Masala Papad: A Malaysian Twist

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Masala Papad, a popular Indian appetizer, has found its way into the hearts and plates of Malaysians. This crispy delight, adorned with a medley of spices and toppings, offers a burst of flavours that resonates well with the Malaysian palate. As the cultural tapestry of Malaysia embraces diverse cuisines, Masala Papad stands out as a testament to the country’s love for Indian flavours.

Source: whiskaffair

The Journey to Malaysia

The Indian diaspora in Malaysia has played a pivotal role in introducing a plethora of Indian dishes, and Masala Papad is no exception. With the migration waves in the 19th and 20th centuries, the Indian community brought with them the rich culinary heritage that seamlessly blended with local tastes. Over time, Masala Papad transitioned from being an exclusive Indian treat to a beloved snack in Malaysian eateries.

Source: flavourstreat

Adapting to Local Tastes

While the basic essence of Masala Papad remains true to its Indian roots, the Malaysian version often incorporates local ingredients. For instance, it’s not uncommon to find toppings like shredded Malaysian mango or even local herbs that add a unique twist to the dish. This fusion not only enhances the flavour but also showcases the harmonious blend of cultures.

Popularity Across the Nation

Today, Masala Papad can be found in various eateries across Malaysia, from upscale restaurants to street-side stalls. Its popularity can be attributed to its versatility as both a standalone snack and a complement to main courses. The crispy texture combined with the tangy and spicy toppings makes it a favourite among locals and tourists alike.


Masala Papad’s journey from the Indian subcontinent to Malaysian tables is a beautiful story of culinary adaptation and acceptance. As Malaysia continues to embrace diverse cuisines, dishes like Masala Papad serve as a reminder of the country’s rich cultural mosaic and its ever-evolving taste preferences.


  • Javaid, Arfa. “Malaysian eatery sells papad as ‘Asian Nachos’, people call it ‘culinary crime’.” Hindustan Times. Link
  • “The Crispy World of Papad: A Deep Dive into History, Varieties, and Culinary Delights.” LinkedIn. Link

Article curated by Suwaytha Gopal