Lauki Halwa (Bottle Gourd Halwa)

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Lauki halwa is a sweet Indian dessert made with bottle gourd or opo squash, milk, ghee, sugar and flavored with cardamom and nuts. This is a well known variant of halwa made with a vegetable – here in this case with Bottle Gourd which is also called as Lauki or Ghiya in Hindi and Dudhi in Marathi languages. So this sweet is known by the name ‘lauki ka halwa’ or ‘dudhi halwa’. You can easily make this halwa variant as a sweet dish on any day or during Hindu fasting days like Navratri fast or Ekadashi.

lauki halwa served in a bowl

About Lauki ka Halwa

There are a few halwa variants made with vegetables in North Indian cuisine. I make halwa with three veggies – carrots, beetroot and bottle gourd on occasions. But to tell you a fact, I have also learned to make potato halwa in my cooking school decades back.

Most of the halwa made from vegetables need them to be grated first and then slow cooked in milk.

This recipe of Lauki halwa also follows the same technique of cooking where grated bottle gourd is initially sauteed in ghee and then simmered in milk till you get a thick consistency.

It is easy to make but takes some time. Similar to Carrot Halwa, lauki halwa also has to be stirred continuously. So some handwork and attention is needed. Making this sweet takes time, so make it when cooking something else in the kitchen.

There are two ways of making lauki halwa. Either cook lauki directly in milk or saute lauki first in some ghee and then cook in the milk. I have sauteed the lauki in ghee first and then cooked it in milk.

This lauki halwa recipe does not need any addition of khoya or mawa. In the process of cooking lauki with milk, the milk begins to evaporate and reduce, so you don’t need to add mawa or khoya.

This method of making halwa with milk takes a little longer, but is handy when you do not have ready khoya at home. I make both carrot halwa and Beetroot Halwa at home with this method.

Since winters have arrived, what better way to warm yourself up by having a nice bowl of hot or warm lauki ka halwa.

Step-by-Step Guide

How to make Lauki ka Halwa

1. Firstly rinse, peel and grate 300 grams lauki. Before grating taste the lauki. If it tastes sour or bitter then discard and do not cook it. You will need 2 cups tightly packed grated lauki.

peeled and grated lauki in a white plate

2. Heat 4 tablespoons ghee in a heavy pan or kadai on medium-low to medium flame. Use a large kadai so that milk does not spill outside when cooking halwa.

heat ghee in a pan or kadai

3. Add the grated lauki.

grated lauki added to ghee in pan

4. Mix grated lauki very well with the ghee with a spoon or spatula.

mixing lauki with ghee

5. On a low to medium-low flame begin to saute the lauki. Stir often when sauteing lauki.

begin to saute the lauki

6. Saute lauki till the moisture dries.

sauteed lauki

7. Then add 2 cups full-fat or whole milk.

adding milk to sauteed lauki

8. Mix very well.

mix milk with lauki and ghee mixture

9. Continue to cook on a low to medium-low flame till the milk comes to a boil. In between do stir at times.

cooking till milk comes to a boil

10. The milk will start boiling. At this step be attentive and keep on stirring, so that the milk does not spill from the pan. Regulate the heat as needed.

milk started boiling in the pan

11. Stirring often continue to cook.

stir often and continue to cook

12. Cook till ¾ or 75% of the milk has reduced and absorbed.

Cook till ¾ or 75% of the milk has reduced and absorbed

13. Add 7 to 8 tablespoons sugar or as per your taste buds and mix well.

adding sugar and mixing it with halwa

14. Next add 3 tablespoons chopped nuts (almonds, pistachios, cashews) and ½ to 1 teaspoon cardamom powder.

You can even add 2 to 3 teaspoons of rose water or kewra water (pandanus water) if you want.

adding chopped dry fruits to halwa

15. Mix very well.

mix dry fruits with halwa

16. Stirring often cook till the halwa mixture starts coming together and thickens.

cook till the halwa mixture starts coming together and thickens

17. The dudhi halwa will gradually thicken and you will see some ghee being released from the sides. There should not be any liquid in the halwa.

cooked lauki halwa in the pan

18. Then switch off the heat and add 1 tablespoon golden raisins. Adding raisins is optional.

adding raisins to lauki halwa

19. Mix very well.

prepared lauki halwa

20. Garnish with some chopped nuts and serve lauki ka halwa hot or warm. Refrigerate remaining halwa in a covered container. The halwa stays good for a couple of days in the refrigerator.

lauki halwa served in a bowl

Expert Tips to make Best Lauki Halwa

1. One issue which happens when making lauki halwa is that the milk gets curdled. To stop preventing the milk from getting curdled, use full cream milk or full-fat milk. Do not use low-fat milk or skimmed milk. Make sure the milk is fresh and in its shelf period. You can even use pasteurized milk or homogenised milk.

2. Use lauki which has a neutral taste. It can be bland, but should not be sour or bitter. A sour or tangy-tasting bottle gourd will also curdle the milk. Always avoid lauki which tastes bitter as it is poisonous and dangerous for the body.

