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9 of the Tastiest Pakistani Desserts

By | Last Updated : 11th December 2021

Various desserts rich in flavor and taste have become a part of Pakistani cuisine. Many like malai laddu, jalebi, and falooda are no different from Indian sweets due to the common cultures both countries share. No festive occasions in Pakistan are complete without these mouth-watering desserts. Their USP lies in their rich flavor, because of ghee, cardamom, and nuts like pistachios and almonds added to most of them.

Pakistani Desserts

1. Malai Laddu

Malai Laddu

Masala.tv

Malai laddu is a rich and creamy dessert often prepared for special occasions. A mixture of malai or milk cream, cottage cheese, chopped nuts, and powdered sugar is incorporated and given ball-like shapes.

Flavorings of saffron and cardamom are also added to enrich its taste, while the yellow food gives it an enticing look. Topping them with an extra portion of nuts like almond, pistachio, and cashew, and adding a garnish of edible silver leaf make them all the more flavorful and appealing

2. Habshi Halwa

Habshi Halwa

Food.ndtv.com

Habshi halwa is a traditional dessert known to be the prince or shehzada of all the halwa variants due to its rich ingredients, including milk, ghee, sprouted wheat, sugar, nuts, and a whole lot of aromatic spices like saffron and cardamom.

What sets it apart from other halwa dishes is its dark brown appearance, from which it gets the name, habshi, meaning brown in Urdu and Persian languages. It is cut into cube or diamond-like shapes and served especially during winter. The overall taste of this delicacy ranges from stick to chewy, soft to nutty.

3. Shahi Tukray

Shahi Tukray

Indianhealthyrecipes.com

Shahi tukray is a delicious bread pudding whose name rightly translates to a royal piece of dessert. Shahi means royal, and tukray refers to a piece. The bread slices are traditionally fried in ghee until golden and crispy and soaked in sugar syrup.

Finally, saffron and cardamom infused thick milk enriched with nuts is poured all over. The combination of crisp and smooth textures with rich flavors is an absolute delight. Once a prominent sweet item in Mughal cuisine, it is now enjoyed in every Pakistani household during the festive month of Ramadan.

4. Sohan Halwa

Sohan Halwa

Angelfire.com

Sohan halwa exists in many variations in South Asian countries like Pakistan, India, Afghanistan, and Iran. It mainly includes cornflour, sugar, milk, and ghee and is flavored with saffron. Almonds, pistachios, and cardamom seeds are added when the mixture attains a lump consistency after the boiling procedure. Once cooked, it is transferred to a tray to cool and then cut into square pieces and served.                                                                                                                                   

5. Zarda

Zarda

Fatimacooks.ne

Zarda is a satisfying rice-based sweet dish made with basmati rice (long-grained aromatic rice), milk, and sugar and flavored with cardamom seeds, cloves, pistachios, and raisins. Its name is derived from an Urdu word, ‘Zard,’ meaning yellow, due to the vibrant hue attained from the yellow food color used.

Sweet and fulfilling, it is sprinkled with chopped nuts or candied fruits for a more enhanced taste. A popular dish served on special occasions like weddings, people even eat it on regular days with a warm cup of tea.

6. Falooda

Falooda

Thismuslimgirlbakes.com

Falooda is a refreshing dessert drink having Persian origin. One of the main ingredients, sabza seeds or basil seeds, are soaked in water until they swell and attain jelly-like consistency. The soaked sabza seeds form the base layer, topped with vermicelli or cornstarch noodles.

A traditional dense ice cream or malai kulfi is added, giving it a sweet and nutty flavor. Finally, thickened and sweetened milk blended with rooh afza, a rosewater syrup is poured into the glass. A combination of flavors and textures, falooda is an excellent sweet treat to cool off in the summer season.

7. Jalebi

Jalebi

Hinzcooking.com

Jalebi is a mouth-watering all-time favorite sweet treat found in every Pakistani street outlets and sweet shops. Ingredients like all-purpose flour, yogurt, and baking powder go into preparing a thick paste and are left to ferment for about 5 hours. Traditionally, the mixture is wrapped in a cloth and poured into the hot oil in spiral form. Many fill it in a bottle with a thin nozzle to attain perfect shapes.

Once fried, the jalebis are soaked in an aromatic sugar syrup made with sugar, water, green cardamom seeds, and kewra or scented water essence. Crispy and juicy, it is an all-time favorite item all around the globe.

8. Sheer Khurma

Sheer Khurma

Teaforturmeric.com

Sheer khurma is a milk-based vermicelli pudding also known as seviyan. It has Persian roots and its name ‘Sheer’ in Farsi means milk, while khurma refers to dates one of the main ingredients in its preparation. Rosewater or kewra water alos goes into its making, alongside dried fruits and nuts like pistachios, and almonds. Creamy, flavorful, and aromatic, sheer khurma is a special item without which Eid celebration seems incomplete.

9. Karachi Halwa

Karachi Halwa

Food.ndtv.com

As the name suggests, this sweet delight comes from Karachi in Pakistan. It is made with simple ingredients like corn flour, ghee, water, and sugar. Nuts and dried fruits are also added, and it usually has a vibrant orange or red color from the food coloring used. The texture is semi-soft and not overly chewy, enjoyed mainly during festive times.

 Not only are Pakistani desserts attractive, but they taste heavenly too. While these are some of the best ones, there are many more in the list that you wouldn’t want to miss. Gulab jamun, barfi, and suji ka Halwa deserve a special mention among these. Besides these sweet delights, Pakistani food, combining veg and non-veg platters too shouldn’t be missed as a main course meal.

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