Gajar Ladoo are soft and melt in the mouth ladoos made with shredded carrots and stuffed with a khoya filling. These ladoos are easy to make and need just a few ingredients. With their bright orange color and a contrasting mawa filled center, they look very appealing and appetizing on the table.
I am a hige fan of gajar desserts and the inspiration for this recipe came from my gajar halwa with khoya recipe and I decided to give it a ladoo form.
Ladoo are sweet round shaped mithai that is very popular in India and are essential part of festive celebrations in India.. Ladoos are made assortment of ingredients, including grains, nuts, fruits, flour, ghee, and sweeteners like sugar, jaggery, or dates.
When it comes to flavors, the possibilities are endless, from aromatic green cardamom, fragrant saffron to delicate rose water, or the exotic kewda essence.
These gajar (carrot) ladoos are made with fresh grated carrots, ghee, sugar, coconut and mawa.These are gluten and grain free and can be easily made nut free.
Since the carrots are naturally sweet, I did not need add a lot of sugar. This a small batch recipe which makes about 6 to 8 ladoos depending on how big you roll them.
This recipe is quite similar to how gajar ka halwa is made in north indian homes. Gajar halwa is an indian dessert made with grated carrots. I make it in the traditional slow cooked method and its delighful.
However, these ladoos do not take that long. They come together much faster. You can also make them without the mawa stuffing, they are still quite delicious. You could use store bought khoya or make instant khoya at home and use it for the filling.
How to make carrot ladoos (Step Photos)
These ladoos are pretty easy to make, however there are a few steps and it takes 45 minutes total start to finish.
Step 1 :- We will start by grating the carrots. Use a box grater or any grater that you normally use in your kitchen and use the side which will give you thin & short carrot shreds. This is important for the soft texture of the ladoos. Plus it shortens the cooking time as well.
Step 2: Once the carrots are cooked in whole milk or half and half we are going to add desiccated coconut and sugar. As soon as sugar is added you will notice that the carrot mixture becomes loose like a slurry. This is because of the moisture of the sugar. However don't worry, it cooks out fast.
Step 3 : While the carrots are cooking, you can quicking make the mawa stuffing by mixing together khoya, sugar and cardamom powder.
Step 4: At the last, once the carrot sugar mixture has dried out, we are going to saute it with ghee and mix in the milk powder (or add grated fresh mawa). Once the mixture is cool, roll ladoos by stuffing mawa in them.
- If possible, select in season carrots for naturally added sweetness.
- The recipe uses ⅓ cup sugar and these ladoos were mildly sweet. You can add upto ½ cup sugar but remember in that case you will have to cook the carrots a little longer for the moisture to dry out.
- Don't use non fat milk powder. Use milk powder with high percentage of fat. I used Nido brand.
- You can flavor the mawa with saffron, this will make the stuffing nice yellow color.
Gajar Ladoo (Carrot Ladoo)
For the ladoo
- 1 cup carrots fine shredded (about 3-5 carrots)
- 5-6 tablespoon ghee melted, divided
- ½ cup half & half (or whole milk)
- ⅓ cup dessicated coconut
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup milk powder
- ½ teaspoon ground cardamom powder
For the Mawa stuffing
- ½ cup mawa
- 1-2 tablespoon chopped pistachios
- ¼ teaspoon cardamom powder
- 2 tablespoon sugar
- Heat up 3 tablespoon ghee in a heavy pan or kadhai. On low medium heat, add the grated carrots to ghee. Fry the carrots stirring continously for 3-4 minutes till they are warmed up and shiny.
- Add the half and half (or milk) next and mix to combine with the carrots. When you see that the milk is bubbling, reduce heat to low and cover. Let the carrots cook covered for about 7-9 minutes or until carrots are soft.
- In the mean time, you can mix the mawa for the stuffing. If your mawa is a solid block, just warm it up lightly in another pan until soft. Transfer to a plate and once little cool, mix in the cardamom, pistachios and sugar. Set aside.
- Uncover the carrots, they would be soft by now and you will see that the liquid has almost evaporated and carrots are little sticky but cooked through.
- Add the sugar & green cardamom powder to the soft carrots and mix. You will see that again there will be liquid in the kadai. Keep sauteeing for another 5-6 minutes stirring regularly until all the mositure has evaporated.
- Add 2 tablepoon ghee next along with the dessicated coconut and milk powder. Mix and continue to cook for about 3-4 minutes till you see that the mixture starts to clump around the mixing spoon.You should be able to fold it over itself.
- Remove from heat. Transfer carrot mixture to a plate. Let sit and cool down.
- When the mixture is cool enough to touch, spread som ghee on your palm and take a lime size portion of the carrot mix. Flatten it on the palm and in the center, spoon over ½ tablespoon or the mawa mixture that we made.
- Bring the carrot mixtue together to cover and parcel the mawa mixture and roll the ladoo between your palms to make a smooth round.
- Repeat till all the carrot mix is exhausted. Ladoos are ready, decorate as you wish. Store refrigerated for 4-5 days.