Kalonji Flatbreads

Kalonji Flatbreads

These Kalonji Flatbreads are an impeccable pairing of light, airy bread and the fragrant, bitter seeds of the Nigella Sativa, a flowering plant native to south and south west Asia. Simple, quick and delicious, these flatbreads are perfect served alongside a variety of dishes, not least a fragrant curry.

The kalonji seed is one of my very favourite spices. They possess a strong, heady flavour – relative even to Indian cuisine – that pervades any dish to which it is added. As such, it is best used in small quantities, or as the dominant spice in a dish. For examples of this see my recipes for Saag Aloo and Mango Chutney, respectively.

These flatbreads are very much intended as a naan-esque creation; more of a tear and share bread. However, the recipe below would also work well as a larger flatbread or wrap. If you’d prefer the latter simply roll or stretch your bread a little thinner and cook for less time over a higher temperature.

Kalonji Flatbreads

Whichever way you choose to serve this delicious bread your kitchen and nostrils will certainly benefit greatly from the fragrance of your new favourite spice; kalonji.

Kalonji Flatbreads

Makes 4


• 250g white bread flour

• 175ml tepid water

• 7g sachet of fast-action yeast

• 1 tsp honey

• A generous pinch of salt

• 2 ½ tsp kalonji seeds

• 2 tsp olive oil


1. In a jug mix together the water, honey and yeast. Set this aside until frothy. Tip the flour, kalonji seeds and salt into a large bowl and mix. Once its frothy incorporate the yeast mixture, turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead thoroughly. Place the dough in a clean bowl, cover and put in a warm place to rise for 40 minutes.

Kalonji Flatbreads

2. Divide the dough into four balls and gently roll them out into circles – leave to prove for 20 minutes.

Kalonji Flatbreads

3. Brush a little oil onto a cast iron or thick stainless steel pan and cook each flatbread, one-by-one, over a medium heat. Serve immediately or leave to cool and freeze.

Kalonji Flatbreads

Cost: It is likely that one of the reasons flatbread has been such a success the world over is that very little is required to make it. Indeed, these four large flatbreads should cost little more than £1 to produce.

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58 comments on “Kalonji Flatbreads

  1. Sophia
    September 30, 2013 at 6:28 pm

    These flatbreads look absolutely perfect!

  2. cookinginsens
    September 30, 2013 at 6:55 pm

    I like the picture of the dough in the bowl.

  3. Lorrieb
    September 30, 2013 at 6:59 pm

    You are speaking my language with these!

  4. countrywoodsmoke
    September 30, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    These look amazing 🙂

    • frugalfeeding
      October 9, 2013 at 6:59 pm

      Thanks, Marcus – I reckon you’d be able to do wonders with these!

  5. Andrea Mynard
    September 30, 2013 at 7:30 pm

    I love making flatbreads and these look wonderful! You’ve reminded me I need to save nigella seed from the little dry pods in the garden to save for the kitchen and next year’s flowers.

  6. ErikaFlorence
    September 30, 2013 at 11:26 pm

    Those look stunning. I may have to try a gluten free version of these beauties.

    • frugalfeeding
      November 12, 2013 at 1:17 pm

      Thank you so much – let me know how you get along with that!

  7. soffiagudrun
    October 1, 2013 at 12:21 am

    Coooool! The seeds are something i will try next time i make flatbread

    • frugalfeeding
      October 9, 2013 at 6:59 pm

      Please do – they’re so fragrant, so their flavour pervades the whole bread.

  8. Chica Andaluza
    October 1, 2013 at 7:30 am

    Love different kinds of flatbread and these are new to me – beautiful shots!

  9. limeandbarley
    October 1, 2013 at 8:11 am

    Looks delicious (and very tempting given I’ve sort of given up bread at the moment!) I’m jealous! Are nigella and kalonji seeds one and the same then?

  10. So Does That Mean I'm Southern
    October 1, 2013 at 1:08 pm

    Flatbreads are all the rage here in the US – Yours look so delicious!

  11. thelittleloaf
    October 1, 2013 at 1:32 pm

    These look utterly fabulous – a simple bread made perfect with the little addition of spice.

    • frugalfeeding
      October 9, 2013 at 6:57 pm

      Thanks!The spice works really well because it’s extremely fragrant.

  12. Yonder Wild
    October 1, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    yum – I will have to keep my eye out for those kalonji seeds!

