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  • Writer's picturePreeti Vaswani


Holi is at a short distance, and it's time for thandai. The rising temperature of daytime calls for Kulfi(Indian ice cream). What can be better than this Thandai Kulfi which has flavors of thandai mixed with traditional kulfi. Topped with an exotic garnish of saffron, pistachio and rose petals this frozen dessert will leave you drooling over its creamy texture.

This thandai kulfi is creamy, dense, rich frozen dessert just made with 6 ingredients - milk, milk powder, condensed milk, cornflour, thandai syrup and nuts.

What is Thandai?

Those still unaware, thandai is a refreshing milk-based drink popular in northern parts of India. It is specially made and served at the time of festivals like Holi and Shivratri.

Thandai comes from the word "Thanda" meaning cold in Hindi as the ingredients used in making thandai have a cooling effect on the body. Apart from being delicious and refreshing thandai has a lot of health benefits too. It improves immunity and digestion, maintains hormonal balance and boosts energy.

This refreshing coolant is traditionally made by flavoring the milk with the paste of soaked almonds, cashew, pistachios, poppy seeds, rose petals along with spices like peppercorns, fennel, cardamom, saffron.

All the ingredients of thandai are ground to a fine paste and then this flavorful paste is stirred in boiled and sweetened milk. It is then kept in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours or overnight so that all the flavors infuse well in the milk. It is then filtered and served chilled.

What is Kulfi ?

Kulfi is the Indian version of ice cream that has a creamy, dense texture and a whole lot of goodness.

It is made by reducing the milk on a slow flame to one-third of its original volume. The reduced milk is flavored with sugar, cardamom and nuts. Some add saffron or rose water too. This thickened and flavored milk is then poured into small earthen pots or cylindrical molds and set to freeze.

These days you can find kulfi in a lot of flavors like paan, mango , kesa-pista and even chocolate.

Thandai and Kulfi - perfect partners to make an awesome Holi dessert

Why not go for something that is as delicious as thandai and as cool as kulfi on this festival of Holi.

With a bottle full of thandai syrup sitting in my refrigerator and Holi nearing, I thought of preparing this Thandai Kulfi to enjoy the flavors of thandai in a frozen dessert. If you have some ready to use thandai syrup , making these is just a breeze.

I just simmered the milk on low flame along with milk powder and condensed milk. After it was reduced to half of its original volume I added cornflour slurry and some chopped nuts for the crunch. When milk thickens a little more , take it off the flame and let it cool down to room temperature. Add thandai syrup , mix it well, pour in molds and set to freeze. As thandai syrup is already flavored with saffron, cardamom and other spices , there is no need to add anything else.

These kulfi were just perfect - with just the right flavour of thandai and rich , dense, creamy texture. It was a great hit at home and just disappeared in a day.

If you do not have thandai syrup, no worries , you can add thandai powder + more condensed milk.

This Thandai Kulfi

✔ is inspired by the flavors of Thandai

✔ makes a festive treat for Holi or Diwali.

✔ is easy to make and eggless!

✔ great for parties

✔ new way to enjoy thandai and kulfi

Cuisine : Indian

Course : Dessert

Prep time : 5 minutes

Cooking time : 30 minutes

Freezing time : 12-15 hours

Servings : 10 (small)


  • 4 Cups full fat milk

  • 10 Tbsp milk powder

  • 3 Tbsp condensed milk(4 tbsp if you like sweeter)

  • 2 Tbsp chopped nuts ,almond.cashew, pistachio

  • 3 Tbsp thandai syrup

  • 1 Tbsp cornflour dissolved in 3 Tbsp milk


1. Add milk to a heavy bottom pan on medium heat. Let it come to a simmer and then lower the heat to medium-low.

2. Then add the milk powder and mix well.

3. Add the condensed milk and mix.

4. Also add the chopped nuts and mix.

5. Let the milk simmer on low heat for 20 minutes.

6. Add cornflour slurry to the milk and mix well

7. Let the milk simmer for 5 more minutes after adding the cornflour, keep stirring continuously. It will thicken considerably.

8. Remove pan from heat and then let the milk cool completely. Once it has cooled add thandai syrup and mix well.

9. Transfer kulfi mixture to plastic cups or kulfi molds. Cover each with aluminium foil.

10. Carefully place the cups in the freezer.

11 .Once kulfi is little set for around 2 hours, take them out of the freezer and insert a ice cream stick in each mold. Return kulfi to the freezer and freeze until set, preferably overnight.

12. Demold carefully . garnish with saffron, pistachio and rose petals before serving.

Let's celebrate HOLI with a delicious blast

Thandai Kulfi

Malai Kofta

Gulab Jamun

Dahi Vada

Mawa Gujiya

Kaju Ladoo

Kala Chana Kabab

Chana Dal Vada

If you try this recipe, let me know! Leave a comment and don’t forget to take a picture and tag it #preetiskitchentales on Instagram! I’d love to see the recreation of my recipe in your kitchen.

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