Best Pav Bhaji Masala Brands in India – Mishry (2023)
We chose Everest Pav Bhaji Masala as our Top Pick because it made the tastiest, most balanced and chatpata bhaji. We Also Recommend Badshah Mumbai Pav Bhaji Masala.
The emotion that chole bhature brings for Dilliwalas, pao bhaji does that for Mumbaikars. Isn’t that true?
Butter-soaked buns dipped in a vat of bhaji which is further cooked in copious amounts of butter. But what is the point if the bhaji lacks a punch of flavors which comes from the blend of masalas used.
After testing over eight brands available in the Indian market, we chose Everest (Top Pick) as one of the best pav bhaji masala brands in India. It is the most potent, flavorful and well-rounded blend that flavored our bhaji wonderfully.
A quick glance at all the brands we tested and the rating awarded to them –
|Brand||Mishry Rating||Buy Now|
|Everest||4.5||Add to cart|
|Badshah||4.2||Add to cart|
|MDH||4||Add to cart|
|Eastern||3.5||Add to cart|
|Tata Sampann||3||Add to cart|
|Catch||2.5||Add to cart|
|Orika||2.5||Add to cart|
|Keya||2||Add to cart|
Our Review Factors
What are we looking for? What is a bhaji without the correct blend of spices? Just mashed up veggies, right? We were looking for a flavorful blend of correct spices which would enhance the taste of a homemade bhaji.
To test the best pav bhaji masala brands we set the following parameters –
Yes, the butter, crunchy onions and the lemon are all important embellishments. But what can make or break a bhaji is the masala you add to it. A pao bhaji is meant to be chatpata, slightly spicy and have a favorable balance of all the masalas. No particular spice should overpower the entire masala blend.
We were looking for the masala with the maximum potency. This means that even a minimum amount of masala can make a flavorful bhaji. Considering it is needed in small quantities, it would eventually prove to be value for money as well.
Garam masala and pao bhaji masala have similar ingredients. So what makes a bhaji masala stand out from an everyday garam masala? Firstly the quantity of ingredients are shuffled in both. Secondly, the use of stone flower. This spice adds a unique, characteristic flavor to the bhaji.
Moreover, the masala should not have any added colors, preservatives or additives.
Competitive pricing, packaging, and shelf life were also supporting parameters.
Our Review Process
To test all the brands of pao bhaji masala, we divided our review process into two broad stages –
Stage 1 included research, ordering samples and product inspection.
Stage 2 was cooking with these masalas followed by a taste test.
For stage 2, here is our step-by-step procedure:
- We took bottle gourd, carrots, peas and capsicum as base vegetables. These were boiled separately and mashed.
- We also boiled potatoes and mashed them.
- In a pan we heated 1 Tbsp oil and 2 Tbsp butter.
- 4 chopped onions and 2 tsp ginger garlic paste were sautéed before adding the boiled veggies.
- After this we added 6 chopped tomatoes and salt.
- Once the masala was well cooked, we divided the prepared mix into 8 equal portions.
- To each portion we added 1 tsp pav bhaji masala, 1/8th tsp salt and 1/3rd cup water and cooked it further till.
- We garnished it with chopped coriander.
- After this we let the bhajis cool and began our taste test.
Best Pav Bhaji Masala Brands – Detailed Review
All the details about the brands we reviewed, along with their pros and cons are listed below –
1. Everest Pav Bhaji Masala – Mishry Top Pick
Tasting after tasting, Everest’s Pav Bhaji Masala was voted as the most flavorful bhaji with the correct blend of spices. This is dominant on red chilli-pepper heat along with warming spices like clove and black cardamom. Amongst all the bhajis we tasted, this was the most balanced yet chatpata bhaji without being extremely spicy.
The fact that this brought out an array of flavors and vibrant color with minimal quantity, shows that it is potent and would also prove to be value for money eventually.
As per the ingredient list, this doesn’t contain stone flower which typically is added to pav bhaji masala. Even without that, this bhaji is tasty, chatpata and meant for those who do not like the smokey flavor of dagad phool.
A 100 gm pack is priced at Rs 74/- and has a shelf life of 15 months. The main ingredients include chilli, coriander, cumin, dried mango, cassia leaf, and black pepper.
It also contains cassia bark- taj, clove, turmeric, dried ginger, star anise, fennel, black cardamom, and iodized salt.
- Most chatpata, tastiest bhaji.
- Excellent potency.
- Gives a vibrant color to the bhaji.
- We liked the balanced heat and flavor of warming spices.
For those looking for a chatpata, well-rounded, familiar tasting pav bhaji masala, Everest is the right pick.
2. Badshah Mumbai Bhaji Pav Masala – Also Recommended
Mumbai-style pav bhaji has a characteristic flavor that comes from dagad phool. Badshah’s Mumbai Pav Bhaji Masala has a dominant, somewhat-smoky flavor of stone flower. No doubt, it’s delicious, but it may or may not be meant for everyone which is why it’s our recommended brand and not a Top Pick.
It is aptly seasoned, is chatpata, has the correct level of chilli but the flavor of dagad phool is more prominent that anything else.
A 100 gm pack is priced at Rs 74/- and has a shelf life of 18 months. The main ingredients include Kashmiri red chilli powder, fennel seeds, stone flower, cumin, and coriander.
