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Moong Dal Halwa without Mawa

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Moong Dal Halwa without mawa is a Rajasthani traditional sweet recipe made using Moong lentils, ghee, milk and sugar. Flavoured using cardamom and loaded with dry fruits, it is a rich and addictive Halwa made using festivals like Diwali, Holi or during Marriages and Parties.

Moong Dal Halwa using Milk

I do make this halwa without mawa and either with 100 percent milk or a mixture of milk and milkmaid.

What is Halwa

Halwa or Halva generally refers to a sweet based recipe that has regional influences. In India, the most famous halwa refers to the Suji or Rava Halwa or Semolina based halwa, which is made using Semolina(Suji), ghee, water/milk and sugar. Basically, the Rava is roasted in ghee and then water/milk and sugar are added to make a rich pudding. 

Halwa is rich in carbohydrates and fats due to the addition of ghee and sugar. Still, due to the ingredients used if it is consumed in moderate proportions, it is considered healthy and at times gives the body the necessary energy. 

More information about Hava or Halwa from around the world can be found here.

Moong Dal Halwa Using Milkmaid

Different Types of Halwa

One of the most common types of halwa made during the Winter months is Gajar Halwa. I like to make this without ghee and mawa to make it a bit healthier. It is also one of the best ways to add carrots to your diet.

I also like to make this Pineapple Halwa or Pineapple Kesari when pineapple is in season. This halwa has a mild sourness as well as have a fresh refreshing flavour from pineapple. Another winter delicacy is this Dudhi Halwa (Lauki/Bottle Gourd Dessert) which is rich and has a nuttier texture.

A rich and delicious halwa is Almond Halwa or Badam ka halwa. Generally consumed by ladies after childbirth. It helps the body regain strength and provide energy. 

Moong Dal halwa served in two glass bowls

The main ingredient Moong Dal

The hero of today’s recipe is Moong Dal. Dal’s are a good source of protein and Moong Dal has minimum calories and a rich source of iron and potassium. It is good for the heart and is light on the tummy. Dal is a common or staple food in India. So a sweet with moong dal is a must. 

Recipes with Moong Dal

Did you check this easy one-pot Moong Dal Khichdi, Pearl Barley and Mung Dal Khichdi or this Instant pot Whole Moong Dal recipe which are kid and toddler friendly? And if you are looking for rice-free or low-carb diabetic friendly breakfast recipes, try this Moong Dal Breakfast Chila or this Rice Free Split Green Moong Dal Idli.

Tips while making Moong Dal Halwa

The recipe for making this moong dal halwa is simple. One needs to take care of a few things. First, the dal needs to be roasted properly in ghee. If the dal is not cooked it will leave a raw after taste. 

Secondly, it is best to ground the dal to a coarse texture. This helps give the halwa a nuttier texture. However many do grind it to a smooth texture too.

I like to soak the dal, drain the water and then ground to a coarse texture. Few even soak, drain, and dry the dal. Make a powder and then cook it. I prefer the first method.

Once the dal is cooked properly along with the ghee, milk is added and it is cooked further until the milk is absorbed. Next sugar is added and cooked further until done. Flavourings and nuts of choice are added and it is done.

Close up look of Moong Dal halwa

Moong Dal halwa without Mawa

Adding mawa (milk solids) reduces the cooking time required to make halwa. But this option is not available always. I cannot source mawa and do not like to make mawa made with milk powder for halwa. So I make it with milkmaid or milk.

Moong Dal Halwa with Milkmaid or Moong Dal Halwa with milk

I make the moong dal halwa with and without milkmaid. Milkmaid reduces cooking time a bit. 

I prefer to make it the traditional way of using Milk. When the dal is cooked in milk, it absorbs more flavour and has a rich and creamy texture. One can use either method, the taste is not compromised. 

How long can you keep halwa?

Flour or lentil based halwa if cooked properly (i.e the flour properly roasted in ghee), can be kept safely in the fridge for a week. In cold winter months (Temperature below 10-5 Deg C) can be kept at room temperatures too. Though best to refrigerate on the safer side.

Fruit or vegetable-based halva can too stay good for a week when refrigerated. But since it has veggies or fruit, it is best to consume them in 3-4 days when refrigerated.

Close up look of moong dal halwa served in a ramekin bowl with garnish of nuts

Can you freeze halwa?

Yes, you can freeze halwa. Once the halwa is completely cooled stored it into individual size portions or in a zip-lock. Please note, If you are storing vegetable-based halwa, it will lose some of its texture due to reheating.

How do you reheat a halwa?

If removing from freezer best is to first defrost it and then heat it. Let the halwa come to room temperature or at least wait for 5-10 minutes. Then reheat on slow on a heavy wok or a pot. One can even microwave it. While reheating one can add a bit of ghee too.

