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Carrot Halwa / Gajar Ka Halwa – Instant Pot, Pressure Cooker

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This Instant Pot Carrot Halwa / Gajar Ka Halwa is a very quick and a delicious recipe made in a pressure cooker by preserving most of its nutrients value and its vibrant color!!
Carrot Halwa or also known as Gajar Ka Halwa is a very popular dessert from India. Carrot Halwa / Gajar Ka Halwa is traditionally slow cooked dessert made with just the four basic ingredients, i.e. carrots, milk, sugar, and ghee or clarified butter, simmered until carrots are cooked through. The simplicity of this dessert is what makes its so rich, flavorful and delicious 😋

Carrot Halwa / Gajar Ka Halwa - Instant Pot

 

Typically, Carrot Halwa is made during the winters, when carrots are available in abundance, tender and juicy. I have a fond memories of this carrot halwa. I remember growing up in India, my Papa (my dad) used to get these red delicious carrots in abundance during the winters. This was like a



whole day event, my mom used to hand grate these carrots, used to take her quite some time. Then in a big pot, she used to add milk, carrots, and sugar, bring it to a boil, and slow cook, until milk was almost evaporated and carrots were cooked through. Finally, she added ghee to give it a
nice aroma. Making of carrot halwa almost took her few hours. But, trust me all the effort was worth it. At the end we all relished this yummy piping hot carrot halwa. The day my mom used to make carrot halwa, I would just eat this whole day, for breakfast, lunch …dinner, so yum, absolutely divine!!! My mom makes the best carrot halwa💖 Ahh…miss those days😔

Carrot Halwa / Gajar Ka Halwa - Instant Pot

 

Traditionally, carrot halwa is made with red, tender, juicy carrots. But unfortunately where I live I don’t get red carrots. Therefore I use the orange carrots available here. Honestly speaking I don’t find much of a difference in the carrot halwa made with these orange carrots, except for the color. Yes, instead of red carrot halwa, I get orange carrot halwa😊 That’s all!! The taste is still the same, purely divine!! Traditionally, my mom used to make this carrot halwa, in a wide heavy bottom pan, and slow cooked until the carrots were cooked through. I like to do it little different. I cook this carrot halwa in a Instant Pot, I think its so much quicker. Carrot halwa cooks in a fraction of a time in a Instant Pot and the best part is that I can still enjoy the same authentic flavors.
When cooking carrot halwa in a Instant Pot or any pressure cooker, there are few factors such as amount of liquid(milk), time and pressure level(high, low, med), play very important role in the taste, texture and color of the food. I tried few combinations till I could get the perfect texture, color and taste of this yummy carrot halwa.

Carrot Halwa / Gajar Ka Halwa - Instant Pot

 


How to cook carrot halwa in Instant Pot?

Cooking carrot halwa in a Instant Pot is a breeze. Trust me, in a fraction of a time you can actually make this yummy, mouth watering carrot halwa in Instant Pot. The only time consuming factor is grating the carrots. But nowadays this can also be done in a fraction of a time, all you need is a good food processor. And grating carrots will be a breeze too. Once you have grated carrots, it only takes 10 mins to make this delicious carrot halwa in Instant Pot. The taste you will never forget and looks you will die for 😍
Turn on Instant Pot on a saute mode(high), add a TBSP of ghee, when ghee melts, add grated carrots, 2 TBSP of sugar (IMPORTANT: do not skip this, sugar actually helps retain the vibrant color of carrots), saute for 2-3 mins. Add a cup of whole milk, mix well. Pressure cook this on a high for 3 mins, followed by a quick pressure release. Turn on saute mode (high), add the remaining sugar or to taste, saffron soaked in warm milk, cardamom powder, and almond flour, and cook until all the moisture is evaporated. This takes around 2-3 mins. Finally, add ghee(optional), mix well for 1-2 mins. and the carrot halwa is ready to be devoured!!

Tips and Tricks

Why use sugar twice?

Initially I add 2 TBSP of sugar when pressure cooking, this actually helps retain the vibrant color of the carrots (red or orange). Yes, I tried to skip this initially and I could see the difference in the color.  And later I add sugar as per taste. Now, depending upon how sweet the carrots are and how sweet you like carrot halwa, adjust the sugar. I used 1/2 cup of sugar in this recipe, ( 2 TBSP of sugar used while pressure cooking the carrots  + the remaining sugar as per taste).


Why use ghee twice?

I am using 2 TBSP of ghee in all for this recipe. Firstly, when pressure cooking, I saute carrots in 1 TBSP of ghee. Secondly, at the end I added 1 more TBSP of ghee. This is totally optional. The second time ghee is used just to give a nice glaze or a shinny look to the carrot halwa. If you would like to keep the carrot halwa on a lighter side, you could totally skip adding ghee the second time, and the carrot halwa will still taste great.

Why use almond flour?

I have a picky eater at home, my little one, my princess. She absolutely dislikes any kind of nuts in her food. And I think adding almond flour is the best way to seek in some of the essential nutrients into her diet, without even her knowing 😃 Adding almond flour is optional, you could also add some handful of crushed almonds, will work just fine or make it nut-free, will totally do.

Carrot Halwa / Gajar Ka Halwa - Instant Pot

How to store carrot halwa?

