Thandai Recipe For Holi

Thandai Recipe For Holi

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Thandai, the name itself means "cooling" in Hindi.
Thandai is one of the most refreshing summer drink served during Holi!

The use of peppercorn, almonds, fennel seeds, poppy seeds along with saffron, cardamom and rose water is what gives a punch to very refreshing and delicious drink!


  • 18 Almonds, soaked overnight in water
  • 2 Tablespoons poppy seeds & melon seeds, soaked overnight
  • 14 Cashew nuts
  • 8 Pistachios (Pista), unsalted
  • 4 Black peppercorns (Sabot kali mirch)
  • 4 Green cardamom pods, husks removed, seeds retained
  • 1 Teaspoon fennel seeds (saunf)
  • 16 Dried rose petals
  • 1 Liter whole milk, or full-cream milk (about 4 cups)
  • 1⁄4 Cup sugar
  • 1 Pinch saffron, soaked in 1 tablespoon warm milk

Cooking Method

  1. Soak almonds in water to cover. Separately, soak poppy seeds and melon seeds in ½ cup water. Leave overnight. 
  2. Peel almonds. Place drained almonds, cashew nuts, pistachios, poppy seeds, and melon seeds in a grinder. Grind to a fine paste adding a bit of milk, as needed, to run the blender / wet grinder.
  3. Separately, place black peppercorns, seeds from green cardamoms, fennel seeds, and dried rose petals in a grinder. Grind to a fine powder.
  4. Bring milk to a boil in a medium saucepan and add sugar. Stir till completely dissolved. Add nut paste to the saucepan and stir to combine while breaking any lumps that might form. Simmer for 4 to 5 minutes. Toss in grind spice powder (reserving ½ teaspoon) and simmer for another minute. Remove from heat.
  5. Stir in saffron along with its soaking milk. Set aside to cool to room temperature, allowing the flavors to develop. Chill in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 hours. Pour into 4 glasses and add a pinch of the reserved spice powder into each glass. Serve immediately.


Besides the fact, this Thandai recipe is yum, this luscious thirst quencher is packed with some healthy stuff. It – 

  • Provides energy – melon seeds, almonds, cashews, and pistachios.
  • Boost Immunity – spices like peppercorn, cardamom, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
  • Helps fight infection
  • It has a cooling effect on the body – fennel seeds, saffron, and rose petals.
  • Detoxifies the body – cardamom.
  • Aids in digestion too – poppy seeds.
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