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Overhead shot of gajar halwa topped with khoya and slivered pistachios.

Gajar ka Halwa Recipe

Gajar ka Halwa (Carrot Halwa) is a traditional Indian dessert made with carrots, milk, sugar and ghee. It's a winter specialty and is perfect for festive celebrations.
Course Desserts
Cuisine Pakistani/Indian
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Servings 8
Calories 234kcal


  • Food processor with a grater attachment
  • Box grater
  • Heavy bottomed pot such as a dutch oven


  • 1 kg Pakistani carrots grated
  • 1 litre whole milk
  • 1/2 cup ghee
  • 1/2 cup khoya milk solids
  • 2 teaspoons cardamom powder
  • 1/4 cup assorted nuts I used cashew nuts and pistachios


  • To a large heavy bottomed pot, add the carrots and cook on medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Now add the milk, stir and lower the heat.
  • Cook for 1-2 hours on low heat, or until all the moisture has evaporated and there is no liquid left. It’s important to keep stirring occasionally during this step.
  • Add the sugar, and cook on medium high heat for 5-7 minutes until the moisture from the sugar has dried up.
  • Add the ghee and khoya (milk solids) and on medium high heat, keep cooking the halwa until you can see the oil separating about 5-7 minutes.
  • Add the cardamom powder, stir until combined.
  • Finally add the assorted nuts, give it a mix, and gajar ka halwa is ready to be enjoyed!


Ingredient Notes:
  • Red Carrots: These carrots are sweeter in flavour and have a bright red color. If you cannot find any, you can substitute with the regular variety of carrots. I use a food processor to grate the carrots as it’s quicker and convenient, but you can also grate them by hand.
  • Milk: I highly recommend that you use whole milk for this recipe as it adds a richness to the halwa that other percentage milk cannot do so.
  • Ghee: Use high quality ghee for best results. You can adjust the amount to your liking, and increase it up to about 1 cup for a more indulgent halwa.
  • Khoya: You can make homemade khoya, or skip it completely if it’s not easily available. 
  • Cardamom powder: You can also use 3-4 crushed green cardamom in place of this.
  • Nuts: I used cashew nuts and pistachios, but you can also add peeled almonds which is more
  • Boiled Eggs: Sounds a bit strange, but in Punjab (Pakistan) this halwa is topped with chopped boiled eggs.
Alternate Methods of Cooking the Halwa:
Milk Powder Method:
  • Follow the recipe as is, except do not add khoya at the end.
  • Instead, you can add 1/2 cup of milk powder after adding the ghee.
  • Mix well and cook for 2-3 minutes. Proceed with the rest of the recipe as written.
Condensed Milk Powder:
NOTE: we do not need any whole milk or sugar for this method.
  • For this method start by heating up the ghee in the pot.
  • Add the shredded carrots, and then cook for 5-7 minutes on medium heat while stirring.
  • After most of the moisture has evaporated, add 400 ml of condensed milk. 
  • Mix well and continue to cook on medium heat for 8-10 minutes, while stirring, or until most of the moisture has dried out.
  • Add cardamom powder and dry fruit, and mix well. Your halwa is ready to be enjoyed!


Calories: 234kcal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 32mg | Sodium: 127mg | Potassium: 433mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 20951IU | Vitamin C: 8mg | Calcium: 147mg | Iron: 1mg