Kheer Recipe | Abel & Cole


Cooking time
Serves8 people
Vegetarians Gluten-free diets

This is a rich, fragrant Indian rice pudding. Basmati rice slow-cooked in creamy milk. Luxuriously flavoured with cardamom and saffron. A delicious dessert for parties and celebrations.


  • 125g white basmati rice
  • 75g pistachios
  • 50g whole almonds
  • 2 ltrs full cream milk
  • A pinch of saffron threads
  • 8 cardamom pods
  • 100g raisins
  • 100g caster sugar

Prep: 20 mins + soaking | Cook: 55 mins

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1. Tip the rice into a sieve and rinse under cold water for 1-2 mins, stirring with your hand, till the water runs clear. Tip it into a bowl and cover with cold water. Set aside to soak for 30 mins-2 hrs.
2. Shell the pistachios and rub off any loose skins. Finely chop the pistachios and scoop into a bowl. Finely slice the almonds. If you'd like to peel them, bring a small pan of water to the boil and add the almonds to the boiling water. Simmer for 1 min, then drain and rinse under cold water. Squeeze the base of each almond and they should pop out of their skins. Scoop the sliced almonds into the bowl with the pistachios. Set aside.
3. Pour the milk into a large pan and set it over a medium heat. Let it warm for 5 mins, stirring, till it's hand-hot. Pop the saffron threads into a small bowl. Use a pestle or the end of a rolling pin to lightly crush them. Scoop 4 tbsp warm milk out of the pan and add to the saffron. Set aside to soak. Drain the rice.
4. Turn the heat up under the milk and bring to the boil, stirring. When the milk has started to bubble, add the rice and stir well. Lightly crush the cardamom pods to open them up a little and add them to the pan. Turn the heat down to medium and simmer the rice for 20 mins, stirring almost constantly to stop the milk catching and burning on the bottom of the pan.
5. While the rice simmers, tip the raisins into a heatprpof bowl. Boil your kettle, then pour in enough hot water to cover the raisins. Soak them for 5 mins, then drain.
6. After 20 mins, when the rice is half cooked through, add the soaked saffron and its milk to the pan. Tip in the sugar. Continue cooking for 20-25 mins, stirring every couple of mins, till the rice is very soft. Take the pan off the heat and add half the chopped pistachios and almonds. Stir well to mix, then pop on a lid and set aside for 15-30 mins. The kheer is best served warm rather than hot, or cold. To chill, let the kheer cool in the pan, then scoop into a tub, seal and chill overnight in the fridge.
7. To serve the kheer, spoon it into small bowls and top with the remaining chopped pistachios and almonds, and the soaked raisins.
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