Phirni (Indian Rice Pudding) Recipe

Beyond Curry

Inspired Indian home cooking.

Phirni (Indian Rice Pudding) Recipe

[Photograph: Prasanna Sankhe]

  • Yield:serves 4
  • Active time: 30 minutes
  • Total time:2 1/2 hours


  • 1/2 cup long grained rice (preferably Basmati)
  • 2 cups water
  • 4 cups full cream milk
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cardamom powder
  • 1 pinch of saffron strands
  • 1/4 cup unsalted almonds, chopped coarsely
  • 1/4 cup pistachios, chopped coarsely


  1. 1.

    Wash and drain rice. Put it into a bowl and cover with water. Soak for 2 hours. Drain water away and grind the rice to a coarse paste in a blender or food processor (there should still be large pieces visible), about 10 to 12 one-second pulses.

  2. 2.

    Combine rice paste, milk, sugar, cardamom, and saffron into a heavy-bottomed saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook, stirring frequently until the rice is completely tender, about 25 minutes. Add half of almonds and pistachios to the mixture. Stir vigorously and turn off the heat. Allow the phirni to cool and serve in individual bowls garnished with the remaining almonds and pistachios.