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Carrot Halwa

If you are looking for a delicious and unique dessert to make, try this easy Carrot Halwa recipe. This sweet pudding is popular in India and is made with carrots, milk, sugar, ghee, and nuts. It is a great dessert to serve at parties or special occasions.

Indian desserts contain lots of spices, fruits, and vegetables. This gives them a rich and unique flavor that you won’t find in other desserts. Halwa is a type of Indian dessert that is made with carrots. It is a sweet and creamy pudding that is made from carrots, milk, sugar, ghee, and nuts.

This simple dessert is great for parties or special occasions or when you’re looking to broaden your dessert horizons.

You’ll simply take shredded carrots and cook them in milk along with warming spices until they are soft and fork tender. Then, you’ll add sugar and cook the mixture until it thickens. Finally, you’ll add nuts to give it a crunchy texture, and it’s ready to serve!

Top down view of a large bowl of carrot halwa.

Ingredients You’ll Need

  • Ghee – Popular in Indian cooking, ghee is used to toast the cashews and give the base of the pudding a buttery flavor.
  • Cashews – Adds a nutty crunch to the dessert.
  • Carrots – The main ingredient, carrots add a natural sweetness and creaminess to the pudding along with a natural orange hue.
  • Milk – Used to cook the carrots and give the pudding a creamy texture.
  • Granulated Sugar – Adds sweetness to the carrot halwa.
  • Ground Cardamom – A warm spice used in Indian cooking that pairs well with carrot and adds a subtle floral flavor.
  • Salt – Helps balance and enhance the sweet flavors in the dish.
Ingredients needed for carrot halwa.

How To Make Carrot Halwa

  1. Toast the cashews: Add the ghee to a large skillet over medium heat. Toss in the cashews and saute for 5 minutes or until the cashews get toasted and fragrant. Remove using a slotted spoon and set aside.
  2. Cook the carrots: To the same skillet, add the carrots and cook until they begin to soften. Then, add the milk and cook for 20 minutes or until the milk is almost evaporated.
  3. Add the sugar and seasonings: Stir in the sugar and cook for an additional 10 minutes or until the carrots are fork-tender and soft. Stir in the toasted cashews along with the cardamom powder and salt. Cook for an additional 5 minutes to blend the flavors.
  4. Garnish and serve: Add the finished pudding to serving bowls and top with additional chopped cashews.
Collage showing how to make carrot halwa.

Recipe Tips

  1. If the mixture begins to stick to the bottom of the pan, add a tablespoon or two of water and continue cooking.
  2. Make sure to stir frequently as the pudding cooks so that it doesn’t burn on the bottom.
  3. Cashews cook quickly, so make sure you keep an eye on them and constantly stir to keep them from burning.

Variations

  • Use additional warming spices like ginger, cinnamon, or cloves.
  • Substitute the cashews with other nuts like almonds, pistachios, or pecans.
  • Add a tablespoon of rosewater for a floral flavor.
  • Add raisins or dried fruit for sweetness and texture.
  • Use brown sugar or coconut sugar for a deeper caramel-like flavor.
  • Add parsnips in place of the carrots for a different flavor and color.
Carrot halwa on a fork.

Can I make this ahead of time?

Yes! This recipe can be made up to two days in advance. Just store it in an airtight container in the fridge until you’re ready to serve.

Is carrot halwa vegan?

This recipe contains ghee, which is not vegan. However, you can easily substitute the ghee with vegan butter or oil to make it vegan-friendly.

What does carrot halwa taste like?

This dessert is a sweet and creamy carrot pudding with a nutty crunch. It has flavors of caramelized sugar, cinnamon, and cardamom.

Is carrot halwa eaten hot or cold?

This dessert can be eaten either hot or cold. It’s usually served at room temperature, but it can also be microwaved or heated up in the oven if you prefer a warmer version.

Storing and Freezing

Storing: This carrot halwa can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to five days.

Freezing: Freezing this dessert is not recommended because it will change the texture of the pudding once thawed.

Don’t forget to check out our Carrot Halwa web story!

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White bowl of carrot halwa.

Carrot Halwa

Yield: About 4 Cups
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

If you are looking for a delicious and unique dessert to make, try this easy Carrot Halwa recipe. This sweet pudding is popular in India and is made with carrots, milk, sugar, ghee, and nuts. It is a great dessert to serve at parties or special occasions.

Ingredients

  • ⅓ cup of ghee
  • 1 cup of cashews
  • 2 pounds of large carrots, peeled and shredded (about 10 carrots or 6 cups once shredded)
  • 3 ½ cups of milk
  • 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • ½ teaspoon of cardamom powder
  • ¼ teaspoon of salt

Instructions

  1. Heat the ghee in a large skillet over low-medium heat. Then add the cashews and cook for about 5 minutes or until the cashews start to turn a toasty brown color. Use a slotted spoon to remove the cashews from the pan, and set them aside for later. 
  2. Add the carrots to the pan. Cook for about 5 minutes or until the carrots begin to soften.
  3. Pour in the milk, and cook for about 20 minutes on low heat or until almost all the milk has evaporated.
  4. Add the sugar and cook for another 10 minutes or until the carrots have reached the desired consistency.
  5. Stir in the toasted cashews, cardamom powder and salt. Cook for another 5 minutes then serve with additional cashews for garnish if desired.
  6. See post for storage options.

Notes

*The calories listed are an approximation based on the ingredients in the recipe card and a serving size of ½ cup of carrot halwa. Actual calories will vary.

*For more information, tips, and answers to frequently asked questions, please refer to the post.

*Photos courtesy of Karla Rae Photography.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1/2 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 363Total Fat: 19gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 30mgSodium: 292mgCarbohydrates: 45gFiber: 4gSugar: 35gProtein: 7g

*The calories are an estimate and are based on the ingredients and serving size listed. The calories can vary depending on the brand of product purchased.

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