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Barfi Recipe

  • 17 min read

The word “barfi” has many meanings in different languages.

In Hindi, it means “sweet.” In Urdu, it refers to “a kind of candy.”

But most importantly, in Bengali, it translates as “deliciousness.”

The history of this dish dates back centuries.

The earliest references to barfi date from 11th century Persia (now Iran).

It was originally called “kheer barfi” or “khir barfi.”

This sweet originated from India but spread throughout Asia.

Barfi is often served at weddings and other special occasions, especially during festivals like Holi.

Barfi also became popular among immigrants who brought this sweet to America in the 19th century.

Today, there are over 2 million recipes for barfi on Pinterest alone!

What Is Barfi Made Of?

There are two main ingredients that go into making barfi: milk and sugar.

Milk is used because it contains protein and fat which give barfi its rich texture.

Sugar gives barfi a sweet taste.

If you don’t add any sugar then your barfi will be very bitter.

Other than these basic ingredients, barfi can contain nuts, raisins, cardamom, pistachio, rose water, saffron, almonds, etc.

These additions help increase the flavor and enhance the appearance of the final product.

If you want to learn more about what goes into making barfi, check out our article here.

It may sound strange, but barfi doesn’t just include milk and sugar.

There are certain rules when preparing the mixture so that the finished product tastes right.

Barfi Recipe

1. How much liquid should I use?

In order for your barfi to have the desired consistency, you need enough liquid.

But how much is needed exactly? You should aim for around 1 cup of liquid per 3 cups of flour.

So if you have 5 cups of flour, you should prepare 6 cups of liquid.

To measure your flour, take one cup and place it in a bowl.

Then fill up an additional cup with water until it reaches three-quarters full.

Use a spoon to stir the flour and mix well.

Add another half cup of water and continue stirring until all dry flour is dissolved.

Make sure not to add too little water or else the batter will become thick and sticky.

2. What temperature do I cook my barfi at?

As mentioned above, you need enough liquid to ensure that the barfi stays moist.

However, you still need to avoid overcooking it.

A cake cooked at 180 degrees Celsius becomes hard and tough while a cake baked at 190 degrees Celsius remains soft.

To prevent both scenarios, turn down the heat on your stove top or oven to 160 degrees Celsius.

Cooked barfi should be firm yet slightly warm to touch.

3. Should I bake or boil my barfi?

You should always let your barfi cool before cutting it.

This prevents the edges from becoming brittle due to high temperatures.

Also, once the barfi is cooled off, you can cut it using either a knife or a cookie cutter.

When cutting with a cookie cutter, make sure to work quickly and cleanly otherwise excess moisture will drip onto the countertop.

Once you remove the barfi from the mold, serve immediately!

Barfi Recipe2

What Are The Steps To Make Barfi?

Making barfi can be tricky if you aren’t familiar with how it’s prepared.

You might think that all you need to do is mix some ingredients together and bake them until they turn into solid blocks; however, this isn’t always the case.

Because barfi is so rich and creamy, you have to pay attention to several factors when making your batch.

Here are the main components of barfi:

  • Milk
  • Sugar
  • Nuts
  • Cardamom
  • Ghee (clarified butter)
  • Yogurt
  • Almonds

As you can see, there are quite a few things you must consider when preparing barfi.

If you don’t know what these items are, check out our article on the differences between ghee and clarified butter.

Also, we recommend reading about cardamom before starting to prepare this dessert.

Cardamom is one of the main spices used in barfi.

1. Milk

When creating barfi, the first step is to cook up some milk.

Before adding any other ingredients, you should boil some milk.

Once it boils, add some salt and remove the pan from the heat.

Next, let the milk cool down completely and transfer it into a blender.

When blending, use an ice cream maker attachment if possible.

If not, you can still blend the mixture by hand using a whisk.

Just be careful – hot liquids will burn your skin easily.

After mixing everything together, pour the liquid through cheesecloth to strain out the solids.

2. Sugar

Next, you’ll want to measure out roughly half cup of granulated white sugar per cup of strained milk.

Because sugar dissolves more quickly than milk, you may find yourself having to repeat this process multiple times to get the right consistency.

After straining the milk again, you should now be able to pour it into the bowl containing the sugar.

Stir well and let the mixture sit for 15 minutes.

3. Nuts

Lastly, you need to chop up almonds.

These small pieces are essential because they give the barfi its signature crunchy texture.

Soak the almonds in water overnight then drain off excess moisture.