  13. chef mimi
    October 1, 2013 at 6:36 pm

    These look absolutely delicious and beautiful!!!

    • frugalfeeding
      October 9, 2013 at 6:56 pm

      Thank you – have you tried kalonji seeds? They’re fantastic.

  14. Sibella at bakingwithsibella.com
    October 1, 2013 at 7:15 pm

    I will sure try these! They look so yummy!

    • frugalfeeding
      October 9, 2013 at 6:55 pm

      I hope you do! They are seriously delicious.

  15. ohlidia
    October 2, 2013 at 3:24 am

    Oh, I could tear into one right about now! Or two…

  16. movita beaucoup
    October 2, 2013 at 12:05 pm

    Flatbreads are so cool. We did a rotation of them at school last year, and it was amazing to see what flour, salt and water can do. No wonder so many people on the planet make ’em! It was terribly satisfying to slap the bread onto the floor of our deck ovens and watch the magic happen! Your flatbreads look perfectly lovely – and make me want to try some kalonji seeds!!

    • frugalfeeding
      October 9, 2013 at 6:54 pm

      Indeed they are! You can do a lot! Get some of the seeds – you’ll love them. So delicious.

  17. Conor Bofin
    October 2, 2013 at 9:17 pm

    Great stuff Nick. That proving shot is exceptional.

  18. helenportas
    October 3, 2013 at 5:48 am

    I have just discovered your wonderful website and I think these will be my first experiment, trying some of the delicious recipes on display. Many thanks!

  19. anna @ annamayeveryday
    October 3, 2013 at 9:21 am

    I love making flatbreads, so rewarding and so much better than bought. These look great!

    • frugalfeeding
      November 12, 2013 at 1:16 pm

      Absolutely! glad you like the look of these 🙂

  20. Jeff Parker
    October 3, 2013 at 11:11 pm

    Fantastic! I’m going to try these out on the grill and/or pizza stone. Cheers

    • frugalfeeding
      October 9, 2013 at 6:53 pm

      Awesome – I’m sure you’ll have great success!

  21. Eva Taylor
    October 5, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    They look gorgeous! I have a recipe for naan that uses milk powder which makes them rather chewy and I’m intrigued that your recipe uses honey. I’ve also developed a technique for baking the naan on an inverted cast iron pot to replicate the traditional tandoor oven.

    • frugalfeeding
      October 9, 2013 at 6:53 pm

      Thanks! Honey just gives a little sweetness – it’s delicious. That a cool cooking method – I’ll give it a go!

  22. buildingmybento
    October 7, 2013 at 4:53 pm

    Cheers for liking my post about Indonesian otak-otak! Have you tried it before?

    This flatbread looks like a great vehicle for köfte and yoghurt. Now where to find those nigella seeds…

    • frugalfeeding
      October 9, 2013 at 6:48 pm

      I’m afraid I haven’t – I’ll keep an eye out for it though. You’ll probably be able to find them at supermarkets, or certainly an Asian supermarket.

  23. Alicia Marie
    October 8, 2013 at 4:16 am

    Are these similar to naan bread? Also do you have a recommendation for what kind of flour you would use to make them gluten free? Thanks!

    • frugalfeeding
      November 12, 2013 at 1:15 pm

      Very similar, though slightly more dense. I’m no gluten free bread expert I’m afraid!

  24. Kathleen
    October 8, 2013 at 7:10 pm

    My family loves these kinds of bread — thanks! <3

  25. whilehewasout
    October 9, 2013 at 3:56 pm

    Never heard of Kalonji seeds before but these look great! They kind of remind me of the Indian naan breads 🙂

    • frugalfeeding
      October 9, 2013 at 6:47 pm

      Try them out – they are exceptional. They are very similar to naan.

  26. Elly McCausland
    January 30, 2014 at 2:18 pm

    I’m making these tonight! Will let you know how it goes! 🙂 I LOVE those seeds, one of my favourites.

    • frugalfeeding
      February 3, 2014 at 2:34 pm

      I hope you enjoyed them, Elly! My favourite seeds. Absolutely.

  27. chef mimi
    January 30, 2014 at 2:50 pm

    I wish I could at least smell these!

  28. Waqar
    April 8, 2015 at 10:41 am

    but the bread in picture seems overcooked to burnt

  29. Bin romani
    December 5, 2017 at 9:27 am

    Great post! I never really thought about it but the best posts are always “Do” posts.
    Kalonji Oil

    Thanks for the ideas!:)

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