Basundi is a traditional Indian milk dessert or sweet that is the perfect festive dessert after a big fat spicy Indian meal. This easy Indian sweet is creamy, rich, and prepared with only the main 3 ingredients. This gluten-free basundi recipe is prepared without condensed milk and is the ultimate end to a meal. 

Traditional creamy basundi served in a brass bowl topped with slivered nuts and dried rose petals


Indian milk-based desserts are amongst the flavourites in our house. Throughout the year, creamy milk-based sweets are always on the menu! Some desserts we love are:

Kheer - Indian-style rice pudding. (Instant pot and stovetop method)

Doodh paak - Gujarati style rice pudding 

Doodh Poha kheer - (Instant pot method)


Basundi is a milk or dairy-based Indian dessert or sweet prepared during big Indian festivals like Diwali, Holi, Navratri, Raksha Bandhan or Gudi Padwa (hindu new year)

Basically, this scrumptious sweet is thick sweetened milk and flavored with sweet and warm spices like cardamom or saffron and topped with rich nuts like pistachio, almonds, and cashews. 

Basundi recipe is hugely popular in Gujarat, Maharashtra and Karnataka - western states of India with slight variations. 

Traditional Gujarati Basundi is made using whole milk and sugar by simmering on low heat until 1/3 reduces, then flavoured with cardamom and topped with slivered nuts. 

We always serve Basundi chilled topped with lots of nuts, edible rose petals along hot pooris in Gujarati feast thali. 

The original basundi recipe is made without adding khoya, milk powder, evaporated milk, cornflour, or custard powder. 

You can use these ingredients if pressed for time, then it will be called INSTANT or QUICK BASUNDI RECIPE. 


easy, gluten-free, and vegetarian recipe

rich, luscious, and creamy old fashioned dessert

a dessert for all ages

only require 2 main ingredients

excellent recipe with simple ingredients

make-ahead Indian sweet recipe 

can be served on its own after an Indian meal or in  a feast thali 


You will be so surprised to know that this delightfully rich dessert/sweet comes together only using a handful of basic ingredients

♦ Milk - we will need whole milk for rich and creamy basundi. For authentic Try not to make basundi by using semi-skimmed or skimmed milk if you want to taste an authentic Basundi recipe. 

♦ Double/Heavy Cream - In the UK whole milk comes with only 3.7% fat, thus we do add double cream to our milk-based recipe for a rich and creamier texture. 

♦ Sugar - for the white or off-white Basundi colour recipe we will need regular granulated sugar. Adjust the quantity of sugar in the recipe according to your taste or how sweet you prefer.

♦ Flavouring - for most Indian sweets, cardamom is necessary as it does not only enhance the flavour of the dish but helps digest rich food. 

♦ Nuts - Basundi looks regal once it is garnished with slivered nuts, use almond, pistachio. 


If you can find whole milk that is with more than 5-6% fat, you can skip the cream.

Our readers in the USA can use half and half milk for the Basundi recipe. 

If you are using demerara or any other brown sugar, the colour of Basundi will change and taste too. 

If you don't like cardamom flavour or don't have it on hand, you may skip it. 

For dietary needs, you can skip nuts and make them completely nut-free. 


Is Basundi and Rabri same?

All the ingredients of Basundi and Rabri are the same but texture, taste, consistency, and method of making it a little different. 

Basundi hails from the western parts of India, whereas Rabri or Rabdi is very popular in northern parts of India.

Rabdi is quite thicker compare to Basundi, also it has layers or strands of malai (milk skin). Whilst making rabdi we create malai whereas in Basundi we dissolve that malai whilst making by constantly stirring. 

Rabdi is often served with other Indian sweets like Jalebi, Malpua or Ghever. Basundi served on its own or with poori. 

What is Basundi consistency? 

Although basundi is known as thick sweetened milk, it is not thick as any batter or solid. It is thick yet runny consistency. 

Usually, Basundi should be drunk, not eaten by a spoon

How to make Basundi with condensed milk?  

For a quick and instant basundi recipe, you will need to be sweetened condensed milk. As condensed milk is already cooked and sweetened it helps raw milk to cook in less time. You'll need one condensed milk can 397g or 14oz in 1 liter or 4 cups milk. 

Mix well to combine and cook for around 20-25 minutes on low to medium heat. Keep stirring constantly. Then add cardamom powder and chill. 

How to make vegan Basundi?

For a vegan version of this dessert, you can use almond milk, cashew milk or coconut milk. I have made this dessert using cashew and almond milk and it tastes so delicious and rich. 

Make sure you use vegan sugar. 

Can I eat Basundi whislt fasting?

Yes, you can as this dessert is milk-based and nothing added that is forbidden that you can't consume on a fasting day. 

What else can I make with leftover Basundi?

Add plain cooked rice to make chawal ki kheer, or make quick seviyan kheer by adding vermicelli. 

Make ras malai with leftover basundi. Simply make paneer patties, cook in sugar syrup then add in Basundi. 

I bet if you prepare these kesar, pista coconut ladoo using leftover basundi, they won't stay longer in a serving dish. 

If fasting, why not make moriyo phool makhana kheer 


Basundi recipe is splendid and one of the easy Indian desserts to create in your own comfort, however lack of care or patience will spoil your efforts. But, with these best tips, you will achieve perfect results every single time. 

✔ Type of pan - my mum gave me this best and most important advice, always cook milk in a heavy bottom/based pan or Kadai. There is less chance of sticking milk on the bottom of the pan. Use a pan that has a  wide mouth.  

