Neem Flower Patties | Nimba Kadha Pithau (Vegan & Gluten free) (with VIDEO details)

vegetarian patties using the healthy and nutritious neem flowers (nimba kadha) from Odia cuisine

Neem tree and its flower :

Neem holds a significant position in the Indian traditional culture. Neem tree is likely native to the Indian subcontinent. We all have heard a lot about the benefits it holds from our parents, grandparents. Every part of the Neem tree be it the bark, seed, root, fruit, leaf, flower or even twig is beneficial to our body in a way or another. Neem is also an essential ingredient in several Ayurvedic medicines that treat various issues ranging from fever infection, skin disease, hail problems, inflammation and dental disorders.

The Neem tree flowers between end of February to starting of May. The honey-scented white flowers, found in clusters are a good source of nectar for bees. Apart from these period in a year, one can dry these flowers and store in an air-tight container to use later on. I always store 3-4 bottles of dried neem flowers as shown in below picture. These stay perfectly and one can enjoy through out the year by using the dried ones. Neem flowers are known for improving digestive health and are used in Indian cooking. These days one can also get both dried as well as the powdered form of these neem flowers in super markets. The flowers can be roasted, boiled or fried for use in many dishes like rasam, rice dishes, pachadi, using lentils and many more.

I have here come up with a side item of a lunch platter using these flowers as Neem Flower Patties or Nimba Kadha Pithau.


Ingredients needed for these neem flower patties :

  1. Neem flower – Neem flower can be used in either fresh or dried form. As this is the off season for neem flowers, so I have used the dried ones which I had stored this year.
  2. Onion & Garlic – These patties can be prepared without using these. But by adding these the patties taste more flavorful. I have used finely sliced onion and some roughly crushed garlic cloves.
  3. Green chili & Red chili powder – These give the spiciness to the patties. And this is recommend to add in order to balance the bitterness from the flowers.
  4. Gram flour (besan) – This plays the binding factor in the patties.
  5. Rice flour – Due to this patties become much crisp. Instead of rice flour, one can use regular rice (3-4 tsp). For that, simply soak the rice for 30 minutes and then make a paste using little amount of water. And use that in place of rice flour.
  6. Turmeric powder – adds a lovely color to the patties.
  7. Salt – as per taste, it is added.
  8. Water – a very little amount of water is needed to make the mixture.
  9. Mustard oil – Regular oil can be opted here for frying the patties. But I will recommend to go for mustard oil if adding onion & garlic which enhances the overall flavor.

    What are the steps to prepare these pithau or patties ?

    The dry ingredients like rice flour, gram flour (besan), red chili powder, turmeric powder, salt are mixed in a bowl. In another mixing bowl the neem flowers (here I have used dried ones) are taken along with finely sliced onion, roughly crushed green chilies & garlic cloves and above mixed powders. Everything is then mixed by adding water little by little. After that a pan is heated with mustard oil. 1-2 tsp portion of the mixture at a time is shaped as a patty and shallow fried by covering the pan and flipping in between over low-medium heat till becomes light brown in color all over. Then these are ready to serve !

    Dietary note :

      ✔  Vegan

      ✔  Healthy Patties

      ✔  Gluten free

      ✔  Odia cuisine

      ✔  Low oil

      ✔  Nutritious dish

      Serving suggestion :

      If you are a bitter gourd (karela) fan then this pithau / patties you will surely enjoy. We love to have these neem flower patties in lunch spread which has steamed rice, dal, a curry, these patties and some salad. When hot, these taste so crisp and perfect. Even the bitterness is bit less as compared to the cool down. Withing few time, these can be prepared and have. Just mix everything, shape like patty and fry. Voila ! these are ready to serve. The recipe is super simple and easy too. Do make these nutritious and healthy patties aka pithau from odia cuisine.

        The event related to this post :

        Well for current month the event ‘A to Z Recipe Challenge‘ has come up with the alphabet ‘N‘. That means, there must be a recipe post having the main ingredient name starting with alphabet N. So I opted N for ‘Neem Flower’ and have prepared Neem Flower Patties | Nimba Kadha Pithau.

        Now let’s go through how to make “Neem Flower Patties” at home 👇


        Video procedure of this “Neem Flower Patties” :


          : Recipe Card :

          Neem Flower Patties | Nimba Kadha Pithau (Vegan & Gluten free)


          Neem Flower Patties | Nimba Kadha Pithau (Vegan & Gluten free)

          Author: sasmita

          Prep time: 5 MCook time: 10 MTotal time: 15 M

          vegetarian patties using the healthy and nutritious neem flowers (nimba kadha) from Odia cuisine


