Difference Between Atta and Maida: What's Good For Your Health

Flour plays a vital role in the staple cuisines of many countries. Atta and maida are the two most-used flours in the Indian subcontinent. Although they may appear identical at first appearance, difference between atta and maida can be noted in terms of their compositions, nutritional content, and culinary uses. In this blog post, let’s explore the wheat flour vs maida debate, what maida is made from and the properties of both flours. We’ll also answer some of the queries like whether all-purpose flour is maida or atta or what are the benefits of whole wheat flour.

They both have their distinctive traits and different applications in baking or cooking. So let's solve the puzzle of these two flours and see what makes them unique.

Basic Difference Between Atta & Maida

While choosing between maida vs atta , it is better to be aware about their source and composition so that you can make an informed choice. Both atta and maida are made from wheat, however, the difference between atta and maida lies in their milling techniques and nutrient compositions.

Let us check the basic atta and maida difference.

How atta is made?

While making atta the entire wheat kernel, including the bran, germ, and endosperm is ground to a fine powder which finally results in whole wheat flour.

It further goes through a sifting process to remove any bigger particles from atta after milling, giving it a finer and more uniform texture. As a result, more fibre, nutrients, vitamins, and good fats from the bran and germ are present in the final whole wheat flour, which preserves the nutritious quality of the original grain.

How maida is made?

On the other hand, maida is refined wheat flour made by just milling the endosperm skipping the bran and germ. Although its texture is finer and lighter, it has less nutrients.

When compared to whole wheat flour, the resulting maida flour is lighter in both colour and texture. Its finer texture makes it popular for baking, cooking, and other culinary uses. However, as maida lacks the bran and germ, which are vital sources of dietary fibre, vitamins, minerals, and good fats, maida lacks the nutritional richness of whole wheat flour.

Now if you are wondering is maida good for health, or is maida unhealthy then let us inform you between maida vs atta, the whole wheat flour is a better option. Since atta has more fibre and retains all the essential nutrients in the milling process it is better to consume atta more regularly than maida. That is why chapatis or parathas made from atta adds more nourishment. For baked items that need to have a softer texture, maida is preferred.

Nutritional Differences Between Atta & Maida - Maida vs Atta


Atta (100g)

Maida (100g)


340 kcal

364 kcal


72.6 g

76.1 g


11.6 g

8.6 g


1.7 g

0.8 g


12.2 g

2.2 g


34 mg

15 mg


3.9 mg

2.8 mg

Vitamin B1 (Thiamin)

0.41 mg

0.04 mg

Vitamin B3 (Niacin)

2.9 mg

0.8 mg


Did you know you can bake cookies and cakes with whole wheat flour? Yes replace maida with premium whole wheat flour for your next cake recipe and enjoy a healthy cake.


Understanding Atta & Maida and their Composition  

What is whole wheat flour?

organic wheat

Atta or whole wheat flour is a flour made from grinding the entire wheat kernel, including the bran, germ, and endosperm. It often has a gritty texture and a mildly nutty taste. As a result, atta is a good source of vitamins, minerals, and dietary fibre. Atta is extensively used in Indian cuisine and in many parts of the Indian sub-continent to make traditional bread like roti, chapati, and paratha.

Are you wondering what is maida made of? The refined flour maida is made from grinding wheat kernels without the bran or germ. A soft, fine, white flour with a smooth texture is produced by this technique. Maida lacks the fibre and other nutrients found in wheat germ and bran, in contrast to atta.

Maida is frequently used in baking because of its fine texture, which gives cakes, cookies, pastries, and other sweets a desired lightness. Samosas and pakoras, two crispy appetisers, are also made with it. Maida has a longer shelf life than atta because of its refined quality.

Now that the difference between atta and maida in their composition is clear, let us check who wins the wheat flour vs maida for their health benefits.


Looking for ways to make your baking gluten free? Did you know millet flour has a soft and starchy consistency which makes its ideal for gluten free baking?

Health Benefits Of Atta And Maida

Atta Health Benefits

Maida Health Benefits

Atta is high in fibre content helping in digestion

Low in fibre content and lacks essential nutrients

Whole wheat flour helps to regulate blood sugar levels

refined wheat flour increases blood sugar levels. High in starch

It promotes a feeling of fullness

Can lead to digestive problems when consumed regularly

Helps in weight management

Regular consumption and excess maida in fast food can lead to weight gain

Has better nutritional value

Less nutritious as compared to atta


Pancakes are one of the easiest and yummiest breakfasts for kids. Now enjoy a healthy wholewheat pancake minus the maida with our Organic Pancake mix. 

Atta And Maida - Which Is Better?

organic maida

When it comes to choosing between wheat flour vs maida, atta is viewed as a better option to refined flours like maida. With the bran, germ, and endosperm still present, atta maintains its classification as whole wheat flour and offers a higher fibre content, vital nutrients, and a lower glycemic index. 

Maida, on the other hand, is refined wheat flour that has had its fibre and nutritionally necessary components removed, making it less nutrient-dense. Maida consumption on a regular basis may cause weight gain and intestinal problems. As a result, atta is chosen over maida for its nutritional benefits and overall wellness.


Now make your roti healthier with multigrain atta because its fibre rich and full of health. 