Carrot Halwa stays fresh in refrigerator for about a week. You can easily freeze this too. It stays good for upto a month in a freezer. Thaw before using and warm it up before you serve. Carrot halwa can be served warm or cold, it taste yum either way. Some prefer warm carrot halwa with a scoop of a vanilla ice-cream 🍨 Enjoy this North Indian delicacy, Carrot Halwa with your loved ones and cherish good moments!!


Carrot Halwa / Gajar Ka Halwa - Instant Pot, Pressure Cooker

This Instant Pot Carrot Halwa / Gajar Ka Halwa is a very quick and a delicious recipe made in a pressure cooker by preserving most of its nutrients value and its vibrant color!!  
Course Dessert
Cuisine Indian
Keyword carrot halwa, gajar ka halwa, instant pot carrot halwa, instant pot gajar ka halwa, instant pot recipes, instant pot dessert recipes, dessert recipes, instant pot Indian recipes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Author Jyoti Behrani

Ingredients

  • 4 cups firmly packed medium grated carrots
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 TBSP ghee / clarified butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar as per taste
  • 1/4 cup almond flour
  • 1/2 TSP cardamom powder
  • 15-20 saffron strands
  • 2 TBSP warm milk

For garnish:

  • 2 tbsp almonds, pistachios slivered add more if desired

Instructions

Instructions for Instant Pot Cooking:

  • Soak saffron strands in 2 TBSP of warm milk, keep it aside.
  • Turn on Instant Pot to saute mode (high).
  • When it displays "HOT", add 1 TBSP of ghee, shredded carrots, 2 TBSP of sugar. Mix well.
  • Saute for 2-3 min.  Add cup of milk.  Mix well. Turn off Instant Pot.
  • Turn on Manual/Pressure cook mode (high), 3 mins, vent sealed. When Instant Pot beeps, quickly release pressure. Open the IP lid.
  • Turn on saute mode (high), add remaining sugar, saffron soaked in milk, cardamom powder, almond flour. Mix well.
  • Saute on high until all the moisture is evaporated, around 2-3 mins. Add 1 TBSP of ghee, mix well for 1-2 min.
  • Switch off Instant Pot.
  • Carrot halwa is ready to be served. Garnish with some almonds, pistachios. Enjoy!!

Instructions for Pressure Cooker Cooking:

  • Soak saffron strands in 2 TBSP of warm milk, keep it aside.
  • In a pressure cooker, on a high heat, add 1 TBSP of ghee, shredded carrots, 2 TBSP of sugar. Mix well.
  • Saute for 2-3 min.  Add cup of milk.  Mix well. Close the pressure cooker.
  • After the first whistle, reduce the heat to medium for 3 mins. After 3 mins, turn off the heat and quickly release pressure. Open the pressure cooker.
  • Turn on heat (high), add remaining sugar, saffron soaked in milk, cardamom powder, almond flour. Mix well.
  • Saute on high until all the moisture is evaporated, around 2-3 mins. Add 1 TBSP of ghee, mix well for 1-2 min.
  • Switch off heat.
  • Carrot halwa is ready to be served. Garnish with some almonds, pistachios. Enjoy!!

Instructions for Stove Top Cooking:

  • Soak saffron strands in 2 TBSP of warm milk, keep it aside.
  • In a heavy bottom pot, on a high heat, add 1 TBSP of ghee, shredded carrots, 2 TBSP of sugar. Mix well.
  • Saute for 2-3 min.  Add cup of milk.  Mix well.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat to medium-low and cook until all the moisture is evaporated and the carrots are cooked through. This will take around 20-25 mins. Keep stirring halwa in between to avoid sticking to the bottom.
  • Add remaining sugar, saffron soaked in milk, cardamom powder, almond flour. Mix well. (If the mixture seems too dry add 2 TBSP of milk)
  • Saute on high until all the moisture is evaporated, around 2-3 mins. Add 1 TBSP of ghee, mix well for 1-2 min.
  • Switch off heat.
  • Carrot halwa is ready to be served. Garnish with some almonds, pistachios. Enjoy!!

Video

Notes

1. Grate the carrots to a medium thickness, if grated too thin the halwa will turn mushy and if grated too thick halwa will have big pieces.
2. Adjust the sweetness as per taste.
3. Almond flour is optional, you can substitute crushed almonds instead or make it nut-free.
4. Nuts of choice such as cashews, raisins may also be added.
5. Butter may be substituted instead of ghee. But traditionally halwa is made using ghee.
6. Cardamom powder and saffron gives carrot halwa a nice aroma.
7. Use heavy bottom pot for cooking halwa on a stove top. Helps prevent sticking of halwa at the bottom.
8. Halwa stays good for a week in a refrigerator and upto a month in a freezer.
9. Instead of sugar, you can also used condensed milk, gives halwa a nice rich taste. Also, some like to add khoya or milk powder to enhance the flavor.
10. Reduce fat milk may be substituted for whole milk. Please do not use skim milk for this recipe.



Jyoti Behrani

Hello!! Welcome to my blog, my journey Living Smart and Healthy! Cook with me easy and authentic Indian food and around the globe. Will be sharing tips and tricks on easy authentic cooking, without spending hours in the kitchen or comprising on authentic flavors. Keeping things simple and healthy is what I am all about. Life is simple, so lets keep cooking simple too!!

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