Kaju Katli

4.85 from 13 votes

Popular Indian sweet, Kaju Katli is a fudge made out of cashews. The homemade version is so much better than the store bought!

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Kaju Katli or Kaju Burfi is a fudge made of cashews.

It’s one of the most popular Indian sweets and probably the most gifted one during Diwali!

kaju katli arranged in a sweet box with small lights on the side and plate of cashews in the background

Me and kaju katli have had a love-hate relationship. As a child, I never liked it. I mean it was my least favorite sweet and everyone I knew just adored it.

Basically it used to be that expensive sweet that everyone was crazy about and I never cared enough for it. For me simple homemade besan ladoo were million times better than kaju katli.

But things have changed now. Our food preferences really change with time, isn’t it? and now I love kaju katli! And I am sure my husband will be really glad to read this.

He absolutely loves this sweet and he can’t be more pleased that now I make it at home.

What is Kaju Katli

Kaju= Cashews

Katli= Fudge

So it’s a fudge made with powdered cashews.

The recipe needs only 3 basic ingredients- cashews, water and sugar. Adding ghee is optional but recommended.

I also add little bit of rose water but that’s optional too.

Kaju Katli is also known as Kaju Burfi. It’s the same thing and it is one of the most popular Indian sweets.

We used to get so many boxes of kaju katli during Diwali, it’s one of the most gifted sweets in India for sure during the festive season.

stack of kaju katli with bell hanging in the background

Tips to Make Perfect Kaju Kalti at Home

The basic process of making kaju katli is simple, however like with most Indian sweets it takes some practice to get them right.

Don’t be disheartened if you don’t get it right on the first go. Practice will make you perfect!

Here are few things to keep in mind while making kaju katli

Don’t over-grind the cashews: if you do that, cashews will release oil and you will get cashew butter and you don’t want that.

Use a spice grinder for getting fine cashew powder: a spice grinder works really well for grinding cashews. You can use a food processor, but then remember to sieve the mixture to get rid of any coarse cashew pieces.

When I use a spice grinder, I don’t sieve the mixture. It’s quite fine already.

Keep the heat low while constantly stirring the cashew mixture: while cooking the cashew-sugar mixture remember to keep the heat low at all time. Also you have to keep stirring at all times.

Add a little ghee to make it smooth: adding ghee is optional but recommended. It makes the mixture smooth and also adds to the flavor.

Cook until the mixture leaves the sides of the pan completely: the most important thing here is to cook the cashew mixture until it leaves the sides of the pan.

If you under cook it, the katli will not set. It takes around 10 to 11 minutes on low heat to get to this point.

To test if you have cooked it to the right stage- take a small piece from the dough and let it cool down a bit. Then roll it between your thumb and index finger. You should be able to form a non-sticky ball.

If it’s sticking and you can’t form a ball, transfer batter back into the pan and cook for few more minutes.

kaju katli arranged in a sweet box with some cashews on the side

Use parchment paper to roll the dough, will make your life so much easier: the cashew mixture is really stick once you remove it from the pan. You can grease a plate and transfer it to that plate.

But it’s best to use a parchment paper. Nothing sticks and it’s easy to knead and roll the dough using it.

Knead the dough while it’s still warm: you have to knead the dough while it’s still warm. Be very careful though and do not try to knead it while it’s hot.

You will burn your fingers (been there done that!). So wait for few minutes until the dough is okay to touch and then knead. But make sure you don’t let it cool down.

If the dough looks very dry while kneading, you may sprinkle some water or milk on top and knead.

Roll the dough immediately after kneading it while it’s warm: and roll between two sheets or parchment paper. It will be difficult to roll once the dough cools down.

 

Method

1- Place cashews in a spice grinder. I prefer using my spice grinder (this is the one I have) to grind nuts. You can also use a food processor or any other blender you have.

2- Grind to a smooth powder. However don’t over grind it else cashews will release oil, you don’t want cashew butter! 🙂

You can sieve if there are coarse pieces of cashew. The spice grinder does a really fine job, so I did not sieve the mixture. Set it aside.

3- Add sugar and water in a pan on medium heat. You can also add rose water (optional) at this point. Stir to combine.

4- Let the sugar melt and then once the sugar melts, let the mixture boil for 1 minute.

step by step picture collage of making kaju katli at home

5- Then lower the heat and add in the powdered cashews. Stir to combine.

6- You can use a whisk at this point to get rid of lumps.

7- Keep stirring the mixture on low heat. Add a teaspoon of ghee and stir. Ghee makes the mixture smooth and also adds some shine to the katli.

8- Keep stirring, after around 10 minutes on low heat, the dough will leave the sides of the pan. This is the stage when you want to remove pan from heat.

You can check if the dough is done or not by taking a small piece from mixture, let it cool down a little and then roll it between your thumb and index finger. You should be able to make a non-sticky ball out of it.