It also has white pepper, cinnamon leaves, iodized salt, cassia, cardamom, black salt, kachadi, turmeric, clove and ajma.
- Chatpata flavors.
- Authentic ingredients.
- Excellent potency.
- The strong flavor of stone flower may or may not be liked by everyone.
Looking for authentic Mumbai-style bhaji? The pav bhaji masala by Bashah comes very close.
3. MDH Pav Bhaji Masala
MDH’s Pav Bhaji Masala is tasty, spicy and tangy but has a lower potency in comparison to our winners. It would take almost twice the quantity to give a robust flavor to the bhaji.
A 100 gm pack of MDH Pav Bhaji Masala is priced at Rs 81/- and has a shelf life of 12 months. The main ingredients include coriander seeds, red chillies, unripe dry mango, cumin, and iodized salt. It also contains star anise and pathar phool amongst other spices.
- The bhaji is well-seasoned.
- Good mix of spicy and tangy.
- Comparatively low potency.
4. Eastern Pav Bhaji Masala
Owing to the presence of stone flower, Eastern’s Pav Bhaji Masala has a similar flavor profile like Badshah. The only reason it lagged behind was due to its potency. Every element is a little muted.
A 100 gm pack is priced at Rs 66/- and has a shelf life of 12 months. The main ingredients include Kashmiri chilli, coriander, fennel, stone flower, and cumin.
- Blend of spices is apt.
- Authentic ingredients.
- Low potency in comparison. Almost double the quantity would be required to flavor the bhaji appropriately.
5. Tata Sampann Pav Bhaji Masala
Tata Sampann did not win because, in a comparitive situation, it scored low on potency and flavor. It is not as chatpata or balanced as our winners and a higher than usual quantity would be required to flavor your bhaji. This has a dominant, smoky flavor of stone flower.
A 100 gm pack is priced at Rs 75/- and has a shelf life of 18 months. The main ingredients include coriander powder, chilli powder, cumin powder, dried mango powder, and fennel powder.
- Not as chatpata as our winners.
- Low potency.
6. Catch Pav Bhaji Masala
Catch’s pav bhaji masala did not win because it doesn’t have a robust chatpata flavor and has a very low potency. This is dominant on cinnamon sweetness and isn’t how a pav bhaji masala should be ideally.
A 100 gm pack is priced at Rs 70/- and has a shelf life of 12 months. The main ingredients include chillies, capsicum whole, turmeric whole, iodized salt, coriander whole, and dried mango slices.
- Very low potency.
- The flavor profile is not how an authentic pav bhaji should taste.
7. Orika Pav Bhaji Masala
Why did Orika’s Pav Bhaji Masala not win? This is a very average, monotonous-tasting bhaji. It is neither chatpata nor does this have any modulation in flavor. We were expecting some spicy bits, some packed with dried mango, coriander and cumin. But sadly, this doesn’t do a good job of imparting those characteristic flavors.
A 100 gm pack is priced at Rs 64/- and has a shelf life of 12 months. The 5 main ingredients include coriander, chilli, cumin, amchur and aniseed.
- Very flat and monotonous tasting bhaji.
- Low potency.
8. Keya Tawa Pav Bhaji
Keya’s pao bhaji masala did not win our review because it did not have a vibrant chatpata flavor. It tastes dull and lends a peculiar flavor to our bhaji that we found a little off-putting.
A 50 gm pack is priced at Rs 35/- and has a shelf life of 24 months. The main ingredients include chilli, coriander, turmeric, salt, star anise, and dried mango powder.
- Lacks the vibrant chatpata flavor.
- Tastes dull.
- Peculiar flavor of bhaji which is slightly off-putting.
Our Top Picks & Recommendations
Why did we choose Everest as our Top Pick? Why do we Also Recommend Badshah?
Three major markers – flavor, potency and ingredients. Everest and Badshah, both excelled in all categories and made our bhaji extremely flavorful and chatpata using minimal quantity.
Everest has the most well-rounded blend of spices that made our bhaji chatpata without turning it overly spicy. For those who are looking for a typical Mumbai-style bhaji with a robust stone flower flavor, we recommend opting for Badshah Pav Bhaji Masala.
Frequently Asked Questions
No. Although garam masala and pav bhaji masala have similar ingredients, the ratio in which these are added differ vastly. Moreover this contains stone flower, which is usually not a part of garam masala.
None of the brands we tested contain onions. Two out of eight brands contain garlic.
As per our research and testing, Everest turned out to be the best pav bhaji masala brand. It is the most potent and tastiest pav bhaji masala. We also recommend Badshah pav bhaji masala.
Ideally, they shouldn’t. But, a few brands may add colors to give the bhaji a vibrant red color. That said, none of the brands we tested contain any artificial colors. The vibrancy comes through the addition of Kashmiri red chillies.
Buttery, chatpata and oh-so-delish!
Bhajis need to be chatpata and provide a burst of flavors within a single bite. The bhajis made using Everest (Top Pick) and Badshah (Recommended) were the most flavorful. Go for Badshah if a typical Mumbai-style bhaji is what you’re looking for, and Everest if an overall balanced, chatpata and well-seasoned bhaji is what you like. Both of these have excellent potency, i.e, small amounts, big flavors.
Which pav bhaji masala do you use?
More Masalas We Tried - Mishry Tested
Our reviews are unbiased and all samples used during the reviews were paid for by us. Read our entire ethics statement here.