Chop them up finely with a knife or food processor.

4. Add yogurt

Once the almonds are chopped, stir in ½ cup of plain Greek-style yogurt.

Now comes the hard part: waiting.

While you wait, preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Pour the strained milk into a baking pot.

Then carefully place the pot inside the oven and set the timer for 20 minutes.

Let the mixture warm for around 5 minutes after turning the oven off.

5. Ghee

You’re almost finished! To make ghee, melt 1/3 cup of unsalted butter in a saucepan.

Remove the melted butter from the heat once the foam subsides.

Place the pan under cold running water until the remaining butter separates from the clear fat layer.

Strain the clear fat and discard the milky residue.

Now that you’ve got the ghee, you can stir in ¼ teaspoon of cardamom powder.

Keep stirring until the cardamom turns brown.

Transfer the contents of the saucepan to a glass container and store in the fridge.

6. Mixing it all together

Place the almond mixture into a large bowl and gradually sprinkle in the ghee while folding it into the batter.

Continue alternating between adding the ghee and the almond mixture until you reach the desired thickness.

Don’t worry too much about getting the proportions perfect since you won’t notice the difference later on.

How Long Does It Take To Make Barfi?

Making homemade barfi takes about 30 minutes if you have all your ingredients ready beforehand.

Here’s how to do it step by step:

  • Combine 1 cup of milk with 4 cups of water in a pot.
  • Bring mixture to boil and then add 1/4 cup of sugar.
  • Add 1 tablespoon of cardamom powder while stirring constantly until the sugar dissolves completely.
  • Turn off heat and let cool down before adding any additional flavors.
  • Once cooled down, pour into molds and refrigerate overnight.

How to make barfi without an ice cream machine

If you don’t own an ice cream maker, don’t worry — you can still enjoy delicious barfi.

All you need are some simple tools and ingredients that will help you create this sweet treat easily.

  • A bowl or pan
  • Blender or food processor
  • Parchment paper
  • Heavy-bottomed saucepan
  • Whisk
  • Bowls and measuring spoons
  • Spatula
  • Mold(s)
  • Ingredients

You only need five basic ingredients to make your very own batch of barfi:

Milk – You can use whole milk, low fat milk, almond milk, coconut milk, etc.

Sugar – Use granulated or brown sugar, depending on preference.

Cardamom Powder – Also known as green cardamom, these pods contain essential oils that give the barfi its unique flavor.

Butter – If you want to get fancy, try using salted butter instead of unsalted.

Vanilla extract – Just one drop per serving should be enough.

Here’s what you need to do:

  • Heat up half-cup of milk in a heavy bottomed pan.
  • Add vanilla extract and stir continuously so that the milk doesn’t curdle.
  • When the milk starts boiling, slowly sprinkle in three tablespoons of sugar.
  • As soon as the sugar dissolves, add two teaspoons of cardamom powder.
  • Stir vigorously until the mixture thickens slightly.
  • Remove from heat and transfer to a blender or food processor.
  • Blend well until smooth and creamy.
  • Now pour into containers and place them in the refrigerator overnight.

What Is The Best Barfi Recipe?

There are two main types of barfi: dry and liquid.

Dry barfi tends to be sweeter than its wet counterpart.

However, both versions have their own distinct flavors.

Dry barfi contains ground almonds and cardamom while liquid barfi incorporates coconut milk instead.

To make your own barfi, you will need four ingredients: milk, sugar, ghee or butter, and nuts.

You could buy pre-made barfi packets, too.

There are many varieties available, including pistachio, cashew, almond, and even chocolate.

But if you want to try making your own barfi, here’s what you should know before you start.

  • You must use whole milk – powdered milk won’t work because they don’t contain enough fat.
  • Use only unsalted ghee/butter for cooking – salted ghee doesn’t cook well.
  • Don’t add water when preparing your barfi mixture – otherwise, the texture may change.
  • If using store-bought barfi, measure out one tablespoon of ghee per serving and follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer.
  • Add 1 teaspoon of sugar per serving.
  • Do not stir the mixture once you add the nuts.
  • Stirring the nuts into the batter will result in clumps that do not mix evenly into the batter.

How Can I Make Barfi More Delicious?

There are several factors that affect the taste of barfi.

Some people say that the quality of ingredients makes all the difference while others argue that cooking technique plays an equally important role.

Here are four things you should watch out when making your own homemade barfi.