Serving Suggestions

Few like halwa cold few like it piping hot. When it is served piping hot, it is generally topped with more ghee and garnished with nuts. Rose petals, cardamom are used for garnish as well while serving.

Moong Dal halwa without mawa served in two glass bowls

Moong Dal Halwa without Mawa

Moong Dal Halwa without Mawa is a Rajasthani traditional sweet made using Moong lentils, ghee, milk and sugar for festivals like Diwali and Holi.
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Indian, North Indian, Rajasthani
Keyword: Dal, Dessert, Lentils, Moong Dal, Sweet
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Soaking Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours 5 minutes
Author: Renu Agrawal-Dongre

Equipment

Ingredients

With Milk

  • 1 Cups Milk
  • 1 cup Ghee (Clarified Butter)
  • 1 cup Moong Dal
  • 1/2 teaspoon Cardamom (Elaichi Powder)
  • ¼ Cup Finely chopped almonds
  • 1.5 Cups Sugar (I used Demerara Sugar one can use granulated sugar too)
  • A pinch of saffron strands soaked in 1 tablespoon of warm milk
  • Rose petals to garnish (optional)

With Condensed Milk

  • 1.5 Cups Milk
  • 1/2 Tin Sweetened Condensed milk
  • 3/4 cup Ghee (Clarified Butter)
  • 1/2 Cup Moong Dal
  • 1/4 teaspoon Cardamom (Elaichi Powder)
  • Finely chopped Nuts as per choice for additions as well as Garnishing
  • A pinch of saffron strands soaked in 1 tablespoon of warm milk
  • Rose petals to garnish (Optional)

Instructions

  • Wash and soak the Moong dal at least for an hour.
  • Rinse it again, drain and coarsely grind it. We do not want a smooth paste.

With Milk

  • Add Ghee in a heavy-bottomed Wok and melt it.
    Melting Ghee in a wok
  • Add the dal and Roast or shallow fry the dal in the ghee on medium to low heat until golden brown stirring frequently.
    Halwa getting cooked
  • This step takes time depending on the quantity. For the said quantity can take anywhere around 25-30 minutes.
    Roasting of Dal with Ghee
  • Once the dal is golden brown and you smell a beautiful aroma, add the milk.
  • Cook this on slow, stirring in between till the milk is absorbed and almost dried up. Careful not to burn the bottom.
  • Once the milk is almost absorbed add the sugar.
    Halwa getting cooked
  • The mixture will be watery again. Keep on stirring it and let it cook on slow until the sugar is absorbed and you have a semi-thick consistency halwa.
  • Do not let it dry completely, as the halwa will thicken later.
  • Now add the soaked saffron milk and give a quick mix.
  • Switch off the heat and add cardamom powder and nuts.
  • Serve it hot with a nice garnish of nuts and ghee (optional)

With Milkmaid

  • Add Ghee in a heavy-bottomed Wok.
  • Roast or shallow fry the dal in the ghee on medium heat until golden brown stirring frequently. This step takes time depending on the quantity. For the said quantity can take anywhere around 15-20 minutes.
  • Once the dal is golden brown and you smell a beautiful aroma, add the milk and let it cook on slow, stirring continuously till the milk is absorbed and almost dried up.
  • Then add the condensed milk. The mixture will be watery again. Keep on stirring it and let it cook on slow until the milk has almost dried up.
  • Do not let it dry completely, as the halwa will thicken later.
    Step by step pics of making moong dal halwa using milkmaid
  • Now add the soaked saffron milk and give a quick mix.
  • Switch off the heat and add cardamom powder and nuts.
  • Serve it hot with a nice garnish of nuts and ghee (optional)

Video

Notes

  • 1 teaspoon = 5 ml, 1 tablespoon=15 ml, 1 Cup=235 ml
  • More or less ghee might be added. But to get a rich taste it is best to add the ghee.
  • Read above on how to store the halwa and tips and tricks.
 
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    Updates

    The recipe first appeared on Cook with Renu on 16th June 2018. Today, 25th March 2021, I have updated the pics, content and added a Recipe card.

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    Recipe Rating




    Sowmya :)

    Friday 13th of July 2018

    That is such a classic sweet....love your take on it. Tempting pics!!

    Sandhya Ramakrishnan

    Tuesday 3rd of July 2018

    i have made moong dal halwa but using condensed milk is a great idea. I should try it sometime. Looks rich and delicious Renu!

    Ritu Tangri

    Tuesday 3rd of July 2018

    Right now I'm craving for something sweet and this delicious moong dal halwa is tempting me like any thing

    preeti gupta

    Wednesday 27th of June 2018

    Moong dal halwa is one.of mine fav halwa. So rich andtasty.. looks fantastic.

    Chef Mireille

    Monday 25th of June 2018

    what a wonderful protein rich halva to try