Karachi Biscuits

Eggless Fruit Cookies, also known as Karachi Biscuits are popular tea time cookies and filled with tutti frutti (candied dried papaya).
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Eggless Fruit Biscuits, also known as Karachi Biscuits are popular tea time cookies. They are stuffed with tutti frutti (candied dried papaya) and usually enjoyed with a cup of hot chai. They also make great edible gifts for the holidays!

karachi biscuits arranged in a plate

These Karachi Biscuits always remind me of Diwali, because we used to get several boxes of these as gifts. Like the Danish butter cookies, these tutti frutti cookies were also very popular to give as gifts to friends and family. I always used to finish the entire box of these biscuits in no time.

These crispy cookies are filled with tutti frutti and flavored with pineapple or rose essence. If you don’t know what tutti frutti is, you might want to look at some other recipes that I have shared on the blog using them like the Tutti Frutti Sooji Cake, Tutti Frutti Burfi Roll. These are candied dried papaya and often used in baked goods, sweets and pastries in India.

This recipe is pretty simple and straight forward and uses basic pantry ingredients. One ingredient which you need for this recipe and it might not be available in your pantry all the time is custard powder (vanilla flavor). The other one if of course tutti frutti. You can find tutti frutti at most Indian grocery stores. These make a great snack and also well with a cup of chai or cold milk.

Ingredients

Flour: these biscuits are made with all purpose flour. You can use whole wheat flour but resulting cookies won’t be as light as the one made with all purpose flour.

Custard powder: For this recipe, use vanilla custard powder. My favorite brand is Brown & Polson which you can find at most grocery stores. If you are using a mango custard powder or any of the fruity flavors, I would skip on the essence and use just little bit of vanilla.

Pineapple essence: this essence is my essence of choice for karachi biscuits but mango and rose essence will also work well in this recipe.

Sugar: for this recipe, I pulse granulated white sugar in a blender and then used that. Do not replace with powdered or icing sugar. However, if you have caster sugar (which is super fine sugar), you can use that directly in the recipe.

Tutti Frutti: these usually come in orange, red and green color. You can find them at Indian grocery stores, sometimes in the refrigerator section.

unbaked karachi biscuits arranged in a wooden plate

Method

1- To a bowl add 1 & 1/2 cups all purpose flour (195 grams), 1/4 cup vanilla custard powder (32 grams), 1/4 teaspoon cardamom powder and 3/4 teaspoon baking powder. Remember to add 1/4 teaspoon salt as well if using unsalted butter. I did not use it since I was using salted butter.

2- Stir using a wire whisk until everything is well combined combined.

3- Add 1 stick butter (113 grams) to the steel bowl of your stand mixer. Add 3/4 cup sugar (150 grams). This is granulated white sugar which was run through a blender to get it into a powdered form. Do not confuse it with powdered sugar/icing sugar. You can also use caster sugar in place.

4- Using the paddle attachment of your stand mixer (or use your hand mixer), beat butter and powdered sugar until creamy and smooth. Add 3/4 to 1 teaspoon pineapple essence and mix until combined.

step by step picture collage of making karachi biscuits at home

5- Now add in the flour mix and 3/4 cup tutti frutti and mix until combined.

6- Then add 3 tablespoons of milk and mix until it comes together as a dough.

7- You can need more or less amount of milk, so start with 2 tablespoons and add more as needed. I had a soft dough with 3 tablespoons of milk.

8- Divide the dough into 2 equal parts.

step by step picture collage of making karachi biscuits at home

9- Then roll each part into a log of around 8 inches long.

10- Wrap the logs with a cling sheet and freeze for 30 minutes or refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours. You can even refrigerate overnight.

11- Take out the dough logs after they have chilled and slice into cookies, around 1/4 inch thick. You would get 40 to 50 cookies depending on how thick or thin you slice them.

12- Pre-heat oven to 350 F degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and arrange the sliced cookies on it. You would need to bake these in 2 batches.

Bake at 350 F degrees for 15 to 17 minutes on until light golden brown from the bottom. Don’t overbake else they will turn super crispy. 15 to 16 minutes is the sweet spot for me but every oven is different so bake accordingly. Also cookies appear soft when you take them out of the oven but firm and crisp up as they cool.

Let them cool completely on a wire rack and then enjoy!

step by step picture collage of making karachi biscuits at home

Storage

Once the biscuits are completely cooled, store Karachi biscuits in an airtight container. They would stay good for 10 days or more. But we finish them way before that time.

You can even store them in the fridge and they might last longer that way.

Tips & Notes

  • If you don’t have pineapple essence, you can use rose or mango essence in place. Either these work well. Vanilla is also okay but definitely recommend using pineapple, rose or mango for that fruity touch since these are dried fruit cookies.
  • Sometimes, I add cashews to these cookies. They give a nice crunch. Roughly chop cashews and then add them to the dough along with the tutti frutti.
  • You can make the dough up to 24 to 36 hours in advance. You can even freeze the dough for 2 to 3 weeks in advance. When baking straight from the freezer, add an additional 1 to 2 minutes to the baking time.
  • Do not overbake these cookies else they might turn very crispy. Start with 15 minutes and go from there. I usually bake for around 16 minutes in my oven.
stack of karachi biscuits with a glass of chai in the background

This post has been updated from the recipe archives, first published in April 2016.