Make sure your pan is free from any odd smell, before your pour the milk in wash inside with clean water. This step reduces changes of milk sticking and burning on the pan  

✔ Medium to low heat - always simmer on low to medium heat for best basundi texture. 

✔ Stirring constantly - when you work with milk-based recipes it is very important to give all the attention. Constantly keep stirring using the appropriate spoon. 

Once basundi is done, keep stirring next 5-8 minutes to prevent any film settling also cover it using a muslin cloth rather than close the lid. The steam will escape from the tiny holes from the cloth and film won't form 

✔ Serving chilled - Basundi will get thickened a little once it cools down. Keep in the refrigerator to chill for a couple of hours before serving. 


Basundi is an Indian dessert, however, it is usually served along with the meal with the rest of the side dishes such as curry, daal, rice, Bateta Vada and eaten with deep-fried Indian flatbread Poori

Basundi Poori is the best combination you will ever see, also many people love to enjoy bowlfuls as it is after a spicy meal. 


Basundi is a rich and delightful dessert, and it is usually made during festivals such as Diwali, Holi, Raksha Bandhan, Bhai Dooj, Gudi Padwa, or on special occasions. 

Basundi is also seen on the Gujarati wedding menus, also can be taken as a dessert during the fasting period like Navratri or can be served with farali Poori


Basundi keeps well for 3-4 days in the refrigerator. Once it cools down completely, put it in the airtight container and store it in the fridge away from strong smells such as curry. 


Basundi being a milk-based dessert, you can experiment to make it interesting every time. This make with plenty of variations to bring (put it in better words)

You can add fresh fruit pulp/puree, freshly chopped fruit or syrups to cooked and cooled basundi. Make sure the basundi is chilled before adding any citrus fruit, else the dessert will curdle. 

We loved creating this showstopper Dudhi Basundi in Instant pot using a tender summer squash called Dudhi or bottle gourd. This creamy dessert can be made in an Instant pot or stovetop. 

1. Sitaphal basundi

2. Mango Basundi

3. Mixed fruit basundi 

4. Pineapple basundi

5. Rose or thandai basundi 

6. Chikoo Basundi

7. Santra Basundi

8. Apple Basundi


Get the exact measurement and complete ingredients list in metric and imperial from the recipe card below. 

Let's gather all the Basundi ingredients and I'll show you...

Easy milk basundi recipe step by step images

1. Pour the milk in a heavy bottom pan or kadai. Keep the heat on medium.

2. Bring milk to boil, as it starts to boil turn the heat down. Keep stirring constantly. Do stir and cook,  scrape sides and bottom of the pan to prevent any burning or scorching. Keep gas flame low-medium

3. Whilst simmering, you can see a thin film of milk skin on the surface, mix it with a spoon in the milk as you are stirring. 

If you like you may add some slivered nuts at this time too. 

4. Once the milk is reduced to 1/3 add sugar and mix well. 

5. Add cardamom powder and let it simmer for 6-8 minutes more. 

6. Turn off the heat, but keep stirring for 5 minutes more to prevent the film from settling on the surface.

7. Add cream if using.

8. Allow it to cool completely then chill in the refrigerator before serving. 

Closeup shot of served basundi in a bowl next to a spoon on a tray.

IF YOU LIKE THIS RECIPE might also like our other Indian desserts recipes:

1. Mango peda

2. Shahi tukda

3. Chocolate and peanut butter kala jamun

4. Cashew Caramel Modak 

5. Beetroot Kalakand

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basundi, easy milk basundi, basundi recipe.milk recipes. mithai, indian desserts, indian sweets, diwali recipes
Desserts, mithai, sweets
Yield: 6-8 servings
Author: Hayley Dhanecha


Basundi recipe is a traditional Indian dessert that is made using milk, and sugar, flavoured with warm spices and topped with rich nuts. Easy milk basundi is rich and delicious, it is basically just boiling milk and sugar in a heavy bottom pan until it is thickened. Serve with poori on festival such as Gudi padwa, Bhai dooj or raksha bandhan.
Prep time: 5 MinCook time: 50 MinInactive time: 2 HourTotal time: 2 H & 55 M


1 cup = 250mililiters
  • 12 cup whole milk (3 liters)
  • 500ml double/heavy cream (2cup)
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar (250g)
  • 1/2 teaspoon cardamom powder
  • 4 tablespoon almond and pistachio slivers


  1. Firstly, rinse a heavy-bottomed pan with tap water and then pour in the milk.
  2. Heat the milk gently over a medium flame whilst continuously stirring. When stirring, ensure you keep stirring and scraping the bottom and sides of the pan.
  3. The milk will eventually begin to reduce and thicken.
  4. At this point, add your slivered nuts and ground cardamom.
  5. Add your sugar and continue cooking. The sugar will release moisture and temporarily thin out the milk but it will thicken.
  6. Once you have achieved the correct consistency, keep stirring the milk every so often as it cools.
  7. Add double/heavy cream and cook further 2-3 minutes.
  8. Cover the pan and leave it aside to cool completely.
  9. Once cooled, chill in the refrigerator for 2-3 hours.


This recipe can be halved, doubles or triples.

Whole milk or full-fat milk is recommended for rich and creamy basundi.

Use heavy-based/bottomed and wide mouth pan or kadai to make basundi.

Make sure you keep stirring the milk continuously using an appropriate spoon to prevent milk from sticking to the bottom of the pan.

Nutrition Facts



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The nutritional information provided is an approximation calculated by an online calculator. Please consult a professional dietitian for nutritional advice.

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