This Almond Halwa with Almond Flour is a delicious Indian dessert flavored with saffron and ground cardamom. There is no peeling or grinding almonds - An instant badam halwa recipe that is rich and luxurious.
Almond Halwa with Almond Flour
Also known as Badam Halwa, this mouth watering Indian dessert is made instantly using store bought almond flour. Ready in under 30 minutes, this halwa is easy yet impressive. It is flavored with ground cardamom and saffron which makes it taste authentic.
Our family has been making this sweet using whole almonds as long as I can remember, until I experimented with store bought almond flour. It was a game changer!
Why are you going to love this recipe?
- No planning ahead - Since this recipe does not use whole almonds, you can make your halwa instantly when a craving strikes or when you have unexpected guests.
- Tastes authentic - It is made just using traditional method and ingredients. So, there is no compromise in authenticity!
- Not overly sweet - Indian sweets can be sometimes overly sweet. However, this recipe is made with the right amount of sugar that does not overpower the taste of almonds or the spices. So, you can enjoy without any guilt.
- Great for make ahead - We generally double, triple or even quadruple the recipe, cool and refrigerate, when we have parties or get together. Simply leave the sweet at room temperature for a few hours before serving.
- Healthier - Traditional halwa is made with 1:1 ratio of almond to ghee, which not only adds taste but also helps to increase the shelf life for several days at room temperature. We have used ¼ cup ghee for 1 cup flour, which is only 25%, making this a healthier dessert recipe.
What is Almond Halwa?
Also known as Badam Halwa, it is made using ground almonds, is a pudding like dessert that is rich and indulgent. Almonds are soaked overnight in water, the skins are painstakingly peeled the next morning and then ground into a fine paste in a blender. It is then used to make this sweet that is commonly served on special occasions or festivals.
Do I have to use saffron?
Saffron is a spice derived from the flower Crocus sativus. The brightly colored stigma or threads are painstakingly collected and dried, making it the most expensive spice in the world. It is used widely to make sweets, rice and sometimes meat dishes in middle Eastern and south Asian regions of the world.
It adds wonderful golden color and lovely flavor to any recipe. If you don't have saffron, then we recommend adding a very tiny pinch of turmeric powder to give the yellow color or simply skip and increase the cardamom powder.
Where can I buy saffron?
It can be found in Indian or middle Eastern grocery stores or online at Amazon. We love to buy ours from Indian grocery stores, where it is not overly expensive.
How to make ground cardamom?
When buying cardamom pods, look for a bright green colored cardamoms which indicates freshness and not brownish skins. Using a dry grinder (like Nutri bullet or spice grinder), grind about ¼ cup cardamom pods (or more) into a fine powder. It can be frozen in a sealed zip lock bag for months, to preserve freshness.
How do I know when the halwa is done?
To check the right consistency, draw a line with the spoon along the bottom of the pan, so that it creates a path through the mixture. If the path fills in, the mixture isn't thick enough. If it stays put, it's ready.
Almond Flour - Like for all almond flour dessert recipes, I used Costco Kirkland brand super fine almond flour.
Milk - Use whole or reduced fat milk and not fat free.
Ghee - Its adds the authentic taste
Sugar - Regular white sugar
Spices - Cardamom and saffron
Pro Tips for Success
Ghee - Use fresh homemade ghee or store bought. Good quality ghee imparts wonderful taste and flavor to the dish. It can be found in indian grocery stores, Costco or very easily made at home (we like this recipe from Indianhealthyrecipes.com).
Almond flour - Use super fine almond flour and not almond meal.
Texture - If you want an extremely smooth, luxurious halwa, then grind the almond flour in a dry grinder to make an ultra smooth powder before using in the recipe.
Pan - We recommend using non-stick sauce pan that has high sides, since the sweet can splatter when bubbling during the last process. Please DO NOT USE A SKILLET. It can also be made in an Instant pot using the saute function.
Saffron - If you don't have saffron, then use a very pinch of turmeric powder or simply skip (the dish will look pale golden) and double the cardamom powder.
Freshly ground cardamom for best flavor - Store bought cardamom powders are usually not as fresh and does have the aroma of homemade ones. It is very easy to make it at home and store for months in the freezer.
How to make?
Saute flour in ghee - Heat ghee in a medium non-stick sauce pan until melted. Add flour and cook, stirring constantly for 2 to 3 minutes to get a nice aroma.
Cook - Add milk, sugar and saffron, and cook until halwa has thickened, stirring constantly.
Finish - When the mixture has thickened and reaches the thick consistency, mix in remaining ghee and cardamom powder and remove pan off heat to stop cooking. It will thicken further as it cools.
How long will it last?
It is a great make ahead dish! Refrigerate sweet in a tightly sealed air tight container for up to a week. Let it come to room temperature before serving.
Do I serve this hot or room temperature?
It is delicious enjoyed warm or at room temperature. We do not recommend eating it cold (although my husband will eat it anyway possible), since the ghee tends to solidifies when cold and is not at the right halwa consistency.
Can I freeze?
Sure can! Freeze in a air tight freezer safe container or a zip lock bag for up to 2 months. Leave at room temperature for several hours or completely thawed.
More Creative Indian Desserts to try -
Almond Halwa with Almond Flour
- Heat about 3 tablespoons ghee in a medium non-stick sauce pan (choose a pan with high sides and larger the pan, the halwa will be done faster) over medium-high heat.
- When ghee melts, add almond flour and saute for 2 to 3 minutes, to toast the flour.
- Add milk, sugar and saffron, stir well to dissolve any lumps and cook (stirring every 1-2 minutes, so it does not stick in the bottom) for 10 to 15 minutes, until the mixture gets thick and reached a halwa consistency. Stir continuously after it gets thicker or the last few minutes. (How to check when it's done? Draw a line with the spoon along the bottom of the pan, so that it creates a path through the mixture. If the path fills in, the mixture isn’t thick enough. If it stays put, it’s ready).
- Stir in ground cardamom and remaining ghee. Stir for 15 to 20 seconds and remove pan from heat.
- Transfer halwa to a seperate dish (halwa will thicken further as it cools).
- Serve warm or room temperature.
Nutritional information, based on third-party calculations, should be seen as estimates, not guarantees, as various factors like product types, brands, processing methods, and more can alter the nutritional content in recipes.
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