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Karachi Biscuits

karachi biscuits arranged in a plate
Manali
Eggless Fruit Cookies, also known as Karachi Biscuits are popular tea time cookies and filled with tutti frutti (candied dried papaya).
5 from 12 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Freezing time 28 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Course Cookies
Cuisine Indian
Servings 40 cookies
Calories 35 kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 & 1/2 cups all purpose flour 195 grams
  • 1/4 cup custard powder 32 grams, vanilla custard powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cardamom powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup/1 stick butter 113 grams, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup granulated white sugar 150 grams, powdered
  • 3/4-1 teaspoon pineapple essence or use rose essence
  • 3/4 cup tutti frutti
  • 3 tablespoons milk or as needed, I used whole milk

Instructions
 

  • Take a large bowl and to that add 1 & 1/2 cups all purpose flour (195 grams), 1/4 cup vanilla custard powder (32 grams), 1/4 teaspoon cardamom powder and 3/4 teaspoon baking powder. Also add 1/4 teaspoon salt as well if using unsalted butter.
    Use a wire whisk and mix until everything is well combined combined.
  • Add 1 stick butter (113 grams) to the steel bowl of your stand mixer. Make sure it is at room temperature, along with 3/4 cup sugar (150 grams). This is granulated white sugar which was powdered using a blender.
    Using the paddle attachment of your stand mixer (or use your hand mixer), beat butter and powdered sugar until creamy and smooth. Add 3/4 to 1 teaspoon pineapple essence and mix until combined.
  • Add in the flour mix along with 3/4 cup tutti frutti and mix until combined.
  • Add 3 tablespoons of milk and mix until it comes together as a dough. You may need less or more milk so start with 2 tablespoons and add more as needed. Once the dough comes together, divide the dough into 2 equal parts.
  • Roll each part into a log, around 8 inches in length. Wrap the logs with a cling sheet and freeze for 30 minutes or refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours. You can even refrigerate overnight.
  • Once chilled, take out the dough logs and slice into cookies, around 1/4 inch thick. You would get 40 to 50 cookies depending on how thick or thin you slice them.
    Pre-heat oven to 350 F degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and arrange the sliced cookies on it. You would need to bake these in 2 batches.
  • Bake at 350 F degrees for 15 to 17 minutes on until light golden brown from the bottom. Don't overbake else they will turn super crispy. 15 to 16 minutes is the sweet spot for me but every oven is different so bake accordingly. Let them cool completely on a wire rack and then store in an airtight container.

Notes

  • Rose essence or mango essence can be used in place of pineapple essence.
  • You can add nuts like cashews to these biscuits too. Roughly chop them before adding to the dough.
  • The dough logs can be made in advance. If storing in the fridge you can refrigerated for up to 48 hours in advance. They can be frozen for up to a month.

Nutrition

Calories: 35kcalCarbohydrates: 8gProtein: 1gFat: 0.1gSaturated Fat: 0.03gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.02gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.02gTrans Fat: 0.002gCholesterol: 0.5mgSodium: 1mgPotassium: 20mgFiber: 0.2gSugar: 4gVitamin A: 2IUVitamin C: 0.01mgCalcium: 7mgIron: 0.2mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @cookwithmanali or tag #cookwithmanali!

110 thoughts on “Karachi Biscuits

  1. 5 stars
    Hi…I loooove this recipe and have tried it couple times. But this time of year it gets hot here in India. Today I doubled the recipe and the dough has become a bit runny. I have kept the dough in the refrigerator for now to let the butter solidify a bit and make the dough workable. Waiting now for the same to happen.
    Can you suggest what else can we do off this happens ?

    1. hmm it could be the weather, putting it in the fridge should help. next time, keep a close eye on the butter and don’t let it sit at room temperature for very long (especially since it’s hot in India).

      1. Thanks for the reply. I made the batch today and it’s turned out fine. I had actually had butter outside for a while(lazy me). Your recipes are awesome…. thanks a ton??

  2. 5 stars
    Wow Miss Manali your recipes are so amazing. Fantastic presentation and very well explained. I really liked whatever I saw today.

  3. Hi Manali,

    They look absolutely gorgeous ! May I ask if I can use vanilla essence instead of pineapple or rose ?

  4. 5 stars
    Will they smell like the Karachi biscuits.
    Evertime I opened the box and the smell just wave over my room. Please lemme know and really thanks for the awesome recipe… ? <3

  5. Hi jst tried d recepie today…taste ws prfct but..dnt know it cme out properly….mine is otg oven….150 c ws evn good..but they spreaded nd were lill chewy not crispy…plz help….

    1. hmm they should crisp as they cool down..maybe your oven temperature setting is little off? and you needed to bake at a higher temperature or for a longer period of time?

  6. 5 stars
    Hi Manali. D recipie is simple awaome. But one question: 1.5 cup all purpose flour means one and half cup na?. Is der any alternative for butter?

    1. yeah 1.5 cups is 1 and half cup..no replacement for butter here, it gives these cookies a nice flavor so I highly recommend using it..

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