
I have read “Teff Love” and I think Kittee Berns did a good job with it. I make many of my dishes a little differently. Particularly, I don’t add oil which makes the food healthier and less fattening. I also do some Instant Pot Ethiopian recipes. Stay tuned for some of my Ethiopian recipes in the coming weeks and months.
Can I use sweet rice flour, cassava flour, or a blended gluten free floor in place of wheat flour? Barley contains gluten so I must avoid it. Also, can I replace corn with tapioca starch, potato starch, or arrow root powder?
Thank you for your question. Frankly, I don’t know if any of those flours will work. I’m not very well versed on gluten-free products so I can only suggest you give them a try. Teff is gluten-free so you may consider combining one of the aforementioned flours with a larger percentage of teff and see how it comes out. You may certainly replace cornstarch with potato starch or tapioca flour. I’d love to know how successful your experiments are. Good luck! Danielle
So, I experimented with the recipe & finally got something tasty. I used a gluten free all purpose flour that contains rice flour, sorghum flour, tapioca starch, and xanthan gum so I omitted the cornstarch. The bread bubbled, was light & elastic with a tangy flavor. Not sure if it can be called Injera bread, but it was quite tasty.
It sounds like great gluten-free injera, congratulations!! I would certainly call it injera, even though it doesn’t contain the traditional teff. Who cares as long as it works? Great job, AJ!!!
If anyone has been successful making this recipe with just teff, or teff and barley, or some other combination, could you please post your recipe for others? I am thinking of experimenting with your recipe, Danielle, because it is so easy, but using gluten-free flours instead. I even want to try the starter with teff only. I will let you know if I have any success.
Thank you for your excellent question, Colette. I have tried making injera with just teff, and with teff and barley. I did not particularly like the results. The pure teff came out rubbery and cracked as it cooked. In Ethiopia, injera is made with 100% teff all the time. I’ve talked with Ethiopian chefs and they say they have difficulty making it with just teff in the United States. I have no idea what the issue is. Altitude, humidity…? They usually opt for a blend of teff and self-rising flour and go through the long process of fermentation which is ideal. I created this quick method because Americans don’t tend to make injera daily as the Ethiopians do so we don’t keep a batter (leet) fermenting in our fridge.
The leet with teff and barley fared better, but I don’t like it as much as I like my version. They become a deep rust color and the flavor is not as good in my opinion. However, I find in the Ethiopian grocery stores that teff and barley are frequently used to make injera. My favorite, which I created after posting this recipe, is made with teff and whole white wheat (whole wheat pastry flour). This gives you a product with 100% whole grains and very little difference in the taste and texture. But, this doesn’t solve your gluten-free issue. You can certainly make a sourdough starter with 100% teff. It will be rather grainy but will have the sourdough flavor you are looking for. I look forward to hearing about the results of your experimentation. Happy Cooking! Danielle
Why do you use the corn starch for?
Thank you for your question, Misrak. Adding cornstarch gives the injera a more pillowy texture. It simulates cake flour, which is a combination of cornstarch and flour.
I absolutely can’t do gluten. What’s you best suggestion for an alternative to wheat? Thanks!
Thank you for your question, Helen. I’ve seen injera recipes using barley instead of wheat and I’ve seen injera made from a blend of barley and teff in Ethiopian markets. It will definitely turn your injera darker but it will be gluten free. I’ve not tried it myself but I know it has been done. Good luck!! Danielle
So excited to try this today! I no longer have teff on hand because I gave up… will this be just as good with some other flour? I have buckwheat, whole wheat and rye. I also have some sorghum grains that I can blend. Thank you!
Thank you for your question. I have never attempted to make this with no teff at all, so I can only make a guess. You can use 100% white wheat flour (also called whole wheat pastry flour), I believe. I have made it with a combination of white wheat and teff and that worked fine. Barley will give it a very dark color and I understand it is often used in making injera, though I’ve never used it myself, at least not without also adding teff. I think 100% whole wheat will be too dense. I don’t know about rye or buckwheat. All you can do is give it a try and see what happens. Let me know how it turns out! Good luck and happy cooking! Danielle
Thank you for posting this.
I was wondering if a ktichenaid could be used in place of a blender.
unfortunately, I do not have a high power one.
I also do have a large food processor.
Would that work?
I’ve never used a food-processor for this but I believe a Kitchenaid will work fine. I would just carefully pulse it to make sure you don’t over-beat it. A hand-held whisk will work as well. Good luck! Danielle
How do you make the starter?
Thank you for your question. You can find the starter recipe and more on the recipe page, or you can just go to this link. Happy cooking! Danielle
Did you fed or unfed starter for this?
Hi, Carol, Thank you for your question. I usually feed my starter the night before so it is very active in the morning. If you feed it just before using, it will not have the sourdough flavor that is so desirable with injera. I hope this helps. Happy Cooking! Danielle
Thank you for the recipe. I made it today and the texture was just like injera. Phenomenal. However I found that it tasted like all purpose flour and did not taste like injera or have any sour taste. Do you have any clue as to what i could have done wrong?
I’m so sorry my injera recipe didn’t meet your expectations. It should not be as sour as traditional injera, but it should be at least a little sour. It certainly should not taste like all-purpose flour, though it will not taste as strong as 100% teff, as it is a blend. The only thing I can think of is the sourdough starter may be a factor. Was it fully developed and sour before you began? Or did you feed it just before making your injera? That could easily rob of its sour flavor. I always take the sourdough out of the fridge and scoop out what I need, then feed it and return it to the fridge. If the sourdough isn’t the culprit, I can’t imagine what is. By the way, you can also use 100% whole white wheat (or whole wheat pastry flour) as a substitute for all-purpose. Then your injera will be 100% whole grain. I didn’t realize this when I first made the video, but in experimenting, I’ve discovered that works well. I’d love to know about the starter. You have me stumped. Thanks, Danielle