It means your dough is done. If not, you need to cook it further. It will be done around 10-11 minutes on low heat though.

step by step picture collage of making kaju katli at home

9- Once the dough is done, transfer it to a sheet of parchment paper.

10- Wait for 3 to 4 minutes for the dough to cool down a bit. Then knead the dough with your hands to make it smooth. You have to knead the dough while its warm. But be careful to not burn your fingers. Let it cool down a little and only then attempt to knead.

Also if the dough looks very dry while kneading, you can sprinkle some water or milk to make it smooth.

11- Then place another sheet of parchment paper on top of the dough. Roll to 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick using a rolling pin applying equal pressure on all sides.

12- Once rolled, apply chandi vark if using. Cut the dough into diamond shape by first cutting the dough vertically and then horizontally.

step by step picture collage of making kaju katli at home

Separate the kaju katil and enjoy! You can store the kaju katli in the refrigerator for up to a week.

kaju burfi arranged in a golden plate

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This post has been updated from the recipe archives, first published in November 2015.

Kaju Katli

4.85 from 13 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 25 minutes
Servings: 20 pieces
Popular Indian sweet, Kaju Katli is a fudge made out of cashews. The homemade version is so much better than the store bought!

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup whole cashews raw cashews, 150 grams
  • 1/2 cup granulated white sugar 100 grams
  • 1/4 cup water 60 ml
  • 1/2 teaspoon rose water optional
  • 1 teaspoon ghee
  • edible silver leaves also known as chandi ka vark and is used for garnishing, optional

Instructions 

  • Place cashews in a spice grinder. I prefer using my spice grinder (this is the one I have) to grind nuts. You can also use a food processor or any other blender you have.
    Grind to a smooth powder. However don't over grind it else cashews will release oil, you don't want cashew butter! 🙂
    You can sieve if there are coarse pieces of cashew. The spice grinder does a really fine job, so I did not sieve the mixture. Set it aside.
  • Add sugar and water in a pan on medium heat. You can also add rose water (optional) at this point. Stir to combine.
  • Let the sugar melt and then once the sugar melts, let the mixture boil for 1 minute. We are not looking for any sugar syrup consistent here.
  • Then lower the heat and add in the powdered cashews. Stir to combine.
    You can use a whisk at this point to get rid of any lumps in the mixture.
  • Keep stirring the mixture on low heat. Add a teaspoon of ghee and stir. Ghee makes the mixture smooth and also adds some shine to the katli.
  • Keep stirring, after around 10 minutes on low heat, the dough will leave the sides of the pan. This is the stage when you want to remove pan from heat.
    You can check if the dough is done or not by taking a small piece from mixture, let it cool down a little and then roll it between your thumb and index finger. You should be able to make a non-sticky ball out of it.
    It means your dough is done. If not, you need to cook it further. It will be done around 10-12 minutes on low heat though.
  • Once the dough is done, transfer it to a sheet of parchment paper.
  • Wait for 3 to 4 minutes for the dough to cool down a bit. Then knead the dough with your hands to make it smooth. You have to knead the dough while its warm. But be careful to not burn your fingers. Let it cool down a little and only then attempt to knead.
    Also if the dough looks very dry while kneading, you can sprinkle some water or milk to make it smooth.
  • Then place another sheet of parchment paper on top of the dough. Roll to 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick using a rolling pin applying equal pressure on all sides.
  • Once rolled, apply chandi vark if using. Cut the dough into diamond shape by first cutting the dough vertically and then horizontally.
  • Separate the kaju katli and enjoy! You can store the kaju katli in the refrigerator for up to a week. 

Notes

If you want to make these vegan, skip the ghee or use vegan butter.

Nutrition

Calories: 57kcal, Carbohydrates: 7g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 3g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 1mg, Sodium: 1mg, Potassium: 43mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 5g, Calcium: 2mg, Iron: 0.4mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Indian
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Hi, I’m Manali!

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57 Comments

  1. Hi Manali – I have tried this recipe and it came out amazing! I recently tried rose flavored kaju katli from India and it tasted amazing. Any ideas if I can use this same recipe and just up the rose water to get the rose flavor or do you have any other suggestions?

      1. 5 stars
        Such an amazing recipe… I have made these Kaju Katlis 3 or 4 times now and they’re just perfect! Thanks Manali 🙂

  2. This is my favorite Indian sweet. I have so many memories of the amazing sweet shops on Devon Ave in Chicago…. and this was always my favorite. I can’t wait to try making this. Such beautiful photos, too! I love the design of the kaju katli in the star – gorgeous!!!

  3. Hi .. thanks for the wonderful recipe. I have used it few times and the katlis came out really nice. However, this time it became very chewy and was sticking to teeth while eating. What did I miss?