  • Use fresh ingredients – Fresh fruits are essential to any good barfi recipe.
  • They add moisture and sweetness to the final product.
  • You can use frozen fruit instead if you prefer, but avoid canned fruits.
  • Also, try not to use dried fruits, which will give your barfi a bitter aftertaste.
  • Cooking method matters too – There are three main methods used to cook barfi: stovetop, oven, and microwave.
  • Stovetop cooking involves boiling water in a pan until it reduces into syrup.
  • Oven-baking uses dry heat by baking a mixture of flour and sugar in a hot oven.
  • And finally, microwaving requires using a microwaveable bowl to melt sugar before adding milk and nuts.
  • Don’t skimp on spices – Adding cardamom powder, cinnamon sticks, saffron threads, rose petals, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger to your mix gives barfi its distinctive flavor.
  • All these spices have natural preservatives that keep them fresh longer than their shelf life suggests.
  • Keep it cold – If you want to preserve your barfi for later, store it in the fridge for up to two weeks.
  • However, you might need to refrigerate it even longer if you plan to freeze it.
  • Make sure to wrap each portion individually so they don’t stick together.
Barfi Recipe3

Best barfi recipe ever

This simple barfi recipe calls for only five basic ingredients: milk, ghee/clarified butter, sugar, almonds, and pistachios.

To kick off your barfi adventure, here’s what you’ll need to do:

First, bring 1 gallon of whole milk to a boil.

Once it’s reached a rolling boil, turn down the flame and let it simmer for about 10 minutes.

Next, pour ½ cup of clarified butter into a separate pot and warm it over low heat.

When melted, whisk it into the milk until fully incorporated.

Now, put ¼ cup of granulated sugar and 4 tablespoons of unsalted butter in another small saucepan and melt them together over medium heat.

Stir constantly until the mixture turns clear brown.

Remove from the heat and set aside.

Add ⅓ cup of chopped blanched almonds, ⅛ teaspoon of ground cardamom, 6 green pistachio halves, and 3 teaspoons of pistachio oil to the warmed milk & ghee mixture.

Whisk everything together well and transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl.

Pour half of the sugar syrup into the bowl and stir continuously until smooth.

Now add the rest of the sugar syrup and continue stirring until smooth again.

Finally, fold in the remaining nuts and oil.

Transfer the entire mixture to a piping bag fitted with a star tip.

Spoon the desired amount onto a plate and garnish with a few drops of pistachio extract.

What Are Some Creative Ways To Serve Barfi?

There are so many ways you could serve your favorite barfi recipe.

If you want to impress someone, then you should definitely try one of these fun ideas:

  • Make a giant barfi cake out of bread dough.
  • After kneading the dough into balls, roll them into long cylinders.
  • Then, slice each cylinder into thin bars that will be used as layers in the final cake.
  • You can use any flavor of barfi here – vanilla bean, pistachio, chocolate chip, etc.
  • Use an old shoe box to create a mini-cake.
  • Just fill up the bottom portion of the box with barfi, add a layer of coconut flakes, and top it all off with crushed walnuts.
  • Use a sharp knife to cut small squares out of the middle of the box to reveal the barfi inside.
  • For Valentine’s Day, why not whip up a heart shaped barfi? Cut a circle using a glass cutter or cookie cutter.
  • Place a ring mold around the outer edge of the circle.
  • Fill it with your favorite barfi of choice, and place the mold on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper.
  • Freeze until hardened, and voila! It’ll look just like a real heart.

What Are Some Common Mistakes People Make When Making Barfi?

There are several steps that must be followed correctly if you want your barfi to turn out perfectly every single time.

Here are some tips for making perfect barfi:

