Besan Ladoos: Diwali Special!

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Hello all. Yes- we’ve been away for almost a week now. Why? Well, there are a variety of reasons. Without going into too many details the  reasons are: 1. We were away two weekends back for a drive to see the beautiful fall colors around here and then when we got back we were trying to get over the fun trip we had. 🙂 2. Before we knew it- it was almost Diwali!

We were panicking. Why? ‘Coz we thought we’d make Nikhil’s grandmum’s famous Besan  Ladoos to distribute to friends and we were already 2-3 days behind. Not that you asked but let me give you a brief summary of what we did over the Diwali weekend:

  1. We made a final list of people we wanted to distribute ladoos to.
  2. We realized we had underestimated the number of people, the number of ladoos, the amount of time and “manual labour” it would take to make ladoos.
  3. We made numerous trips to the Indian store to get the ingredients. One such trip was when we had already started making the first batch of ladoos and we realized we didn’t have enough ghee! Phew!  We are usually more organized than this. 🙂
  4. We also went to a few art and craft stores to get packing material, came back and realized we could do better. We researched online  and went to a few more stores and finally got what we needed. We still need to return the stuff we got from the first store.
  5. We made the ladoos- in two batches, celebrated Diwali, attended a fun house-party, wrapped up the ladoos, clicked pictures, finished up this blog post and finally sat down and wondered we made it! 🙂 We made 130 besan ladoos– aren’t we proud of ourselves!

So here is how we made the legendary besan ladoos-

Besan Ladoos

Yield: Approximately 25 ladoos


  • 4 cups besan
  • 1 ½ - 2 cups ghee plus 3-4 tablespoons warm ghee
  • 3-4 tablespoons warm milk
  • 2 ½ - 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 2-3 teaspoons cardamom powder
  • ½ cup almonds, chopped
  • ¼ cup raisins


  1. In a medium size mixing bowl, mix 2 cups besan together with the warm ghee and warm milk. Mix it well with a fork or a pastry cutter until it the mix starts to look like bread crumbs. This texture is called “Kakda”.
  2. Next, sift this crumbly besan mix (a.k.a. kakda) through a sieve into a large mixing bowl. You will need a spatula (and a good amount of muscle power and patience) to force the crumbly besan mix through the sieve.
  3. Then, add the remaining besan to the sifted besan and mix well with a fork.
  4. In a big wok heat 1 ½ cups of ghee on medium heat and add all the besan to it. (See notes below for helpful tips for this stage).
  5. Roast and continuously stir this until the besan turns slightly pink/ brown and the mix starts looking pasty. This may take around 35 – 40 minutes. Then turn off the heat and add in the chopped almonds and 1 teaspoon cardamom. Make sure that when you turn off the heat, the besan is slightly undercooked as during the cooling process the besan will cook in its own residual heat.
  6. Allow this mix to cool enough until it is warm (not hot).
  7. Add the sugar and the remaining cardamom and mix well. You can adjust the amount of sugar depending on how sweet you like your sweets.
  8. Roll into even sized ladoos (about the size of a ping pong ball) and keep them on a plate with parchment paper. If the ladoos start to get flat at the bottom them allow them to cool for about 15 minutes and once they get slightly dry reshape the ladoos into rounds until firm.
  9. Let them sit overnight or at least for about four hours before you eat/ serve/ pack them.


You may need to adjust the amount of ghee depending on the quality, type and grind of the besan. If the mix seems too dry and difficult to mix when you add the besan to the ghee in step 4 above, add a tablespoon of ghee at a time to loosen it up. At all times make sure, your wok is only on medium heat or below.




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  3. I have heard of besan ladoos a ot but never tried them. Thank you for sharing the recipe.

  4. Caryn & Paul Johnson

    These are wonderful! I’m so glad that Paul & I made “the list”!

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