Gajarela (carrot and rice pudding)

This is a frequently made dessert in Indian and Pakistani homes, its a bit like a rice pudding (kheer), but is made with carrots and rice, resulting in a rich milky dessert, best eaten with plain yoghurt or fresh single cream.  Yummy!

Most of us guesstimate the ingredients, but my sister-in-law who lives in Milpitas has worked out the following measure with perfect results every time.


  • 2 oz (80g) butter
  • 1 tsp ground cardamom
  • pinch of saffron
  • 2 pts milk
  • 4 medium sized carrots grated
  • ¼ cup rice (soaked for 30 mins)
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • handful sliced almonds (optional)


  1. Melt butter in a deep heavy based saucepan, add cardamoms, saffron, carrots, rice and the milk, bring to the boil and simmer for 30 – 45mins. Keep stirring every 10mins so the ingredients do not stick to the bottom of the pan.
  2. Add the sugar, mix well, bring to a boil and keep on a rolling boil for 5 mins, keep stirring so the mixture doesn’t boil over.
  3. Switch off, leave to cool in the pan for 10mins, pour into a shallow serving dish and garnish with sliced almonds (if using).
  4. Cool in a refrigerator before serving with single fresh cream or plain yoghurt.


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About Me

I am Sabiha Khokhar, born in Kenya now living in London – a busy working mother, wife, published author and passionate cook. Despite having many interests in life, my greatest joy is FOOD!

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