          • Neem flower (fresh / dried) 1/2 cup
          • Onion (finely sliced) (medium) 1 no.
          • Green chili (roughly crushed) 1-2 no.
          • Garlic clove (roughly crushed) 2-3 no.
          • Gram flour (besan) 2 tsp
          • Rice flour 3 tsp
          • Red chili powder 1/2 tsp
          • Turmeric powder 1/4 tsp
          • Salt as needed
          • Water as needed
          • Mustard oil for shallow frying


          1. In a mixing bowl take the dried or fresh neem flowers and finely sliced onion, roughly crushed green chilies & garlic cloves.
          2. Then in another small bowl mix rice flour, gram flour (besan), red chili powder, turmeric powder, salt.
          3. Add this mixture to the above mentioned bowl.
          4. Mix everything well by adding a very little amount of water.
          5. Now heat a pan and drizzle 1 tbsp of mustard oil.
          6. Take 1-2 tsp portions of the mixture at a time and place over the hot pan.
          7. Cover the pan and allow to cook a bit.
          8. Flip and fry the other side over low-medium heat till becomes light brown in color all over.
          9. Transfer to a plate and serve hot with steamed rice-dal combo !


          Always fry over low-medium heat.
          Adjust the spiciness as desired.
          Serve immediately to have crispy patties. Also when these cool down, taste little more bitter.
          Instead of rice flour, one can use regular rice (3-4 tsp). For that, simply soak the rice for 30 minutes and then make a paste using little amount of water. And use that in place of rice flour.
          Some boiled potatoes (in grated form) or few finely chopped potatoes can be added to the mixture. I have not used potatoes.

          Vegetarian, Side dish, Nimba kadha, Odia cuisine, Mustard oil, Rice flour

          Neem flower, Patties, Odia side dish, Vegan, Gluten free


          Did you make this recipe?

          Tag@firsttimercookon instagram and hashtag it#firsttimercook

          You may also follow me on  FacebookPinterestTwitterGoogle+Instagram and can subscribe for free to get new recipes directly into your inbox 😊

          PIN for later :



          Hey there !

          Myself Sasmita, a techie turns to a food blogger which is reflected in this space.

          Recommended Recipes


          1. Rafeeda AR

            Totally an interesting recipe. Thank you for sharing such traditional recipes that is tough to be found… They look so crunchy and tempting…

          2. Superduper kitchen
            Superduper kitchen

            I have never thought about making parties with neem flower. These look so crispy. I am bookmarking this recipe.

          3. Shobha

            Super healthy snack or a side dish with neem flowers. I see that you have used mustard oil for frying them. I love anything cooked with it

          4. Priya Iyer

            While we make several dishes using neem flowers, this is completely new to me. I would never have thought of using them in patties. They look utterly delicious and inviting!

          5. Swati

            Neem flower patties sound so delicious .. though I never used it in cooking, but looking at your cutlets I surely want to give this a try.

          6. Vidya Sury

            We have always used neem flower in a medicinal sense. Of course we make "rasam" out of it or fry in ghee with other ingredients to make a tummy ache remedy. This recipe sounds really good! Neem is so good for health!

          7. Ana Smith

            Really nice veggie patties!
            Thanks for this recipe.

          8. Kalyani

            lovely share.. when I first read the recipe, I thought potatoes were used to binding, interesting use of gram flour here..

          9. Poonam Bachhav

            We make chutney with tender neem leaves but never used neem flowers in cooking. Neem flower patties sound interesting to me.

          10. Vidya Narayan

            Love such traditional recipes that use these humble ingredients in their best form. Best way to use up that bottled goodness throughout the year.

          11. Mayuri Patel

            I am really enjoying some of your traditional recipes Sasmita. So much to learn from different regions of India. I've never used neem flowers in cooking but would love to try. Making patties with them is a good way to enjoy the health benefits of these flowers.

          12. Sujata Roy

            Excellent share Sasmita. These patties will be great to start the meal with hot steamed rice. Loved that you didn't use potatoes to make the patties. I would love to try it whenever I can get neem flower.

          13. Paarul

            This an interesting way to use neem flowers, the patties looks great and I am sure it will be a great accompaniment with simple daal chawal too.

          14. Geetha

            Patties with neem flower is totally new to me and it sounds like a great way to use this ingredient that has so many health benefits. Lovely share Sasmita.

          15. JollyHomemadeRecipes

            Patties with neem flower is totally new and interesting recipe. I’ve never tried in my cooking, I think I’ve to start it with such amazing recipes of using neem flower. Patties itself looks so thin & crispy, so yumm!

          16. Unknown

            Wow,such a innovative idea to use neem flowers in patties. Loved it. Perfect with a hot steaming cup of ginger tea. Awesome share👌

          17. mildly indian

            Wow, this is a unique recipe indeed. I am sure that neemflower would have added a unique flavour to the recipe too.

          18. Narmadha

            Neem flowers in patties is so innovative idea and they look so crispy and crunchy to munch. Thanks for sharing this traditional recipe.

          Leave a Reply

          Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *