Name of Recipe      

Moong Dal Halwa


English Description

A luscious, creamy pudding made with lentils


It would be fair to say that split yellow gram (moong dal) is the most unique of all the lentils used in Indian cuisine. Thanks to its versatility (it can defy the sweet-savoury spectrum), moong dal can spark innovation in the kitchen. Usually made into savoury dals or combined with rice to make khichdi, here it becomes a buttery, sweet concoction known as moong dal halwa.   



Preparation Time         60 minutes

(Plus soaking time: 6 hours to overnight)


Cooking Time               60 minutes

Serves / Makes             8

Tastes: (on icon of spice meter)

(Mild/Medium/Spicy/Hot)         Mild



1 cup split yellow gram lentils (moong dal)

1 cup caster sugar (or any other sugar)

1 ½ cup clarified butter (ghee)

2 cups full fat milk

4 green cardamom pods, crushed (hari elaichi)

¼ tsp. saffron

1 tbsp. warmed milk pistachios or dried fruit, to garnish



Wash the lentils thoroughly and soak them in plenty of water for at least six hours or overnight


Drain the excess water and grind the lentils into a coarse paste using a food processor. Add a little water if necessary.


Steep the saffron in 1 tbsp. of warm milk and keep aside


In a pan, mix the sugar with milk and bring to the boil (no more than once). Add ground cardamom and remove from heat, keep aside.


Heat clarified butter in a heavy-bottomed non-stick pan on a medium flame.

Add the lentil paste and stir the mixture continuously until it becomes golden-brown in colour and the fat has separated (this can take 40–45 minutes).


Add milk and sugar mixture to the lentils and cook while stirring continuously until all the moisture has been absorbed and the fat separates.

Add the saffron milk and mix well.Simmer until the milk has been absorbed and once again, the fat has been separated.


Garnish with pistachios or any dried fruits of your preference and serve warm.


Ruby’s Tip

Adjust sweetness by adding more or less sugar to suit your taste. Halwa can be stored in an airtight container and refrigerated for up to three days.