    1. seems like you didn’t cook the dough right, had to be cooked little longer. It can happen, don’t think you missed anything since you have made it perfectly before

  4. Hi…. I just made the fudge….. I waited for more than 10 minutes for the small balls but it didn’t happened so I proceeded with the parchment paper….. I did not knead though and proceeded with the further step….,now it is stuck with the parchment paper….what to do

    1. 10 minutes is a range, that time may vary depending on the type of pan you are using and the intensity of the heat. You have to cook until the dough reaches the stage where you can roll it into a non-sticky ball. maybe it was 15 minutes for you? focus on the stage not on the time. Put back the mixture on pan again and cook on low heat until you reach this stage.

  5. 3 stars
    Hi
    The recipe looked very simple but at no stage did my mixture look like the way it was shown in the pictures. My wet mixture never lost its graininess – could be totally my bad, Was afraid to over powder the kaju. My dough turned out to be quite crumbly, not glossy and smooth at all. So my kaju dessert is not soft and slightly chewy like the store bought variety but harder

    On the other hand, it tastes GREAT! Will definitely give it another shot.

    1. all Indian mithais including kaju katli appear simple on paper but they are never simple to make- I speak from experience 🙂 I think your cashews were not grinded well (use a spice grinder, works very well) and also you over-cooked the mixture hence harder. Practice makes you perfect, please try again.

  6. 5 stars
    Hi Manali,

    I made this and it was a huge success so ventured to make it a second time. As my spice grinder died! I decided to use my food processed and have half the mixture with fine fry cashew flour and the other half with chunky cashew pieces with the oil out. Would you have any suggestions on how to use the half I cannot use for the mithai?

  7. Thanks so much for this recipe! I made it yesterday and it was perfect except it was a bit too sweet. I used 150 g sugar. If I reduce the sugar to 100g, do I need to reduce the water too?

    1. The recipe calls for 100 grams sugar only and not 150 grams, I think you got confused 🙂 The cashews are 150 grams. so just follow the recipe as it is.

      1. Sorry, it was a typo! I did follow the recipe but would like to reduce the sugar to 50-75 gm. Should I reduce the water as well?

      2. do 75 grams, use same water, again haven’t tested so can’t say 100% that it will turn out okay

  8. I tried kaju katli but oil started oozing out when I was kneading the dough.
    Why do you think this happened??kindly let know please. Thanks.

  9. I tried the recipe and it came out perfect but have a question y my kaju katli did not hv a strong taste of cashew.. Had a very mild taste of cashew.. I did not use rose water. Can u help?

    1. that’s a very unique question and unfortunately I have no explanation for this. The recipe literally doesn’t have anything in it besides cashews so why wouldn’t it taste of cashews, that’s strange to say the least. Maybe your cashews were old and didn’t have much flavor to being with. That’s the only explanation I can think of.

  10. 5 stars
    I tried this recipe today and it turned out perfect.. Just like the store kaju katli… Thanks for this recipe ??

  11. Hi Manali, yours receipe looks realistic, I mean I’ve tried it looking at some other video but it didn’t set as they told to switch off the gas immediately after adding cashews. Still i have a question, however careful we are, my mixie leaves oil very early, my mother used to make kaju barfi by soaking kaju in milk for one hour, grind it into batter and start cooking it with sugar? Want to try that way, what’s your opinion?

    1. Hi Sushma, you can try that way. I have always made my kaju katli this way so I can’t say how that process will go. But you can try!

  12. 5 stars
    Manali I made kaju Katli following your recipe and came out beautiful and delicious. This was my first recipe from your blog.

  13. 5 stars
    Manali, Kaju Katli is the first recipe I tried from your blog and it turned out perfect. Thank you for all the tips and for posting a tried and tested recipe. Your description and photos made it a lot easier.

    It was a tad too sweet for our taste, but that is just a personal preference.

  14. That looks like an easy way to make Katli. I can never get the “string” consistency right.
    Where do you get the edible silver?

  15. I agree with Kathy! I want to be your neighbor so I can enjoy all of your delicious treats. This fudge sounds wonderful.

  16. My goodness….how do you keep turning out such fabulous recipes? You must cook all day long every day! I need to move next to you so I can get all your samples!

  17. this looks delicious! and those edible silver leaves are the coolest! I have never used them before! 😉

  18. Hahaha, As a child, I just LOVED Kaju Katli, and still it is in one of my favorites. Yours look so beautiful and YUMMY!

  19. Wow these sweets look delicious Manali! I adore cashews, so I can tell I’m going to love this fudgy treat! I can’t wait to try it!

  20. I love your Diwali recipes Manali! These “cookies” look awesome! And I’m a huge fan of these silver edible leaves, I love anything blinky!

  21. I am loving all of these Diwali recipes, Manali…I’m learning about so many different awesome foods! Now I just need them to magically appear in my kitchen, too. 🙂

  22. The fact that these are made with cashews has already won me over. I just love them. This is so beautifully presented too.

  23. What a pretty fudge, Manali! I love the presentation of this. Sounds delicious, too! I think I could munch on this all day long!