  • Use good quality unsalted butter instead of margarine.
  • Margarine contains preservatives which will break down the dairy products and ruin your barfi.
  • Do not use powdered milk.
  • Powdered milk loses its moisture quickly and becomes hard after refrigeration.
  • You should always use fresh milk for making barfi.
  • Make sure all ingredients are cold before starting to mix them together.
  • Always keep everything chilled until you start mixing the ingredients.
  • If any ingredient gets hot, your barfi won’t have the desired consistency.
  • Don’t add too much water.
  • Adding too much liquid into your batter will dilute the taste of the dessert.
  • Add just enough so that your mixture resembles thick pancake batter.
  • Try using low-fat yogurt instead of heavy cream.
  • Low fat yogurts tend to separate more easily while whipping than full-fat yogurt does.
  • Therefore, you may need to beat your egg whites longer to achieve stiff peaks.
  • Keep your pan clean.
  • Make sure your pan is dry and grease free whenever possible.
  • Greasing your pan with oil will prevent food from sticking to it.
  • Gently pour your batter onto the greased baking sheet.
  • Don’t press down on the baking sheet because doing so will cause air bubbles to get trapped inside your barfi.
  • Try to leave about 1/4 inch space between each layer of barsfi.
  • Bake your barfi for 20 minutes.
  • Baking your barfi for too long will cause it to become overly browned and crispy, ruining the texture.
  • After removing your barfi from the oven, let it cool completely.
  • Once cooled, store your barsfi in an airtight container.
  • Add extra sugar only when necessary.
  • Too much sugar will make your barfi gooey and sticky.
  • Use less sugar if your family prefers sweeter desserts.

How Can I Make Barfi Ahead Of Time?

If you want to prepare your own homemade barfi, here’s what you need:

  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ⅓ cup almond flour
  • Pinch salt
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon honey

Mix together all ingredients except the honey until smooth.

Add the honey and mix well again.

Pour into an 8- by 10-inch baking pan lined with parchment paper.

Press down firmly so that the barfi forms a solid layer.

Refrigerate overnight before cutting into squares and serving.

To serve, top each square with additional powdered sugar and sliced almonds.

How Do I Store Barfi?

Once you have your barfi ready, you must keep it fresh by storing it properly.

Here are some guidelines that will help you avoid spoiling your delicious treat before its due time:

  • Store the barfi in an airtight container.
  • Keep the ingredients separated so they don’t mix together.
  • Don’t use plastic wrap because moisture can cause mold growth.
  • Refrigerate the barfi if possible, but not frozen foods as heat may affect the texture.

Tips for storing barfi

If you decide to freeze your barfi, follow these tips to ensure it doesn’t get soggy or melt down into something else:

  • Freeze the barfi in one layer.
  • Use freezer paper or waxed paper between layers.
  • Don’t put anything wet inside the freezer bag when freezing.
  • Defrost your barfi slowly in the refrigerator instead of directly out of the freezer.

What Are Some Interesting Facts About Barfi?

As you can see above, barfi is very versatile.

You can make it with any type of nut or fruit, and then flavor it with various spices.

Depending on your preference, you could add cardamom, pistachio, rose water, saffron, almonds, raisins, dried mangoes, cashew paste, sautéed onions, or even curry powder.

There are two main types of barfi that people typically serve—one with milk and one without.

Here are the differences between them…

  • Without Milk: A simple version of barfi that uses just sugar and nuts.
  • These are usually not too sweet and have more of an earthy taste.
  • They are best enjoyed when they are warm.
  • With Milk: Also known as kulfi, these barfis use ghee instead of oil.
  • The ghee gives them a rich, creamy texture.

If you want to learn how to make delicious homemade barfi, we recommend checking out our article here.

Barfi Recipe

Barfi Recipe

Barfi is often served at weddings and other special occasions, especially during festivals like Holi.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Barfi Recipe
Servings: 4
Calories: 734kcal


  • 1 Bowl
  • 1 Pan


  • cup milk powder
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 cup milk
  • ¼ cup ghee
  • 3 tbsp pistachios


  • First, combine 1 cup milk, 1/4 cup sugar, and 2 12 cups milk powder in a bowl.
  • Up until everything is thoroughly incorporated, whisk and mix well.
  • Put the mixture in a big kadai. encourage using nonstick cookware to avoid sticking
  • Additionally, stir well on a low flame with 1/4 cup ghee.
  • As the mixture thickens, continue stirring over a low flame.
  • After 10 minutes, the mixture starts to separate from the pan and keep its shape.
  • Avoid overcooking the burfi since it will become hard. Moreover, the combination becomes chewy if it is undercooked.
  • Place the burfi dough on the baking sheet-lined tray.
  • Press lightly to ensure that it is level.
  • Add a few chopped pistachios on top, then gently press.
  • Cover and chill for one hour, or until completely set.
  • Unmould the burfi after an hour, then cut with a sharp knife.
  • Finally, when kept in an airtight container, the milk burfi dish tastes fantastic for a week.



Calories: 734kcal | Carbohydrates: 79g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 37g | Saturated Fat: 22g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Cholesterol: 114mg | Sodium: 321mg | Potassium: 1214mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 78g | Vitamin A: 869IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 811mg | Iron: 1mg
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