Usage - Atta Vs Maida

There is a difference between atta and maida and they serve diverse culinary uses due to their distinctive composition.

Atta or whole wheat flour is best suited for making your food that falls under macro nutrition – like the main carbs of your meal. Making chapatis, rotis, paratha or whole wheat bread with atta is better because of its higher fibre and nutritional content. Food items made with atta also helps to support digestive health.

Maida has a lighter texture and should be consumed occasionally. Maida is preferred for delicate baked items like cakes, pastries, and biscuits because it is finer and lighter and produces a soft texture. Maida is less suited for a balanced diet because it contains less fibre.

In the debate between maida vs atta, atta or whole wheat flour should be your choice for regular consumption. You can also choose other healthier substitute of maida like buckwheat flour, millet flour, jowar flour to suit your tastes.

Delicious & Unique Whole Wheat Atta Recipes That You Can Try

  • Whole Wheat Pancakes

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup milk (or dairy-free alternative)
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter or oil
  • Butter or oil for cooking
  • Maple syrup, fresh fruits, or toppings of your choice

Instructions - 

  1. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the whole wheat flour, sugar (if using), baking powder, baking soda, salt, milk and butter until well combined.
  2. Heat a non-stick pan over medium heat. Lightly grease the surface with butter or oil. Pour about 1/4 cup of batter onto the heated skillet for each pancake and cook for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Serve the pancakes warm with your favourite toppings, such as maple syrup, fresh fruits, yoghurt, or nuts.
  • Whole Wheat Banana Bread

    • 1& 1/2 cups whole wheat flour (atta)
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    • 3 ripe bananas, mashed
    • 1/2 cup honey or maple syrup
    • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted (or virgin coconut oil for a dairy-free option)
    • 1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional, such as walnuts or pecans)

Instructions - 

  1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the whole wheat flour, baking soda, salt, and ground cinnamon, mashed bananas, melted butter(coconut oil).
  2. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake in the preheated oven for 50-60 minutes.
  3. Once done, slice the Whole Wheat Banana Bread and serve. Enjoy it as a delicious breakfast, snack, or dessert!

Popular Dishes Made With Maida

  • Pizza

Maida is used to make the dough for the pizza crust, giving it a soft and crispy texture when baked. 

  • Doughnuts

Maida is used to make the dough for doughnuts, which are deep-fried and often coated with sugar or chocolate, and filled with jam, custard, or other sweet fillings.

  • Pastries

Maida is used to make the flaky and tender pastry dough used in a wide range of pastries, including puff pastry, croissants, and Danish pastries.


Atta with its high fibre level and important nutrients is a healthier choice than maida when it comes to choosing between atta vs maida. In India, traditionally atta is being used in local cuisines for centuries for making traditional breads. When you are wondering which atta is best for health you can opt for different organic flours which are a healthy substitute for maida. Today you can find a variety of organic flours and other organic foods for better health management on I Say Organic because we strive to bring you fresh and organic goodness directly from farmers.  

FAQs For Atta Vs Maida

What is whole wheat flour?

The entire wheat kernel, including the bran, germ, and endosperm, is ground to create whole wheat flour. It has a nutty flavour and is high in minerals and fibre.

How maida is made from?

Maida is made from milling wheat kernels after removing the bran and germ, creating refined whear flour that is lighter in colour and texture.

What is refined wheat flour?

Refined wheat flour is maida. If you are wondering if all purpose flour is maida or atta, let us clear the myth, all purpose flour is maida.

Which is healthier, Atta or Maida?

Atta or whole wheat flour is a healthier option because of its nutritional value and hi-fibre content.

What should I eat to lose weight, Maida or Atta?

You should eat atta to lose weight.

Which one has fewer calories, Maida or Atta?

Atta has fewer calories than maida and is a healthier choice.

What is the glycemic index of maida & atta?

Maida has a glycemic index of 70. As a result, after consuming a bowl of maida, your blood sugar level will increase quickly for roughly 30 minutes. However, the glycemic Index of wheat is 54, which is why it is considered a good option for diabetics or any one on a weight loss journey.

Is it okay to eat maida once a week?

You can eat foods prepared with maida once in a while. Once a week you can enjoy desserts or cookies made with maida. However, you can also choose desserts made with whole wheat flour or millet flour as a healthier alternative.

What are some healthy substitutes of maida?

Some of the healthier substitutes of maida are millet flour, jowar flour, buckwheat flour, soy flour, barley flour, water chestnut flour.

Which one has more gluten - Atta or Maida?

Maida has a higher gluten content than atta.

How to keep atta or maida fresh for a longer period of time

To keep your flours fresh and insects at bay, it is better to store them in air-tight containers. To ward against insects, many keep a sizable piece of whole turmeric or ginger in the flour container.

Which flour is better for baking cakes?

All-purpose flour or maida is a universal choice for baking cakes due to its fine texture, but you can also use whole wheat flour for baking.

Does brown bread contain Maida?

No, brown bread is made from whole wheat grains. However, it is necessary to check the labels of the products before buying.

Can atta and maida be mixed together in recipes?

Yes, a blend of atta and maida can be used in some recipes to achieve a balance of texture and nutritional content. However, it is important to check the recipe of the dish first.


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