3. If in case the milk gets curdled, then no need to panic. Continue to cook the halwa on a medium to medium-high flame so that the water or whey evaporates. Cooking this way will eventually cook the lauki, thicken the halwa and you will get coagulated milk solids aka tiny paneer granules in the halwa and this halwa tastes good too.

4. Simmer and cook lauki halwa on a low to medium-low flame. Stir often when cooking halwa so that the halwa does not stick or get browned from the base.

5. Use a heavy kadai or pan, so that the halwa gets cooked uniformly and do not brown or burn from the bottom.
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lauki halwa, dudhi halwa

Lauki ka Halwa | Dudhi Halwa

Lauki halwa is also called as dudhi halwa. It is a rich Indian sweet made with bottle gourd (opo squash), milk, sugar and ghee. The method of making lauki halwa is similar to making gajar halwa. Making lauki halwa is easy but takes some time. This is a slow cooked halwa and what you get after minutes of slow cooking is super deliciousness. 
4.65 from 14 votes
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Cuisine Indian
Course Desserts
Diet Gluten Free, Vegetarian
Difficulty Level Moderate
Servings 4
Units

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons Ghee (clarified butter)
  • 2 cups tightly packed grated lauki or 300 grams lauki (bottle gourd or opo squash or dudhi)
  • 2 cups whole milk – milk can be pasteurized or boiled before and can be used at room temperature or chilled
  • 7 to 8 tablespoons sugar or add as required
  • 5 to 6 green cardamoms – powdered or crushed or ½ to 1 teaspoon cardamom powder
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons chopped nuts – almonds, cashews or pistachios
  • 1 tablespoons raisins – optional

Instructions
 

Grating Bottle Gourd

  • Firstly rinse, peel and grate the lauki. Before grating taste the lauki. If it tastes sour or bitter then discard and do not cook it. 
  • You will need 2 cups tightly packed grated lauki.

Making lauki halwa

  • Heat ghee in a heavy pan or kadai on medium-low to medium flame. Use a large kadai so that milk does not spill outside.
  • Add the grated lauki. Mix grated lauki very well with the ghee.
  • On a low to medium-low flame begin to saute the lauki. Stir often when sauteing lauki.
  • Saute lauki till the moisture dries. Then add whole milk and mix very well.
  • Continue to cook on a low to medium-low flame till the milk comes to a boil. In between do stir at times.
  • The milk will start boiling. At this step be attentive and keep on stirring, so that the milk does not spill from the pan.
  • Stirring often continue to cook till ¾ or 75% of the milk has reduced and absorbed.
  • Add sugar and chopped nuts. Mix very well. You can even add 2 to 3 teaspoons of rose water or kewra water (pandanus water) if you want at this step.
  • Stirring often cook till the halwa mixture starts coming together and thickens.
  • The halwa will gradually thicken and you will see some ghee being released from the sides. There should not be any liquid in the dudhi halwa.
  • Then switch off the heat and add golden raisins. Adding raisins is optional. Mix very well.
  • Garnish with some chopped nuts and serve lauki halwa hot or warm. Refrigerate remaining halwa. It stays good for a couple of days in the refrigerator.

Notes

  • Use lauki which has a neutral taste. It can be bland, but should not be sour or bitter. Always avoid lauki which tastes bitter as it is poisonous and dangerous for the body.
  • Avoid using skimmed milk or toned milk as they may curdle.
  • Use only full-fat milk or whole milk. 
  • In case the milk splits, then continue to cook on a medium to medium-high flame stirring often, till most of the whey evaporates. Then add ghee, sugar and continue to cook on medium-low flame till all the halwa thickens and some ghee is released from the sides of the halwa. 
  • Sugar can be added less or more as per taste. 
  • A few saffron strands can also be added. 
  • You can add your choice of dry fruits and nuts.
  • You can add more ghee if you want. 
  • The recipe can be halved, doubled or tripled.

Nutrition Info (Approximate values)

Nutrition Facts
Lauki ka Halwa | Dudhi Halwa
Amount Per Serving (4 g)
Calories 343 Calories from Fat 180
% Daily Value*
Fat 20g31%
Saturated Fat 10g63%
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 45mg15%
Sodium 56mg2%
Potassium 371mg11%
Carbohydrates 36g12%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 29g32%
Protein 5g10%
Vitamin A 600IU12%
Vitamin C 0.5mg1%
Calcium 183mg18%
Iron 1.4mg8%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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This Lauki Halwa recipe post from the blog archives (first published in November 2011) has been updated and republished on 2nd July 2021.

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Welcome to Dassana's Veg Recipes. I share vegetarian recipes from India & around the World. Having been cooking for decades and with a professional background in cooking & baking, I help you to make your cooking journey easier with my tried and tested recipes showcased with step by step photos & plenty of tips & suggestions.

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59 Comments

  1. Hey Dassana.. I have been following your blog for long. You and your recipes are just awesome. I made this lauki halwa and it turned out to be perfect. The appreciation I got is because of you.
    Thanks and keep posting superb recipes5 stars

    1. Welcome Mallika. Glad to know that everyone liked lauki halwa recipe. Thanks for your kind words and positive feedback.

  2. Your recipes have been so helpful and specially for someone like me who is newly wed and wants to impress the in laws ????. Thank you and hope to see more of your recipes ????

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