Mouth watering dairy-free gajar halwa with vanilla essence

This slow cooked vegan carrot halwa flavoured with vanilla will leave you craving for more; plus, it's nutritious too!

Gajar halwa

Yes, carrots are loaded with nutrition. But who eats gajar halwa for the nutrition? This warm, comforting, melt-in-your-mouth Indian dessert is enjoyed by one and all for its exquisite deliciousness. Gajar Halwa turns out best when made with red carrots [not orange ones], that are in abundance during winter season in India. This vegan recipe is made without ghee or milk but we bet you won’t be able to tell the difference. The secret in making the perfect vegan gajar ka halwa is to slow cook it on low flame. Traditionally this recipe is made using cardamom [elaichi]. To give it a twist, I have replaced cardamom with vanilla.

Number of Portions: 2

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Cooking Time: 20 minutes


  • 4 cups grated red winter carrots
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1 cup thick coconut milk or almond milk [can use dairy milk also]
  • A few drops vanilla essence [you can use vanilla extract if available]
  • 10 pistachios halved
  • 1 tbsp broken almond
  • 1 tbsp broken cashews

Preparation method

  1. Place grated red carrots in pan and add sugar. Allow carrots to sweat and cook in its juice. Now add milk and vanilla essence and cook on slow flame.
  2. Cook until ¾ of milk is evaporated.
  3. Separately heat oil and lightly sauté all nuts.
  4. Add nuts to carrots and cook until all milk is reduced. Serve gajar halwa hot.

This recipe was first published in the March 2013 issue of Complete Wellbeing.

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